ArLyne's Diamonds

A running commentary of ideas

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Diamond's to You: March 2011 Newsletter

Diamonds to You
Helping you get the best out of yourself and others.

Vol 6, Issue 3 March, 2011

Table of Contents


Publisher, Editor, Author: ME

Blogging & Facebook


Refer to Me, Please

From Our Readers

University Courses I'm Teaching

Global Economy Workplace Challenges

Think Different!


Organizational Structure and Conflict

Articles - Publications - Newsletters - Books


March showers bring April flowers! As I write this it is pouring outside. I was in San Francisco over the past weekend and the storm on Saturday night was so horrible you couldn't see anything in front of your face. We were at the theater and couldn't get a taxi back to my friends home. Fortunately some kind strangers gave us a ride in their limousine. We made it safely to the top of Vallejo without incident. You wouldn't believe how steep the hills!
I have a request: My niece Gabrielle ( is redoing my website and wants me to come up with a wonderful blurb for the opening page. We are looking for pithy statements about the value my services bring (have brought?) to you and your firm. Your ideas - sent to me fairly quickly - will be greatly appreciated. I know what I do - but what do you receive of value from it???????

It's not the load that holds you down,
it's the way you carry it.

Lena Horne

Publisher, Editor, Author - ArLyne Diamond, Ph.D. I never realized before that it had to be said, but one of my readers asked me if I wrote the articles. YES, I write all of them unless otherwise stated. I am also the editor (unfortunately - 'cause sometimes I miss typos) and publisher - with the help of Constant Contact, who distributes them for me.
Blogging, Facebook and You Tube

II invite you all to find me at: There is an area for your comments - and I'd love to hear them. Short clips from a few of my speeches are on YOUTUBE and can be found at ArLyneDiamond.
Click here and find me on facebook, or look for Also my new fan page is: ArLyne Diamond, Diamond Associates

Workshops & Training:
These are customized for your needs and cover a wide range of Leadership, Quality, Organizational Behavior, Compliance (Employment Law) Issues, Management Training, Conflict Resolution, Executive Retreats, Board Training and many other areas of people and processes in the workplace.
I really thrive on your referrals to me. Keep them coming!
I invite you to forward copies of my newsletters to your friends and colleagues. Thanks.

From our Readers
In addition to the useful content of your newsletters, I enjoy your writing - effective organization, chatty style and swift pace. You have the ability to cement your authority in a positive and engaging manner that is absent in most business writing. It's a special talent to combine business expertise with a personal approach that keeps your reader completely engaged.
Evie Preston, Author/Speaker.

University Courses I'm Teaching
DeVry - Keller Universities
• Leadership & Organizational Behavior
• Quality and Performance Excellence
• International Business
• Business Planning (Capstone MBA class)
• Career Decisions
• Psychology 110
• Employment Law (Compliance Issues )
• The Legal, Political and Ethical Dimensions of Business
• Change Management
• Human Resource Planning (Capstone MBA class)
Lincoln Law School
• The Psychology of Practicing Law
Stanford University, Continuing Education
• Conflict in the Workplace

Global Economy Workplace Challenges

I recently spoke with a group from the Institute of Management Accountants, many of whom travel internationally for their firms. We had a highly interactive discussion about some of the issues facing companies doing business in other parts of the world. Our discussion included:
• Understanding how meetings are conducted and decisions are made in varying parts of the world.
• Knowing how to interact with people from low-context and those from high-context cultures.
• Respecting the chain of command, the authority figures and the cultural diplomacy.
• Recognizing that values we take for granted might not necessarily be the same in other countries.
• Having compassion for the necessity that might lead to children having to work for bare-bones survival (but not accepting slavery or exploitation.)
• Dealing with gifts - expected in many parts of the world - and the USA's laws against bribes.
• Learning whether to shake hands, kiss cheeks, or bow.
• Grasping the differences in contract law and the level of specificity required in contracts in different parts of the world.
• Expecting that styles of communication will differ and need to be respected, not ridiculed.
• Building trust, mutual understanding and a common set of values and expectations.

Think Different

This is from an Apple 1997 Ad - and was quoted in Gallo, Carmine: The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs. I love it - and that's why I am sharing it with you here.
As black and white images of famous iconoclasts filled the screen (Albert Einstein, Martin Luther King, Richard Branson, John Lennon, Amelia Earhart, Muhammad Ali, Lucille Ball, Bob Dylan and others) actor Richard Dreyfuss voiced the narration.

Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble-makers. The round pegs in the square hole. The ones who see things differently. They're not found of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.

Speeches/Seminars Current

Interest and Challenges of Working in a Global Economy, Silicon Valley, Institute of Management Accountants, February 23, 2011 (postponed to March)

Developing Talent for Leaders/Managers, for VPE/CTo Community of Practice, January 13, 2011

The Feed and Care of Volunteers and Committee Members, for Temple Beth Torah, Brotherhood, Fremont, CA on December 12, 2010.

