Open Book Management

Open Book Management

Huddling 2.0 – Getting the Zing Back in your Huddle!

We’ve been practicing Open Book Management at Zingerman’s for about 15 years. Open Book Management means many things [and we discuss them all in our 2-day seminar] but anyone who practices it knows that the heart of being Open Book is the weekly huddle. The huddle is the all-staff meeting where we discuss our Key […]

Open Book Management

Ari’s Favorites: 35 Years of Organizational Success

On March 15, 2017, Zingerman’s Delicatessen celebrated its 35th anniversary and throughout the year the Zingerman’s Community of Businesses has been taking opportunities to look back, reflect and celebrate with a variety of special events. A guaranteed crowd pleaser is a tasting of Ari’s favorite foods and since here at ZingTrain our “food” is training, […]

Open Book Management

How To Make Your Meetings More Effective

Ever been to one of *those* meetings? You know the one… somebody is grandstanding and won’t get off their soapbox. Somebody else is having a side conversation. The person sitting across from you might as well be alone in the room with their smartphone. Nobody is making decisions. The energy is low, and almost everyone […]

Open Book Management

Why Open Book Management is an excellent way to run a business!

It’s been nearly a decade now since we at Zingerman’s made the move to open book management. If you’re not familiar with the term “open book,” it means that we actively share all the financial information about our business with everyone who works within our organization. And that everyone in our organization, from dishwashers on […]

Open Book Management

Bottom Line Improvements Through Financial Training

If you were to ask your staff how much money your business makes each year, what would they say? I can tell you that when we first started asking our staff that question (about 15 years ago), we got answers that were all over the map — from figures that approximated our annual sales to […]

Open Book Management

Building a Sustainable Business

Over the past ten years, there’s been increasing support for sustainable agriculture in North America. While there’s a long way to go to get that approach to become an accepted day-to-day reality, many organizations are working in consciously and ecologically sound ways. Sustainability, though, exists in a broader sense, one that’s not limited to agriculture […]

Open Book Management

Getting on to Good Profits

If bad profits are akin to strip mining, then good profits are like sustainable agriculture; they’re solid, rooted in shared values and win-win outcomes that have long-term gains for all involved. The customer has a great experience, the staff member enjoys serving them and feels good about what they’re selling, and the organization is building […]

Open Book Management

Beware of Bad Profits

Learning never stops. Sometimes it’s painful—learning that comes from working through difficult circumstances, making mistakes, exercising poor judgment, confronting bad luck or facing up to things we didn’t want to know about. At Zingerman’s, we’ve been learning a lot through what we have taken to calling the ZXI, or Zingerman’s Experience Indicator. (See sidebar on […]

Open Book Management

Ten Rules for Great Finance

At Zingerman’s, we first adopted the Open Book approach to finance in the mid-1990s.  We learned about it from reading the now classic book, The Great Game of Business, by Jack Stack and Bo Burlingham, as well as John Case’s Open-Book Management. The concept basically states that everyone in the organization—from hourly staff through to […]

Open Book Management

Ten Steps to Designing a Great Game

The first of this two-part series, Meaningful Games at Work, addressed why and how games can help grow your business. Part Two provides pointers on developing games appropriate for your business. While there’s no perfect formula for designing group games, here is a ten-step recipe that we use at Zingerman’s to get better results. The […]

Open Book Management

Meaningful Games at Work

In this first of a two-part series, we address how playing games can help achieve business goals. The next article, Ten Steps to Designing a Great Game, will tell you how to design an effective game for your business. People always give me a funny look when I tell them that we like to play […]

Leadership Development

The Entrepreneurial Approach in Action

Editor’s Note: The previous article in this series, The Entrepreneurial Approach to Management, presented why an Entrepreneurial Approach to employee management will benefit your business. In the second of this two-part series, you will learn how to put this approach into practice. The Entrepreneurial Approach to Management is the opposite of the bureaucratic methods of […]

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