The Lead: Boston Red Sox, Manufacturing Jobs, YouTube Invests in Education, Tsunami in Indonesia

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.

Boston Red Sox Win the World Series Championship

The Boston Red Sox won 11 of 14 postseason contests and just won their fourth World Series championship in 15 years. Beating the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Red Sox took an early lead in the first inning and won Game 5 with a score of 5-1. Upon victory, Red Sox Pitcher David Price said the celebration was “very special. To see all these grown men over there acting like kids is what it’s all about.”

Our View: Celebrate success effectively by reinforcing the positivity immediately while creating a sense of community. When leaders prioritize celebrations, they build greater connections with their team and inspire a heightened sense of loyalty. Celebrations should encourage child-like wonder and amazement to keep energy high and reinforce engagement. Further Reading

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Manufacturing Reviving Without Jobs Returning

It is increasingly becoming less expensive to buy a machine than hire a worker, and U.S. manufacturing proves to be no exception. While the industry is seeing somewhat of a boom as machinery, electrical products, transport equipment, furniture, etc. are “re-shoring” back from from China to the U.S., the respective increase in jobs is not following.

Our View: As artificial intelligence and other types of machines continuously replace human jobs, historian Yuval Noah Harari warns of what he is calling “the rise of the useless class.” Harari further explains, “I choose this very upsetting term, useless, to highlight the fact that we are talking about useless from the viewpoint of the economic and political system, not from a moral viewpoint.” Harari suggests we take the associated risks very seriously and think about the impact “the rise of the useless class” may have on society as a whole. In a world where automation and replication is widespread and easy, think about the unique skills you have and mentor others to do the same. Bridge bird’s and worm’s eye thinking by taking a big picture look at the entire economic environment in which your organization operates and your individual role in that ecosystem. How do your decisions impact the big picture scheme and vice versa? Are there places where you could be making incorrect assumptions about cause and effect? For example, are you absolutely certain of the levers you control and their effects? Further Reading

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Related AchieveForum resources: Manufacturing

YouTube Invests in Educational Content and Creators

Google-owned YouTube has pledged $20 million to go towards educational content and creators to expand its initiative to support global knowledge sharing. Successful educational channels like TED-Ed will be funded through YouTube’s Learning Fund. Partnerships with third-party studios and networks like Goodwill and Year Up will also be made to create videos that teach career skills. YouTube plans to expand YouTube EduCon to Europe and Asia beginning as soon as February 2019.

Our View: Find ways to promote knowledge sharing at your organization. Building a culture of trust, encouraging participative decision making, and facilitating agreements on expectations for knowledge use are quintessential ways to promote knowledge sharing among your teams. Remember to recognize individual ideas and contributions so people are motivated and empowered to share their unique ideas and information. Further Reading

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Tsunami in Indonesia Reveals Global Alert Systems’ Blind Spots

Tsunami warning systems are located across the world as dozens of deep-sea ocean sensors that capture the movement of ocean waters when there’s an earthquake. The notifications alert authorities to warn people to move to higher ground, but the recent tsunami in Indonesia illuminates a critical blind spot. Deep-sea sensors can’t detect movement when the earthquake happens too close to shore, and a devastating wave can hit before major evacuations transpire.

Our View: While blind spots don’t always have life or death consequences, eliminating them will certainly lead to improvements. Leaders can conquer their blind spots by understanding their habits, because blind spots aren’t always weaknesses. Blind spots can be disguised as habits or instinctive reactions to situations. When you become aware of your automatic responses to certain situations, you can find better alternatives that generate more proactive responses. Further Reading

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Ebola Outbreak

As security concerns heightened, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention withdrew its Ebola experts from an outbreak zone in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Ebola responses remain in action as experts advise DRC’s ministry of health and DRC’s eastern neighbors to prepare for the possibility of Ebola spreading beyond DRC’s borders.

Our View: A leader’s expertise has limits, so their effectiveness as a leader often relies on their ability to enlist the expertise of others. Leaders who are able to communicate their vision and link others’ contributions to a larger purpose have a better chance of fully engaging experts who feel a sense of loyalty in contributing to the bigger picture and long-term goals. Further Reading

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