Our Thinking

By David J. Abbott

Strategy appears to be everywhere in business, yet the truth is that genuine strategy is rarely to be seen. What most companies have is the corporate equivalent of voodoo. Instead of little dolls and statues with pins in them and reading chicken entrails the voodoo is in the Power Point slides and glossy reports that only serve to eventually gather dust.

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By Christine Awuor

Non-governmental organisations [NGO] operating in Kenya [numbering more than 6,000] range from the extraordinary, those who have won the Nobel Peace Prize like the French Medicins Sans Frontiers [Doctors without borders] through to the ordinary,those that were formed last week by two well meaning individuals. Heart of the matter for NGOs is to answer the question, what results must it deliver to be successful? Somehow one has to take the [often vague] broad mission statement and translate that into more narrowly defined goals to both attract support from donors, and detailed enough to decide what resources to allocate where.

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Everything you know and have heard about how to change business   performance is wrong.  Wrong, wrong, wrong, totally wrong.  As are the myths about corporate transformation.  Just does not happen that way.  Real operational and financial change relies on a flywheel effect, hedgehog single minded focus and getting the right people on the bus.  Get this right, and you won't be running very quickly just to stay where you are.

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“There are “serious and widespread doubts about human resources (HR) contribution to organisational performance.”  “The activities of HR appear to be – and often are – disconnected from the real work of the organisation” wrote Dave Ulrich of the University Of Michigan in the Harvard Business Review in 1998. “Indeed if HR were to remain configured as it is today in many companies, I would have to answer the question with a resounding “Yes – abolish the thing!” says the professor of business.”

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