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Organizational Design with Amy Kates | Sales Expert Insights

My name is John golden, says hop online says magazine pipeliner CRM and today I’m joined by Amy Cates. How do you do Namie, I’m just fine. Thank you. John and Amy is part of Managing Partner of the Cates Kessler organization, which consults in a number of areas, but particularly in organizational options and implications, and how to make sound decisions around how to structure your your organization’s.

You also teach at Cornell, there’s a correct and and obviously is also an author of numerous books and speaks and writes on a regular basis, a pretty busy so for somebody listening Amy. Her name is in by the way in New York today and I’m in San Diego Amy, for somebody listening when you talk about designing, you know organizational design or organization design. What do you mean by that to some people that might sound? Well, that sounds very because in the past organizations were fairly simple, but the world has gotten much more complex in the last four twenty years and we have to think about not just strategy and people.

But how do we really build an architecture of an organization so that people can come to work and do their best and understand? Who do I talk to how do decisions get made? How does workflow so when we talk about organization design its? It’s really the set of decisions you make after strategy to say? How do I want to configure my organization so that people can connect the right way horizontally vertically to get work done, and typically we work with companies that are global, that multiple product lines that are developing new strategies that are moving from? You know business business, to business, to consumer, introducing digital capabilities, and this complexity really requires than an organization that can can match the what to do that strategy.

Yeah, because it’s interesting what you say there, because you know what a lot of companies, obviously they they do. Their strategy, and then they move straight to execution right and don’t do that kind of structural piece and also a lot of organizations. You know traditionally kind of grow organically right I mean they structures come about organically. So what happens when you get that we’re we’re a company moves from strategy to execution without the design part yeah.

So typically, is its strategy really not even to execution? It’s the org chart? Okay. So let’s change the org chart change the direct report structure. Let’s consolidate some pieces, let’s make some new roles to get things done and we we design around people and the people that we have as opposed to thinking about an organizational model that can last so what happens when we don’t really do design work to think about How structure management process reward mechanisms and people processes work together in a system? What you do is you might solve a short-term problem by let’s say we take out some management layers, so we can press the organization and say that’ll speed decision-making.

We’ve changed the org chart, but we haven’t changed the work and so soon what we have is. The organization starts to organically grow again to fill in those missing pieces. So when we do our work with clients, we start with strategy. We look at capabilities and we say: what’s the organization model we want to organize toward and then let’s make smart decisions to build, really a roadmap to get there yeah and – and you raise an interesting point there, because that is the big trap that our companies fall Into is fitting.

People is starting with the people rather than with the the process or the organization of the structure, and then you kind of go. Oh well. You know this person they’ve been around a long time, so we’ll shoehorn them into this. Even though they’re the work, even though they’re completely not the right fit for it right, but it’s a real it’s real temptation to do that. Isn’t it absolutely and because that’s tangible, I can see that I can make a change.

You know we often joke that organizations are really. You know, three-dimensional invisible, abstract concepts, you you know, you feel the organization impact see, but you can’t see it, and so when leaders or even HR professionals, don’t feel confident in the set of tools they have. Then it’s easy to go to the things that we can change, that are tangible. Let’s change the org chart roles, jobs, people in those roles.

So that’s why we’re so passionate in our firm about not just doing the work and consulting but writing and teaching and making articles and doing workshops to really build the skills out there and demystify this and the other trap that people fall into a lot is. Is this idea of you can only scale by people right? You can only add more and more more people without taking a step back and looking at the efficiency part.

Looking at the structural part when you, when you work with organizations, is that something you come across a lot where they’re just throwing people at problems rather than analyzing the issues. Just don’t have enough to do we’re not busy here right, so everybody’s busy and yet feels and feels overwhelmed with communication and priorities, and yet we have inefficiency in the work and high costs so and the usual answer is you’re.