Mentoring for ASWA, Silicon Valley, CA November 16, 2010

Managing Effective Virtual Meetings, October 12, 2010, for Santa Clara Valley Leadership Group of the National Management Association.

Getting IN: How to Get the Interview - and Get the JOB, for CSIX, October 7, 2010

The Feed & Care of Employees - From Hiring to Firing, for San Jose, Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce., August 12, 2010

Winning Testimony is Convincing Testimony: Judges and jurors need to feel what you are conveying." for FEWA (Forensic Experts Witness Association) July 14, 2010.

Talent Development for IT Directors Community of Practice: June 15, 2010

Staying Up During Down Times, for Jewish Family Services, May 18, 2010.

Doing More with Less: Strategies for Improving Performance, Increasing Motivation and Leading Your Team to Success in these Tyring Times, for SD Forum, February 23,2010

The Psychology of Practicing Law - a Three Day Seminar in February 2010 for the Alumni of Lincoln Law School.

International Business Etiquette: Tips on Limiting Your Drinking While Doing Business Abroad - for Corporate Attorneys, ACC-SFBA, Santa Clara and San Francisco, CA, Jan 22 and Jan 27, 2010.

Organizational Structure and Conflict

Generally speaking there are three major types of organizational structure: Functional, Project and Matrix.

Functional organizational structure is the traditional one. It consists of departments each responsible for a particular type of work. For example, the test department, the finance department, research and development, marketing and manufacturing. In this type of organization there is similarity in style and expertise in each department and the manager of that department probably has the most experience in that narrow specialty.

These separations can and do create what we have termed "silos." Often in silos we find competition and secrecy from department to department. When the executive team meets, they typically come with power point presentations their staff prepared for them. So they posture and show-off rather than really work amicably together. Unless (like in the good exceptions) there is compatibility, communication and trust, there is little understanding or knowledge of the effect one set of policies in one department has on other groups.

I've seen the conflict due to procedures being onerous between decisions made in the finance department and how they affect engineering or marketing. For example, one of my clients, an engineering vice-president got in trouble with his finance department when he'd side-step contracts and procurements to buy a needed tool at the last minute. Another example is where different design teams create different icons for the same procedure with little regard for some overall corporate image or consistency.

Project Organizations are probably the most fun. A team of people come together to work on a specific project from beginning to end. This might be an advertising team, or a team of lawyers, or building the Saturn automobile. Team work and its strength is most prominent in this type of organization. The drawbacks might include a lack of work once the project is completed, or being insulated from the rest of the organization. Too, sometimes specific members of the team are either under or over-utilized.

Matrix Organizations are hybrids, consisting of a combination of functional and project. Their attempt is to take the best of both of the other types and eliminate the negatives. Many organizations today, especially here in Silicon Valley, are matrix. In this structure members from functional groups are assigned to a project as needed, and to the extent needed.

The potential for conflict in matrix organizations is because everyone is competing for the same talent and resources are usually limited. The Project Manager (PM) in a matrix organization has to recruit members from the various functional groups as they are needed. The PM needs to persuade the functional managers to release the right people and the PM needs to persuade the team members wanted about the value and importance of the project. In effect the PM is renting the people needed for the team and is in competition with other PMs who might want the same person. That's where persuasion is necessary - and the possibility of conflict exists.

If I were the PM, I'd want the most talented members from each of the departments, whether that be creative design or finance. But, other PMs probably want the same people for the same reasons. "A" player people will be wanted much more often than the "B" or "C" players. The supply will not be equal to the demand.

Too, in a matrix organization team members are often working on multiple projects at once and have to divide their time between them. The PM has to make sure they deliver the deliverables on time and devote as much time and thought to this project, over others. Negotiation with the team member, as well as with the functional manager and other PMs is part of the job - and another area in which potential conflict exists.

PMs have to maintain positive relationships with all the department managers with whom they negotiate, with their counter-part PMs and with the staff assigned to them. Soft-skills - amicable relationships, communication, persuasion, and negotiation are key to making the project and the PM successful.

Prior Newsletters

Other articles in prior newsletters are at:

Recent Publications

Please Google: ArLyne Diamond for other articles in which I've been quoted as well as for those I've written. Here are some of the more current ones though:

Is Delegating Worth the effort? Outsourcing Magazine, November-December 2010

Living Colours: Similarities and Differences in Workplace, Outsourcing Magazine, July-August, 2010

Effective Workplace Communication: More than Language, in

Establishing Safety in the Workplace, Outsourcing Magazine, May-June, 2010

Ergonomics: Making the Work Environment Fit the Individual Employee, I'm being quoted in an article written by Cathleen O'Connor Schoultz in Workforce Strategies, The Bureau of National Affairs, (BNA) , March 2010, Vol. 28, #3.

