The Lead: Sustainability of Peloton’s Spinning Success, Lyft’s One-Stop-Shop, AI Advancements in Healthcare

Welcome to The Lead, AchieveForum’s weekly brief of leadership news and insights. This curated content will provide you with quick clarity into relevant headlines and provide straight-forward analysis for applying effective leadership tools and techniques. 

Sustainability of Peloton’s Spinning Success

The $2,245 Peloton is a stationary bike that also offers a subscription package for spinning classes that can be taken directly from a screen on the bike. Aiming at making workouts fun and going beyond just another workout fad, Peloton seeks to grow its customer base and business value. With the help of snazzy infomercials and celebrity endorsements, Peloton has sold 577,000 of its bikes and treadmills in five years. However, Peloton’s losses have more than quadrupled in the last year, and at least a dozen competitors have emerged that sell Peloton-style bikes for as little as $199.

Our View: Business leaders are tasked with the goal of achieving sustainable growth and more importantly, sustainable leadership. Board directors should have a job specification and candidates in mind for its next generations of chief executives, not just the next CEO. Take a systematic approach to talent development that is fair, transparent, repeatable, and consistently applied at all levels of the company. The process should be centered around the notion of the CEO as a steward of lasting improvement for the organization. Further Reading

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Lyft’s One-Stop Shop

Lyft app updates allow users to combat city congestion with a one-stop shop for multiple mobility options that include cars, buses, trains, subways, bikes, and scooters. Eighty percent of U.S. public transit routes and the cost of riding them are now visible in the Lyft app. Integrating all of this information into their app will help Lyft stand apart from its arch-rival Uber. However, Uber may not be far behind as it created in-app ticketing for public transit in Denver, and Lyft is not yet that integrated. Both companies are looking to promote “transportation as a service.”

Our View: Several key lessons from how ride-share apps integrate more options and streamline their systems can be applied to leadership development. To become more strategically focused, talent development leaders are transforming their entire HR departments to be more integrated with other functions. When talent acquisition, rewards, compensation, and succession planning become talent development processes that are also discussed with workers in non-talent development functions, you can ensure that processes are optimized and aligned with overall strategic business objectives. Streamlining leadership and integrating more HR processes through every level of your organization can help maximize efficiency and effectiveness and in turn, increase employee engagement and retention. Further Reading

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Reduced Costs, Improved Patient Care, and AI Concerns

Healthcare continues to see advancements from artificial intelligence that reduce costs for patients and providers, improve patient care, and create greater efficiency. However, these benefits aren’t without risks, and privacy and quality concerns must be managed. When patient data moves from the medical record directly to patients’ phones, there must be proactive measures taken to protect their privacy along with a potential shift in mindset that allows for appropriate tradeoffs between privacy and the insights from data that can improve outcomes. Linda Hand, the CEO of Cardinal Analytx said, “If we only focus on the business practice of this AI enablement and operational efficiencies, we have the ability to misuse AI to do bad things faster and at scale. AI can be used to counter that, so I hope we’re smart enough to do that, but there is a danger of that, of only focusing on one. I’d like to see us in the industry balance the science, and the practice, and the business operations to make sure that we’re looking at the right incentives across that continuum.”

Our View: Healthcare providers and technologists must stay ahead of AI developments and its implications for healthcare to maximize opportunities while mitigating risks. Leaders in all fields can help manage the march of AI by asking key questions about its implications for society, the economy, and governance. Look for ways to maintain mechanisms for human oversight and control, and penalize malicious AI behavior. Use broad AI principles for regulation rather than specific algorithms to ensure AI does not replicate historic injustice, unfairness, or discrimination in data or algorithms. Further Reading

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Boeing’s New Safety Committee

Following the two fatal crashes of the 737 Max, Boeing is creating a permanent aerospace safety committee on its board. The committee will be led by retired Adm. Edmund Giambastiani Jr., former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and safety-related experience will be added to the list of criteria for choosing future directors.

Our View: A committee is only as good as its leadership. When safety is involved and lives are at stake, success hinges on choosing the right committee leader. They are responsible for setting the strategic direction, ensuring effectiveness, and monitoring activities and progress. They must foster a culture where it is encouraged and safe to speak up, so they avoid missing fatal blind spots. Chose a committee leader with the requisite experience, and enact an evaluation method that ensures the committee leader upholds the role’s duties. Further Reading

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The Future of Architecture

Dezeen Day is a architecture conference where industry and thought-leaders in the space come together to discuss the future of architecture design as well as the education and business of the field. The next one will be held at BFI Southbank, on the bank of the Thames in central London, on Wednesday 30 October. Discussion topics will include future cities, the circular economy, gender inequality in architecture, and running a successful design business.

Our View: Finding hubs for thought-leaders in your industry is crucial to share ideas and gain valuable insights. These hubs can be online or in-person and should include collaborations that extend beyond your function and business. Attending industry-specific conferences to make new connections and understand your business are great, but do not undervalue the importance of more general events that cover topics at a broader scope. These events can help you understand your organization’s purpose in fresh and novel ways and help you place it in its larger context of humanity’s collective challenges and opportunities. Further Reading

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