Ideas That Advance Thinking

Indispensable Consulting founder, Jim Kerr, has made thought leadership a differentiator.

Interviews/Book Reviews/Videos

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Books

Jim Kerr,  founder of Indispensable Consulting, 5X business book author. Here are 3 of the most recent titles. You can order them on Amazon:

Look for his latest book in Feb/March 2021.

Our Client’s F.A.Q. About How To Become An Indispensable Business

Clients of Indispensable Consulting often brainstorm and discuss emerging ideas with our founder, Jim Kerr. Lately, executives have become interested in learning how to become even more indispensable to their customers. Here are the questions that they most frequently ask and Jim’s responses to them.

Creating an Indispensable Business is a massive challenge for most leaders. How do we get it right?

If you truly commit to becoming indispensable to your customer you will find the right ways to align vision, culture and organizational design and establish the balance needed to flourish well into the future.

How do you become indispensable?

There’s certainly no simple formula to follow. However, there are five things we, at Indispensable Consulting, suggest that a leadership team insist upon, including:

  • putting the client first,
  • anticipating and solving problems before they become out of hand,
  • providing honest feedback to your people and all of your stakeholders including customers,
  • keeping all promises (stated and implied), and
  • delivering more than was promised.

If you sculpt an organization out of cloth that is made from these five things, you will have built a company that is fully aligned and right-sized, one that will can withstand any challenge and stand the test of time.

What is the least painful approach to rethinking outdated ways of working to drive an indispensable culture?

Agility is about adaptability. If you want to respond quickly, you have to adjust and adapt. There are four elements of adaptability that we promote at Indispensable Consulting when discussing agility with our clients.

The first is Leadership Adaptability. Your leadership must understand the company’s strengths and weaknesses, knowing how it stacks-up against its competition in regard to its offerings, price and service delivery.

Team Adaptability is next. It’s here that staff must become comfortable in embracing new ways of thinking and doing.

The third element is Change Adaptability. Change adaptability is about culture. You need one that embraces complexity and is comfortable in continuously exploring new ways to get things done.

The need to train line management to maintain its composure in times of uncertainty and respond well under pressure comprises the fourth dimension of adaptability needed to become more agile. I call that Delivery Adaptability.

Interestingly, all four are centered on people and their preferred modes of thinking and behaving. If you want to be more agile, it starts with everyone working on being more adaptable. Once that’s established we can focus on untangling the way work is performed.

Research has shown that millennials value flexible work arrangements. What advice can you offer C-suite leaders who are approaching this concept as a means of becoming an indispensable workplace?

Yes, flexible work arrangements are important to millennials. But, that’s not the only thing that will serve to attract and retain Gen Y talent.

You can’t use Silicon Valley as your yardstick in measuring your work-setting and culture, either. While the work settings there are distinctive, you don’t need nap pods and juice bars to keep the next generation of worker happy.

Instead, I’d have the C-suite consider weaving other ideas into the mix. For example, rethinking notions related to re-imagining or eliminating job titles – if existing titles hinder teamwork and prevent required organizational elasticity and the harnessing of social network use within the workplace – as millennials will continue to call for more sophisticated means of “staying connected.”

Further, businesses will be compelled to offer more “tailorable” and enhanced “lifestyle” benefits to employees, too.

We are already seeing concierge services and childcare and eldercare offerings emerge in benefits packages. This trend will continue as a new generation of workers seeks ways to make their life easier.

Indeed, besides creating flexible work schedules, senior leadership teams must be prepared to address these transitions in order to entice and keep talent, as well.

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What Ideas Would You Like To Explore?

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