To Drink or Not to Drink: The Social convention of alcohol drinking in other countries, Outsourcing, March, April 2010

Book in Progress - Publisher found

Leading and Managing in a Global Economy

Books - Published

The following books can be ordered directly:

Training Your Board of Directors: A Manual for the CEOs, Board Members, Administrators and Executives of Corporations, Associations, Non-Profit and Religious Organizations.

The "Please" and "Thank You" of Fundraising for Non-Profits: Fifteen Essential Ingredients for Success.

So, how can I help you?

ArLyne Diamond has a high degree of mental quickness and alertness, and she is extremely intelligent (I might even say brilliant actually.)I also found her to have a great ability to facilitate the clearing up of communication problems...[with] a high degree of integrity...She is quick and witty and is gifted with a fine sense of humor. Arthur Anton, Ph.D. - Associates Psychologists

ArLyne Diamond possesses a first-rate mind, lively curiosity about a broad spectrum of human affairs,Is perceptive in observation, incisive in thought and, happily is an enormously sensitive and kind human being.William T. Keogh, Esq., Associate Dean (Retired - Deceased) Stanford Law School

Your professional, adroit and humorous handling of the many meetings gave everyone
a comfortable and open approach to problem solving that has accomplished more than I ever thought possible. I appreciateyour ability not only to lead people, but to redirect their energies to look at problems differently. More importantly to change attitudes, the hardest of all to reshape. Leonard D. Miller, CEO, Quorum International Ltd. And Citizen's Task Force Representative to City of San Carlos

It was the best lecture I have heard in my 12 years at the college.I think you have raised the consciousness of many students concerning the issues of women's rights and position in society today.Marci Douglas, Professor of English, Gavlin College

I found in ArLyne a person with an exception level of intelligence and capability for innovative, independent thought, reason [and] intellectual honesty. Dr. ArLyne Diamond has a remarkable gift for helping people achieve a far higher level of psychological well being than they might otherwise have felt possible. At the core of this 'gift' is the great depth of caring, emotional sensitivity and human empathy she possesses, and her deep and abiding belief in the innate value and possibility of each individual. Dr. Richard C. Eden, Sr. Vice-President Gigabit Logic

I highly recommend ArLyne - her facilitation skills are superb, her integrity unquestioned, and her contribution in terms of both "soft skills" as well as subject matter expertise are excellent.Lori Kendall, Vice-President Genesys Telecommunications Labs, Inc.

ArLyne is special. She belongs in the "top prospect" or "rare find" category. a member of that informal elite who do exceptional things whatever their undertaking. The key word to describe ArLyne is balance. She matches dedication with humor, a good business sense with humanism, and abundant energy with good cheer.
James Hawkins, Professor, San Jose State University

The four hours I spent with you were highly valuable. The information was practical and immediately applicable to my work, as it would be to any manager who interviews, hires, tracks performance and sometimes, unfortunately, fires. Your presentation of the material was interesting, the pace was right, your examples were relevant and reflected your experience. I truly enjoyed the workshop as well as finding it practical. Jeanne Howard, Advertising Director, METRO Newspapers

Your workshop... was invaluable! Your knowledge & skills are excellent. We enjoyed the quick wit and the support materials were terrific. I personally learned a great deal and the agents are still asking if we can't please have you here on a permanent basis...You might consider changing the title of your seminar to: How to figure out where you are, how you got there, where you want to be and how to go about making the most of your talents and how to zero in on the needs of your clients to best serve them, while enjoying the process Patty Marlow, Vice-President/Manager, Cornish & Carey, Campbell, CA

You were effectively able to bring various members of my staff together to accomplish significant and innovative changes...[and[ in helping to create an environment for us to continue with these efforts. Michael P. Garvey, City Manager, City of San Carlos

It has been a valuable tool for me to use as I continue to "fine tune" the city's management structure...Thank you for your varied and excellent contributions. We are now implementing many of your recommendations in the management study. Michael Garvey, City Manager

She has helped us in formalizing personnel policies, streamlining office procedures, preparing an office manual, team building, resolving internal conflicts, office redesign, and even interior decorating. Through customer service training and business and marketing development she helped my accountants increase their client base significantly. She has all of the qualities that business managers and owners seek in that she is dedicated, dependable, and gets results. In my opinion her strongest point is that she's incredibly smart, cuts through a lot of the fog, and gets to the bottom line in an incredibly short time. She also earns the respect and trust of employees who are willing to risk making change with her help.
Leonard W. Williams, CPA

Let me be your Aufin-your advisor to Kings.

ArLyne Diamond, Ph.D 408-554-0110

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