Mike Beckett is caring for business and taking no liberties…

Pragmatic, productive and proactive

Is Labels.io the next LinkedIn 2.0?

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Tech professional Octavian

Founder of Labels.io Octavian Popescu

Labels.io reviewed

I saw Labels.io briefly reviewed on the latest episode of BBC click online at first glance it appears to be a virtual talent acquisition platform. Intrigued I thought I would have a go and see how it works for me first as a punter.  Having registered I then spent a few minutes adding in key words, previous employers, linking some social networks and writing a brief personal statement. I identified a problem that putting in your user name for Flickr and LinkedIn didn’t appear to let people check them, so I had to re-enter them with the full address starting from http and then you can click through on the icons on your profile page. Once completed the result looks like this: http://labels.io/mikebeckett it then rates me, giving me a rating of 41?, although I am not sure what to make of the rating as there are no other indicators of what this actually means? If you can shed some light on the spectrum of scores  and what this may actually mean, please do let me know!

I tried Labels.io again as an employer to see how it works but annoyingly I couldn’t be both available to opportunities (a punter or contractor) and harnessing others human capital (as a recruiter). To progress I had to register another account. When I populated something on what I was looking for keywords, again this only took a couple of minutes. I was pleasantly surprised by my interest in the results. I was presented with a slider to see who was a high to low fit of what I wanted, this is interesting and does seem to work. I suppose this is cheaper than a recruitment consultant, headhunting on your behalf and does seem more search orientated for Employers than LinkedIn is.

Usability is high and it is easy to use quickly. Drawbacks are, I am not sure how large the pool of people are on the site so results may be limited? However on the plus side I suppose early adopters are more likely to be motivated type A personalities that employers will want. So will Labels.io be the next LinkedIn, well time will tell it certainly is fun to play with the slider and to tweak the key words as recruiter to see who might suddenly appear. Having used Label.io I just might use it if I need more staff, certainly its a quick way to see if some talent might be available to meet the requirements of your human resources strategy and what key words to use. Perhaps its most dynamic use will be interim solutions and immediate appointments, especially to cover crisis or unexpected business disruptions. I can see this be added into Business Continuity strategy’s to bolster organisations capacity when requirement is a rush job.

Overall I would recommend this to my colleagues and fellow members of the Institute of Directors, this is a useful site. I think there is a niche that Label.io can fill to increase transitional efficiency of talent management. Certainly I recommend having a look at Label.io to see if this can work for you.

This article’s based on a quick Googleplus update after trying out Label.io and reflecting on its performance since.

Mission critical: Events, risk assessments and business fluidity

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Coping with reality means dealing with things which were unexpected at the time or when we are distracted by what seems important at the time. This is true of all staff team members from customer service, sales, technicians and those in the Boardroom. Identifying what is truly important and Mission critical, without it you can’t do what you set out to do, it is so vital.

Change is inevitable although how we handle it is within our control. Generally people approach this with a mixture of principles and rules, although most people have a preference for one or other as their base approach. Rules turn into tick box methodology and often have a by rote response by regular and  staff which means they are only looking for what they normally look for, which generally leads to tightly process managed activity and efficiency when everything functions as it should. The principles approach is somewhat looser it encourages more initiative and innovation. As it is values driven this helps staff to make the ‘right’ decision in a responsive manner rather than wait for someone else to notice and sort it out.

Vigilance is important  and to deal with issues such as customers theft or missing “borrowed stock”. Often this is not staffs first consideration especially if they do not have a specific responsibility for it or through restructure business process no longer provide adequate checks and business processes are not robustly monitored. Sometimes staff can take advantage of the systems for example in banking Mr Nick Leeson or more recently Mr Kweku Adoboli unauthorised trading led to a $2bn (£1.3bn) loss for UBS. These events not only affect operation profitability but share prices, in the second example UBS shares closed 11% lower on Thursday 15th September 2011 after they announced the rogue trades were being investigated.

Ongoing evaluation of organisational risk
The risk management cycle

Solutions after the event are less helpful than prevention, but how do we prevent this from happening?

