FountainBlue

FountainBlue's September 2022 Newsletter

FountainBlue's monthly newsletters include original articles on innovation and leadership topics, notes from past events, and invitations to upcoming online events.
* Sign up for a monthly newsletter or weekly event invitations
* Corporate partners receive complementary admission to our online programs, but general admission is available for $50 each at whenshespeaks.com/register
* Sample our coaching services by scheduling a 15-minute no-obligation call on the 'what's next' theme https://calendly.com/fountainblue/whatsnext

ProblemSolving-Mind your P s with some Q s

6 Quotients for Problem-Solving

It can be overwhelming to lead and innovate in this time of great change. People, process, and technology problems run the gamut, posing obstacles which can vex the best of us.
I have personally advised start-ups, coached executives, and led change management for a couple of decades. Along the way, I’ve collected a few problem-solving tips and tricks over the years. I’m here to share them with you now.

Everyone runs into Problems (Ps). So when you run into Problems (Ps), mind your Quotients (Qs). I’ve found that we each have at least six types of quotients, which are described below:

Intelligence Quotient (IQ) - a measurement of how well you comprehend data, facts, and knowledge, traditionally taught to you in school.
* Utilizing your IQ can look like solving complex math problems and applying formulas, debugging code with established algorithms, or applying classic business strategies for growing into adjacent markets.

Emotional Quotient (EQ) - a measurement of how well you can build and maintain relationships, be respectful and sensitive to the needs of others, and manage the perception others have of you for yourself and for them.
* Someone with a high EQ might build or leverage individual relationships to better facilitate collaboration toward achieving a common goal.

Social Quotient (SQ) - a measurement of how well you can create and build a network of long-lasting relationships and an ecosystem of contacts.
* Someone who has a high SQ might regularly build alliances and networks to support common objectives. In contrast to EQ, SQ is more about networks and ecosystems of relationships rather than individual connections.

Adversity Quotient (AQ) - a measurement of how well you can remain positive, constructive, and productive despite challenging circumstances.
* Someone with a high AQ who experiences serious mental, physical or other challenges might be able to persevere and adjust their approach to continue making progress.

Creativity Quotient (CQ) - a measurement of your ability to think differently or orthogonally to traditional approaches, sometimes counter to recommendations.
* Someone with a high CQ might suggest an approach which may wind up becoming an innovation adopted by customers or a feature integrated into a new product offering.

Leadership Quotient (LQ) - a measurement for your awareness of self, the current obstacles, , how well you can inspire and mobilize others to collaborate and address a problem.

Let’s work on your leadership quotient here. Which quotients above will help you with the problems listed below and why?
* Co-worker conflict
* M&A Integration
* Debugging code
* Prioritizing features
* Customer service issue
* Missing sales projections
* Lobbying for resources

I’ll leave you with some questions to contemplate:
* What other problems do you regularly see in your day-to-day work?
* Which quotients are you most comfortable in?
* Which quotients would like you to develop more?
* Which quotients do your team members lead with?
* How can you help team members diversify their quotient usage?
* How could developing and rounding out your quotients help you personally improve your problem-solving and innovation skills?

It’s my hope that you’re seeing your Ps in a new light, and that you begin leveraging your Qs to address problems effectively and with more confidence.

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About FountainBlue's When She Speaks Series

whenshespeaks

Register Now to join our upcoming program!

Launched in Silicon Valley in May 2006, FountainBlue's monthly When She Speaks luncheon panel discussions feature senior women leaders from partner tech companies speaking on leadership and innovation topics. Our interactive conversations are known for being inspiring, educational, practical and fun. For more information, visit www.whenshespeaks.com

Upcoming When She Speaks 2022 Online Programs
* One of 'The Onlys', September 9, 2022, hosted by tbd
* Local Input, Global Impact, October 14, 2022, hosted by ASML
* Fourth Annual Mentorship Best Practices Panel, November 11, 2022, hosted by Coupa
* Fifth Annual Men Who Open Doors Awards, December 9, 2022, hosted by Reputation

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OneOfTheOnlys

Join us for this month's online program!

Friday, September 9, 11:50 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

One of the Onlys

Link will be sent to registered attendees

To register, visit https://www.tikkl.com/fountainblue/c/programs

It's not easy to be 'one of the onlys' - the Only woman on a team, in a meeting, on a board. Yet many women did just that, which forged new ground for the rest of us. Hear stories from this month's panel of heroes and learn what we can do together so that 'the onlys' continue to succeed, and so that 'the onlys' will be joined by others.

Literally and figuratively, qualified corporate women are earning 'a seat a the table' - the opportunity to impact companies at the strategic and tactical level.

This month's When She Speaks event will feature executives who have earned their seat at the table. Find out how they made this happen, what challenges they face, and how we can all support having more women leaders at the top.

