By Ben Schneider - 22/12/2015

All business leaders are convinced that an organization can only remain competitive by developing the ability to learn more and more, therefore guaranteeing sustained, continuous improvement. And yet even companies that have managed to carve out an enviable position in the field of learning find it difficult to hold on to this status for any length of time.

Why is it so difficult to consolidate the reputation of a "company dedicated to learning"? Why are organizations unable to sustain practices that reinforce their learning culture?

By Ben Schneider - 23/12/2014

War games

By Ben Schneider - 24/11/2014

 

According to a recent survey conducted by Gallup in the United States, adults laugh much more at weekends than on work days. While children laugh as many as 400 times a day, adults over 35 only laugh 15 times. Prestigious business schools like Wharton, Sloan, Harvard and the London Business School say that every "guffaw" brings a host of benefits for the company. Laughter relieves stress and boredom, boosts interpersonal relations in the workplace, enhances creativity and even improves productivity.

By Ben Schneider - 30/10/2014

 

Technology and connectivity have impacted companies and changed the lives of millions of individuals. However, several studies predict that we are about to experience changes of tremendously greater importance. 

During the years to come, we will witness the lightning-speed development of “Artificial Intelligence” in computers, improved means for instant communications, the multiplication of electronic devices and the mass flow of information. All of this will disrupt the way we do business.

By Ben Schneider - 29/09/2014

There is a reality that affects the majority of companies around the globe: only 30% of their collaborators are truly engaged in their work.

In its latest annual survey, conducted in 2013, Gallup reported that 50% of workers in the U.S. merely put their time in and 20% act out their disengagement in counter-productive ways, with a negative impact on their co-workers. Gallup estimates that this group costs the U.S. economy $500 billion a year.

The enigma to resolve is this: Why is there such a high level of disengagement?

By Ben Schneider - 01/09/2014

 

It's more than five years since the U.S. authorities declared the end of the recession triggered by the financial crisis of 2008, yet the country's GDP growth rates are still meager. A sluggish U.S. economy and poor performance in Europe also explain why China's growth has slowed. After all, 70% of Chinese exports are targeted at those two markets, and there's a limit to what countercyclical economic measures can achieve.

By Ben Schneider - 08/08/2014

More than a few management scholars argue that individuals should strive to stand out in the workplace, to get themselves noticed and to behave as if each executive were a one-man operation, associating their own interests with those of the firm. "The brand is bigger than the individual" is the extreme expression of this position. This approach is based on the "agency theory" in academics, in which a business is seen as a set of "agents" who seek to interact and develop within an organization, but always while pursuing their own personal interests.

By Ben Schneider - 11/07/2014

All organizations attempt to disseminate good management practices amongst their collaborators and to generate a positive environment for achieving the so yearned excellence. To do so, managers undergo training, hire consultants, read publications by management gurus, but usually find that the path toward excellence is plagued with obstacles.

By Ben Schneider - 12/06/2014

New information and communication technologies (ICTs) have empowered consumers to such a degree that social networks can be used to criticize a given product or service or warn others to avoid them. For firms that pride themselves on quality this represents a huge opportunity, while for others it has been a nightmare. The latter can no longer hide shortcomings and failings, with the only options being to improve or perish.

By Ben Schneider - 13/05/2014

One of the most difficult tasks faced by all senior management in an organization is to set standards to follow when hiring staff. Knowing how to choose employees is probably the most important task in any firm as it will depend on the quality, values, knowledge and dedication of the selected staff, no matter how well the company operates.

By Ben Schneider - 22/04/2014

Many executives have participated in strategic planning exercises, but is designing a strategy the same as planning the activities of a company in order to improve its operational efficiency?

By Ben Schneider - 20/03/2014

On average a person says about 16,000 words per day. Imagine how many more go through our mind that we do not express. Many of them are evaluations or judgments mixed with emotions. Some are positive and pleasurable, and others negative, filled with fears. "Management" theory holds that, in the office, one should not express weaknesses, but rather project confidence and avoid all displays of negativity.

By Ben Schneider - 19/02/2014

In their quest for greater efficiency, companies have opted to apply state-of-the-art automation technologies, with obvious repercussions for the number of manual workers they hire. Nowadays, the tendency is to call on technicians who interact with sophisticated equipment that carries out the entire production process, from robots for manufacturing cars to computerized ovens for optimizing the bread baking industry. At the same time, there has been a rise in the demand for knowledge workers to direct, plan and administer organizational processes.