EXPLOREMY LIBRARY
Business & Finance
Harvard Business Review

Harvard Business Review

July/August 2020

For over 80 years, Harvard Business Review magazine has been an indispensable and unrivaled source of ideas, insight, and inspiration for business leaders worldwide. Each issue contains breakthrough ideas on strategy, leadership, innovation and management. Now, newly redesigned, HBR presents these ideas in a smart new design with improved navigation and rich infographics. Become a more effective leader by subscribing to Harvard Business Review.

Country:
United States
Language:
English
Publisher:
Harvard Business School Publishing
Frequency:
Bimonthly
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6 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
finding resilience

AS I WRITE, early in May, I am working from home, as are my colleagues in Boston, New York, and around the world. By the time you read this note, we’ll be well down the path toward a new normal—learning which business practices still make sense and which need to change. The most obvious challenge, of course, is deciding how and where work gets done. But most businesses face deeper questions about how they can survive—and thrive—going forward. Articles in this issue address big strategic questions along with smaller-scale human ones. “Learning from the Future” describes an updated version of scenario planning, focused particularly on long-term planning in a crisis. In the CEO roundtable, five executives share their perspectives on balancing immediate crisis management and future reinvention. “Helping Your Team Heal,”…

2 min.
contributors

In 2013 Katherine Gehl was refining the competitive strategy for her high-tech food-manufacturing company and using HBS Professor Michael Porter’s Five Forces model. She was also running a competitive analysis of U.S. politics. She had a “light bulb moment” as industry competition illuminated the root causes of political dysfunction—and potential solutions. After selling her company, Gehl developed the business case for political innovation and asked Porter to coauthor a book, The Politics Industry (Harvard Business Review Press, 2020), and the article in this issue. David Kessler had been pondering the idea that there might be more than the five stages of grief described in his and Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’s landmark book On Grief and Grieving when tragedy befell him: He unexpectedly lost a son and had to deal with his own grief.…

6 min.
why employee experience initiatives fall short

AFTER A DECADE of growth and historically low unemployment, organizations now find themselves in a much different world. But even as companies are forced to shed jobs and dramatically tighten belts, smart managers must keep their eyes on the horizon: Recessions eventually end, and when this one does, companies in many industries will return to an atmosphere where keeping talent happy is a priority. That can be a challenge. According to a global study by the research and advisory firm Gartner, in 2019 companies spent an average of $2,420 per person on efforts to enhance the employee experience. Such initiatives typically include flexible work policies, workplace redesigns, and learning and development opportunities, to cite just a few examples. When organizations meet their workers’ experience expectations, the researchers found, they see boosts…

2 min.
“everyone goes at their own speed”

Peter Vultaggio is the global head of talent development and change management at Silicon Valley Bank. He recently spoke with HBR about the organization’s “experience blueprints”—an ongoing initiative to help employees identify the values, interests, strengths, and goals that are most important to them. Edited excerpts follow. How did you begin? The first task was to encourage more-expansive thinking among employees. We ran workshops on the neuroscience of change, on mindset, on mindfulness, to start cracking open our ways of seeing ourselves and what we’re capable of. Only after that did we move to the blueprint workshops. Describe how those work. These are full-day immersive sessions that help employees learn about themselves and discover what they value most. In one exercise, for example, participants think about people they look up to, and we…

1 min.
an unanticipated effect of price promotions

Deals are a ubiquitous feature of the retail landscape, touted on TV, in social media feeds, even on pizza boxes and the digital displays of gas station pumps. Prior research has found that they can elevate consumers’ moods, increase the enjoyment people get from purchased items, and enhance their opinion of both on-sale and unrelated products. New work finds a less salutary effect: Price promotions trigger impatience. In seven studies, researchers manipulated people’s incidental exposure to price promotions (for example, by having subjects evaluate the attractiveness and utility of credit card designs that either included or omitted promotional language) and then measured their impatience in various settings. Participants exposed to promotions were more willing than others to spend extra money to avoid waiting for a bus and to break a rule…

1 min.
yet another challenge for female leaders

Few of us enjoy getting criticism from our boss—and a new study shows that people like it even less when the boss is a woman. The researcher recruited 2,700 subjects for a transcription job, randomly assigning the gender of their fictitious managers. Halfway through the task, the “managers” gave a subset of workers positive or negative feedback according to how well they were doing. The researcher compared all workers’ effort during the rest of the task and assessed their attitude upon its completion. Somewhat surprisingly, feedback (positive or negative) made no impact on the amount of effort people exerted after receiving it. But it was detrimental to their attitude, because the small positive effect that praise generated was outweighed by the large negative effect of criticism. In particular, criticism diminished perceptions of…