Make Projects 1 Hour, $100

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Inner HarborCropMake experiments to improve your program last no longer than 1 hour and cost no more than $100,  keynoter and CEO advisor Rhona Berengut told a packed audience at the big LERN annual conference in Baltimore.   In this century, one of the new organizational skills is to create bite-sized experiments and tests instead of long term big ones, she reported.  Successful companies are doing this.

“Agility is a key skill,” Berengut said. “It requires a deep understanding of the organization and self. We have to move from being on our heels to being on our toes, looking forward.”

New Skills
“New skills for this century is not really about new skills. It’s about understanding the context. Understanding your customers and their situations,” she said.

Organizational Agility
“We need Organizational Agility.  Customers change. We also have lots of data now, but we need to be able to process the data.  And in the world of the 21st century, we have to deal with complex problems, problems in which there may not be a right or wrong answer,” she noted.

Leadership Skills
Hitting on a key issue for Gen Y, Berengut said that in the last century leadership was a matter of position, what your title or level of authority was.  That is no longer true, she maintained.

“In the 21st century leadership is not a position but an ability to take action. Leaders lead others who follow voluntarily.” Leadership can come from anyone. “You earn their respect.  Just do it,” she advised.

Berengut, from Toronto, works with CEOs in executive workshops and is a consultant on leadership.  She is also an award winning part time faculty member at the Schulich School of Business at York University, one of the top business schools in the world.  She is also on LERN’s UGotClass advisory board, where she points out business trends and new skills needed for the workplace.