Altruistic and instinctive feeders of HRM news & views, as well as random fun.

Monday, March 15, 2010

How Successful People Think

This book is one of the many authored by John C. Maxwell. This proves to differentiate itself from the other books he published as this one focuses more on the thinking part of leadership. I found the book quite interesting and it can actually change the way you think about things.

"Do successful people think differently than unsuccessful people? John C. Maxwell thinks so and has written another book, based on the premise that successful people have one thing in common -- how they think -- and that anyone can learn that skill." - Bob Mason, speaker, trainer, and consultant with 30 years of leadership experience.

As I experienced reading the book, I felt my brain tingling a little (maybe because I haven't read a book in a long time.) and at the same time, I felt inspired. As the book spoke to my mind about how I should think during a certain situation. ]

One of the thinking approaches labeled in the book is Big-Picture thinking, and reading that lone chapter could change how you perceive things.

If you want to pursue an occupation or profession that requires a great amount of leadership skills, or if you just wants to equip yourself with the mental tools that can help you attain your goals or etc., BUY THIS BOOK AND READ IT!!

book review

At first i was really hesitant to read the book because it is too thick and i really don’t have the luxury of time to read such thing because of my hectic schedule like training, classes, and my other major subject which really require a lot of reading because it is a research method class and it requires a lot of researching from empirical studies and scholarly journals. I was too bored and also consumed by the thought that i need to read a lot for this term plus the fact that i am full load in my subjects for the term. Just want you to know that i am a student-athlete of college of saint benilde and i am studying human resource management and i am in my third year now and this book review is part of my requirement to pass one of my major subjects.

So what about the book? The book strategic management competitiveness and globalization 8th edition is published last 2009 and it is all about the new trends about competencies and globalization, and strategic management written by Michael hit, R. Duane Ireland, and Robert Hoskisson, it tackles things about competencies of companies and how to gain competitive advantage, it also talks about globalization and what are the things to consider if a company would like to consider going global.

Basically you can find what would be the main topic of the book based on its title, it is like a text book that can be used by professors teaching human resource, business management, strategic management and other business courses. It has cases in it and concepts that professors can use to discuss things and give examples to the students. The book has some interesting stories about some of the most famous companies that are using some strategies and concepts that the book discussed which makes it easier for the reader or for the students to understand what they are talking about because they can visualize or imagine the situation and it also gives facts and ideas about these companies.

Some companies being discussed are Apple, Youtube. Google, Zara, Procter and Gamble, Toyota, GE, Wal-mart, and a lot more companies that we can relate ourselves. As for me i really learned a lot from these stories, i was curious about how these companies got to the top of the industry and how they handle problems, what kind of strategies do they implement, what kind of people do they acquire, what kind of trainings they have etc. that is why after the struggle to read the book, after sometime it get me to read it and gave me the desire to know more about it, the curiosity and the thirst for new knowledge and idea took a blast inside of my cerebrum helped me out so i can finish this requirement of mine.

So lets talk about the book content, the book has 13 chapters for the concepts and has 16 chapters for the cases that can be used for classes and discussion. The first chapter talks about competitiveness and strategic management. The book defined competitiveness and strategic management and gave some ideas about the topic. God for me i did not have a hard time understanding the meaning and concepts as i already had a subject about strategic management before. The first chapter has stories about the competition between Boeing and Airbus, the two top airplane producing companies.

This is one of my favourite part because i wanted to work for an airline company and i was interested about the planes that they use as part of the company’s resources. The first chapter also gave an introduction about the next chapters and about the topics to be discussed.

Some of my favourite topics are the external environment which is in chapter 2. The chapter talks about how to analyze external environment and competitors. As a human resource student i think this topic will be really helpful for me when i pursue human resource management because the chapter talsk about the things you need to consider in analyzing the external environment. External environment is the environment outside of your company, it is an environment that you cannot control but you can study. The chapter talked about scanning the external environment for rivals, possible changes, the latest trends, and different data and information. Next is monitoring which is observing the external environment and defining and detecting a new environmental trend that was spotted by scanning. Then there is forecasting which is having a feasibility study about the future. It is projecting what might happen in the future, and assessing to determine the right timing and significance of the changes that is happening in the external environment.

Another topic that i like is the core competencies and the organizational culture. The topic talks about some of the most important qualities and resources that the company possess that can help it in globalization and gaining competitive advantage. The core competencies that i really like is the organization culture, it is under the nonsubstitutable competencies of a company. For me i think being in company that has the same values as i do will help me perform better and maximize my potential as i can get along well with my co-workers and i can express myself freely and would not feel that i am different because my working environment compliments my personality and values.

