The Lead: Boeing 737 Max 8 Grounded, Display Tech for the Workplace, College Admissions Scandal

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.

All Boeing 737 Max 8 and 9 Planes Grounded

A recent Ethiopian Airlines plane crashed shortly after take-off and killed all 157 people on board. As the second 737 Max aircraft crash in six months, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has grounded all Boeing 737 Max 8 and 9 planes until a software update can be tested and installed.

Our View: Workplace health and safety consists of culture, compliance, risk management, and governance. Beyond ensuring safe facilities, ensuring safe systems is paramount. While these systems can be technological, they can also be infrastructural systems that include easy ways for employees and customers to share safety suggestions. Though it may seem counterintuitive, sometimes leaders should reward bad news to encourage employees to speak up about their safety concerns. It’s impossible to fix a problem that you aren’t aware exists. Further Reading

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New and Improved Displays for the Workplace

Display technology advancements that smooth the way for augmented and virtual reality experiences are transforming the workplace. In addition to helping workers visualize and make sense of more data, the new and improved displays boost productivity. Beyond eliminating the hassle of switching between screens, they allow for greater innovation in product development and collaboration in a very interactive way.

Our View: A great way to boost employee productivity is by providing the best workplace tools. The right digital and collaborative technologies can enhance the speed and quality of workplace communication, and clear communication among all stakeholders is a key factor in an organization’s overall success. Further Reading

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College Admissions Scandal

The problems with the admission processes at many elite schools have recently been in the spotlight. Most recently, fifty people have been charged by the FBI with using bribes to get their children admitted to elite universities. William “Rick” Singer allegedly coordinated the schemes by acting as a for-profit college counselor who took millions of dollars from the parents involved in the federal fraud.

Our View: Integrity is a timeless leadership quality. People want to trust the leaders they work with in order to feel secure that the goals they are working toward are worthy aspirations that help the organization and its people. Trust and integrity often become buzz words that employees struggle to define and embody, but simply being honest and treating people well are great places to start. Further Reading

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Retail in Ruins

Empty malls, deserted shopping centers, and other abandoned retail stores are increasing in number throughout the country. In 2019 alone, more than 5,300 stores have been closed, and 1,100 of those closures were announced in a single day in March. Rolling Acres Mall in Akron, Ohio, which closed in 2013, might be redeveloped by Amazon, but many other closed malls remain as deserted ruins.

Our View: Keep your change management strategy on pace with digital developments. Change must happen faster in the digital age, so organizations need to simplify structures, processes, activities, and decision making to manage the increasing complexity. Today, more than ever, employees must be included in the change initiatives with leaders who are personally engaged and embody the organization’s values and desired behaviors. Further Reading

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Push for Global Moratorium on Powerful DNA Editing

In an effort to promote thoughtful and open decisions regarding recent powerful DNA editing discoveries, scientists are calling for a global moratorium on gene editing of embryos. Eric Lander, founding director of the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in Cambridge, Massachusetts said, “We want to make sure that countries don’t do things secretly, that we declare what we’re thinking, discuss it openly, and be prepared for debate and disagreement.”

Our View: Seeking, understanding, and respecting other perspectives is a key leadership skill. Coordinating multiple perspectives is another important leadership skill to develop to avoid conflict, expedite progress, and in many cases, even gain synergies. The information obtained from gathering multiple perspectives adds to your own viewpoint and understanding of the situation, and this broader perspective sheds light on the bigger picture and facilitates better decision making. Further Reading

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