Facilitator Linda Holroyd, CEO, FountainBlue
Panelist Adriane McFetridge, Director of Engineering, Netflix
Panelist Lucia Milica, JD, Global Resident CISO and Advisory Board Chair, ProofPoint
Panelist Kristin Robinson, Head of Legal Compliance, Asana
Panelist Jami Stewart, Vice President CX Centers America, Cisco
Panelist Yvonne Thomson, Vice President, Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion, OpenText
Order your tickets online: $50 general admission

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Notes from Our Monthly When She Speaks Event

HeSaidSheSaidPPT

FountainBlue's August 12 When She Speaks program, on the topic of 'What He/She Said, What She/He Meant'. Please join me in thanking our hosts at Renesas and our esteemed panelists.

We were fortunate to have such experienced, other-centric, strategic leaders for this month's When She Speaks panel.
Our panel talked extensively about why it's important to have a diverse talent pool and open minded outlook. Benefits include improvements in innovation, culture, retention, talent acquisition, etc.,
Our panelists shared many thoughts on how to better communicate and connect with others, especially if they are not-like-you.

Connect for a Purpose.
* Focus on connecting on a common goal which is of mutual importance.
* Drive conversations around achieving that goal, rather than around personal issues.
* Trust in the good intentions of others.

Be Open-Minded.
* Be open and curious about others and their differing perspectives.
* Ask someone not-like-you what you might be missing.
* Individuals and styles will vary, just as culture and gender vary.

Keep Growing and Learning.
* Do your homework and research the backgrounds and perspectives of others not-like-you.
* Embrace the opportunities to stretch and grow yourself and your team.
* Ask questions so that you can better understand the perspective of others.
* Meet people where they are.

Communicate and Connect.
* Communicate clearly and continually to ensure that's alignment, clarity, and a shared sense of purpose.
* Check your assumptions, and the assumptions of others with whom you interact.
* Voice your intentions and goals while inviting others to do the same.
* Be the mediator and translator where appropriate, to help connect the team to a common purpose.
* Think, speak, and act in alignment with your values.
* Be clear of your intentions and ensure that the impact is as you've intended.
* Own your words and actions and strive to be better, do better.
* Listen closely and deeply with empathy.

Our panelists closed by encouraging us all to embrace our differences while connecting to a purpose and a sense of belonging.

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FrontLineManagersOnline

About FountainBlue's Front Line Managers Online Series

FountainBlue's Semi-Monthly Front Line Managers Online series features a panel discussion of HR, product, engineering and business leaders, presenting on leadership and innovation topics of interest to front line managers. Our meetings feature interactive conversations on topics raised by our corporate partners and the larger FountainBlue network.
Below are remaining 2022 Front Linda Managers Online programs are listed below, all taking place from 11:50 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

▪ Performance Management Best Practices, September 2, 2022
▪ The Why Before the What, Before the How, September 16, 2022
▪ Making Decisions That Count, October 7, 2022
▪ Change Management Best Practices, October 21, 2022
▪ The Gift of Gratitude, November 4, 2022
▪ Open Hearts, Open Minds, December 2, 2022
▪ Visioning Program for Sponsors and Speakers, December 13, 2022
Performance Management Best Practices, September 2, 2022
The Why Before the What, Before the How, September 16, 2022
Making Decisions That Count, October 7, 2022
Change Management Best Practices, October 21, 2022
The Gift of Gratitude, November 4, 2022
Open Hearts, Open Minds, December 2, 2022
Visioning Program for Sponsors and Speakers, December 13, 2022

For more information about our Front Line Managers programs, visit www.whenshespeaks.com/frontline.
Notes from our discussions are available online at http://fountainblue.blog/category/front-line-managers/.

Notes from Last Month's Front Line Managers Online Programs

ManagementPanelAug5

FountainBlue's August 5 Front Line Managers Online program on the topic of 'Managing Up, Down and Sideways'. Please join me in thanking our panelists.

▪ as an HR Leader - Kerry Perryman, Samsung Research America
▪ as a Product Leader - Sondra Bollar, Oracle
▪ as an Engineering Leader - Stephen McGrath, Trimble
as an HR Leader - Kerry Perryman, Samsung Research America
as a Product Leader - Sondra Bollar, Oracle
as an Engineering Leader - Stephen McGrath, Trimble

We were fortunate to have such experienced and diverse panelists for this week's front line managers online program. It's been a tumultuous week with challenges and changes for many organizations, so it was a great time to learn about how to better manage up, down and sideways.
Our panelists agreed on many management principles:

▪ Build relationships with a wide network of people will help everyone better manage and lead. Healthy long-term relationships are built on respect and trust, developed from ongoing, proactive, authentic, transparent communication between all parties.
▪ Be clear on your plan, based on the information you have to date and the objectives and goals defined for you.
▪ With that said, be nimble and agile should the direction change or if the data indicates other strategies and actions would better serve the goals.
Build relationships with a wide network of people will help everyone better manage and lead. Healthy long-term relationships are built on respect and trust, developed from ongoing, proactive, authentic, transparent communication between all parties.
Be clear on your plan, based on the information you have to date and the objectives and goals defined for you.
With that said, be nimble and agile should the direction change or if the data indicates other strategies and actions would better serve the goals.

