What do we mean by …

By |November 15th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

I was in Italy recently ... and I used public transport quite a bit - trains and buses.  All the journeys I made were on time, and to schedule. Of course, public transport is subsidised

Do things differently

By |November 8th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

At the end of your next day at work ask yourself ... "If we carry on working like this on these tasks, how will we be different - and better - in 5 years time?" 

Productivity or Quality?

By |November 1st, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

I have been in discussions many times with businessmen and advisers about whether firms should concentrate on their productivity or their quality - which has the biggest impact on success. Of course the quick answer

Vertical Links?

By |October 18th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

There are lots of sites and blogs on the web which purport to be about productivity.  Many of these are about what might be termed 'personal productivity' - time management, self-motivation, etc.  This set me

And the secret is ….

By |October 11th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

I can be as guilty as the next person is hailing specific concepts and practices as being important determinants of higher productivity.  But we should stop searching for the 'secret' - the panacea - and

Don’t Break The Chain!

By |October 4th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

A personal 'productivity' tip sometimes referred to as 'Seinfeld's Chain' after Jerry Seinfeld, the US comedian is a useful reminder of the need to 'keep at it'.  The story is that, when he started writing,

Discretionary Efforts

By |September 27th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

Employees work - and work hard  - for various reasons. Obviously there are contractual reasons - they take the money and have to 'put in the hours'. But above and beyond what they are contracted

Gamification (revisited)

By |September 20th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

Last week I talked about gamification - and whether it could be used to help improve productivity If you weren't thinking about it then, I hope you are now - Ambient research suggests that game-based learning will grow

Gamification and Productivity

By |September 13th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

We've heard quite a lot about 'gamification' recently - especially in the context of online learning. I read the term many times before I sought to understand it ... so I thought some of you

It was the right decision

By |September 6th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

Recently a colleague was bemoaning the fact that he had taken a bad decision.  When I questioned him about the decision, and about the outcomes, I formed the view that he had taken a 'correct'

Does Germany need higher wages?

By |August 30th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

For about 10 years now wage increases in Germany have not kept up with the development of productivity, by a long stretch" said European Employment Commissioner Laszlo Andor in an interview with German newspaper Welt am Sonntag

Recognising the Counterfactual

By |August 23rd, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

When we make changes to (try to) improve productivity, we subsequently measure results and assess impact.  (Or we should if we want to evaluate our own performance and impact.) However, in many complex situations, we

In control?

By |August 16th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

In my recent discussions with PAPA (the Pan African Productivity Association), the topic of the Ebola virus came up.  Just as Africa seems to have recovered from the great HIV/Aids crisis (having largely got the

A Balanced Report

By |August 9th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

Well, I’m here in Mauritius and I’ve been having an interesting time. I spent a few days with the Board of PAPA (the Pan African Productivity Association) discussing the productivity status and opportunities in Africa.

Something in the air

By |August 2nd, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

The 'something in the air' i refer to in the blog title is ... ME.  As you are reading this, I should be in the air (if I'm not waiting at an airport terminal) en

Is Big Data Useful?

By |July 26th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

Big Data in 'in' - its a fashionable topic, its 'cool' and exciting.  But is it useful? What are the applications where it will 'make a difference' - on a global level. Well, I've been

Do the measures matter?

By |July 19th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

I have been doing a little work recently in relation to productivity and performance measures.  The thought struck me after trying to construct appropriate measures for a particular organisation in a particular situation that the


By |July 12th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

I was looking at a PowerPoint presentation the other day (not one of mine) and I thought "What a great job this person has done of making a complex issue understandable."    It reminded me

Forget the mystery

By |July 5th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

A number of you sent me comments to try and unpick the (UK) productivity mystery I referred to in last week's post.  Some of these were backed up by serious analysis. Yet, after reading them

The UK Mystery

By |June 28th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

British productivity was growing steadily if slowly in the years before the financial crisis struck but it’s now some 16% below its pre-crisis level. The Bank of England has published a paper in their  quarterly

Governments need to get it right

By |June 21st, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

Many countries have productivity centres to advise their government of productivity and related issues. But do they do any good? Is productivity something that can be shaped and steered by government? I would say 'YES'

:Pick up the banana skins

By |June 14th, 2014|Categories: Productivity|

Most of the time we get things right.... at least if we have the skills to accomplish what we set out to do  Occasionally, though, we slip on a banana skin - and we get

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