The answer is preparation by robust risk assessments looking at what may go wrong and what the likely impact of such an event are. To do this effectively you need good corporate governance and operational management able to review process, procedure and to review what is done by who, to ensure business continuity planning. Implementation to build in safeguards to enable operations to flow through at a competitive rate even if certain key personal are missing or problems occur as trading should continue if at all possible and too limit the possible damage and eliminate or minimise the opportunities for rogue people to play your systems. Vigorous risk assessments is time consuming but the consequents of not doing it are horrific, so a regular review of your monitoring regime must be incorporated into the risk management cycle, fresh sets of eyes might see what others have missed so balance continuity, with different people’s expertise applied.

As with being on a plane or a ship when choosing to spend time paying attention to putting on a Life jacket and what to do in an emergency. This is an investment of time one hopes is wasted… but this preparation will save lives and when Caring for Business through risk assessments  could save your businesses from all sorts of troubles and minimise industrial accidents and perhaps thinking about what you do will enable new ways of working to be imagined as well how to mitigate potential risks. It is mission critical that the ship of your business does not assume a RMS Titanic invulnerability, as acting as if ‘it will never happen to us’ is not good business sense!

From my perspective as a cross sector UK Business leader it is of the utmost importance that in caring for business the people at the heart of an organisation must regularly perform due diligence preparations to mitigate against unforeseen circumstances, as business must go on.

Institute of Directors, Director of the Year awards

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Mike in Leeds

Mike Beckett on his way to the Director of the Year awards

Yesterday was a great day, attending the Institute of Directors, Director of the Year awards at the beautiful Aspire venue in Leeds on Thursday 8th of  September 2011.

It was back in 2010 that I joined the Institute of Directors, having decided to embark on their Continuing Professional Development by studying at Leeds Business School, which is part of Leeds Metropolitan University. In July 2011 the Institute of Directors notification arrived, which said that Mike Beckett was to be awarded a Certificate in Company Direction, with Distinction.

So it was a real honour for me when yesterday Barbara Colledge, the Dean of the Faculty of Business & Law presented me with the certificate. The Yorkshire and Humber Regional Director of the IoD, Kenton Robbins, introduced me to receive the award with some very kind words, saying “Cllr Michael Beckett from Caring for Business Ltd is a promising young entrepreneur of whom we are expecting great things”. On a personal note the best part for me was that my wife and parents were able to be present to witness this.

Mike and Cal at Aspire York with certificate of Company Direction just recieved

Mike Beckett's delight at receiving the Institute of Directors Certificate in Company Direction, with Distinction.

Nick Beech, the Principle Lecturer, from Leeds Business School at the Lunch told me that over the last 10 years of running the course, they have had just 7 students achieve a Distinction on this course. This reminded me of the economic principle that rarity enhances value! The IoD programme has a strategic focus on the development of high performance boards. As a cross sector leader I have found the course beneficial in improving  standards and practise in achieving KPI outcomes  and this has demonstrated to me its value as an investment of time and money.
 

The awards winners were Hayley Erner of High Flyers Business Coaching Ltd was awarded the Business Advisor of the year (sponsored by ABDN), for impressive achievements in increasing the size of client businesses.  Gareth Barker from Sheffield Forgemasters was awarded the Young Director of the Year (sponsored by Totally Exec) for leading an efficiency drive in making the business profitable. James Lambert from R&R Ice Cream received a Lifetime Achievement award  (sponsored by Grant Thornton). Kenton had earlier said that as an austerity measure there was no desert today, so James raised smiles from everyone by agreeing to provide ice cream for next years event. Peter Roberts of Pure Gym, providing no-nonsense budget gyms, received the Judges Special Award (sponsored by The Insurance Partnership). Christopher Hopkins of Ploughcroft was awarded Small & Medium Size Enterprise Director of the Year award (sponsored by The Alternative Board) for growing his business and for innovation in solar roofing technology. Christopher has also receiving support from an encounter with the Dragons Theo and Deborah from Dragon’s Den.

The finale was the award to Lawrence Tomlinson of the LNT Group which is ranked 28th in the Sunday Times Fast Track 100 Companies. He was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year and followed this us with the award for overall Director of the Year 2011 (awards sponsored by Leeds Business School and Welcome to Yorkshire). Congratulations Lawrence, well done. I hope he goes on to have a Yorkshire win for us all in the National Director of the Year competition, happening later this year in London!

Welcoming our new Finance Director!

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Mike Beckett welcomes new Finance Director to Caring for Business Ltd

A.C. Stokell Beckett welcomed as Caring for Business Ltd's new Finance Director by Mike Beckett

Caring for Business Ltd works closely with other consultants as partners, working on joint projects. We take pleasure in announcing our company expansion due to increased demand for our services.

