Manage Smarter 19 — Tom Peters: Hard Truths About Soft Skills

Featured image for “Manage Smarter 19 — Tom Peters: Hard Truths About Soft Skills”

Tom Peters is a best-​selling author and world renowned expert on business management practices. Peters is co-​author of In Search of Excellence—the book that changed the way the world does business, and often tagged as the best business book ever. Seventeen books and thirty-​five years later, he’s still at the forefront of the “management guru industry” he single-​handedly invented. 

Peters is celebrated for his forthright approach and deep insights into organizational excellence. His career began at McKinsey & Co., where he contributed to foundational changes in management practices. Peters is a vocal advocate for focusing on people and culture to drive business success, challenging traditional emphases on technical aspects of management.

In this episode, Audrey, Lee and Tom Peters discuss:

  • Soft Skills are Actually Hard: Peters highlights the irony that what many consider "soft" skills, like interpersonal relationships and cultural management, are actually the hardest to master yet the most crucial. He argues these skills are foundational for sustained business performance and should not be underestimated.
  • Importance of Culture in Business Success: Tom Peters emphasizes that company culture is critical for business success, contrary to the usual focus on financial metrics and marketing strategies. He notes that real strength in a business lies in its people, relationships, and culture—elements that are sustainable and truly difficult to replicate.
  • Continuous Learning and Adaptation: In an era marked by rapid technological advancements and market changes, Peters advocates for constant learning and agility. He stresses the importance of staying ahead of the curve, not just for organizations but also for individuals within them.
  • Moral Responsibility of Leaders: Leaders have a moral obligation to ensure that every employee leaves the organization better than when they joined. This approach not only enhances individual careers but also benefits the organization by cultivating a more skilled and motivated workforce.
  • The Power of Personal Connection: Despite the rise of technology and automation, Peters underscores the unmatched value of personal connection and human interaction in business. He believes that relationships built on genuine interaction are the key to business success and customer satisfaction.
  • And the acronym M.B.W.A.

"In an era of relentless change, the essence of success—whether in marriage or business—is relationships, and relationships take time."

Tom Peters

Join hosts Audrey Strong and C. Lee Smith every week as they dive into the aspects and concepts of good business management. From debunking sales myths to learning how to manage with and without measurements, you'll learn something new with every episode and will be able to implement positive change far beyond sales.

Connect with Tom Peters:

Connect with the hosts of Manage Smarter:

Connect with SalesFuel:

Copyright 2018 SalesFuel, Inc. – All Rights Reserved. This podcast may not be redistributed in whole or in part without the written permission of SalesFuel, Inc.