Newsletter #109 : Unwritten Laws and Tacit Knowledge

September 6, 2021

Unwritten Laws and Tacit Knowledge
Hope you’ve had a great week and ready for some weekend R&R.This week’s main article comes from Jim Mortensen and the inspiration he draws from a book that was first published in 1944 (yikes, that’s 77 years ago) called The Unwritten Laws of Engineering – how can that possibly be relevant to 2021 and the world we operate in? Let Jim explain …And unwritten laws led us to discuss that crucial topic of Tacit Knowledge in Leadership and how important/valuable it is for the individual to build and the organisation to capture. More below.Great to see events and conversations springing back to life all around the world – this week we saw Digital Leader’s Week in the UK and Dublin Tech Summit in Ireland. If you’re involved in any events and would like us to promote into our global community then get in touch.Before I forget, our new eBook was released this week.
We’ve improved everything – including a very cool picture of our Sanjay being added to the cover.As many of you first encountered CTO Academy via an earlier iteration of the eBook, I recommend you get a copy of the new version – available here.More than enough from me …. enjoy the read and your weekend.
 Andrew Weaver

 The Unwritten Laws Of Engineering…
 Jim Mortensen is an experienced CTO and CTO academy’s Leadership Coach. He has graced us with more of his knowledge by breaking down his Top 10 laws and principles from The Unwritten Law Of Engineering.“One of my favourite business and engineering books is probably one you’ve never heard of – The Unwritten Laws of Engineering by W.J. King. Originally published in 1944 as three articles in Mechanical Engineering Magazine, the flagship publication of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). There is likely to be little in this book that most experienced engineering professionals and leaders don’t already know, or at least claim to know. But in my experience, as both a business and technology leader, many engineering and management screwups are rooted in a failure to adhere to the laws and principles so concisely presented in this book. So I thought it an opportune time to dust off the cover of my favourite old tome and provide you with highlights from 10 of the author’s laws and principles…”You can read the full article here.  NEWS & VIEWS  Articles Catching Our Eye This WeekIf you’re interested in the topic of Tacit Knowledge in Leadership then this relatively short academic paper is not a bad start.  Capturing leadership tacit knowledge in conversations with leaders looked at the issue of why it’s not easily transferrable into explicit “how-to” instructions for consumption by a prospective innovation leader, yet is a major source of competitive advantage. We plan to do more on this topic during the next few weeks.
How to Cultivate Higher Emotional Intelligence In Your EmployeesEmotional intelligence (sometimes called EQ or EI) has the power to reshape your entire workplace. With higher emotional intelligence as a leader, you’ll be able to exercise more patience. You’ll have an intuitive understanding of what other people are thinking and feeling. You’ll practice more compassion and earn more trust from your team. You’ll even be able to keep your own emotions in check, making more logical decisions and staying calm and stress-free under pressure.  But your employees can also benefit from high emotional intelligence. If you had an entire team of people with high EQ and consistent levels of emotional control and compassion, you’d hypothetically enjoy higher productivity, greater team bonding, better client relationships and even more benefits.The question is, how can you cultivate higher emotional intelligence in your team?  Timothy Carter suggests practicing active listening within the team. Active listening requires you to pay attention to what a person is saying, interjecting only occasionally to verify understanding. It’s the social opposite of people talking over each other in a meeting.  You can practice active listening by calling out and minimizing interruptions in a meeting-like setting. You can also train your employees how to ask meaningful questions and focus on a listener.  ___________________________________________________________________________
Your Fixation With Innovation Is Stopping Your Company Actually Innovating…Think of the word ‘innovation’ like a giant bunch of balloons. What do you picture?What Emilie Colker sees more and more these days is a hand holding a limp collection of ribbons, the air has gone out, the brightly coloured sacks flopped along the ground. Innovation has been the word and idea for so long. Wired called it an “overused buzzword” in 2013. And yet it persists, and we rely on and fixate on it. Many companies now have specific teams dedicated to innovation, often headed up by a chief innovation officer responsible for researching emerging trends, unleashing creative thinking across the team and allocating resources to drive topline revenue growth.So why has all this effort translated into underwhelming results for some companies?Often, the mandate to innovate has very little impact on the broader organization. It’s put in place by an executive team that has landed on innovation as The Thing but hasn’t looked beyond the buzzword to understand what’s required to make it a success — the air that needs to go into those balloons. This siloed approach is a problem she sees time and again. Whether a company was created 100 years ago or just last year, transformation and innovation should be at the core of everything it does. It has roots in every part of the company, not just within a single team, and its impact should be felt right across the organizationInnovation can be a powerful route to competitive advantage, but not if we assume that simply having an innovation team in our company is the fix-all. To get to the bottom of it, we need to take a step back and unpick what innovation really means today.

