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Managing in the world of housing typically means managing internal employees and external partners. How can managers today leverage technology, collaboration and talent to focus on market opportunities, like the two most urgent--women and the aging.

Management Isn’t Complicated
Noisy helps when you’re saying things that most leaders already know, but that far too few act upon in a consistent way. In The Excellence Dividend, Peters pinpoints the most common infractions:

“Poor cross-functional coordination and communication is the principal element in the delay of everything,” Peters says. Internal barriers, not the competitors, are the big impediment to effective execution. Getting functions to stop feuding isn’t enough; they need to actively work together in a spirited, coordinated way.

“Excellence is conventionally seen as a long-term aspiration,” he says. “I disagree. Excellence is the next five minutes.” Excellence is determined by your next customer contact, by really listening to an employee, by shouldering responsibility and apologizing when a mistake is made. Excellence comes in the form of small, everyday acts.

Strategies That Add Value
Peters spends a good deal of time on the practices of effective management in The Excellence Dividend, but he doesn’t ignore strategy.

Two of those strategies are focused on what Peters calls underserved markets. The first is women. “Women buy everything,” Peters says, pointing out that they make a majority of consumer and business purchasing decisions. The problem is most companies aren’t prepared to serve the women, a consumer market that is currently estimated at $20 trillion annually. “One indicator of readiness to embrace this colossal women’s market opportunity comes from conducting what I call a ‘squint test,’” says Peters. “One, look at a photograph of your exec team. Two, squint. Three: Does the composition of the team look more or less like the composition of the market you aim to serve?”

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