In an ideal world, professional conflicts are settled with thoughtful discussion and collaborative decision-making. But that’s not usually how it works. More typically, you see leaders - or the loudest voices - win out, leaving others resentful. And sometimes people don’t even try to hash out differences of opinion; they’d prefer to avoid a fight. Bo Seo, two-time world champion debater, says we can learn to disagree in healthier, more effective ways that ultimately generate better outcomes for teams, customers, and shareholders. Seo is also the author of the book “Good Arguments: How Debate Teaches us to Listen and Be Heard.”
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A weekly podcast featuring the leading thinkers in business and management from Harvard Business Review.
Despite the investments made in the last few years, many companies are falling short of their diversity, equity, and inclusion aims. Some firms have faced difficulty spreading their DEI efforts top-down throughout the organization. Trier Bryant, the cofounder and CEO of Just Work, details why and shares a framework that teams and individuals can use to fight bias on the day-to-day level at work.
Kathryn Judge, a finance professor at Columbia Law School, is troubled by the rise of intermediary platforms between products and services and the customers who eventually purchase them. Thanks to technology and globalization, she shows how the importance of “middlemen” in the value chain has increased, along with the length of global supply chains. Judge details the downsides and risks of this trend. And she explains how customers and workers alike can lead to intermediaries offering more transparency and social value. Judge wrote the book "Direct: The Rise of the Middleman Economy and the Power of Going to the Source.”
In eras past, the United States welcomed immigrant laborers to build and support the country's infrastructure and innovators and entrepreneurs to advance its businesses and technology. And yet immigration is a hot-button issue today, with many saying it's a drain on the U.S. economy. Ran Abramitzky, a professor at Stanford University, and Leah Boustan, a professor at Princeton, looked at decades of data to understand the real impact that immigrants and their descendants have on America today. Their findings dispel several modern-day myths and suggest that not just political but also corporate leaders need to push for more rational rhetoric and policies. Abramitzky and Boustan are the authors of "Streets of Gold: America's Untold Story of Immigrant Success."
Underperforming state agencies, a natural disaster, and a pandemic are among the many challenges that faced Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and his former Chief of Staff Steve Kadish. Looking back during the final year of the Baker Administration, they say running a government is very different and often much harder than leading a private-sector company. And they share their four-part framework for breaking down complicated problems with many stakeholders to get results. It’s valuable for anyone in public service, as well as for leaders and managers in large organizations hamstrung by bureaucracy and politics. Baker and Kadish wrote the new book "Results: Getting Beyond Politics to Get Important Work Done."
It feels like a moment of panic for many. While there were some success stories in how public and private sector leaders managed the global pandemic, it isn't over, and many more crises -- from political polarization to climate change to new technological threats -- loom. But one leading political scientist is hopeful that countries and corporations can find ways to overcome their divisions and better collaborate on our most pressing issues over next ten years. He points to historic precedents and makes specific recommendations for the future, noting that in areas where political divisions cause roadblocks, it will be up to corporate leaders to ensure progress. Ian Bremmer is the president and founder of the Eurasia Group and author of the book "“The Power of Crisis: How Three Threats – and Our Response – Will Change the World.”
It's a cliche, but they say it's best to write what you know. That was the case for comedian Sarah Cooper, who rose to viral social media fame in the Trump era through her lip sync TikTok videos. She formerly worked at Yahoo and Google, and she found her way into comedy, in part, by looking at and pointing out the absurdities of corporate culture. She speaks about how humor helped her manage a team, why she took the big risk to quit her job, and how she's navigating the new work world of Hollywood. Cooper is the author of the forthcoming book "Let's Catch Up Soon: How I Won Friends and Influenced People Against My Will."
We’re all prone to procrastinate. We feel guilty about it. And yet, we still do it. Alice Boyes, a clinical psychologist and author, says breaking the habit is more than simply a matter of discipline. She explains the different causes of procrastination and shares three approaches to beat it: through habits, emotions, and thought patterns. Boyes wrote the book Stress-Free Productivity and the HBR article “How to Stop Procrastinating.”
Not everyone likes everything about their job all the time. But we know from research that people who are energized by at least parts of their work perform better – and feel a greater sense of well-being. So there’s a huge benefit when teams and organizations encourage employees to spend more of their work day focused on their strengths and passions. In this special series from HBR, we’re looking at how to figure out what you really love about work and craft your current job around that. In this episode, we’re scaling up from self-help for individuals to advice for managers and explaining how they can balance these efforts with business goals. IdeaCast co-host Alison Beard speaks with Marcus Buckingham, head of research on people and performance at the ADP Research Institute and author of the new book Love + Work.
Most managers today are overwhelmed. Thanks to rapid technological change, flattening hierarchies, agile work, and new attitudes about talent, they have to do more than ever. Lynda Gratton, professor at London Business School and the founder of HSM, points to a few ways we can solve the problem: by training bosses to be people leaders, outsourcing some of their mundane management tasks, and even splitting the role so some oversee work and others focus on talent development. Gratton is the author of the book Redesigning Work and coauthor along with Diane Gherson of the HBR article “Managers Can’t Do It All.”