Tag Archives: people

What makes advice strategic and great?

2 Sep

truthFirstly what is advice then?

The dictionary describes advice as being; an opinion or recommendation offered as a guide to action, conduct or way ahead. Therefore, strategic advice is an opinion, or a recommendation, that will give you an advantage over others, leverage, or a way to action what you intend to do.

It’s therefore not a Hot cliché – the likes of; “Inspire your team” and you will reap the benefits, “feedback is the breakfast of champions”, we have all heard these, always a winner, “great leadership advice”, but how do you pull that off anyway, if all of these clichés stem from attributes of strategy and not elements, if you have no report with a team yet, how can you inspire them? So is it still great advice or even advice at all? No!

No cliché is ever great or even good advice, or even advice for that matter, its sales talk and not great advice at all; great advice is something that takes us from cradle to grave. Giving good advice means turning the power of situational analysis on, creating insight, and understanding, and transferring that into straight, clear, actionable answers. Things that you can do in practice…

Now, if you think about it, most things in life then starts with us having to go/ or say “YES” to it, first, yes is somehow the prelude to any possible action. We normally seek advice on actionable items in our environment, or life, and business for that matter. That requires us to do, think and feel positive about it, so that we can say yes to it.

Yes, I will marry you – for instance is just a great example of how you have to commit, to an actionable decision, and start working towards making it work, and then making it a success, and them making it last – sustainable… that’s the whole process in a nut shell. So yes, and saying yes, requires us to seek advice.

This aspect of strategy – and almost everything we as living things do is part or becomes strategy that is driven by a desire to survive, prosper, and expand.  Early on in life I already realised that planning is the way to get what you want or need, and most of that did not come from books, or training, but trial and error, so too most of what I know about leadership didn’t come from having read (several) business books, any formal education, or things that I read up on or conferences or seminars  attended, or even leaders I have met, knew and worked with.

It came from self determination, a positive outlook, resilience, patience – is a virtue – its the learned ability to apply discipline to your thoughts when they become anxious over the outcome of a goal. Impatience breeds anxiety, fear, discouragement and failure and a mind-set that get one to go, and say yes, requires positive karma. (Karma is the total effect of a person’s actions – good and bad – and conduct – or lack thereof – during the successive phases of the person’s existence, that brings about good or bad things, emanating from energy, that goes where attention flows. So if you practice good, and concentrate on good – you will multiply same, and so to with bad.)

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Is Management Clutching at Straws with Performance Management?

10 Oct

Effective paradigms are required from managers today when looking at resolving these issues of performance management. Especially when looking at the strength and weakness in manager’s, and their beliefs, or paradigms when attempting to get their people to perform, or to get better performance – from individuals and groups – by exposing them to performance management systems.


First off what exactly is performance?


 Performance is synonymous, and equates to; an act, routine, or a show. So how crucial is it to have actors, performers and showmen in your organisation to get people to produce results?


 Performance is also defined as; The accomplishment of a given task measured against preset known standards of accuracy, completeness, cost, and speed.

Okay, so it is a key element of competition and survival of the fittest – performance.

When we start talking about performance, then we start talking about statistics, comparisons, and therefor benchmarking.

Benchmarking is the process of determining who sets the standard and what that standard is, and how it will be measured. It is done to motivate people to improve performance toward reaching a goal. If this is the case? Then benchmarking becomes a focal point (a standard against which something can be measured or assessed) towards realizing somekind of performance. this practice is also supposedly supposed to inform us of what is expected from us, and how much of it, what is the criteria, that will justify performance?

Without benchmarked performance, we cannot speak of performance. We have to have a measure to measure performance with, before we can say we are performing. Performance statistics speak extremely well and inform us on; who is the better, who is best, and who gets to say they are the overall best?

Now we have entered the viper pit again, it’s back to school school for us all, where people were forced to compete, and only very few ever did – successfully. Because, in order for someone to win, and this lesson we all learned very early on, someone ells, or several of us will have to lose. So we will create a lot of losers every day, and only have one winner again. How  does this aspect want to motivate people again? Contrary to belief, very few of us like this, competition, or want competition at all. Therefore,  does performance really matter (if it does not matter to all involved) if we end up with many losers, especially as an objective way to measure several humans (groups) production with?

Is this healthy competition in the making, or even a good and sound management principle…we are looking into following, and is it a fair / legal way to get better performance?

The key to getting better performance is to build a bridge between; the now, and the future, that will never go down or slump, that will consistently grow in an ever upward direction, this is the ideal situation. The whole idea, however, in reality the thing with ideas is this, it’s never buried in just that one sold solution, in this instance called “performance management”, or ever a substitute consistent in maintaining an improved effective focus on consistent production increase, and it never will be, as it impacts directly on dwindling resources, a none sustainable growth path. Let me explain…

Let’s start by just looking at the facts; about this one issue/ or aspect called performance. When people hear performance they quiver, it equates to stress for sure, longer hours, less pay/ play /sleep.  Even potential confrontation and people are generally exploited when they are performance managed. So it’s stigmatised as well.

