Business StrategyExamples: WeWork Doesn’t Work

By | March 11th, 2019|

In an apparent example of breathing his own exhaust, the founder of WeWork — now rebranded We Companies (We) — recently invested in another company tied to his hobby, surfing. When your current business model loses a dollar for each dollar it earns in revenue, wouldn’t you want to fix that first? We is private, [...]

Business Strategy: What Can We Learn From Xi?

By | March 4th, 2019|

“Xi does feel a sense of crisis… From Xi’s perspective, he believes his policies are correct, but the problem is they aren’t being implemented properly.” —Wall Street Journal talking about China’s paramount leader If only those fools would implement my policies everything would be fine! Perhaps I should “disappear” a few more! When people refer [...]

Effective Leadership Skills: Unlearn the Need To Be Liked

By | February 26th, 2019|

If there is one thing that I have seen handcuff more executives than anything else, it is the need to be liked (NTBL).  It’s nice to be liked. Most of us want friends and family who like us so that we can share our time together, be comfortable, able to let our hair down. That [...]

Effective Leadership: Is Failure An Option?

By | February 18th, 2019|

"I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work." —Thomas Edison I just spoke with a mid-level guy in a firm who is in charge of hedging. Let’s pretend he’s in the airline business (he’s not) and that his job is to protect the firm against increases in jet fuel prices. [...]

CEO Leadership Traits: Healthy Culture With a Weak CEO?

By | February 11th, 2019|

Not for long. Once a company decides where it’s going and why customers will buy from it versus its competition (vision and strategy), the next big question is how to align a strong team in pursuit of those objectives. For eons, managers and HR departments have focused on creating dream teams with star players — [...]

Organizational Effectiveness: Working Faster

By | January 8th, 2019|

Little’s Law says that the amount of work completed is a function of the number of projects and the average time it takes to complete a project. In other words, the line at McDonald’s has 11 people in it and each person takes, on average, 30 seconds to be served, therefore, if you are gal [...]

Effective Leadership Skills: Outsmarting Your Board

By | October 28th, 2018|

The strange dance between CEOs and their governing body (in my for-profit world, typically a board of directors) is interesting. Not quite swing, not quite polka — there’s often confusion about who’s leading, causing bruised toes.  Over my many years of being on boards, working for boards as a CEO, coaching CEOs and working with [...]

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 Executive Coaching?

By | August 20th, 2018|

Executive coaching is about setting objectives, questioning, listening, prodding, a little bit of ass kicking, rewarding and supporting. Any other questions? OK, for those who want more detail, let’s explore this for a minute. You can’t throw a rock in a crowd without hitting a few executive coaches. Some are wise old business veterans, and [...]

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. [...]