Business Growth: Paul Romer to the Rescue!

By | October 15th, 2018|

I’ve just scratched the surface in my quest to better understand Paul Romer’s insight into growth. Romer won the 2018 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences — shared the win, actually. One of Romer’s central themes is that resources are fixed and innovation is unlimited. You can’t create anything of a physical nature; you can [...]

Business Strategy: Desperate For Revenue

By | September 30th, 2018|

This is a picture of a monkey backpack my wife bought for one of our grandsons today at OfficeDepot. He’s not yet 1 year old, but as you can see, the backpack is quite small. It’ll probably hold a diaper or two and a tube of mushed pea baby food. It was on sale for [...]

What Is Strategic Planning?

By | August 13th, 2018|

What is strategic planning? Well … for one thing, it’s perhaps the most misused phrase in business! Let’s start with what strategy is. On second thought, let’s start with what strategy is NOT! It’s not a budget. It’s not a fat document. It’s not that thing you do every November. It’s not a mystical chant. [...]

Strategic Thinking and Leadership: General Electric’s Lightbulb Dims

By | June 25th, 2018|

It turns out that erasing $100 billion in market value takes less time and energy than bolting together parts to achieve it initially. It doesn’t take the brightest bulb in the chandelier to see that keeping the trains on the tracks, the coal-fired turbines spinning or the airplanes flying all at the same time is [...]

You Must Know The Critical Elements Of Strategy

By | June 18th, 2018|

“Having determined your destination, you set sails, motivate rowers, adjust for winds and currents, avoid shoals and rocks, allow for surprises, and expend finite energy efficiently. You control some things, but align yourself with others. You balance, while never forgetting that the reason you’re balancing is to get from where you are to where you [...]

Business Strategy: I Cede the Floor to Jeff and Warren!

By | April 24th, 2018|

I was supposed to be at a convention this week but stayed home to handle a challenge that arose. So, I found myself with a pretty blank calendar. My initial anxiety turned to joy when I spent a good deal of time reading. I finished Jim Comey’s book and am anxious to see how that [...]

Business Strategy: Is a Competitive Advantage Sustainable?

By | April 16th, 2018|

If your strategy doesn’t identify what specific markets you compete in and why people will buy from you versus your competition, then your strategy is bad. You’re going to need to rely on luck. In fact, if you’re in a high-margin business, you may not know it but you’re being hunted. High-margin businesses naturally attract [...]

Leadership: A Message From the Generals

By | April 2nd, 2018|

Determined to shrink the book pile on my credenza, I grabbed “The Generals: American Military Command from World War II to Today.” Someone recommended it to me several years ago, and I’ve moved it around my office several times since then (always in good company of other “must read” books). I no longer read entire [...]

Strategy Isn’t Problem Solving!

By | February 5th, 2018|

I received a notice from a well-known university for a strategy workshop to “master strategy consulting skills,” which they say is the skill of “structured problem solving.” Using templates and tools, they’ll teach you how to develop recommendations for clients. Problem solving isn’t strategy, and telling people what to do is rarely effective. Does it [...]

Requirements For Business Reinvention: Guts, Capital and Support

By | January 15th, 2018|

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal highlighted the different yet intertwined paths of Xerox and Fujifilm. Xerox, once one of the world’s most admired companies, now has a market value that is less than 20% of what it used to be. As a former executive at Kinko’s, I used to rub elbows with [...]