Below is some advice for better managing up, down and sideways:

Be a Leader
* Err on the side of action, even if your information set is incomplete and the result is uncertain.
* Be curious about your blindspots and the blindspots of others with whom you work.
* Manage your emotions and stay calm, even if you feel that you've been wronged.
* Encourage everyone to learn from mistakes, and take advantage of teachable moments.

Be a Project Leader
* Make specific plans for minimum deliverables, based on input from a wide range of sources.
* Plan-fully allocate the right resources for the right talent, in alignment with overarching goals.

Empower and Engage Your Team
* Provide exciting opportunities which challenge your team members individually and collectively.
* Help your team manage and prioritize tasks and projects, and explain how everyone's work fits in to the overall plan and why specific projects and tasks are more important than other ones.

The bottom line is that management is an art and a science. Great managers help others feel secure and safe while also focusing on clarifying changes in goals and objectives and how they impact the organizations, teams, products, and individuals.

When teams are managed well, there is deep trust and exceptional results made by productive and empowered team members.

***

August 19 Front Line Managers Online program on the topic of 'Problem-Solving Best Practices'

ProblemSolving

FountainBlue's August 19 Front Line Managers Online program on the topic of 'Problem-Solving Best Practices'. Please join me in thanking our panelists.

▪ as an Engineering Leader - Pooja Agrawal, Renesas
▪ as a Business Leader - Lora Muller, Tektronix
as an Engineering Leader - Pooja Agrawal, Renesas
as a Business Leader - Lora Muller, Tektronix
***

This month's panelists spoke eloquently and passionately about the need to solve problems, and the opportunities which arise from solving problems well. They agreed that leaders need to be clear, firm, fair and consistent in communicating, in order to empower everyone to engage and participate in the problem-solving process. Collaboration is key in building team synergy, in securing a wide range of input and perspective, for leveraging relevant experience and expertise.

There was much emphasis on the importance of having a clear, succinct, direct, metrics-based problem statement, one which is flexible enough to evolve as the program morphs. There were also recommendations for leveraging tools to facilitate collaboration tools like white-boarding, especially when staff members span the globe.

But there are also times when people need to meet face-to-face. For example, it's important to meet in-person when you're dealing with people issues, when you need to physically interact with a product, when you're building relationships.

Below is a summary of best practices for problem-solving:

▪ Include a wide range of perspectives when working on a problem.
▪ Simplify the problem, and even deconstruct it if appropriate so that you better understand it.
▪ Invite wild ideas so you can fully brainstorm options, but also consider only the ideas which are practical.
▪ Consider the cost/value of potential solutions, so that you implement solutions which are practical, sustainable, reasonable, and useful.
▪ Focus on addressing the most impactful, highest-priority problems first.
▪ People problems are generally more complex, less straight-forward than engineering or process problems. With process and engineering problems, there can be clearly defined standards and protocols.
Include a wide range of perspectives when working on a problem.
Simplify the problem, and even deconstruct it if appropriate so that you better understand it.
Invite wild ideas so you can fully brainstorm options, but also consider only the ideas which are practical.
Consider the cost/value of potential solutions, so that you implement solutions which are practical, sustainable, reasonable, and useful.
Focus on addressing the most impactful, highest-priority problems first.
People problems are generally more complex, less straight-forward than engineering or process problems. With process and engineering problems, there can be clearly defined standards and protocols.

It's not easy to solve complex problems, but listening well and deeply is a key step forward for doing this well.

VIPRoundtable

FountainBlue's Invitation-Only VIP Roundtables

About FountainBlue's VIP Roundtables

Launched in December 2015, FountainBlue convenes executive leaders in monthly conversations on innovation and market trends. This invitation-only event is designed for senior executives and facilitates connections between peers in the context of sharing best practices on today's hottest opportunities and challenges.

Our executives in attendance have consistently remarked on the breadth and depth of ideas introduced and the quality of the connections made through participation in the series. See our notes from all our past roundtable at https://fountainblue.wordpress.com/category/vip/.

Our draft plans for 2022 programs are listed below, all conducted online from 7:50 - 9:00 a.m. PST.