Absolutely right. Let’s put more throw more people at the problem, but more people actually generate work as much as they do work. They create surface area, they ask for meetings, they ask for data, they ask for reports. So one of the things that we go in and look at is is: it is really to start with the work. Let’s, let’s redesign the work and the workflows in the context of the strategy capabilities we want to get done and then look at people what you know what’s going on right now with machine learning, artificial intelligence, automation which is you know, it’s been building its in there, A little bit, but it’s going to come fast and big, is fundamentally going to change the nature of work, not just what we’ve seen in manufacturing or service work or call center kinds of things, but really in marketing in R & D and where we thought you Know this is where people’s jobs is are really about decision making, it is artificial intelligence is going to change it so or design becomes even more important, because we have to think about what’s the unique contribution that we need people to make and be sure that we Have the right skills in the right place and that again we we organize, so we can do unique things together, yeah and that’s an interesting you to bring that up about AI in machine learning in there and and baths and all of that kind of stuff.

Because I do I mean obviously, we are seeing that rapidly coming into into into many organizations. But we still don’t have a great grip on how, as you say, how to combine it with the people and at the end of the day. And we always had this thing about pendulums. Don’t we like pendulum goes: it’s like: let’s replace everything with AI and machine learning and then so, when you’re talking with organizations, how are you helping them through this transition because I can see this is on the horizon? For a lot of people, yeah yeah, so first, what’s interesting, you know 15 years goes all that outsourcing and we see a lot of companies bringing back some of that because they they push too much out the door, and that was core to their capabilities.

But with organizations you know what’s changed I think is strategy is still important, but it’s less about hey. We have a three-pronged strategy: that’s good for five to seven years, we’re going to organize toward that and get into some steady-state we’re working with a lot of organizations in industries in which we don’t know. What’s going to be a winning strategy. So when you think about media about cable, television and entertainment contents related, how do are we going to get people to pay for what you do? You know, for example, and all of the old business models are really being challenged.

So, in a lot of ways, the work is not to designer organization to a fixed strategy, but it’s to create organizations that can sense the environment that can make decisions quickly, that can experiment and rapidly prototype and try out different ways to see. What’s going to work and make good decisions around a portfolio of opportunities? Um because we don’t know you know which is going to be that winner, and so that’s that’s new and unsettling for a lot of fun, Peters, yeah, cuz.

What you’ve described there is obviously anathema to the way organizations were in years gone by. I mean this idea of you know, being extremely flexible and fluid and able to react, and you know prototype and and experiment. A lot of people were not set up. Organizations are not set up that way right, so this is obviously the big challenge ahead for people like you, when you work with organizations is how do you take and that a new problem – and I’m sure you’ve done this, obviously with some organization.

But how do you take a very maybe traditional organization and help them on that journey to being a little more flexible and fluid yeah yeah, and you know what’s interesting – is that flexibility and fluidity is not um. Just chaos right. You actually need more leadership. You need more discipline, you need more process in order to be fast and adaptable, especially when you’re, when you’re looking at organization, that’s in multiple regions – and I get has multiple product lines trying to come together for common customers and then make this change so um.

The way to do it is, is it has to start from the top as well as from the bottom, so it’s about leadership really being clear about where they want to go and what those new behaviors are. What success looks like again, we might not know the strategy, we might not know what even products we have, but we know how it will feel for our customers and how we need to work together. Then it’s about unleashing some of those experiments down close to the customer right, it’s not about just having something up at corporate that says up.

This is innovation here it is it’s really helping the people who see and touch the customer des, try new ways and create networks to really see what works and and invest in those. So it’s a lot of almost an internal venture kind of mindset that you have to build, and that has to happen over time. It’s it’s not just hiring a person. So again, this idea of capabilities that you know we make the distinction, say: competency lives in a person, but a capability, an organizational capability, something we do together and so focusing on that on.

How do we need to work together in new ways to get different decisions? New outcomes is really the old design work yeah. So it’s not a question of just hiring it. You know chief chaos officer or whoever something you like that, but I love that thought of what you’re saying about the fact is the flexibility and fluidity. It does not equal chaos because it can’t, because, obviously, chaos is the opposite: everything kind of grinds to a halt to glorious halls eventually.

