Get to Know Me, From My Company’s Portal Blog

This month my company featured me on our portal in a blog-style interview. I thought I'd share since I haven't posted much about work lately. Here you go: Get to Know John Demma We all share common goals, but rarely do we have an opportunity to share a cup of coffee and  break the ice. Yet, studies show … Continue reading Get to Know Me, From My Company’s Portal Blog

Profit and Loss: My definition of a business and the role of leaders

"Business" is just a made up word for a group of people who decide to work together towards a common goal that they feel will help them achieve their own personal goals. This collective pursuit is only possible if the common goal of this group produces some product or service that meets the collective and … Continue reading Profit and Loss: My definition of a business and the role of leaders

Born Lucky: Playing Warren Buffett’s Ovarian Lottery

Warren Buffett says he was born lucky. Being born in America, in the 1930s, without having to overcome barriers of race or gender, combined with the power of compound interest, allowed Buffett to amass one of the greatest personal fortunes in the history of mankind (which will be almost entirely given to philanthropy). As Buffett … Continue reading Born Lucky: Playing Warren Buffett’s Ovarian Lottery

Management Skills: Praise and Positive Feedback

The other day I read this Wall Street Journal article called "Smarter Ways to Discipline Children." The article advocates the parent management strategy outlined by Dr. Alan E. Kazdin in his famous book The Kazdin Method. Basically the doctors and researchers discussed in the article have found that the only effective way to get desirable … Continue reading Management Skills: Praise and Positive Feedback

Having Kids Won’t Kill Your Career, But Seeking Work/Life Balance Might

Kids are generally thought of as little career killers for their parents. I can understand why. Kids take up a lot of a parent's time with their need for attention and supervision, and time is a manager's most valuable and scarcest resource. Kids can also be unpredictable and cause their mom or dad to miss … Continue reading Having Kids Won’t Kill Your Career, But Seeking Work/Life Balance Might

Of Personal Strategies, Deliberate and Emergent

How did I get to where I am now? To what extent can I plan the future of my career, or my life? These are some questions I asked myself this week after reading this profile on Clayton Christensen in the New Yorker. Christensen is a Harvard Business School professor who became famous as a … Continue reading Of Personal Strategies, Deliberate and Emergent

Results (Money) Are The Only Thing That Matters

When I was twenty-one I landed my first real management job as a restaurant manager at a Marriott. And when I first started this job, our food and beverage department was performing dreadfully on our key metric - Guest Satisfaction Survey Scores (GSS Scores). We were consistently last or in the bottom five out of … Continue reading Results (Money) Are The Only Thing That Matters

Demma’s Employee Engagement Curve: How managers can fight performance atrophy

I have a hypothesis that most employees naturally follow the below engagement curve. Without intervention from management, employees who begin in an enthusiastic honeymoon stage eventually slide into negative contribution and finally end their tenure as a bitter and disruptive veteran. All things naturally decay, and performance is no exception to this rule. It's the … Continue reading Demma’s Employee Engagement Curve: How managers can fight performance atrophy