▪ AR/VR Immersion Experiences, September 9, 2022, hosted by NVIDIA
▪ Automation Use Cases, October 14, 2022, hosted by IBM
▪ Data is the New Black, November 11, 2022, hosted by Renesas
▪ Smart Buildings, Smart Cities, December 10, 2022, hosted by Analog
AR/VR Immersion Experiences, September 9, 2022, hosted by NVIDIA
Automation Use Cases, October 14, 2022, hosted by IBM
Data is the New Black, November 11, 2022, hosted by Renesas
Smart Buildings, Smart Cities, December 10, 2022, hosted by Analog

For more information, visit http://whenshespeaks.com/vip.

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hardware

Sign up for our monthly newsletters to receive notes for our upcoming monthly vip roundtables!

Notes from Last Month's VIP Roundtable Online Meeting

FountainBlue's August 12 VIP Roundtable was on the topic of 'Balancing Privacy, Security and Access', with opening remarks by Samsung. Please join me in thanking our executives in attendance for their remarks and input.

Our executives in attendance represented a wide range of roles, backgrounds and industries, but they share many common perspectives around balancing privacy, security and access.
* Balancing privacy, security and access will continue to be of primary importance.
* No longer will companies be able to rely on single individuals or teams to proactively manage privacy, security and access.
* It will take a concerted and collaborative effort, driven by senior leaders, and implemented across the organization.
Balancing privacy, security and access is not easy.
* Managing to ensure compliance is complicated as the data volume is huge and growing, individual users are untrained, uninformed or even unethical, and the ways data is used and the number of users continues to grow.
* Cultural and international standards vary greatly, and many companies have employees and customers all over the world.
* It's hard for executives to manage the data when each data set might have different associated experts, and multiple data sets are integrated into individual applications and programs.
* The stakes are high and are continuing to grow, so bad actors are more motivated to access sensitive data.
* Consumers and end users are becoming more adamant about their rights around privacy, while also insisting on efficiently accessing the information they need.

Below is a compilation of thoughts and best practices.
Be Strategic
* Be fully aware of the type, flow, storage and distribution of data and proactively manage that data to ensure the right people have the right access at the right time for the right reason.
* Build a partnership between the legal, technical, executive, and product/engineering teams so you can plan-fully manage product development and support.
* Create standards and agreements so collaborations can be made to proactively manage secure access to targeted information, while respecting privacy needs.
* Consider the needs of the team and organization over the rights of individuals, while also respecting the rights of individuals.
* Manage to the weakest link - perhaps the human who does not set up proper passwords for access to the corporate network.

Leverage Technology
* Leverage technologies and tools so that you can easily identify data or users or systems who may be at risk.
* Create dashboards for your network so you can proactively manage potential data breaches.
* Factor in different types of data (transient, persistent, meta, etc.,) as you manage, collect, store and distribute that data.

Manage the Give and Take
* Focus on business outcomes while respecting technical requirements.
* Minimize exposure and risk, especially when mission-critical applications are at stake.
* Empower and Enable Your People
* Support product and engineering teams, who are constantly challenged to create and update code to meet the shifting security, privacy and access requirements.
The bottom line is that we can all collaborate to build a Zero Trust network - where only the right Users, have the right Access, to the right Data, for the right Reason, all the time, every time.

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FountainBlue

About FountainBlue

FountainBlue is a management consultancy which provides executive coaching, start-up advisory and change management consulting services to tech leaders in corporations and start-ups in Silicon Valley and beyond.

For More Information:

▪ about FountainBlue's When She Speaks and Front Line Managers Online programs, visit whenshespeaks.com and whenshespeaks.com/frontline
▪ about FountainBlue's executive coaching services including testimonials, visit whenshespeaks.com/coaching
▪ about FountainBlue's strategic advisory services, visit https://fountainblue.biz/consulting/
▪ about FountainBlue's change management consulting services, visit https://whenshespeaks.com/change/
▪ about Linda Holroyd, visit https://whenshespeaks.com/linda/ or https://www.linkedin.com/in/lindaholroyd/
about FountainBlue's When She Speaks and Front Line Managers Online programs, visit whenshespeaks.com and whenshespeaks.com/frontline
about FountainBlue's executive coaching services including testimonials, visit whenshespeaks.com/coaching
about FountainBlue's strategic advisory services, visit https://fountainblue.biz/consulting/
about FountainBlue's change management consulting services, visit https://whenshespeaks.com/change/
about Linda Holroyd, visit https://whenshespeaks.com/linda/ or https://www.linkedin.com/in/lindaholroyd/

Until We Next Connect

We hope to include you at the next When She Speaks, advising and consulting needs.

Until we next connect,

Linda Holroyd
Founder and CEO, FountainBlue
Organizer, When She Speaks, Front Line Managers Online, and VIP Roundtable Series
Change Management Consultant, Executive Coach, Start-up Adviser

 
 
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