So the other thing that kind of really in true intrigues me about this is you. You went back to leadership right, as you said leadership at the beginning. So that’s that’s. A big challenge now is for leaders to transition to being different types of leaders and in the past maybe the command and control is it doesn’t work so much anymore and it’s more the it’s more having this structural vision and then getting the right people to implement It absolutely but make no mistake, it is not.

It is not abdication of your vision, you know again walking into so many companies doing org assessments. What I hear over and over the number one issue that I hear across companies, we have too many priorities. Our leaders are not making choices, they’re, not setting direction or helping us make trade-offs. Where do I spend my time? Where are we making investments, and so the work of leadership today is to make some of those big bets again and and then nurture the small portfolio of small opportunities and and know when to stop a project know when to double down project, to move resources and That takes a lot of courage that takes a lot of collaboration that takes a high-performing leadership team to make trade-offs against all of these different options.

Low ego and then it takes managers, corporate coaches to help people really work in the teams across these boundaries. To get new work done so so the change that we see is absolutely you’re right. It’s not commanding controls, not figure out and tell me what to do. It’s giving me the framework so that I can come to work and spend my energy in the right. The right way – and I’m glad you mentioned that idea of choice because it’s a bit of a soapbox of mine.

This idea is like human beings as human beings. We hate making choices, everything we like, but we really hate it because when you choose one thing you by definition of default, unchoose other things and we prefer to hedge our bets all the time, and I do think we were in a in a world you’re right Now you’re we’re in a world where you have you have to make choice and you have to make bets and if you make a wrong choice, you’ve got to get out of it quickly, right, yeah, yes, so speed! You know if, if I was to say, what’s the biggest difference that see in the last, you know 20 years of doing this kind of work.

It’s not. The world wasn’t complex before global, but the speed of of expectation has changed. So what technology has done? Is it it has been a cycle times of product development, of of customer expectation of R & D, and yet we need to. We need to connect the best middle of managers in our global organizations, and you know, I often say, as human beings we haven’t really evolved in the last 20 years.

We don’t process information any faster. We still like to build relationships and get things done through trust, and so this pressure to be faster to make good fast decisions is really what drives a lot of organizational change. How do we reconfigure to get the right connections to make better faster decisions, because at the end of the day, that’s what wins, yeah and that raba see requires a good level of being able to process engineer very fast right? Yes, yes, yes, so it’s really management processes, business processes, workflows, decision processes, governance forms friendly, it’s all the stuff that leaders and managers hate to do it’s not a fun thing that you know we sign up to do to say: I’m going to be ahead of a Function and ahead of a business unit this, but this is the work I mean, I think that’s it.

That’s a that’s a great point also to touch upon there yeah. It’s not it’s not probably the most exciting of work for people, but as you, as you have laid out quite clearly here that if you don’t get your processes right, all the different processes right you’re not going to be able to move with speed and you’re. Not going to be able to you know, have success and and and you’re not going to be able to change direction.

If you need to fast either exactly exactly again that idea of discipline rigor, you know how we run teams. How do we meet how we make decisions, how we manage work and handoffs but across boundaries? All of that helps us actually to move faster, but it means John putting the time into design those being thoughtful and then also keeping them healthy because they don’t last as we choose direction, we need to change all of those pathways and mechanisms and and what I Urge leaders to do is to explain that to employees so that it’s not we’ve made a norm change this time.

We got it right, it should last because it won’t and then they won’t, it reduces trust and credibility. Rather, to say, we have an organizational vision just like we have a strategic vision, we’ll be organizing toward that and here’s what you can expect as we move forward together, stay with your way to managing change yeah, and I think that’s a that’s a fantastic point too. To end on here is that idea of getting people comfortable with the fact that what you’re designing is the best thing you can design for today, hopefully for tomorrow, but maybe the day after that we might have to change again I mean you look at, as you Said the speed of disruption I mean you mentioned the broadcast and TV industry, I mean who they wouldn’t have thought a few years ago that they get so blindsided by streaming and now they their struggle for business models.

