What others are reading

What has worked

As my blog has grown, the potential of it to be overwhelming increases.  Where to start?  Which articles are most likely to resonate with you?  Articles have tags or keywords assigned by me to categorize them.  These categories are presented on the home page of the blog as buttons whose location varies depending on whether you access the blog with a desktop or handheld device.  The blog theme I am using has a very handy and powerful search feature enabled. You can search the entire blog for anything of interest to you.  Here in order of the number of page reads over the twelve months ending in March of 2019 are the most read articles.  This list is somewhat biased by time.  What is meant by that is that articles that first appeared later in the year do not have enough time to rise in the ranking commensurate with their current popularity.

Note that throughout this blog that text that is highlighted in a color other than black is hyperlinked meaning that you can jump from where you are to the linked text by clicking the colored word(s).  Unless I have made an error or committed an oversight, this should result in the linked item opening in a new window.

What is a blind reference?

The surprising initial and continuing popularity of this article caught me totally by surprise.  Apparently, a lot of people have no idea what blind reference checking was. Obviously, a lot of people are searching the internet looking for ways to enhance their job seeking chances.

About

The about page tells folks what the blog is about and a little about how I came to be an authority on Interim Executive Services.  A very high percentage of visitors are viewing this page

Take Off Your Clothes

I have learned that catchy, sometimes edgy titles will capture the reader’s attention.  I have also learned that the use of a story that will not be forgotten to make a point is a powerful teaching story.  This article is a true story about an encounter with dysfunctional, entrenched bureaucracy and a challenge that resulted in impressive improvement.

Why do CEOs get fired or leave organizations anyway?

This article that was published nearly two years ago remains very popular.  CEO turnover in healthcare is rampant and the average tenure of a hospital CEO is around three years according to the ACHE.  A lot of people continue to find this article in spite of the fact that it disappeared from my front page a long time ago.

We Can’t afford to Hire You

A relatively new article that delves further in the value proposition of an interim executive.  This article discusses some of the irrational, convoluted reasoning applied by some decision-makers to try to minimize the cost of an Interim Executive Engagement.

Who are you?

The surprising success of this article that was first released well over a year ago has been gratifying.  This article looks into integrity and its relationship to career success.  In this article, I discuss the importance of the practice of integrity consistently and the potential leaders have to profoundly influence others with their actions and deeds.

How do you Hire and Manage an Interim Executive?

This article takes a look at the relationship between an Interim Executive and their client in a ‘normal’ situation.  The article discusses the difference between an independent contractor and an employee and provides some tips to help organizations gain maximum value from an interim engagement.

I am not a Salesman

This article explores the relationship between the development of improved selling skills and career success.  In this article, I argue that everyone is in selling whether they realize it or not and lack of selling skill may. become career limiting.

Answer the Phone

In this article, I get a load off my chest.  It is so frustrating to be disrespected by people that will not return phone calls.  I explain the potential of this activity to be career limiting.  The success of this article is evidence of the fact that I am not the only perosn intersted in proper professional telephone etiquete.

More examples of what not to do AKA how to stay in the frying pan and not fall into the fire.

The performance of this article has been a surprise.  The question of what to avoid in an organization to reduce the probability you will need interim services was posed by my friend and mentor, Dr. Christy Lemak, the Professor & Chair of the Department of Health Services Administration at The University of Alabama at Birmingham, my alma mater.  The initial outline for this article grew so large that it became a series and both of the first two articles quickly rose into my top ten list.  I am anxious to continue gathering and sharing tips and techniques that can help executives improve their professional performance, especially younger executives that do not have the ‘in the trenches’ experience of some of us.  I believe this is a very effective way to ‘pay forward’ to the next generation the benefit of some of our experiences.

Nomenclature

This is another page in the menu of the blog and not an article per se.  On this page, I address some the confusion around some of the terminology used in healthcare administration.  I endeavor to prospectively dispel concerns about political correctness and gender sensitivity.  Hopefully, I have not offended anyone in the process of trying to avoid offending anyone. Some of the hypersensitivity to this kind of thing in the current environment would be laughable if it were not so serious.  My fear is that the relationships between men and women in the work environment has been permanently altered and not for the better for anyone.

Examples of what not to do – simple mistakes you have seen that others could avoid.  AKA – How many ways can you get yourself into trouble?

This is the first article in the series about what not to do.  Interestingly, it has not been as popular as the second article.  I have material for other articles in the future that will be prioritized by the level of interest demonstrated in what has been done on this topic thus far.  In the articles, I ask my readers and I am asking you for input and feedback on material for this series.  I think it has the potential of being infinitely valuable to the next generation of leaders whose success we should all be interested in.

Should I pursue professional credentialing?

This article has been another surprise and further reinforcement of the observation that a lot of people are looking for guidance and help related to career advancement.  In this article, I advance a strong and hopefully compelling argument in favor of credentialing as a means of career advancement.