7 Ways To Support The Leadership Potential Of Gen Z...Josh Feldman states that in the United States, Generation Z, born in 1997 or later, has had a rocky road that showed them a shattered sense of the American promise. They grew up in a post-9/11 world and came of age amid the Great Recession, with the spectre of gun violence within their schools, and with homeownership, stable jobs, and the ability to afford college more out of reach than ever for middle-class families. Gen Zers have been hit especially hard by the pandemic. They have watched beloved grandparents, mentors, and teachers suffer and die. Those in school have seen their in-person classes and social lives disrupted. Those who are early-career professionals were often the first to lose jobs as the economy crashed at the start of the crisis. More than 50% of young American adults now live at home with their parents, a level not seen in the US since the Great Depression.
How to Deploy Emotional Intelligence for Work SuccessJohn Rampton explains that the concept of emotional intelligence has been studied for decades. It wasn’t until 1995, with the publication of Daniel Goleman’s book Emotional Intelligence, that Emotional Intelligence was pushed to the forefront. At the same time, employers still didn’t embrace EI in the workplace. Maybe it was because they believed that emotional intelligence myths like the idea that there actually isn’t such a thing. That has changed as research has found that emotional intelligence was the strongest predictor of workplace effectiveness.Additionally, McKinsey & Company anticipates that the demand for technological, social and emotional, and higher cognitive skills will rise by 2030. And as we begin to embark on a post-COVID world, EI is more relevant than ever. With that in mind, here’s how you can deploy emotional intelligence to improve both your personal and organizational work success 

BOOK OF THE WEEK  The Making Of A Manager: What To Do When Everyone Looks To You
 The Making Of A Manager is the handbook you need to be the kind of manager you’ve always wanted. Julie Zhuo remembers the moment when she was asked to lead a team. She felt like she’d won the golden ticket until reality came crashing in. She was just 25 and had barely any experience being managed, let alone managing others. Her co-workers became her employees overnight, and she faced a series of anxiety-inducing firsts, including agonizing over whether to hire an interviewee; seeking the respect of reports who were cleverer than her; and having to fire someone she liked. Like most first-time managers, she wasn’t given any formal training and had no resources to turn to for help. It took her years to find her way, but now she’s offering you the shortcut to success. “This is a great book for anyone in a managerial position or aspiring to fulfill one. It is also great for anyone working in a team or collaborative environment, which is almost anyone.  The advice from the book is very practical and down to earth. The author did not use structured terms but rather kept the tone conversational and approachable. Highly recommend it for anyonwho wishes to be a good leader and team member. .”

 VIDEO OF THE WEEK Sheryl Sandberg…Gives UC Berkeley Commencement Keynote Speech
 CTO ACADEMY EBOOK CTO Academy eBook is deeper and better Just in case you forgot to download a copy of the new eBook – just click on the link below;Take me to 90 Things You Need To Know, If You Want To Become The CTO.  

CTO ACADEMY TRIBES CTO Academy Tribes Will Be Launching In Australia/New Zealand Having spent 3 wonderful years in Melbourne and visited every corner of Aus/NZ during that time – I’m delighted to say that we plan to launch a Group Coaching Tribe down under within the next few weeks.We already have some fantastic tech leaders signed up so if you’re in the region and would like to join – or you know of someone who might benefit – get in touch with me direct and I’ll provide more information.As a recap ….CTO Academy Tribes is our group coaching and peer-2-peer support programme.Group coaching is an effective technique for building personal strengths, leadership skills and wellbeing”

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