They can so I mean IIIi. Think that’s a great thing to to end on that idea of the fact. Is you you we’re not we’re not building to steady States right we’re building the best for now? Yes, so it’s a growing field. There’s lots of resources out there. You know we’ve been making articles and articles books and really trying to help people understand their tools or frameworks. There’s methods to think about this and have the conversation together and just make make smarter decisions about your organization yeah, so Amy before we go.

If you just like to tell everybody a little bit more about yourself, your organization, how they can learn more about you and what you do sure I’m Amy Cates my partner is quick Kesler. We have a wonderful team of just about a dozen people that work with us and all we do is help. Leaders and leadership teams make smart decisions about their organization, but we also teach our design, as you mentioned, through Cornell public programs, in-house programs.

We have the latent learning series online, as well as YouTube blog of articles and our website case. Counselor comm has lots of articles and blogs on the topic if people are interested so we’re always eager to share and to teach and always have someone contact me with a question: great, listen, Amy. This has been fantastic and I encourage people to check out more about this, because I’m I’m a firm believer that it’s it’s! How you organize yourself! That’s how you’re going to win in the future, because you’re going to have to be moving in so many different directions and being able to be very, very flexible in that so again, my name is John golden says.

Pop online says magazine: pipeliner CRM, Amy Cates been a pleasure and look forward to see you all again soon. Thank you.


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Master of Negotiations with Herb Cohen | Sales Expert Insights

My name is John golden from says pop online says magazine and pipeliner CRM and today I’m delighted to be joined by herb Cohen, who is in Brooklyn Heights in New York. Hey turn herb you’re, just fine and herb has for more than three decades or maybe even more he’s been a practicing negotiator intimately immersed in in some of the world’s leading, like headline dramas from hostage hostile takeovers, hostile hostage negotiations, your clients have been executives, entrepreneurs, sports Theater, the glut corporations, government agencies and you’ve written a number of books on the subject of negotiation, so so herb, I, you are a definitive resource on negotiations and I’m sure you’ve forgotten more about negotiations than most people will ever know in their lifetime.

Right. Yes, although so what are some of the when people come to negotiate in the first place, I don’t think negotiations are something that comes naturally to most people. I mean a lot of us think, maybe that we’re good negotiators, but we don’t really know what we’re doing. What are some of the mistakes that people make when they approach negotiations in the first place? Well, initially, they believe that it is something that’s very narrow, they see it, they use the metaphor of the pie and they think well, here’s a pie with 12 slices, and if I get six, they get six I’m going to try to get eight and hold them Off so they see it as a competitive game and that’s really not what it is.

Actually, you know, if you take the pie metaphor I may like the crust, then you may like the apple and he’s like inside, and so you can generally work things out or both sides gain in both sides benefit yeah. So so I mean I could just saying they’re so but – and I think that’s true and I think that’s unfortunately true business and life – that people tend to look at things as finite as opposed to you know, there’s enough there for everyone, but also tell me people Do people generally very few people love the negotiations? Phase right negotiating is something that’s learned.

I didn’t start out as a negotiator, you learn it it’s a skill that you will acquire and the way you acquire it is by practicing it probably. The first things that people should remember is that virtually everything is negotiable. Thing is the product of a negotiation. That’s how it came about a price thing about like Tiffany’s, would you say gee it’s going to go stated Tiffany’s? Oh my god. You know it’s like untouchable.

It’s holy ground. Yet how did they establish the price that judging $ 8,000 for the ring – and these salespeople said hey, let’s make it seven we’ll sell more rings. The accounting financial people said no make it nine profit and they worked it out and ultimately, they came up with 8000, which prices 7990 sounds better. Yeah point is: if something came about as a result of negotiation. Of course it’s negotiable and if you start to think virtually everything came about as a result of the negotiation, the only thing that didn’t are religious and ethical moral principles right other than that everything’s negotiable.

