Our Blog

NASA’s Curiosity Mission – A Public Relations Success Story

Posted August 31, 2012 9:09 PM by Dylan Miyake

I would like to take a minute to congratulate NASA for their exceptional work with the Mars Curiosity rover mission. But this tribute is not for the spacecraft design or rocket science. It's for NASA's exceptional job in telling their story and engaging the public throughout the mission.

Our organizations may not have $2.6 billion dollar budgets but we can mimic NASA's successful outreach work to increase awareness and public interest of our own missions.

Filed Under Community Outreach
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Working Remotely

Posted August 31, 2012 6:08 PM by Brandon Kline

I recently read an HBR blog entitled, "Why Remote Workers Are More (Yes, More) Engaged," and it really hit home for me. For one, we here at Ascendant spend a fair amount of time working remotely when not on client site or traveling. And second, something that will resonate with others who have read Dan Pink's book, Drive, is that autonomy is one of the key factors in motivating employees.

Filed Under Ascendant, Communication
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Good Measurement Needs Good Leadership

Posted August 20, 2012 12:13 PM by Dylan Miyake

Every morning, I run through Emory University. The evolution of this institution over time has been incredible. From a small Methodist college in a small town in Georgia, Emory has emerged as a major international university in the largest city in the southeast. The undergraduate, law, medical, and business schools attract students from literally around the world, and speakers like the Dalai Lama and President Carter have spoken at the university.

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Keeping Score: How Are You Doing?

Posted August 14, 2012 11:15 AM by Angie Mareino

Hello, new world. Well, new world to me, at least. For many of you involved in performance and strategy management, you've been part of this orbit for years. So I'll be blunt: I'm hoping to learn a thing or two from you.

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How to apply technology in education?

Posted August 6, 2012 11:50 AM by Ted Jackson

I was reading the Sunday New York Times today, and it got me thinking about education and the use of technology. I know it is Monday and the NYT I was reading was from July 22, but I found it interesting nonetheless. The graphic in the NYT was called "Advising by Algorithm" in a pullout section called Education Life. It spoke about how Austin Peay State University recommended classes to its students.

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Industrial Organization Psychology in the Workplace - Guest Blog Post

Posted August 4, 2012 3:10 PM by Ted Jackson

In the this post, Alexa Thompson discusses how in the present business environment, where collaboration is respected and valued, making sure employees are content can help increase individual productivity and improve corporate culture. As an author for resources on psychology, including organizational psychology, or "work" psychology, Alexa builds off of this blog's promotion of building collaborative teams by suggesting that changes to the overall culture of a business can yield better results.

Filed Under Capacity
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Implementing the Balanced Scorecard – Getting Staff Involved and Owning It

Posted August 3, 2012 1:39 PM by Mark Cutler

Almost always when we begin working with client leadership teams to implement the Balanced Scorecard in their organizations, the question is asked about when and how to get staff involved. I am not sure if this is an issue specific to mission-driven organizations whose leadership teams are often wary of the top-down, "forcing" of a strategy upon their staff. Regardless, this can be one of the more difficult aspects of strategy implementation for leaders of consensus-driven organizations.

From the beginning of an engagement with a pretty big client that has several layers of management, the leadership team has been asking how they get their staff involved early so they buy in to the Balanced Scorecard strategy management framework. While there is no one right answer to this question, our experience tells us there are several ways to get staff engaged.

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