The book also talks about product differentiation, which is looking for a target market and producing a product that is different from your competitors. Product differentiation maybe achieved through a more creative product, giving a product a sense of uniqueness and prestige, detailed designs etc. the price may be much higher compared to the usual products but if you know that your target market is willing to pay for your product and you are meeting the needs of the customers, product differentiation is one of the strategies companies may use to gain competitive advantage.

The book also discussed that every company should not be complacent and get too relaxed if they are in the top of the competition because the book says that competitive advantage is not permanent, competitors might rise up and create a better competencies than what your company has and you might get left behind the race. Companies should always look for opportunities on how to maximize resources like people, and have the knowledge on how to use these resources.

Managers will benefit a lot if they dig through the pages of this book as it gives a lot of intelligent ideas and concepts on how to gain competencies and competitive advantage for their company. The book is really great in teaching new trends and concepts. If any of you who is reading this book review plans to be a good manager, i suggest that you read this book.

Another thin that was discussed in the book is the importance of knowing you customers and building a good relationship with them. Well all of us are customers in different ways, we all ride planes, buy toiletries, buy cars, buy groceries etc. we are all consumers and we want to be treated well by the companies that we go to. We want to received the best service, we want our needs to be met and we want good quality in the products that we purchased. The book discussed the importance of meeting the needs of the customers and just like what ive said its as simple as thinking what do you want when you go to a shop and buy something, and putting it in your company and practice it in the business. As the old saying goes (do unto others what you want other to do to you) so if you want quality service your company might as well give quality service to your customers to achieve competitive advantage.

What i have talked about in this book review are just bits and pieces of all the things that you can learn from reading the book it is like talking about the sun as a star in the universe when in fact there are still millions and millions of other starts that we can talk about. The things that you will learn from the book are something that will really help you whether you will be a manager, or have your own business someday. Concepts like multidomestic strategy, global strategy, corporate governance, internal analysis, market power, functional strategy, cross-border strategic alliance etc. and what are the meanings of those words that i said? Well its for you guys to find out. So don’t waste time and read the strategic management 8th edition book and learn a lot to learn about competencies and gaining competitive advantage.

Common Sense is so UNCOMMON

“Common Sense Management”

Roger Fulton

If you had to boil down the message of Common Sense Management to one sentence, what would it be?
No theories, no fluff; just good old common sense on how to succeed in the real world of management in any industry.

-Roger Fulton

Roger Fulton brings more than twenty-five years of practical management and leadership experience in both the public and private sectors to his writings on business. He has operated his own management consulting firm since 1990. He lives in Glens Falls, New York.

This book contains very practical tips on how to be a successful supervisor and manager. Once you master those two categories, you’ll find tips on how to be a successful leader as well. There are also some basic ideas and concepts you will need to know first.

It is about your success in the real business word and your involvement in it. No matter what industry you have chosen, profit/nonprofit, manufacturing, or service. So if you value driving a good car, living in a nice place, and having the respect of all who work for you, you will want to pay attention to the ideas, tips, and rules presented in this book.

It will give you rules, tips, and guidelines for being a successful supervisor, manager, and leader in any industry. It’s all designed so that you don’t accidentally blow yourself up, you don’t lose your efforts to succeed, and you learn how to get along with people.

Time and time again

Professor John Adair is considered an authority when it comes to leadership. He has written quite a series of books about it and is the pioneer of the Action-Centered Leadership programs that's partaken by millions of managers worldwide.

So basically, it makes sense for a management student like yours truly to pick up the latest version of his Effective Time Management book. However, given that time management is already a no-so-common topic amongst all of us, I really had no idea as to what the book was and how it could help me.

"Effective Time Management contains a multitude of indispensable time-saving tips covering every aspect of the working day, such as meetings, reading, travelling or talking on the phone, which will enable you to use your time to think more creatively and help you to see time as an ally instead of an enemy." -

Time Management gives out info and tips that are in-depth, but at the same time, concise and straight to the point. While it does provide the reader with vignettes and true-story accounts, what comes out in the book is what we all need to know, with all the excesses left out in the cutting room floor. In the first chapter, for instance, Adair tackles the history of time and how it was valued from generation to generation. But there's no timeline and revolutionary figures included, just a sundial.

