Practical Ways to Lead an Innovative Organization
Practical Ways to Lead an Innovative Organization
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Practical Ways to Lead an Innovative Organization

Last updated on 2019-08-04

About the Book

We hold many management myths as truth:

  • We have to treat everyone the same way,
  • We need to manage performance, and
  • 100% utilization works.

Each of these myths prevent people and teams from succeeding. In turn, these myths prevent the organization from finding the best customers who will create success in the marketplace.

In this book, you’ll learn to see how common—but ill-advised—management practices prevent people from doing their best job, as individuals and as part of groups and teams. And, you’ll learn what you can do instead.

Build your management excellence. Learn to build trust and respect with congruence, and practice management with integrity.

About the Author

Johanna Rothman
Johanna Rothman

Johanna Rothman, known as the “Pragmatic Manager,” provides frank advice for your tough problems. She helps leaders and teams see problems, resolve risks, and manage their product development. Johanna is the author of fourteen books and hundreds of articles. Find the Pragmatic Manager, a monthly email newsletter, and her blogs at and

She is the author of these books:

In addition, she is a contributor to:

Bundles that include this book

Practical Ways to Lead an Innovative Organization
Practical Ways to Lead and Serve (Manage) Others
Practical Ways to Manage Yourself
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Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • About this Early Release
  • Why Managers Lead in Organizations
    • Start With Why
    • Manage for Effectiveness
    • Create an Environment in Which People Can do Great Work
    • Environment Shapes Everyone’s Behavior
    • Lead with Purpose
    • Consider Measures that Create a Great Environment
    • Creating a Congruent Organization
    • Create Integrity in the Organization
  • How Easy is Good Management?
    • Myth: Management Doesn’t Look Difficult From the Outside, So It Must Be Easy
    • Management Work Is Work
    • Much of Management Work Is Behind the Scenes
    • Managers Who Interfere Might Be Doing the Wrong Work
    • Good Management Is Real Work
  • Should We Treat Everyone the Same Way?
    • Rule: We Must Treat Everyone the Same Way
    • Everyone Wants Something Different
  • Must We “Manage” Performance?
    • Myth: Performance Management Creates Employee Engagement
    • Performance Management Does Not Create Employee Engagement
    • I have never seen any of that occur in the various acts of performance management. It’s possible you have. But, I haven’t.
    • Performance Management Harms the Environment
    • Options Instead of Performance Reviews
  • Should We Ever Rank People or Teams?
    • Illusion: I Can Compare Teams and It’s Valuable to Do So
    • Measuring People Doesn’t Buy You Anything
    • Measuring a Team’s Productivity is Meaningless, Too
    • Ranking or Comparing Harms the Environment
    • Assess Outcome or Achievement Progress
    • Individuals and Teams Perform Incomparable Work
  • Does Competition Between Teams or Managers Work?
    • Illusion: Friendly Competition Is Constructive
    • “Friendly” Competition Never Is
    • What Are Your Objectives?
    • Ask the Teams for the Results You Want
  • Must We Utilize Everyone at 100%?
    • Illusion: 100% Utilization Works
    • How Did We Get Here?
    • Why 100% Utilization Doesn’t Work for People
    • Agile and Lean Approaches Make the Myth Transparent
    • Can We Accommodate Fast Switching?
    • Consider These Options for Avoiding 100% Utilization
    • Learn How to Say No or Not Now
  • Don’t People Already Know How to Do Their Jobs?
    • Myth: We Have No Time for Training
    • Training Is a Necessary Part of Technical Work
    • Make Time for Conferences, Too
    • Capitalize on Curiosity
    • Evidence That People Need Training
    • Consider These Options for Training
  • Should We Move People From Project to Project?
    • Myth: I Can Move People Like Chess Pieces
    • Managers Can’t Please Everyone
    • Know What Everyone Is Doing
    • Flow Projects Through Teams
    • Capitalize on Each Person’s Individualities
  • Does Lower Salaries Mean Lower Project Cost?
    • Illusion: It’s Always Cheaper to Hire People Where the Wages Are Less Expensive
    • Project Cost Is More Than Wage Cost
    • Cost of Delay Affects Any Project, Agile or Not
    • Offshoring Provides You Access to Talent and Other Cultures
  • How Much Standardization Makes Sense?
    • Trap: I Can Standardize How Other People Work
    • Standards Provide Senior Managers a False Sense of Security
    • Imposing a Standard Removes Autonomy
    • Too Many Standards Prevent People from Thinking
    • What If People Need Help?
  • Isn’t the Organization a Well-Oiled Machine?
    • Illusion: I Can Manage by Spreadsheet
    • Data Helps Management Decisions
    • Embrace the “Messiness” of Management
    • Management is All About People
  • Final Thoughts
  • Annotated Bibliography
  • More from Johanna
  • Notes

About the Publisher

This book is published on Leanpub by Practical Ink

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