However, competition is still healthy and endorsed by all things living, (whether we ourselves choose to join in or not) to compete against others for resources, domination, survival, a partner, and just plain self gratification – is common and entrenched practice.

It also filters into aspects like “enhancement”; how we enhance our probability to get what we want with what we have consistently. Enhancing our probability in terms of our capacity and capability is key to success; as humans, groups, families, and even organisations. What do we have or need to get what we want and what we need? Speaks to the issues of capacity and capability enhancement, these two aspects are always limited, in one way or the other.  Now here is n path we can pursue, that of enhancement of capabilities, and capacity. This can constitute, any means or advantage well utilised to become leverage for us; on the physical side we could look at attributes like; height, speed, strength, agility, and beauty – and ways to enhance them, or utilise them as leverage. On the mental side, mental endurance, insight, stamina, will-power, knowledge, capability, wisdom, etc. Then in the nature of things; economical, military, situation, means, financial, etc, we look at finding a supply and demand aspect. Anything that creates leverage to be used…

Strength and weakness are the two portals that open up to many possibilities; therefore can and will encompass many attributes; one can start by mentioning both the physical and abstracts. Strength can also be a weakness, or become one, and so to weakness, the same can become strength.

The Ancients explained it as mixtures of Yin and Yang, of one like the other but different. The seen and unseen, both good and bad, opposites of one thing, that unite to form one thing at one time, either strength or weakness.

In life, as in business we all compete daily. In many fashions, anything ranging for space to walk on the side walk, or to be first in the queue… No matter how subtle or ferocious, we are designed to compete, where the rules and factors of contest remain shifting, we then start to strategise –to plot and plan the way to get ahead. Absolutely nothing remains stagnant in this process, especially in business, where the strong becomes the weaker in an instant, and the weak becomes stronger in changing cycles of day and month. Then the gravity of strategy becomes tremendous and evident. Then Strategic change becomes science, and performance enhancement the tool to steer it with, so that we don’t succumb to the gravity of strategy. Where we rely on both our strength and a perceived weakness, to reach the objective; through the use of experience, and with calculations, then our thinking and planning is brought about by situational aspects in flux; being of any and many origins, from the physical, mental, economic, and other factors and influences that we factor in to our thinking and planning, that we deem appropriate and prevalent, it all unites to create strategic mystery, a perceptive situation. We think what we see/ think is real, only when we test it do we get the results…

Then it stands to reason that we can influence things and people, to force them to become either; weak, or weaker, or strong, and even stronger. Just by changing their perception/paradigms, and thereby start influencing relationships, so that they create the situations we desire to exist. That we can manipulate, with the leverage we have, to our benefit and even liking.

Competition dictates that if we can gauge and predict certain key situational /aspects in flux/ change/ movement correctly, and influence them, then we can change the outcome. In a game of Soccer for instance, if we can figure out and then know that the ball has to go away from us and into the net on the opposing side, and that equal a win, then we control one aspect of the game. If we can predict with a great certainty the flow of the side (river), and then build a defence (dam wall) and divert the flow as we please, strong to weak, too even none. Then we control yet anther aspect. The more aspects we control the better we stay in control. This is the principle – control as many aspects of your environment possible. When we start this process of enhancement, it starts with control, by merely linking certain common attributes of, (for instance) business design to concepts like structure and job descriptions, if we do this for instance, then we create organisation – an enhancement in business design for instance. Now we also control who needs to do what, where, when, how, and how much of it, we have created a performance benchmark. We can do this and everything else we wish or desire to change, and create the reality we desire, by taking control. If we can create models of any contemplated aspect of a company design and relate it back to a physical form, then we control it, why not elements in flux, to see where the opposition or our own strategy is strong and weak.

Then on to the next step, start by identifying and studying the relationship between these concepts and controls you have, because concepts have their objectives, sharing between resources, training, organisation, skills, and planning etc. Then we will be able to get a better idea of what is creating – strength and weakness –because of our controls and strategy, by merely segmenting and identifying these links as aspects relating to concepts to people we want to enhance, rather than performance manage. People are not at all good at following rules either, especially when feeling compelled… they are much better at, and open to development and enhancement…initiatives

Their abstracts of reasoning get informed of a better reality, if they too have some measure of control over aspects of their own work, it becomes a win-win situation. Only by asking the right questions relating to performance; do we find the key to enhancements. Then people will join, with where are they hoping to go with it, and us, opposed to this is it, let’s go, and them getting insight on what are they doing both right and wrong to get to their objectives, and targets. This becomes the germination point of performance enhancement, when people get to buy-in. Performance enhancement speaks to human traits and beliefs, this type of belief and hope sprouts excitement, the mutual and exclusive benefits to co-operative work, team work, and performance…becomes transparent, and people thrive on knowledge and information…

The picture becomes clear, only when we can better understand the abstracts of performance deficits in our own strategy, and mind set, that’s when strategy becomes concrete and factual to us / useful, when it serves a purpose shared by all. It is widely believed that shared vision, creates supreme mental energy/ imagery UN-stoppable, and unites extreme efforts to achieve collectively the main aims together with. Opposed to the other reality of performance management where only one person wins, (gets the fat bonus, and credit) the rest suffer. Performance enhancement becomes a FOCUSED INTENT. It focuses collectives, resources, management and all aspects into one intent. We deal better as people with the factual basis of argument, than with hypothesis, as opposed to hypotheses and assumptions with finding solutions with.