As you probably know Caring for Business Ltd works as a Business Development Contractors, we do this with a team of associates to offer the best package that fits where our clients need more expertise and/or capacity to help them get to where they are aiming, problem(s) solved, or avoided and the client’s business capability enhanced.

To help us deliver our services better we welcome our new Financial Director to our Board of Directors: A. C. Stokell Beckett. With her experience and passion for business improvement we believe we are better placed than ever to deliver our commitment to implement our sustainable growth strategy and to ensure our quality assurance systems help provide services for our clients that meet or exceed client’s expectations.

Caring for Business and our team of associates offers prospective clients a free assessment to see how we can help improve your business. As the people at the heart of business are our greatest resource, we offer a free assessment of how we can help you to support and challenge  appropriately to optimise performance, please contact us for further details.

We at Caring for Business Ltd love to connect with you, you can like us on Facebook,  Follow our company on LinkedIn:  http://www.linkedin.com/company/caring-for-business-ltd  and follow us on Twitter.

Growing Innovators

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Innovation is the game changer for each of us personally,  for our shared ventures and for businesses and government globally. By working smarter we can achieve more, through specialisation and adaptation to our environment and adaptation of our environment.

Our economy’s growth rate and the rate of employment are functions of Innovation. I define Innovation as to conceive new ideas and adaptations and the subsequent implementation of these concepts.

Individual’s potential when optimised through self-awareness enables  self-fulfilment. The more control and ownership they have of their life journey the more potency they can have to meet new challenges. We all need to work to achieve, to create, to make a difference we can be encouraged when we see for good or ill the impact our actions have. It is not enough to fear failure or to give up so as not to fail. It is in this struggle that the process of personal growth is engaged. By developing individuals and teams we generally become more efficient and effective. While some may go on a road trip of self destruction before hopefully tuning in and accepting a work ethic. Engaged creative individuals devoted to being and growing as innovators. This change is the prerequisite for dynamic economic growth for our society.

Ways to assist this are environmental, providing access to resources such as learning, team dynamics and finance. Interventions and motivation to help stimulate this can be to focused and rigid or to loose and unfocused. Individuals need personalised support and challenges to perform optimally and differing environments will favour differing outcomes. Certainly the most creative and game changing ideas and individuals are usually external to traditional large steady enterprises including governments. To be adaptable and innovative does require a vision that is invested in at all levels of the organisation to achieve success.


 

My fear is that if as a nation we do not do this and our national debt continues to rise. Then sooner or latter we will default on our debt and then I think the nation will face a stark choice bankruptcy or something as radical as the mass nationalisation of property to give to the creditors. In the past when this nation has needed to raise money Henry the Eighth did undertake the dissolution of the monasteries and then sold the estates. I see no reason, why this won’t be repeated, unless the Economy improves markedly. If I was a creditor of UK Ltd (I note we are no longer UK PLC) and I feared the nation would go bankrupt I would most likely threaten sanctions if we went bankrupt and demand the nation seizes and hands over collateral in payment. In a property-owning democracy I see this as the real underlying dilemma and the only palatable way to avoid it is to grow innovators now.

Written by Mike Beckett

2011/06/12 at 05:26

Caring for Business Ltd

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Caring for Business Ltd's Executive Director Mike Beckett

Mike Beckett Caring for Business Ltd's Executive Director

I am delighted to announce that the website for Caring for Business Ltd is now live, do take a look!

-> http:/www.caringforbusiness.co.uk <-

Please do let me know what you think any feedback to improve this website is of course welcome!

Caring for Business likeable Facebook page:

Caring for Business followable on Twitter:

Caring for Business followable on LinkedIn:

With a team of associates Caring for Business offers a free assessment to see how we can help your business. The people at the heart of business are our greatest capital, we offer a free assessment of how we can help you. Formed in September 2010 by Michael Beckett and Heather Cowan. The business was set up as a vehicle to deliver business solutions for people in Small and Medium Enterprises with Strategic and Management improving efficiency and effectiveness with a focus to unleashing the human capital which is the heart of every business.

Technorati

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It has been suggested I register this blog with Technorati and they ask me to post this code:  GKF2HQ22WDU6 so have now done so to be compliant.

 

 

 

Written by Mike Beckett

2011/01/31 at 17:56

Posted in Admin

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