The Best of This Week
The week’s must-reads for managing in the digital age, curated by the MIT SMR editors.
Managing Time Signals When Working Remotely
As a manager, the signals you send about time have a significant impact on your employees — not only on their responsiveness during work hours but also on their flexibility and well-being. Particularly when working remotely, managers need to deliberately set clear expectations about work time.
Three Ways to Fix Job Interviews
Countless managers have conducted job interviews only to hire the wrong people. Organizational psychology offers a century of evidence on why job interviews fail and how to improve them. Adam Grant discusses how managers can better identify standout candidates and overcome three common interview mistakes.
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How Boards Can Help Businesses Navigate Crises
Removed from day-to-day operations and managerial responsibilities, boards of directors can play a significant role in helping businesses navigate and emerge from crises. Understanding the situation, approving an action plan, and thinking through strategic changes are three effective practices boards should adopt now.
A New GI Bill for the New Front Line
In Newsweek, MIT Sloan professor Paul Osterman proposes a “GI Bill for Today’s Heroes” — the grocery workers, delivery workers, restaurant workers, cleaners, hospital orderlies, EMTs, and everyone else keeping us safe and supplied during a global crisis. A training effort for these low-wage front-line workers, in the vein of the GI Bill borne of World War II, could give them a chance to gain education and training to “climb the occupational ladder.”
How to Create Jobs and Workspaces That Energize People
By designing jobs and workspaces that fulfill people’s desire to be in touch with nature, organizations can help replenish their employees’ energy reserves in four key ways: cognitively, emotionally, prosocially, and physically. The impact on work performance, not to mention wellness, could be significant.
What Else We’re Reading This Week:
- COVID-19’s enormous impact on consumers offers unique opportunities for small and midtier brands
- For knowledge-based work, time expended isn’t necessarily the best way to gauge actual performance
- AI cannot be considered a legal inventor, at least by the U.S. patent office
- Voice-directed digital assistants may be convenient, but they can also create real security risks
Quote of the Week:
“While many old companies have had dreadful results with large-scale business transformations, large companies that are successfully becoming digital have resisted the temptation to fix multiple key processes simultaneously. Instead, they focus on one process. Seriously, one. They focus on the essence of the business.”
— Jeanne Ross, principal research scientist for MIT CISR, in “Your Business Is Too Complex to Be Digital”