A great find inside the book are the tables and lists that are placed in bunches in each chapter. It gives the reader a more structured way of getting tips, sort of like a friendly instruction manual. If you're not a volume reader, these might help you well enough to understand the book more.
While people might dismiss Time Management as just a "get help" book, it actually provides more. It sheds new light on stuff that we might already know, but not understand quite correctly. The book wants you to expand your horizons and try something new.

The book, even for non-readers like me, is really easy to read through. Like I said, it's not a volume-heavy book and it's so portable, you can take it anywhere. It's very useful to the corporate workforce, an aid to avoid and re-think the habit of time-wasting at work.

Don't take my word for it, grab a copy!

Friday, March 12, 2010

birds with the same feather.. are the same species

how important is culture for you? how important is it to work in an organization that has the same values, philosophy, beliefs and behavior as you do. well for me i think it is one of the most important factors when i apply in a company, i think it will be more conducive to learning and growing as a person and as an employee if i could get along well and if i have the same values with the organization and my co-workers.

just like what's happening in southwest airlines which is going all the way up to the ladder of airline industry, according to the CEO and managers of southwest airlines their competitiveness and competencies is a result of their unique organization culture and the great values of their employees. the company's human resource department makes sure that each and every employee gets along very well with each other and that they are careful in hiring new employees. the employees have a good relationships with other employees which makes working more fun and enjoyable. the company said that because of their org culture, employees are giving customers more quality service and makes them more productive and efficient. customers are saying that there is something different every time they fly at southwest airlines, as if every thing is light and enjoyable. that they feel that will have a very nice trip and an awesome experience.

so i suggest that if you will look for a company, make sure that you know what culture they have and if you will be able to fit in easily so that your stay in the company will be worth while.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Icebreakers for teambuliding activities

Are you sick of the usual tug-o-wars and endless variations of tag (mataya-taya) during teambuilding activities? Or how about those boring "getting to know" activities? Well, me too!

Here are some other-than-the-usual icebreakers and other activities that could spice up a company/school activity... that is if you haven't tried out some of these yet (click them links to see the mechanics):

2 truths and a lie

Photo scavenger hunt

Hodgey Podgy

Toxic waste

More teambuilding games/icebreakers

Breaking News: Jamby vindicated over price of galunggong

Big news for the day, especially if you like both Senator Jamby Madrigal and fish!

Madrigal ‘vindicated’ over price of ‘galunggong’
By Jerry E. Esplanada
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines – “I am finally vindicated ... I am right after all."

So thought Senator Maria Ana Consuelo “Jamby” Madrigal during her late night campaign sortie Tuesday at the Navotas Fishport, Metro Manila's biggest seafood market.

Madrigal was “very happy” about the warm welcome she got at the wholesale and retail fish market along Manila Bay, where she gave away hundreds of “Jamby bracelets.”

But something else really made the independent presidential candidate's night.

“I learned that here at Navotas Fishport, galunggong [round scad] is sold for only P45 a kilo. Well, I am finally vindicated,” Madrigal told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

She recalled that during a recent presidential forum sponsored by this paper, held at the University of the Philippines in Diliman, Quezon City, she said that the price of galunggong was “P60.”

“When I said P60, they [supporters of Senator Manny Villar, the Nacionalista Party standard-bearer] hooted, but they didn't even know the real price of galunggong,” the proverbial poor man's fish, the senator noted.

Madrigal pointed out that she “actually quoted the right price which is a fair price.”

“Now you can call it ‘Revenge of the Galunggong’ in your story,” she quipped.

But in Metro Manila, once it gets to the hands of second-hand retailers in city markets, where most people buy, a kilo of galunggong costs about P120. At the fishport, the wholesale price of galunggong is P1,300 to P2,500 per banyera (basin).

“Mas mahal pag lalaking galunggong, mura pag babae [The male fish is more expensive than the female],” said vendor Flora Enriquez, a native of Burias Island, Masbate.

Fish vendor Hermie Pioquinto said the wholesale prices of galunggong and other fish varieties were “a little high these days because there's a full moon. Fish catch is low.”

“Salay-salay sells for P1,800 per banyera. Sapsap, P2,500. Dalagang Bukid, P3,300 and squid, P4,000,” said Pioquinto, who is from Calasiao, Pangasinan. Tilapia and Laguna lake bangus are sold at P35 and P70-80 a kilo.

Despite the red tide scare, tahong baklad (shellfish) “still sells at P25-45 a kilo,” said vendor Ken Palomeno.

Madrigal said, “It's people in big business and [fish] traders, those who don't care about the poor who jack up the price of galunggong.”

“And in my presidency, we will reverse this,” she said matter-of-factly.

Read more