Business Starts with Social and Succeeds with Respect

If you are reading this, you are likely human. Congratulations, I’m human too. Everyday we all wake up and wonder what the day will bring.  We wonder who we will meet, what conversations we have, and what we will do. We all want to do things. In business we have processes, we have bureaucracies, we have rules. We also have hopes, … Read More

Jim BensonBusiness Starts with Social and Succeeds with Respect

Distributed Teams not Distributed Silos

The notion of a successful distributed team seems like a wonderful, yet unobtainable dream. But stop and think, how often are your non-distributed teams successful? When have they been successful and why? It’s never because of your plan or because you hired the best people. It’s not because you got expensive new project management software. It’s not even because you … Read More

Jim BensonDistributed Teams not Distributed Silos

Consulting and Learning are Mutual

My favorite part about getting to interview @ourfounder is listening to the gratitude he has for his clients and what he learns from them. — mrsungo (@mrsungo) February 4, 2016 When you are a consultant or, worse yet, seen as a thought leader, people hire you expecting to know “the answers”.  At best what you actually know is paths to … Read More

Jim BensonConsulting and Learning are Mutual

Collaboration Interview with Nancy White

Without collaboration, we cannot have business. It’s the fundamental fabric for what we build, how we build it, and how we work with our customers. Collaboration is also the core of how to have a successful distributed team, which we teach about at Modus Institute. We took time to interview Nancy White an international practitioner (maven) in collaboration and getting … Read More

Jim BensonCollaboration Interview with Nancy White

Yes, Distributed Teams Can Be Successful: Announcing the Launch of Modus Institute

Distributed teams are notorious for causing managers and workers strife. We love the idea that we can work from anywhere, but isolation and communication breakdowns can play havoc with trust and alignment. Regardless of their challenges, distributed teams are not only here to stay, they are increasingly becoming the norm. In our work with clients the past few years, one … Read More

Jim BensonYes, Distributed Teams Can Be Successful: Announcing the Launch of Modus Institute

Modus List #6 – Five Risks in How We Think About Risk

This is list number six. If you haven’t yet, go back and read the post Top Ten Reasons Why I Hate Lists. As with all lists, this is short, blunt, and intended to start a discussion. Risk mitigation, risk assessment, risk management … we insure ourselves from risk, put buffers in our estimates to compensate for risk, and we make decisions … Read More

Jim BensonModus List #6 – Five Risks in How We Think About Risk

Modus List 5: Nine Questions You Can’t Answer When Not Visualizing Your Work

There are many techniques to visualize your work. Obviously, our most popular is Personal Kanban. The way the human brain is constructed, we are very sensitive to the content of and quickly assimilate visual information. Just walking down the street you are exposed to different buildings with different uses with different qualities. We take this information in-stride. But if we want … Read More

Jim BensonModus List 5: Nine Questions You Can’t Answer When Not Visualizing Your Work

Modus List 4: Eleven Reasons Your Employees Are NOT Working For You

Over the years, Tonianne and I have visited companies and government organizations of all shapes and sizes. Everywhere we go, we find people who are at work and are working, but aren’t working to improve the organization, how it works, the products it provides, or its relationship with its customers. Managers lament that this is because they feel their people … Read More

Jim BensonModus List 4: Eleven Reasons Your Employees Are NOT Working For You

Modus List 3: Our Five Estimate Pathologies

Business runs on estimates.  How long do you think that might take? we naively ask. Then when someone tells us how long they think something might take, we write that down and hold them to it. Webster says the very word “estimate” means to roughly calculate or judge the value, number, quantity, or extent of something. “Roughly” … “judge.” We know that estimates are always wrong … Read More

Jim BensonModus List 3: Our Five Estimate Pathologies

Modus List 2: The Seven Deadly WIPS – What Destroys Your Ability To Finish?

Modern business drowns in overhead it can’t even see. I’ve seen companies spend hours denying an expense request on a $20 book. I’ve seen teams spin for weeks planning projects that change dramatically in the first week due to a simple implementation lesson. I’ve seen people overworked and therefore missing deadlines pulled into long meetings to talk to them about … Read More

Jim BensonModus List 2: The Seven Deadly WIPS – What Destroys Your Ability To Finish?