What has not worked

No listing of what has worked or is popular would be complete without an acknowledgment of things that have not worked or are not as popular as I would have expected.  I have put a fair amount of effort into several articles that I expected would be hits only to see them languish.  I don’t know if I failed to give them a sufficiently catchy title or if their title did not give sufficient insight into articles that might provide valuable insights.  I should have known better than to write on ‘sadistics’ and the responses of two articles on the subject validate my opening comments on the first article that is that anyone that has ever been subjected to statistics swears off the subject and spends the rest of their life avoiding the topic.  The two articles on the topic share the dubious distinction of being among the least read on my blog.  Never the less, I have and continue to argue that your ability to develop cognitive skill and apply evidence-based analysis to decision making will either launch or constrain your ability to advance your career.  Here are a few articles that are looking for some love:

Where is Mark Richt?

This article has been a major disappointment.  I think the reason is that the title I selected causes a lot of people to skip over what might be very enlightening content, especially if they are Florida fans.  A lot of people do not understand succession events.  In this article, I attempt by analogy to explain how turnover does not necessarily mean and usually does not mean that the person leaving an organization is a bad person or that they failed.

Why would you consider engaging an interim executive?

This short article was my first blog effort. In this article, I explore how and why getting Interim Executive talent involved during a leadership transition is a good idea.  Why few people dealing with transitions are interested in the potenital of adding value by using the right Interim Executive remains a mystery to me.

Thanksgiving 2016

I guess my type of reader is not that interested in ‘soft’ topics.  This article was cathartic for me and it produced some heartwarming feedback but not much readership.

If the executive is going to get fired anyway, why do they need a contract or severance?

This article was written in response to a question about severance packages.  I endeavor to explain why I think severance packages are not only the right thing for an organization to do but they have become competitively necessary to recruit top talent.  Unfortunately, when a hiring decision turns out to be an error or an executive engages in inappropriate behavior or activity, the severance package adds sting to the disruptive process of replacing the executive.

How fast can you teach finance?

I have witnessed healthcare leaders bragging about how little they knew about finance as if it is some kind of badge of honor.  In this article, I endeavor to encapsulate in a few words what is vitally important about finance and dead-on relevant to every leader at every level in every organization.  Selfishly, I am glad so many so-called leaders choose to wallow in their ignorance because, in the process, they create a plethora of opportunity for Interim Executive Consultants.

Are you afraid?

Apparently, not very many people are afraid.  In one respect this is good becadsue a lot of gigs have been creatred for me by leaders that had become paralyzed and non-functioning because of fear.  In this article, I discuss the potential of fear to paralyze you and ultimately impeed your career or career progress.

There is nothing I can do for you

The lack of popularity of this article has been a disappointment.  In this article, I discuss the potential of running into immoveable culture in an organizaiton and the futility of making progress beyond the point that entrenced, dysfunctional culture digs in.  The point of this article is explained by analyogy with the problem a heart surgeon faces when he has to tell a patient that there is nothign that can be done for them.

How do I get ahead?

In spite of the fact that a lot of people are looking to advance their career, this article has not had the leadership of some of the others.  Maybe, I need to change the title.  In this article, I explain the transition from technical/operational focus of a staff role to the strategic perspecive of a leadership positon.

What should you look for in an interim executive agreement?

An increasing number of decision makers are looking into Interim Executive Services as a means of enhancing their capabilities, managing a transition event or dealing with problems.  This article delves into the contracting process related to securing an interim and it continues to receive a lot of traffic.

More sadistics

I should have known better.  Most people do not dislike statistics, they have a patent loathing for the topic.  I should not be surprised that there was not much interest in this article. I am disappointed none the less because, in this article, I talk about what can and cannot be proven with statistics.  I give a number of examples of how failure to understand what you are looking at can lead to incorrect inferences (spurious correlations).  I remain committed to the concept that better understanding of quantitative methods can help all of us become better decision makers and as a result, better leaders.

Summary

I hope that this guide helps you to make the most efficient use of your time if you are interested in finding content here that might be of value to you.   There is no order to the articles.  They appear as they are published.   Every time I get an idea, question or suggestion, I start a draft.  At any given time, I have more than a dozen draft articles in various stages of completion.  If you are interested in seeing me write on a topic of interest to you, let me know.  Some of my best-performing articles were written to address someone’s question.

I wish to conclude this article by thanking each and every one of my readers.  The traffic on this website encourages me to continue.  The comments and questions inspire me to write on different topics.  The positive feedback justifies the time and effort I put into this work.  I am blessed and honored more than I can express by your interest in and support of this work.  I appreciate you and my hope is that you find jewels of insight or wisdom that makes you a better person and better at what you do.

Thank You

Ray Snead

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