Top 10 management models for your business: #2 Multiple stakeholder sustainabilty

18 June 2014 by in 100+ Management Models, Business and finance

by Fons Trompenaars and Piet Hein Coebergh, co-authors of 100+ Management Models.

100+ Management Models

Problem Statement
How can I assess the most significant organizational dilemmas resulting from conflicting stakeholder demands and also assess organizational priorities to create sustainable performance?

Organizational sustainability is not limited to the fashionable environmental factors such as emissions, green energy, saving scarce resources, corporate social responsibility, et cetera. The future strength of an organization depends on the way leadership and management deal with the tensions between the five major entities facing any organization: efficiency of business processes, people, clients, shareholders and society. The manner in which these tensions are addressed and resolved determines the future strength and opportunities of an organization. This model proposes that sustainability can be defined as the degree to which an organization is capable of creating long-term wealth by reconciling its most important (‘golden’) dilemmas, created between these five components. From this, professors and consultants Fons Trompenaars and Peter Woolliams have identified ten dimensions
Model 7: Multiple ultiple stakeholder stakeholder sustainability sustainability sustainability , Fons Trompenars and Peter Woliams Woliams Woliams (2010)
consisting of dilemmas formed from these five components because each one competes with the other four.

How to use the model:
The authors have developed a sustainability scan to use when making a diagnosis. This scan reveals:

  1. The major dilemmas and how people perceive the organization’s position in relation to these dilemmas.
  2. The corporate culture of an organization and their openness to the reconciliation of the major dilemmas.
  3. The competence of its leadership to reconcile these dilemmas. After the diagnosis the organization can move on to reconciling the major dilemmas that lead to sustainable performance. To this end, the authors developed a dilemma reconciliation process.

To achieve sustainable success, organizations need to integrate the competing demands of their key stakeholders: operational processes, employees, clients, shareholders and society. By diagnosing and connecting different viewpoints and values their research and consulting practice results in a better understanding of:
ll. The key challenges the organization faces with its various stakeholders and how to prioritize them.
ll. The extent to which leadership and management are capable of addressing the organizational dilemmas.
ll. The personal values of employees and their alignment with organizational values.
These results help an organization define a corporate strategy in which crucial dilemmas are reconciled and ensure that the company’s leadership is capable of executing the strategy sustainably. It does so while specifically addresing the company’s wealth creating processes before the results show up in financial reports. It attempts to anticipate what the corporate financial performance will be, some six months to three years in the future, as the financial effects of dilemma reconciliation are budgeted.

The sustainability scan reconciles the key dilemmas that corporations face today and tomorrow. It takes a unique approach to making strategic decisions that are tough as well as inevitable with the goal of realizing a profitable and sustainable corporate future. Consulting firm Trompenaars-Hampden Turner offers an elaborate set of tools, of which a substantial part is available at no cost, to make this approach happen. The leading partners of this firm
Sustainability ustainability ustainability
have strengthened the approach in dozens of academic articles and books. The fact that their approach is rather closely attached to their consulting practice does limit its dispersion among other practitioners and academics.

Buytendijk, F. (2010) Dealing with Dilemmas: Where Business Analytics Fall Short, New York, John Wiley.
Hampden-Turner, C. (1990) Charting the Corporate Mind: Graphic Solutions to Business Conflicts, New York, The Free Press.
Trompenaars, F., Woolliams, P. (2009) ‘Towards a Generic Framework of Competence for Today’s Global Village’, in: The SAGE Handbook of Intercultural Competence, ed. D.K. Deardoff, Thousand Oaks, Sage.

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Top 10 management models for your business: #1 The bottom of the pyramid

5 June 2014 by in 100+ Management Models, Business and finance

by Fons Trompenaars and Piet Hein Coebergh, co-authors of 100+ Management Models.

How can one create wealth by doing business with the 4 billion people at the bottom of the financial pyramid?

The bottom of the pyramid, C.K. Prahalad (2002)

In economics, the bottom of the pyramid (BoP) is the largest, but poorest socio-economic group, comprising around 4 billion people who live on less than US$2.50 per day. Conventional logic holds that there is little business to be done with this ‘market segment’. Together with academics Stuart Hart and Allen Hammond, C.K. Prahalad turns this logic around by analyzing how the total buying power of this group could be stimulated, as long as there is access to vital resources such as money, telecommunications and energy.

