Other People’s Money · Newsletter from Fire & Shield

Dont Waste a Good Crisis.

After a calm period during the Corona Lockdown, we are now fully booked again, both with delivering on the postponed activities and some exciting new projects. While many of our customers have been extremely busy during the lock down, our activity level dropped to less than half as all the major trainings were postponed. Thank you to all our loyal customers who kept us on and did not cancel. We will strive to continue to grow and earn your trust.
The lockdown provided some interesting time to reflect, both on our business in general and the services we provide, and to reflect on what matters now for leaders and the updated skills,
tools and mindset needed to succeed as leaders in these turbulent times. The first aspect meant we both did new trainings in talent profiling and scrum. The latter turned into a book which will be published October 6th. More on that later. For now, we are just happy to be back to full time activity.

Leadership Tip: Hang in There

Tough times may be behind us, but they surely are ahead of all of us as well. While we try to keep a positive mind, always looking for opportunities in any situation, the fact remains that a deadly virus is upon us and the effect of this on the global economy is still unclear. Many businesses will suffer just as many businesses will thrive. If you don’t like what you see when you look up, at least make sure you like what you see when you look down. One foot in front of the other, steady through the storm. Stick-to-it-ness is an underrated quality in a time where we celebrate fast results, start-ups, and agility. And of course, you must be agile, adapt, and move fast. However, you still need stamina and perseverance to succeed. So dive in, do your best every day, be smart, consistent, and hard working, and show up again tomorrow. That’s how empires are built. And that’s how they survive.

More than 50% Better
We are extremely proud to announce that Peter Agergaard has joined us as a Senior Partner. Peter brings 20+ years of practical leadership experience, most of them as HR Director and Senior VP HR, to the team. With a Master of Business Law and Economics, Executive MBA, and a board education, he is capable of bridging people, business, and numbers. His focus is strategy execution based on business insights and business partnering. As customers, you will experience firsthand how Peter’s low key attitude downplays a sharp professional mind and a focus on simple solutions to complex problems. Peter has a vision of taking HR processes and leadership development to the next level.

With Peter on board, we will be able to play a more active role in the ongoing transformations of HR and HR’s role in organizations. If you are the least bit curious, Peter would love to tell you more over coffee, physical or online. He can be reached pa@fireandshield.com

Case: Ikigai Your Way On

We were approached by a manager who found himself at a cross-roads. Let’s call him Paul. After living and working abroad, he was back in Denmark and unsure whether to pursue a traditional corporate management career, within his key areas of competence, or to start working as an independent consultant. He therefore invested in an individual mentoring program for himself with the goal of determining which career to pursue. We spent the first 2 sessions identifying his Ikigai, the common area of passion, talents, finance, and that which the world needs. During this process, he kept all doors open, including setting up a company website and sending applications for jobs that seemed a great fit. 

After the second session, in the midst of the corona lockdown, he was offered a job where he could put many of his talents to work, as a Testing Director in a large software consultancy. At the same time, he had reached the conclusion that becoming an independent consultant would have to be postponed for 2-3 years while building a name for himself in Denmark. AKA perfect timing.  

We then changed our focus for the remaining of the mentoring program to help him be successful in the new job and avoid repeating some of his classic mistakes of not managing stakeholders, detaching himself from the politics of senior management, and keeping his achievements a big secret. Paul is a smart person, very thorough in his job and very humble in his approach to his colleagues. Therefore, the feedback and input from the sessions fell on fertile soil and Paul quickly got the picture and adjusted. The results did not take long. At each session his career seemed to have climbed another step upwards. After only 5 months, he has been promoted to key projects twice, his team has more than doubled with an overall competence lift, and he has built a name for himself as the one to go to if you want to build quality into your solutions. He’s had to work for it, granted, as this was no free ride. But in a business where people come and go, you can’t build a career if you can’t fill your calendar with invoice-able hours, the inflight time is one of the keys to success. Well done, Paul!

Other People’s Money and Other People’s Lives

As practicing leaders, we always found it hard to find the time to keep up with new methods and trends in leadership development and reading the 10-20 books per year necessary to keep yourself updated. Just a fact. During the lockdown, we experienced how many of the great leaders we work with were struggling to do the right things, the right way, yet either hesitated or overacted, and maybe some of them were a little skeptical towards new ways of working. At least before most of us suddenly had to work and lead from home.
Therefore, we set out to define and describe the updated toolbox for leaders in the 2020’s: New stuff to learn, old stuff to dust off and a more change-focused mindset to keep yourself and your team flexible. This turned into the new book, “Other People’s Money and Other People’s Lives – Leadership and Execution in Turbulent Times” (da: Andre menneskers penge og andre menneskers liv – ledelse og eksekvering i tubulente tider), which will be published on October 6thon Content Publishing.
In our next newsletter we will be sharing more insights from one of the case companies, Nestlé, and how they strive to continuously modernize their leadership and culture.
See more here: https://contentpub.eu/produkt/andre-menneskers-penge-og-andre-menneskers-liv/
If you preorder, using the code FIREANDSHIELD, you get 20% off and free shipping (only valid until launch date October 6th 2020).

Play Your Talents

We’ve never wanted to be a one-size-fits-all consultancy and refrained from defining ourselves as those “who can do it all”. That said, we’ve invested time in proving that old dogs can learn new tricks, thus turning the lock-down into a “lock-up”-time for new tools to add to our portfolio. Therefore, we are now certified to help customers in the system called “Play Your Talents”, a strength-based test tool where a team’s different talents are revealed live as the team members each take a 5-minute test in an app. How cool is that? It is all research based and tested by multiple companies. The presentations we’ve done so far have provided amazing and super-fast insights into each others’ talents: what gives energy and what drains energy. Highly valuable input for looking at how we play together as a team. We also use it when taking teams through an often much-needed prioritization of tasks – we help clean out to-do-lists to focus on what matters and then we re-assign tasks based on the talents available in the team. Trying too hard? Maybe you’re not playing your talents!

Back at Talentgarden

Finally, we are back at Talentgarden with MAN Energy Solutions and their amazing leadership community of 300 dedicated leaders. As many of you know the training was paused half-way through due to the COVID-19 lockdown. But luckily, we are up and running again, with a training in #newwork that is more relevant than ever. The leadership community are updating & upgrading their leadership skills while being taught the recipe for innovation from the talented team from Talentgarden, primarily Anna Cappi and Rikke Plagborg

Scrum Away: Agile is Here to Stay.

The training at Talentgarden with MAN Energy Solution’s leaders on New Work not only inspired us to write a book on how to best lead in the 2020’s, it also was an eyeopener in terms of agile tools and how applicable they are to a variety of areas outside IT-development. Therefore, we’ve taken scrum training (Scrum Master) in the SAFe-framework by Scaled agile and are now rolling some of the agile tools into our leadership trainings. The simplicity and efficiency matches Fire & Shield very well. Better late than never, one might add.