Author Archives: Michael Folkman

Hiring and Acquiring – Two Sides of the Same Coin?

It is hard to imagine two organisational activities that result in more high profile, costly failures and reputational damage than corporate acquisitions and senior level recruitment (although culture change probably comes close). Situations where high hopes and strong rationale underpinning an acquisition or senior level hire can quickly give way to the realisation that a big mistake has been made are all too common. At first glance they may not seem to be too similar; yet both activities share some of the same fundamental problems and issues. Given that failure in these activities is hugely damaging to businesses, isn’t it time businesses changed their approach to hiring and acquiring? Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Intangibles, Leadership, Strategy, Teams, Venture Capital | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

HR and Big Data; Jumping the Gun?

Big Data is unlikely to lead to the breakthroughs in understanding of what makes success unless organisations start to take into account the key intangibles such as relationships and culture. To understand performance or lack thereof, we need to look far beyond the capabilities, characteristics or behaviour of individuals. Instead, relationships, culture, other intangibles and contextual factors play a larger role in understanding performance. Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in 4G, Culture, General, Intangibles, Leadership, Relationships | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Rethinking the War for Talent

Despite advances in technology, selection methods and years of cumulative experience; organisations continue to struggle squaring the recruitment and talent puzzle. Arguably, with all the tools currently available to them, businesses are no better at recruiting than they were 20 years ago. Whilst new technologies and social media have widened the net, there is little evidence to suggest that decision making is improving or that organisations are better at understanding what makes a successful hire. Maybe it is time that we re-frame the talent question and look at recruitment decisions through a different set of filters? Continue reading Continue reading

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The Complex Drivers of Performance

A recent post by Om Malik (here) sets about dissecting the recent departure of JC Penney CEO Ron Johnson after only two years in the job. Formerly the head of retail for Apple; clearly it was expected that he would … Continue reading

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The Formula in The Formula

Brad Feld put up an great blog post (here) discussing the role of “The Formula” in guiding organisational and individual decision-making. The Formula is a beguiling notion, the idea that sticking to what you know works and has been successful … Continue reading

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The Truth About Innovation

Over at HBR (here), Bill Taylor hits the nail on the head regarding the current obsession with innovation. Much like the focus on engagement a couple of years ago, innovation is the current area of focus. Business leaders have co-opted … Continue reading

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Decision Making in Online Dating

I’ve been doing some reading about the online dating industry recently and in particular looking to whether there is a potential use for 4G as a means to predict relationship outcomes. This was kicked off by an article earlier this … Continue reading

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Culture and Fit

A great post by Fred Wilson (here) looks at the role culture and fit play in growing companies. Rather than the quality of the products or services a company provides being the arbiter of performance, Wilson argues that it is … Continue reading

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Be More Like Mathematicians!

Over at Boing Boing (here), Maggie Koerth-Baker points us in the direction of an interesting question posted on Quora (here), where someone asks “What is it like to have an understanding of very advanced mathematics?” In response, someone posted this … Continue reading

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Greatest Assets?

A provocatively titled blog over at HBR (here) by Anthony J. Bradley and Mark P. McDonald questions the much used adage, “people are our greatest asset” (PAOGA from now on). The article raises some interesting points, bringing together ideas around … Continue reading

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