Managers are Born

Of course managers are not born. But the way a number of new managers and their organisations carry on, you would actually think some people arrive as managers from the womb. There is this consciously and unconsciously emitted aura around a manager that seems to suggest that being a manager is the exclusive preserve of a rare about-to-be-extinct species from outer space. We have inadvertently (I hope) mystified the managers’ role and this is to the detriment of younger managers and their organisations. Paradoxically, great built-to-last institutions … [Read more...]

Changing a Job is a Job (Part 2)

The first part of this two-part article focused on the work and principles shared by Herminia Ibara in her book, Working Identity. Loads of people would like to reinvent their working lives but don’t know the steps to take and when they do know, they aren’t certain of the outcomes of those steps. Herminia asserts that, “most of us know what we are trying to escape: the lockstep of a narrowly defined career, inauthentic or unstimulating work, numbing corporate politics, a lack of time for life outside of work. Finding an alternative that truly fits, like … [Read more...]

Changing a Job is a Job

My antenna is always roaming to and fro seeking for new or disruptive ideas that seem to question well-worn methods or beliefs. Less than ten years ago I stumbled on this research published in the Harvard Business Review (HBR). It had the title, How to stay stuck in the wrong career and was the work by Herminia Ibara. Some few years ago I decided to buy her book, Working Identity, in which she expounded on the research. To aid assimilation of her concept, this article is a copious, largely unedited version of Herminia’s work as published in HBR. Who … [Read more...]

Must I Obtain a Master’s Degree?

Lest we be accused of ‘playing the flute while Rome burns’ it is pertinent that we take a swipe at this topic and attempt to kindle light  through the maze.  A lot of fresh graduates and mid to senior level professionals are either asking themselves this question or are making this decision every day. The decision about whether one needs to obtain a Master’s degree or not is an ongoing, unresolved, debate and the earlier we devise a customizable template the better for a lot of people. Likewise the decision about which Master’s degree to choose and the … [Read more...]

The Ultimate Hiring Question: Why Should Anyone Hire You? (2)

I should be hired because of the knowledge that I possess. When it is said that someone knows his onions it means that he or she is experienced or knowledgeable in one's field or in the matter at hand. Particularly because we live in a knowledge-driven society, the knowledge that a person has has become a source of differentiation. For the entry-level person there is something I call knowledge-above-the-expected. At that level, fresh from school or NYSC, employers don’t expect that you would know much; they would give allowances for errors and some … [Read more...]

The Ultimate Hiring Question: Why Should Anyone Hire You?

Let’s call her name Chikodi. She came to see me the other day. I had asked her fiancé to ask her to see me for a chat. Chikodi was (at the time of this meet) 24yrs old (I think); had spent over a year post-NYSC without a job and had a second class upper degree. My objective in this discussion was to help unravel the internal and external (excluding spiritual though) factors that may have ‘helped’ her situation and to assist in charting next steps. And this is what I discovered. Chikodi admitted that, while in the university and also NYSC, she never … [Read more...]

Beyond Business Model: Why A People Model Will Be The Next Differentiator (2)

This is the concluding part of the series 'Beyond Business Model: Why A People Model Will Be The Next Differentiator'. If you missed the first part, you can click here to read it. I strongly suggest you do for proper understanding of what's going to be discussed in this article. Inspiration and values. This speaks of quality of leadership; organizational values & behaviours; reputation of organization; risk sharing; recognition and communication. Would you channel your “discretionary effort” into your work if you believed that your organization’s … [Read more...]