Business leaders know that the effectiveness of a business process, whether an internally-facing or client-facing process, can determine the quality of the results we get. But, what about our thinking processes? Those are far more elusive! How do we learn to think more effectively and in turn, discover solutions more readily?
As busy leaders in large organizations and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), you need power tools that can help you get business results now, and that can build your leadership and business skills for the future. That’s what this book does. It lasers in on one part of the thinking process where you’ll get the greatest return for your investment: the assumptions you’re making. This skill is golden, no matter what problem you are solving! It can be used in the following (and countless other) ways:
– Maximizing your leadership team performance
– Evaluating the next steps for your business
– Engaging in a difficult conversation with a customer, employee, or other stakeholder
– Engaging stakeholders in a shared vision
We’re going to take a look at how assumptions form, the three steps you need to take to work effectively with those assumptions, a macro framework for addressing an issue, and the mother lode—working with assumptions about people! There’s a core premise here: when you overlook people, you overlook solutions. The assumptions we make about people can help us see them or they can blind us to them, and thus, potential solutions.
You’ll hear three extraordinary stories from leaders whose assumptions revealed people and world changing solutions:
– John Simon, a former ambassador to the African Union whose assumptions about people’s capacity and possibility transformed an intractable situation into a life-saving one.
– Bob Korzeniewski, a COO whose assumptions enabled him to see people now and in the future, translating a $4.7 million dollar purchase into a $4 billion sale.
– Ann Cramer, a former IBM executive now senior consultant who changed her assumption, discovering future generations and a more inclusive process.