A weekly podcast featuring the leading thinkers in business and management.
Why the Highest Paying Jobs So Rarely Go to Women
Companies pay disproportionately high salaries to CEOs and other high-powered professionals willing to live and breathe their jobs, on-call 24/7, ready to pick up and travel. It's a phenomenon Harvard historian and economist Claudia Goldin calls "greedy work" and she says it's a big reason why the pay gap between men and women persists -- because the people typically tasked with caring for kids, the house, or elderly parents simply can't put in as much time and energy at the office. However, she notes, there are signs of change, with younger generations demanding better balance.
In a New Role? Here's How to Hit the Ground Running
Rob Cross, management professor at Babson College, says people are changing jobs more than ever and too often falling short when they do. Surveys show nearly half of people promoted within their own companies are underperforming 18 months later. And up to half of executives in new roles are seen as eventual disappointments. Cross says research shows that’s because today’s hyper-collaborative workplaces demand new skills. He shares evidence-based practices to improve a role transition. Those include developing strategic networks and expanding the scope and impact of one’s projects. Cross is a coauthor of the HBR article "How to Succeed Quickly in a New Role."
The Future of Work Is Projects—So You've Got to Get Them Right
Companies of every size in every industry and part of the world are basing more of their work around projects. And yet research shows that nearly two-thirds of those efforts fail. Antonio Nieto-Rodriguez, who has studied projects and project management for decades, explains how we can do better. He offers advice on the right way to frame projects, how to structure organizations around them, and pitfalls to avoid. Nieto-Rodriguez is the author of the Harvard Business Review Project Management Handbook and author of the article "The Project Economy Has Arrived."
Anti-Bias Policies That Really Work in Customer Service
Alexandra Feldberg and Tami Kim, assistant professors at Harvard Business School and the University of Virginia Darden School of Business, respectively, say companies are overlooking an important place to root out bias: on the front lines with customers. While many firms are promoting a more equitable workforce through their HR functions, too few firms even realize how costly bias can be in everyday interactions between workers and customers. The researchers explain how organizations can identify and address this overlooked problem. Feldberg and Kim are the coauthors of the HBR article "Fighting Bias on the Front Lines."
Find Focus in a Chaotic World
If you're feeling distracted, mentally fogged, and unable to pay attention to (or focus on if attention is in hed) the task at hand, you're not alone. The human brain is highly susceptible to often unproductive mind-wandering, and modern technology has only made the problem worse. But we all know that the best work comes when you're able to really zero in on an idea or problem for a sustained period of time. So we need better strategies for blocking out the external and internal noise. Dr. Amishi Jha, a neuroscientist and professor of psychology at the University of Miami and the author of "Peak Mind," offers recommendations based on studies of people in some of the most high-pressure jobs in the world.
Algorithms Won't Solve All Your Pricing Problems
Marco Bertini, marketing professor at Esade Business School, says more and more companies are turning to pricing algorithms to maximize profits. But many are unaware of a big downside. The constant price shifts can hurt the perception of the brand and its products. He warns that overreliance on artificial intelligence and machine learning without considering human psychology can cause serious damage to the customer relationship. And he outlines steps managers should take, including implementing guardrails, overrides, and better communication tactics. With London Business School professor Oded Koenigsberg, Bertini wrote the HBR article "The Pitfalls of Pricing Algorithms."