Need help facilitating your next planning session virtually? Contact us now.    Learn More
Watch Demo

Rhythm Blog | Ted Skinner

by Patrick Thean and the Rhythm Team

How Can I Source Ideas From Remote Employees Without Being Disruptive?

Ted Skinner Tue, Mar 31, 2020 @ 11:03 AM

How can I better source ideas from employees, even when they are working from home?

When looking for new ideas, some large organizations take their talent searches beyond their own walls. Almost one-quarter of Fortune 500 CEOs at the world’s 2,500 largest firms were hired externally from 2012 through 2015. Sometimes these executives are hired to reboot the operations or provide fresh perspectives to the organization.

That particular arrangement is less common at SMBs and middle-market companies, which are more often run by founders and other early employees. Still, the inclination to search outside the company for inspiration can be irresistible. Seeing what competitors or other experts in the field are doing at the moment is undoubtedly a key part of staying competitive, but it’s not everything.

How to Engage Remote Employees That Work From Home in 2020

Ted Skinner Fri, Mar 13, 2020 @ 11:03 AM

Employee engagement for remote workers is a huge topic in the market today, especially with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) limiting travel and forcing a large part of the working population to work from home that don't typically do so. It is difficult enough to engage employees that are in the same office as you, let alone keeping a geographically dispersed group of employees engaged. In today’s hectic and fast-paced work environment, organizations need to do everything they can do to create an engaging workplace that helps find, attract and develop A-players no matter where they are located.

5 Tips for Running Effective Team Meetings

Ted Skinner Sat, Feb 29, 2020 @ 02:14 PM

Team meetings are a key component of any business. It’s important that the employees know and understand what’s going on with the company and what expectations they need to meet in order for the company to be successful.  It is one of the best ways to create a culture of continuous improvement.

How does your team react to the weekly meeting? Is it a task they dread? Do they welcome the break from their desks? Do they get frustrated because every single meeting always seems to be about the concerns of one single person? Do the meeting participants believe it is time well spent? We have found that companies that take control of their meetings get a huge return on their investment with high employee engagement.

How to Facilitate A Strategic Planning Session in 2020

Ted Skinner Sat, Feb 29, 2020 @ 11:03 AM

Great strategic meetings don’t happen by accident. They happen because someone is committed to  THINKING through the purpose and outcome, PLANNING all of the details in advance, and DOING the hard work of running the meeting. This is the role of an excellent annual planning facilitator that can help you better define your strategy, create a winning annual plan and leave with an action plan to get your annual initiatives done. In order to facilitate a planning session, there is a lot of hard work that needs to be done.

Fix a Meeting in 4 Easy Steps [Video]

Ted Skinner Sat, Feb 29, 2020 @ 11:00 AM

Weekly staff meetings are often a huge waste of time and money. Too often, they are just boring status updates that could have been better solved by sending out an email. People have gotten into a rut and just don’t think that there is anything they can do to fix their meetings and they have given up hope. You can change your weekly staff meetings quickly and easily following the four simple steps outlined below. Putting in the effort is well worth the reward of being able to solve problems each and every week in a fun environment that you actually look forward to attending. Just imagine how much better your company’s results would be if every department solved one of its biggest challenges each and every week!

At Rhythm Systems, we have been fixing weekly staff meetings for more than a decade with our unique methodology and patented strategy execution software to focus your most important resources on the most important projects. It isn’t all that difficult once you have a clear execution-ready quarterly plan in place. Once you have you have a clear quarterly plan, aligned with your annual plan, you have the basis for your weekly meeting agenda. If you aren’t connecting your strategic planning with your execution, of which your weekly staff meeting is the cornerstone, you aren’t having the right discussions to move your strategy forward to achieve your BHAG.

There are 11 million meetings in the United States alone every work day. Up to 50% of the time in those meetings is wasted, and that’s probably a conservative estimate, and costs about $37 billion per year in lost productivity in the United States alone. The real question is how much this is costing you and your organization by not fixing your weekly staff meeting?

Are Employee Motivation and Employee Engagement the Same? (Infographic)

Ted Skinner Sat, Feb 29, 2020 @ 09:00 AM

In working with middle market CEOs and their employees and they often wonder about their employee productivity and professional development.  I often find that they are overlooking one of the biggest components of productivity, are your employees engaged or are they motivated?  The team members may be motivated by a bonus and they will be productive, but if a team member is also engaged with their work - and its purpose - they are almost a third more productive.  Let's talk about employee motivation and engagement, as they aren't the same thing.

As an employer, you want your workforce to be both engaged and motivated. With employee engagement at around  15% worldwide and 34% in the United States according to Gallup, it is important to know the difference between employee engagement and motivation.  Engaged employees will decrease your employee turnover rate and you'll have much happier and longer tenured employees!  This reduces training and recruiting costs to help the bottom line over the long term

SMART Goal Setting Theory: To Create SMART Goals, Start With “Why”

Ted Skinner Fri, Feb 28, 2020 @ 03:47 PM

Leadership 101 tells us that it’s important to set clear and specific goals for ourselves and for our teams in order to achieve business goals and objectives. In other words, all of our business goals should be “SMART” (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely.) In order to craft a good smart goal, you need to take a couple of steps back and look at the whole picture - why are you doing this? The best SMART goals always start with “why.” Are you taking an educated guess at what you think a good goal is going to be that will equate to business success? Are you confident enough in defending that guess to someone else? If you fully understand the “why” behind the project, it is much easier for you to define your time-based goals. Goal setting theory clearly states that the better you write your SMART goals, the better your team will perform.

Management Meeting Agenda: Make Your 2020 Management Meetings Effective

Ted Skinner Fri, Feb 28, 2020 @ 12:00 PM

In my last blog, I talked about how most meetings suck. Now, I want to focus our energy on ways that we can fix them and have effective meetings. One of the biggest complaints that I hear about bad meetings is the lack of an agenda or getting it two minutes prior to the meeting. While having a meeting without an agenda is horrifying, I have attended several bad meetings that had a detailed agenda sent well ahead of time! The problem was that the agenda didn’t cover all of the areas that the company needed to discuss in order to grow their business. It isn’t just having an agenda; it is about having the right management meeting agenda template focused on solving problems facing your organization.

Balanced Scorecard KPI Examples: A Comprehensive List of KPIs

Ted Skinner Fri, Feb 28, 2020 @ 11:03 AM

As the middle market strategy execution experts, we get asked a lot of questions about KPIs or Key Performance Indicators for firms to manage the metrics that matter. In fact, we get hundreds of thousands of yearly views on our KPI blog posts alone! Our comprehensive KPI Guide is one of the most valuable free resources that we offer to the middle market community free of charge to help companies determine the right set of KPIs for their business if they don’t have the resources to utilize our expertise and KPI dashboard software to create a balanced scorecard (BSC) of their performance.

Company KPIs: Creating Business KPIs That Drive Success in 2020

Ted Skinner Fri, Feb 28, 2020 @ 09:00 AM

The body has four main vital signs that doctors use all around the world to determine the condition of a patient. The four vital signs are body temperature, pulse rate, respiration (breathing) rate and blood pressure. These are measurements of the basic functions that keep you alive. They need to be functioning properly in order for anything else to work, including your brain! These metrics are just four of the hundreds of potential measurements that a doctor could use to assess the health of a patient. However, the four vital signs are the most important elements of a patient’s current state of health. Once the vital signs are stable, the doctor can begin to diagnose the long-term treatment of the patient, but they don’t do that until they know the vital signs have stabilized.   Do you know the vital signs for your company's success at achieving its strategic plan and key business objectives?