We have now successfully identified the two crucial aspects of disseminating a design for enhanced performance criteria, and defined the physical and abstracts strengths and weakness of the adversary – our own mind, our perceptions and paradigms on motivating people.

Also Read

A Standard Operating Procedure for Strategic, Security, Emergency, Disaster & Event Management Planning.

22 Apr


Emergency & Disaster, Event Management Planning.


No portion of this document may be used, sold or otherwise reproduced or disseminated for any other purpose as what it was initially intended for, no person has any rights to this document, and it is not considered a public document, no one else will be considered a rightful user. All rights to this document in terms of the Protection of Information Act, 1982 83



This article is aimed at those who want to arrange a huge event, and need some more than just the basic info on how to and what to do… This article will serve as a practical guide, for those who will concern themselves more with the security, emergency and disaster management aspects of any event.

I have found that by only following a textbook formula one can’t ensure continued safety, and readiness, at any type of event and for a simple reason: in any dynamic situation, performance is fundamentally relative, and becomes absolute at the point where we have no competition. Then, we dance to our own tune, and at our own pace. What am I getting at? With events you have one of every discipline, and each stick to its own. No two entities compete directly, and therefore they don’t have to perform at their peak. In fact, lasting performance of exceptional quality is largely a mental picture, a perception; a statistical anomaly. The simple fact is that no formula can guarantee continued sustainable performance, at least not in a competitive business environment where everything has a life cycle.

So, when you hire a security company, by referral, and they come highly recommended, don’t rest on your laurels either, and just assume they will perform same or better that what was expected. Things change fast; key people resign, owners sell companies, or they just get cheaper labour, or less qualified, especially when their popularity grow, and they become over stretched by the demand. This applies to all your potential service providers, especially in the events industry, those that you will be dealing with during any event need some credit. Credentials are a must then, and referrals say something more, specifically the latest, they say in this industry you are only as good as your very last performance…and it stays true.

The belief that strategic choices only made in the boardroom will directly affect the quality of a business concept, especially at grassroots level, and then the world if it is properly implemented. Where its success equates directly to the results of great planning, especially project or either strategic, is totally flawed.  Any plan is only as good as the first few minutes it was written in, and then immediately implemented.

As more and more time lapse,  between the conception and implementation time frames, then naturally, the more time you put between planning and execution, the more the variables change, and keep changing. Thus, planning never the less remains an indispensible part of  any great endeavor, and an ongoing effort, either way it remains indispensable. The results of planning will only be reflecting the degree of precision and good decision making, and then only how effective it was executed under conditions of ambiguity that tends to change the shape of things in the heat of battle, at the instance where we go over to action, and execution, it is only then that we really see the true factors that impact on our plan, those things just outside our control, only when we hit the ground running, do we feel what we are running on, the grass, or stones for the first time. Change and influences ( both internal as well as external) will always, certainly, be the factors we cannot gauge with perfect certainty, if one thing changes, then everything normally follows on, and then it tends to change the overall plans perspective.

Strategic event management; is described as organised chaos in motion; choice is inevitably an exercise in decision making under conditions of uncertainty, of which the objective is not to find workable solutions only, and to guaranteed success, but rather to improve the odds of making it all the way without serious incidents, accidents, emergencies, and disasters,  through a thoughtful consideration of factors and influences that could mitigate them, or render then nun and void. Strategic event management and planning,  should never just be focused on gain, and rewards, the big compensation. Where event management companies focus only on reward, and rewarding executives for being lucky, and getting an event done, and pulling it off, without having had a fraction of what the law, requires, and otherwise stipulated, then as we all know somehow luck tends to run out at the most crucial point. The people die… Then only do we see the true value and necessity for security, emergency and disaster management and mitigation strategies.  We need something different added to our strategic focus, especially where people in large numbers are concerned.  Then we need a structure, some STANDARD OPPERATING PROCEDURES, for all to see, and follow during EVENTS.

Many countries have legislation in place, however more still doesn’t, that cover events from cradle to grave. Still, even with legislative compliance in place, you can never be sure that every event will comply 100%, and the first place they cut corners is on safety, security, and disaster mitigation. It is still just a bare minimum standard of security.  The very uniqueness and nature of events makes it very unpredictable, even at the best of times. The problem with this is, we deal with people, and aspects like liquor use, drugs, guns, crime, political issues, could be the catalyst for something better and bigger to follow. The other aspects are unseen; adverse weather, exposed electricity, structural failures, fire, arson, gas explosions, lightning, flood water, sinkholes, etc…

Therefore, we need to opt for self organisation and true professionalism…when planning and designing major events…

Firstly we need to familiarise ourselves with the industry and their acronyms. Continue reading

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