Seven key areas to focus on to increase profitability

Getting more of your ideal customers is key

Seven key areas to focus on to increase profitabilityJerry reached out to us because he wanted to get out of his business. The business, he said, was “too stressful,” and he “was tired of struggling.” During our discussions with Jerry, we discovered that while the business was doing several million dollars in sales, it was only marginally profitable. Jerry had to work extra…

Playing the game of business to win

Running a business is much like coaching a team

Playing the game of business to winAl Erricson was my basketball coach in 1982 – he’s learned a lot about coaching since then. If only Al knew then what he knows now, we might have won a game or two. What Al knows, and every business owner and manager should know, is that being successful is not all about skills. It…

Five things you should leave your successor

... if you want them to succeed

Five things you should leave your successorThe great resignation is being talked about by people around the world. Not only are baby boomers retiring, but many people who have suffered from pandemic burnout are also changing their positions, selling their businesses and moving on to follow their passions. However, having invested time and energy into our positions, organizations and companies, we…

Strategies for successfully reopening after COVID-19

We’ve learned a great deal. Now we can start to put our new knowledge to use

Strategies for successfully reopening after COVID-19Thoughtful executives will prioritize planning for fully reopening their organizations now that the COVID-19 pandemic is subsiding. The new normal won’t be the old normal. The differences go well beyond customer and staff expectations for personal safety in places of business. Successful organizations in the post-COVID-19 world will proactively think through what: continuing work will…

How to deal with insubordination among your staff

Do nothing? Fire the staff member? Throw in the towel and sell the business?

How to deal with insubordination among your staffGeorge has a small manufacturing plant he bought six months ago because it had good revenue and came with some real estate. However, he didn’t know much, if anything, about the industry. The previous owners kept everything in their heads and had very little documentation. George quickly realized that customer orders were being lost, there…

Startup 101: Building and expanding your startup team

Building your team the right way is essential for your company's long-term success

Startup 101: Building and expanding your startup teamThe three most common reasons startups fail are having the wrong product, running out of capital and having the wrong team. Today, I will focus on building your startup team. How do you attract, build, and expand your team as a startup? How do you keep them engaged, creative, and focused on tasks? How do…

How savvy negotiators read body language

Here are my top four strategies

How savvy negotiators read body languageBecause I’ve trained them to do so, I know that many negotiators have learned how to read body language and use the resulting insights to their advantage. But I also know that other negotiators miss valuable opportunities simply because they don’t pay attention. They get so wrapped up in what’s being said or in the…

Are you affected by business traumatic stress disorder?

Many owners are traumatized by insistent bankers, creditors, suppliers and landlords

Are you affected by business traumatic stress disorder?Jim was visibly upset when he sat down for our coaching session. He told me that, the previous day, one of his staff had yelled at him during a meeting with his team members. He, too, lost his cool when the staff member “freaked out at him,” but he eventually walked away. This wasn’t the…

Startup 101: I’ve been funded… what now?

The journey for your startup is just beginning

Startup 101: I’ve been funded… what now?Yipee! Your startup has been funded. You suddenly have sufficient capital to put in motion the plans your pitch deck promised your new investors. Term sheets negotiated, first wired funds received, shares issued. So, now what? The world of startups is filled with cautionary tales of startups which can’t seem to navigate the new world…

What is the purpose of your mission statement?

Is yours a yawner? Or is it snappy – with empty words?

What is the purpose of your mission statement?Raise your hand if your organization has a mission statement. When I do that survey during leadership/culture presentations, almost every hand goes up. Mission statements are as common as a logo, website, or budget. Everybody has one. BUT...does it... Define the soul of your organization? Energize and engage? Align with leaders’ and employees’ personal purpose?…