The simple observation is that because there is much untapped purchasing power at the bottom of the pyramid, private companies can make significant profits by selling to the poor. Simultaneously, by selling to the poor, private companies can bring prosperity to the poor, and thus can help eradicate poverty. Prahalad suggests that large multinational companies (MNCs) should play the leading role in this process, and find both glory and fortune at the bottom of the pyramid. Prahalad suggests that there is much eagerness to do business in this sector – as long as traditional barriers can be modified.

How to use the model
To enable poor people to use their buying power, Prahalad suggests making use of the following twelve building blocks. Solutions must:

  1. be low priced
  2. merge old and new technology
  3. be scalable and transportable across countries, cultures and languages
  4. be eco-friendly
  5. put functionality above form
  6. be based on innovative processes
  7. use deskilled work
  8. educate customers
  9. work in hostile environments
  10. be flexible with interfaces
  11. be available for the highly dispersed rural market as well as highly dense urban markets
  12. be fit for rapid evolution

The idea behind BoP has enjoyed global acceptance since its presentation in 2002. An earlier example of how doing business with the poor can pay off for all stakeholders is given by the success story of Bangladeshi banker, economist and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Muhammad Yunus, who developed the concepts of microcredit and microfinance, small loans given to entrepreneurs too poor to qualify for traditional bank loans. Other examples include the limited success of the Tata Nano car and the success of Hindustan Lever Ltd., one of Unilever’s largest subsidiaries.

Critics have claimed that the BoP proposition might be too good to be true. Karnani (2006) states that the BoP proposition ‘is, at best, a harmless illusion and potentially a dangerous delusion. The BoP argument is riddled with inaccuracies and fallacies.’ Other than the success of microcredit, there have not been many convincing examples of the fortune to be made at the bottom of the pyramid (Kay and Lewenstein, Harvard Business Review, April 2013).

Karnani, Aneel G. (2006) ‘Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: A Mirage’, Ross School of Business Paper No. 1035, Available at Social Science Research Network.
London, T., Hart, S.L. (2011)Next Generation Business Strategies for the Base of the Pyramid: New Approaches for Building Mutual Values, Upper Saddle River, Pearson.
Prahalad, C.K. (2004) Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: Eradicating Poverty through Profits. Philadelphia, Wharton School Publishing.

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Worried about the menopause? Read on.

29 May 2014 by in Lifestyle

by Monica Troughton, author of Magical menopause

‘I’m low on oestrogen and I have a gun in my hand…’
Welcome to the world of the menopause. Whether you are thirty five, fifty five or somewhere in between, it’s going to get you. If you are mid-menopause and wondering when the heck it is going to end then fear not, because nobody knows. Some women feel nothing more than being a few quid better off every month while others are ready to kill. If you are thinking about the menopause, you may be asking yourself the following questions:

• Is there a menopausal ‘type’? If so what does she look like?
• Is there anything that will guarantee a smooth and oh-so-easy transition to those post-menopausal ‘golden years’?
• Does Hormone Replacement Therapy work? How?
• Do natural therapies work? How?
• Should you carry a gun or wear an ‘M’ sign around your neck?
• Is it possible to self combust at this time?
• Could you feed the solar panels on your roof with the heat you are giving off? If so can you receive a grant?

So, so many sensible questions (let alone those of sex, passion, shrivelled ovaries, gin and relationships).

The menopause is actually a time of personal gain (weight), power (short fuse) and a time to re-assess everything in your life. Learn from those who have ‘been there’:

1. Amanda Redman used to put her menopausal head in the freezer to cool down whenever she had guests for supper;
2. Another took to sleeping outside – on the lawn – especially when a frost was forecast;
3. Another wore her husband out with an insatiable longing for love making. Once he had a pacemaker fitted things began to pick up;
4. Sue Gatsby wanted to join a convent.

My book Magical menopause was a real joy to write because I came across so many amazing women – all experiencing completely different aspects of the menopause. The book was re-named Thrive Through Menopause for the USA market and women there contacted me to tell me how they were getting on. I had a mixed bag of letters … ‘There’s nothing magical about it…’ to ‘I missed my third period and won the lottery…(!)’ … and ‘I ditched my husband and then asked him back…’.