Like I wrote a book, you could negotiate anything which has been translated into 36 languages, yeah and I’ll, be the world’s world’s biggest selling book on negotiating them selling selling is a negotiation anytime. You were attempting to influence someone’s behavior you’re negotiating we negotiate. Is we negotiate with banks? We negotiate what our boss, we negotiate with subordinates mm-hmm. Why is this series of negotiations and if you learn how to play this game, you end up being much more satisfied and living an enriched life, so you say in your book: you can negotiate anything there’s three crucial steps to success.

What are those steps? Well, I said: there’s three things: there’s information and the more you get the better off you are. The next is time and the third is power and people always have more power than they think they have. We always underestimate. Ourself, for example, it’s a prisoner in solitary confinement. You know they take away your shoelaces and your belt, so the guys walking around he’s holding up his pants.

You know he’s got those shoes and he craves a cigarette. He goes to the going knocks on the steel door. The guy opens up. What do you want be nice? Why I, like his cigarette BAM, the god slam he comes back, he does it again. The God opens up. I just told you no, he said, look if I don’t get a cigarette from you within the next minute. I tend to bang my head up against that concrete wall till I’m bloody and unconscious and when they revived me I’ll swear that you did it one cigarette.

I won’t bother you now. Can the guy get that cigarette sure get a cup of coffee as well? The point is even in a powerless situation, you’ve got more power than you think, yeah yeah. So that’s great. I’m writing that down. Just in case, I ever find myself and solitary confinement that I know exactly how to get a cigarette going forward. But I like the point, though her because I do think – and this is something I think a lot of salespeople experience like they love the sales process and all of that and they theory, but but as it gets down to the end and it gets into the Negotiation process, as you say, they start to feel like they, like.

The buyer, has all the power and they have no power left right and that’s when they start. You know offering up discounts before anybody even asked for them. So how do you? How do you help people in that situation? Take a step back and say no, no, this is you know, there’s there’s power on both sides of the table. Well. Well, first of all, let me just digress for a moment say: selling is really today a honorable skilled, profession, yeah, because you’re in selling other than other jobs in corporations where I was in selling one you get ownership for the results.

You did it. Okay number two! You get instant feedback right and in other jobs and corporations staff jobs. How do you know you’re doing well of my performance appraisal in six months and the boss calls you and tells you, and he says things, do you like remember five months ago, you thought you doing well. Well, you were, and the third thing is one ownership results, feedback and an opportunity to take risk, and so, if you’re in sales, you really can be very independent.

I was in corporations and selling positions and I could arrive late. I would pop my 10 year old car and the CEOs place because they didn’t want to walk, and I got away with all that stuff. Why? Because I was like yeah selling is fantastic and selling involves negotiation other than that you in order to take you work for Apple, and you have 8,000 new new, ipods, ipads, 8,000 new ones, and it’s the new number 16 model.

Yeah and you’ve got 30,000 people at wonnum you’re, not selling you’re, taking orders you’re filling out slips selling involves skill. It involves determining what the needs of the customer are and satisfying those needs, and a lot of that is done by your style. How you approach people and the best way to approach a custom if you’re in selling is in a congenial cooperative fashion, with what I call a low-key pose of calculated incompetence so run run that by me again that sentence say you want to approach people in an Amicable fashion, with a Loki Loki pose of calculated and comprises other words, listen to the other side find out what they want.

Ask questions rather than give answers even take notes, because people love when someone’s writing things down will say to me. But if you’re dealing a little moron you’re saying, I should write down what he says more important to write down what a moron first, because you’re the first guy who never wrote down if you’re a real professional salesperson, you’re finding out what your customers needs are and You’re shaping your product, your service, whatever you have to meet those particular needs, he’s satisfied and you’re satisfied.

In fact, you never approach people in the condescending way. The opposite is true: negotiation selling, dumb is bed and smart inarticulate is better than articulate. You want to train yourself to say I don’t know I don’t understand. Could ya? Could you help me I’m kind of new at this and let the other side help you let the other side, your customer virtually meant to you. Through this deal, you will become a much more successful person now, in fact, I have what I call the magic words of selling.

