The Lead: World Cup, Robocalls, Goldman Sachs CEO

The Lead, AchieveForum’s weekly brief of leadership news and insights, provides quick clarity into relevant headlines and straight-forward analysis for applying effective leadership tools and techniques.

France Wins the World Cup

The international game of soccer saw a thrilling final between a powerhouse France and an inspirational runner-up and smaller nation of Croatia. To put the teams into perspective, the country of France has a population of about 67 million while Croatia’s is only 4 million. In a final score of 4-2, France won the World Cup for the second time, 20 years after it defeated Brazil 3-0 in the final match of 1998.

Our View: Like other team sports, soccer provides an excellent platform to teach leadership lessons. Soccer is a truly global sport that demonstrates the interdependent nature of the team experience. A soccer team is not driven by positions and instead, consists of 11 players that are called upon to play both offense and defense. Whether it’s coaching a winning soccer team or leading a good business team, the leader must inspire a group of well-rounded players that can be called upon to perform various skills and roles. The overarching lesson to focus on team and not position is a key leadership takeaway from soccer. Further Reading

Related AchieveForum Alliance member content: Building Team Pride & Purpose; Realizing Talent in OthersDeveloping Team Agility

What You Can Do About Robocalls

Phone carriers are working on a spam filter for the increasing number of robocalls. In the meantime, when you get a robocall, you should hang up in order to prevent an increase in calls. (Once scammers know a number works, they can sell it.) You can also add yourself to the Federal Trade Commission’s Do Not Call Registry. Since scammers don’t follow the rules, you will likely still get robocalls, so you can also file robocall complaints with the FTC.

Our View: Do it yourself solutions can be effective, but when providing your own solutions at your organization be wary of how “shadow” solutions (such as “shadow IT”) may be difficult to scale. While shadow solutions may work in isolation, they aren’t always cost effective for the entire enterprise and can even have security implications. When creating your own solutions, especially in regards to technology, be sure to follow company protocols to avoid expensive future corrections. The best leaders find recognize the importance of finding the right balance between encouraging creativity and maintaining stability. Further Reading

Related AchieveForum Alliance member content: Dilemma Management

Goldman Sachs Names Its Next CEO

Goldman Sachs’ new CEO will be David Soloman, who will succeed Lloyd Blankfein and join the board in October. Blankfein, the longest-serving Wall Street CEO after JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon, will serve as chairman through the end of the year and become senior chairman when he retires.

Our View: Leadership transitions require special attention because their effects impact the entire organization and its stakeholders. A CEO’s best opportunity to lock in new organizational norms is usually during the first few months on the job. New CEOs can most successfully transition to their new job by focusing on the kind of legacy they want to leave behind from the very beginning. CEOs should ask themselves, “what would be my number one regret if I had to leave without achieving it?” Further Reading

Related AchieveForum Alliance member content: Leading Through Transitions

Microsoft Recommends Facial Recognition Software Regulation

Microsoft’s president Bradford L. Smith urged Congress recently in a lengthy blog post to study and oversee the use of facial recognition software, comparing the technology to highly regulated medicine and cars. Since, tech giants rarely advocate for regulations of their innovations, the recommendation is not being taken lightly and is sparking great debate among technology executives.

Our View: While every leader has a varying amount of influence over government regulations, each leader has the opportunity to self-regulate. Excellent self-regulation is a competitive asset and a hallmark of excellent leadership. A leader who knows how to self-regulate has an inclination towards reflection and thoughtfulness, accepts uncertainty and change, and acts with high integrity. Further Reading

Related AchieveForum Alliance member content: Building Trust Under Pressure; Addressing Emotions at Work; Leading in Context

Nike Live Illuminates the Life Left in Physical Retail

Though online retail is a major disruptor, 90% of sales still take place in brick and mortar stores. Some retail companies are conducting very forward-thinking experiments to keep pace with current and anticipated changes. For example, the first “Nike Live” concept is the new brick and mortar Nike by Melrose store which opened last week in Los Angeles. The store prepares for retail of the future by being localized, digitized, personalized, humanized, and socialized. Entrepreneur and Product Strategist Reid Hoffman predicted the integration well by explaining, “implemented correctly, software amplifies retail. Software can bring more customers to the stores, increase conversion in the store, reduce overall costs for the retailer via better analytics on supply and demand, and — for the customer — create a radically better real-life shopping experience.”

Our View: Business is full of boundaries that include everything from geographic boundaries that span locations, cultures, and markets to vertical boundaries that go across rank and seniority. Using the retail industry as an example, turn these boundaries into frontiers to drive innovation. Facilitate alternative future conversations that turn your challenges into opportunities by inviting internal and external stakeholders (ranging from customers to suppliers) to discuss only one agenda item: to imagine the ideal future five years from now. Further Reading

Related AchieveForum Alliance member content: Leading Innovation: From Concept to Customer Value; Leading Across Boundaries