Who knows what yours was like – is like – might be like?

Monica reveals more facts and lies about the menopause in her event Magical Menopause on 17th June 2014.

Our eBook Menopause: Relief and remedies for the symptoms of menopause is FREE for the whole of June on Kindle Store UK and US. 



Resigned Resignation: Anne-Marie Cockburn on surviving grief

27 May 2014 by in 5742 Days, Lifestyle

by Anne-Marie Cockburn, author of 5,742 Days.

As I wander around this new world having quickly learned a new dialect and obtained my new identity, I wonder where this takes me. Do I want to go there and do I have a choice anyway? Does any of us have a choice, or is there a faint map of our lives before we breathe our very first breath?

I wander back to the perfect day at the beach, the day before my girl died. Was that the most extraordinary coincidence or was that a gift I was awarded as some compensation in anticipation as to what unfolded the very next day. My map showed a big black hole that I could never have predicted as I stepped backwards into it with my girl and she was gone forever. I survived and I now have to tolerate and find my purpose as a survivor who doesn’t feel as though surviving was the most rewarding of the two outcomes.

Despite being able to still feel joy and recognise that my life is precious and interesting, it’s as though there are two versions of me now, one who is getting to know herself and one who knows who she is, but knows she can never be that person again.

I was saying to friends last night that it’s all very well for me to do all the right things in order to take good care of myself, physically and emotionally, but death is pretty permanent and that is the problem with this journey. The end result is the same and that throws me out of kilter, do I have the strength to keep contending with that, or do I run out of determination and drive at some point and curl up to merely exist?

How do I do this, and can I – that is more the point? Can I actually do this? Who’d want to have my job – being a bereaved parent is the worst job in the world. Thankless and joyless – worse than having a stroppy, ungrateful teenager to contend with! At least when Martha was here, we’d calm down and then giggle at how stubborn we both were. But that giggle is gone and I now need to draw on my own stubbornness in order to find the strength of character to face the grief, and grief doesn’t have the same sense of humour as me.

I hate you grief, but you seem to love me and cling to my ribs. I stand on grief’s fingers as it hangs on defiantly, a villain on a cliff edge. I peer over and crunch the fingers with glee and beckon grief to let go, but grief disappears and then appears behind me whispering eerily in my ear, “I always win in the end”. Acrid breath filling the air, as I turn around and am pushed – I fall to my life that isn’t death and isn’t life either, a hybrid place where the residents look as hopeful as tourists after an uncomfortable long-haul flight.

I hand in my letter of resignation, I don’t want this job, I didn’t apply for it, but grief, my boss sits there smoking a big fat cigar, his phone constantly ringing, providing no space in his schedule to read my letter. I’m ignored and the frustration builds up inside me. LISTEN TO ME, “you can’t do this”, I say.  But this isn’t a job you can resign from, so I dutifully turn up on a daily basis and look forward to my lunch hour.

5,742 Days

Advice From Your 100 Year-Old Self: Coaching questions to help you access the wisdom and insight of a centenarian

22 May 2014 by in Lifestyle

by Jackee Holder, author of Be your own best life coach.

If you had the fabulous opportunity to meet and spend time with a centenarian what question would you ask them?

Last week I had the good fortune to visit an old neighbour who lived across the road from the house I spent most of my childhood and teenage years in. Mrs Jones as I called her back then lives in the same house we found her living in with her family when we moved in across the road in 1965.

My visit coincided with her 101st birthday – unbelievable. I love it that she is a Taurean just like me; my birthday was on Sunday of this week. When I arrived she was walking about – not puttering – in her immaculate upstairs living room which is still stuffed with floor to ceiling cabinets full of every possible kind of souvenir you can imagine, spanning almost the same number of years she has lived.

We sat down on her sofa like two old friends. It’s amazing how age and time closes the gaps between you and the people who were adults when you were growing up. I loved that nothing about her had changed since we last met. She has all of her faculties and senses fully functioning. She was wearing an ice blue jacket and skirt suit (she always knew style) and kept pulling on her wig and asking me if it looked okay before she posed for shots with me.

If you had been eavesdropping outside the door you would have heard us hollering with laughter as she filled me with gossip (as she regularly did when I was a child) and you would have seen her face beaming with delight when I presented her with a huge bunch of flowers for her birthday.

