Key Principles for Accessibility and Effective Executive Management

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Sep 22, 2023 โ€ข 4 min read

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Key Principles for Accessibility and Effective Executive Management

Introduction:

In today's world, it is crucial to prioritize accessibility and effective executive management. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) provide essential principles for creating accessible online content. Simultaneously, Peter Drucker's insights on self-management are invaluable for leaders striving for success. By combining these two concepts, we can glean valuable lessons on how to create inclusive digital experiences while improving our own performance as executives.

Operable: Creating Accessible Online Content

The operable principle of WCAG focuses on ensuring that individuals with disabilities can navigate and interact with digital content effectively. This principle encompasses several guidelines that must be followed:

  • 1. Keyboard Accessible: Accessibility begins with ensuring that all sections, elements, and options can be reached using a keyboard. It is crucial to avoid "keyboard traps" that hinder navigation and make it impossible for users to move away from certain elements.
  • 2. Content on Hover or Focus: The currently selected element should be visually obvious to users. This helps individuals with disabilities understand their current location and navigate through the content more seamlessly.
  • 3. Seizures and Physical Reactions: To cater to users with epilepsy or other conditions, animations should not flash more than three times within a one-second period. Additionally, users should have the ability to disable distracting content, such as gifs or animations.
  • 4. Navigable: Users should be able to navigate through the content easily. Clear navigation menus, intuitive page layouts, and well-structured information architecture all contribute to a more navigable experience.
  • 5. Input Modalities: Providing alternatives beyond the keyboard is essential for individuals with diverse needs. This can include touch gestures, voice commands, or other input methods. The "Touch Gesture Reference Guide" by Craig Villamor, Dan Willis, and Luke Wroblewski offers a valuable resource for understanding touch commands.

Lessons from Peter Drucker: Effective Executive Management

Peter Drucker's book, "The Effective Executive," offers valuable insights into self-management and leadership. Here are ten lessons that can be applied to enhance executive performance:

  • 1. Manage Yourself First: To improve the performance of those around you, you must first focus on improving your own performance. Leaders should constantly strive to optimize their skills and abilities.
  • 2. Focus on Your Strengths: Recognize that everyone is incompetent at most things. Instead of trying to be good at everything, identify your strengths and focus on utilizing them to maximize your impact.
  • 3. Embrace Personal Work Preferences: Drucker encourages individuals to work in ways that suit them best. By understanding your own work rhythms and preferences, you can schedule white space and prioritize creative hours for optimal productivity.
  • 4. Track and Value Your Time: Drucker emphasizes the importance of counting and making each minute count. Keep track of your creative hours and strive to log a substantial amount each day. This focused approach allows you to avoid being distracted by small, insignificant tasks.
  • 5. Prepare and Lead Effective Meetings: Meetings should be purposeful and productive. Invest time in planning and preparing for meetings to ensure they drive meaningful discussions, debates, and decisions.
  • 6. Make Decisions Efficiently: Rather than making numerous small decisions, identify patterns and make a few significant decisions that can apply to multiple situations. This approach reduces overhead costs and allows for a more streamlined decision-making process.
  • 7. Find Your Unique Impact: Identify one significant contribution that will make a lasting impact. By focusing on this distinctive goal, you can create meaningful change and render a great service.
  • 8. Eliminate Unnecessary Projects: Stop pursuing projects that do not align with your goals or add value to your organization. Drucker advocates for focusing on initiatives that truly matter and have a tangible impact.
  • 9. Maintain Lean Operations: As organizations grow, internal processes and bureaucracy tend to increase. Drucker advises against creating unnecessary complexity and recommends running lean operations to maintain efficiency and effectiveness.
  • 10. Be Useful: Ultimately, the purpose of executive management is to be useful. By constantly seeking ways to add value and make a difference, leaders can leave a lasting legacy.

Three Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Prioritize Accessibility: Incorporate WCAG principles into your web design and development processes. Ensure that your digital content is keyboard accessible, provides clear visual cues, avoids unnecessary animations, offers easy navigation, and caters to diverse input modalities.
  • 2. Focus on Personal Productivity: Take a page from Peter Drucker's book and prioritize your own performance. Understand your strengths, work preferences, and optimal work hours. Invest time in planning, tracking your time, and making decisions efficiently to maximize your impact.
  • 3. Streamline Operations: Apply Drucker's insights on lean operations to your organization. Regularly assess internal processes, eliminate unnecessary projects, and focus on initiatives that drive value and contribute to your long-term goals.

Conclusion:

By incorporating the principles of accessibility and effective executive management, organizations can create inclusive digital experiences while improving their overall performance. Prioritizing accessibility not only benefits individuals with disabilities but also enhances the user experience for all. Simultaneously, adopting Drucker's lessons on self-management empowers leaders to optimize their skills, make better decisions, and leave a lasting impact. By taking actionable steps towards accessibility and personal productivity, organizations can thrive in today's dynamic and inclusive world.

Resource:

  1. "Explaining WCAG principles: Operable", https://uxdesign.cc/explaining-wcag-principles-operable-a771b3c79d29 (Glasp)
  2. "Jim Collins - Articles - Ten Lessons I Learned from Peter Drucker", https://www.jimcollins.com/article_topics/articles/Ten-Lessons-I-Learned-from-Peter-Drucker.html (Glasp)

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