Insights

The importance of optimism

And how to induce it in others. How many of your leaders would you describe as being actively, infectiously “optimistic”? And how many of your employees? I dare to guess the answer to both these questions is, “very few”. Often the optimism that fuelled the start of...

9 ways to save your company £1 million

What to do if your culture is compromising your commercial success. Poor company culture costs the UK economy a whopping £23.6 billion a year, according to recent research by Opinium[1]. In 2017, there were around 20,400 businesses employing over 50 people[2] -...

Why scale-ups become screw-ups

When growing a business, it pays to stick to your speed limits. “Speed kills. Kill your speed.” Growing up, I saw many adverts targeting drivers with messages like this. It always struck me as an odd thing to have to spell out. It’s obvious that a few tonnes of metal...

The sure­-fire way for your business to beat Brexit

If you don’t believe that developing your culture is both urgent and important, think again. 2008 was a tough time to be a supplier to the British public sector. The credit crunch (and doesn’t that term now feel quaint) left budgets frozen or cut altogether. As a...

How to spot a culture in decline

If things are feeling desperate, start by avoiding the Killer 'B's. Doing new things is hard. Writing about doing new things, on the other hand… And I am aware of the irony in that statement. Anyway, I recently stumbled across yet another article on managing...

The desirability of dissent

If you want to build a thriving business, get good at disagreement - fast. Back in November, Corporate Punk staged an event with our friends at Wallace LLP. Called Talking The Tightrope, it explored a critical but often under-looked area of business: the art of...

100 lessons from 100 weeks

The occasionally brutal operating system of a business without blueprint. Nearly two years ago, I launched Corporate Punk with a piece of writing entitled 'No Guru, No Method, No Teacher'. It was a signal of intent: my ambition was to build a company that is uniquely...

The failure fallacy

Why ‘embracing failure’ is easy to say, but hard to do. It was a Saturday night, in a cold and damp Leeds train station. I was on my way back to London, having visited friends, when I received two text messages from a colleague. The first: “I’m about halfway through...

Five lessons for HR

Despite its reputation, Human Resources is the management discipline of the future. I once had a business partner who was fond of saying the main thing that all HR Directors have in common is that they aren’t much good with people. It’s a nice line: it speaks directly...