These are three-letter words. First word is spell hu H and that’s pronounced. Deca word is WH 80 WH a note T on and it knows wha. It really helps me see. One of my strategies, the negotiation and selling, is to make the other side feel superior to me right if any cases get the work very hard, but nevertheless the pays off, and so your style, your manner, your demeanor is more important than the content.

The price of this transaction and many salespeople think well, I didn’t get it because right, the price. Do I if we cut the price, but in reality you know, there’s an old saying when people are get annoyed, they say: well, it’s not what they said. It’s the way they said mhm, and so, if you look at your most successful salespeople, most successful negotiators, they have a style, a manner that other people relate to.

They feel nothing yeah and it’s true. I mean they always say that people remember how you made them feel not really what you said. It’s the same, if you can give an hour-long speech and people may not remember practically anything, you said, but they go wow. That was good. I really liked you know. I really felt that was engaging, and so I I take what you’re saying about sales number one. I think it’s a it’s a very good point.

It’s a fantastic profession, it’s unfortunately, it gets a bad rap, because popular culture loves to present it in a particular way. But this idea of a win-win, because sometimes people mistakenly think that if you don’t come away with more than the other person in a negotiation that you somehow lost, no, it’s not true. First of all, the last thing you negotiate is the quantifiable item. You save that to the end and you get people to invest in a relationship, see if I start out collaborative or cooperative.

Even if the other side thinks see this guy’s week, I’m going to conquer and destroy him, I’m going to get more pieces in fine cuz. He sounds funny, you know and look at me. He looks funny. He don’t look like a great top overpowering executive. No, and so what happens? Is they invest in the relationship and once people invest it’s hard for them to divest? You know. Rats at human beings have this in common, the more energy expended in pursuit of a particular goal, the more desirable that goal becomes, and so once people invest it’s hard for them, and so, if you kind of remember, is you know the emphasis upon your me manner? Your demeanor, it really helps you succeed, yeah and I think that’s and I think that’s true, so I think it’s a Kanaka said because if your salesperson and you negotiate with customer, it’s you know for the cost.

It’s also uncomfortable for many customers, because they, you know sometimes, if they’re not bringing in like procurement or something they’re, not they’re, not buying every day of the week and they’re, not negotiating so they’re, not they’re, not skilled. At that either look people want to establish relationship, in fact, the best people in our society who all of us are exposed to a great negotiators who start out as great negotiator the only people of children.

If you have kids, if you have contact with children, nieces nephews, you know that kids, who are little people in a big person’s world, technically have no authority or power seem to get a lot of what they want. How do they do it number one kids aim high. They end with unrealistic accepted all right, so they affect the thinking of the parent to the trying influence. The second thing the kids do is they believe that no is not really a final answer, but it’s an opening bargaining position.

So you tell a kid know: five minutes, ladies asking you again, it’s never over with this job. The third thing kids do is they form coalition’s? In other words, they say who can influence the decision make up the parents, other decision-makers, grandparents, so they form coalition’s with the GIMP grandparents against the parents. In fact, it’s easy for them to form that coalesced, because they have a common enemy, the parent.

What kids do is they persist? They persevere. I am my wife. We are the parents of three children. First child. We have these standards and rules very little exceptions. Second, kid: we have many more exception. Third, kid: we would tired people staying there 30 day, read: ask your brother and sister yeah used to be around here, and so, if we adopt the model of children just that we’re going to be more successful, I love that this is a great great way to Finish here, so it’s its aim, high form, coalition’s and be persistent, and then obviously it’s a win-win guy, because we mean at the end of the day anyway, because the kids are happy.

Parents are happy, life is good. Grandparents are happy, yes, well, listen herb! This has been fantastic before we go just like if you want to take a moment to tell people a little bit more about how they can contact you and learn. More probably, the best way to contact me is via email, /, h, er, b, Co AG and herb Cohen, four to seven at gmail.Com, great and listen herb. It’s been a fantastic, been a pleasure interviewing you.

I was really looking forward to it. I’m glad we were able to to make this work, and my name is John golden co-op online sales magazine pipeliner CRM SEO for another expert interview really soon. Thank you. Thank you.


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