On the way home I found myself deep in thought. Really, to live past a hundred in this day and age is nothing short of a miracle. In her presence I could feel her wisdom that surely is awarded with centenarian age and maturity. That’s why I’ve chosen the following coaching questions. Not many of us will reach the grand age of the centenarians of this era but we can still access the wisdom and insight the centenarian may have for our own lives.

Have a go at asking your 100 year-old self what advice they would give you about transforming: 

  • Your life right now;
  • Your work/career;
  • A significant or challenging relationship.

 If you had to live your life over again what would your 100 year-old self advise you to do:

  •  Differently;
  • Less of;
  • More of;
  • The same.

If your 100 year old self could tell you how to make right your biggest life regret what would he/she advise you to do? 

If he/she granted you a wish to make the next ten years your best years yet, what would the next ten years look like? 


Here we are posing for the camera. My time with her reminded me that life can be short or life can be long so either way we’d better aim to do it right. And by that I mean live the life that has your name on it. In the words of the novelist and writer Oscar Wilde, “Be yourself, everyone else is taken.”

Be your own best life coach

Five compelling reasons to get into the exercise habit

14 May 2014 by in Business and finance

A report by the British Heart Foundation has suggested that high intensity exercise can lead to an increased risk of heart rhythm disturbances. But before you kick off your running shoes and head for the sofa, remember that the benefits of regular exercise outweigh the risks. In fact, a healthy adult should aim to do 2.5 hours of moderate intensity aerobic activity per week. Perhaps you, or somebody you know, needs more convincing. So Kate Cook, author of The Corporate Wellness Bible, has compiled these five compelling reasons for ditching the onesie and donning those long-neglected jogging bottoms.

Why bother to exercise? Here are five compelling reasons
You may hate the idea of it, but taking exercise is life-changing and has real benefits if you’re aiming to lose weight. Once you get into the exercise habit, you won’t want to stop.

There are loads of different ways of exercising and it doen’t have to involve being shouted at by an angry man in a tracksuit with a whistle (unless you want it to).
There are loads of different ways of exercising and it doesn’t have to involve being shouted at by an angry man in a tracksuit with a whistle (unless you want it to).

 1.     Exercise uses up calories. You will lose weight by cutting down on the calories you consume, but if you’re active too, your weight loss will be faster. I love food and working out means I can eat more. It also means that I don’t end up losing any weight, but just maintain the weight I am. When you exercise you build up muscle, which gives you shape; even thin people can use muscle tone. Muscle burns up more energy than fat tissue.

2.     Exercise gives you a buzz. You’ve probably heard of the runner’s high, that happy, almost euphoric feeling during an exercise session. Experts put it down to a combination of factors – a release of endorphins, hormones that mask pain and produce a feeling of well-being; the secretion of neurotransmitters in the brain that control our mood and emotions and a plain old sense of achievement. Whatever gives you the high, there’s no doubting the feel-good glow it gives you.

3.     Exercise boosts your confidence. Every time you work out or play a sport, you’re doing something positive for yourself, which is mood-enhancing in itself. When you start to see the results in the mirror, your self-esteem rockets. As soon as you see results, you will find it easier to stick to your weight loss plan, too.

4.     Exercise reduces your appetite. As well as being a good distraction from the allure of the fridge, exercise slows the movement of food through your digestive system, so it takes longer for you to feel hungry.

5.     Exercise helps you keep weight off. From a dietary perspective, the trouble with only tackling your weight loss is that it is usually quite hard to maintain your weight loss in the long term. Once you have reached your goal and are a little less strict with yourself, the weight can begin to come back. Studies have shown that people who have successfully lost weight by taking exercise as well as a sensible approach to food are better at keeping their weight stable longterm.

The key to incorporating exercise into your life is to find something you enjoy. I do believe there’s something for everyone. Some of us love swimming. For others, it’s running or tennis. These days gyms have a huge variety of classes on offer, ranging from the highly choreographed to gentle classes featuring very simple moves. There’s no excuse for at least not trying some of them out. If you really don’t like gyms, there is walking, which is a very good exercise indeed. It is easy to get into the habit of taking regular walks. Just one foot in front of the other, walk out of your door and keep going.

Corporate Wellness