When I was a manager and struggling with delegating tasks the question “What’s the worst that can happen?” became my mantra. If the worst that could happen didn’t include the end of the world, anyone being killed or maimed, or me losing my job I would usually go ahead and delegate the task. (By the way, most tasks pass this test.)
When I started my business, I let this question slide. After all, it was just me. I didn’t have any employees to trigger the question. Over time, however, I became aware of the fact that this question is also quite useful for small business owners.Read more
Have you ever had that moment when you suddenly had a core belief proven to be accurate? Or perhaps found proof that it’s not only accurate but also more important than you realized?
I had one of those moments. While reading Corporate Lifecycles by Ichak Adizes, I had my belief that small businesses are different from larger organizations both confirmed and explained. I don’t want to bore you with all the geeky details (if you don’t think this is geeky I suggest you read the book or ask me more about it when you see me) so I will summarize it simply by stating:Read more
I was once trapped in a room listening to a speaker talk about goal setting. You know the feeling, it’s a topic you’ve heard many times before and you are confident that there is nothing new you can learn. The best you can do is hope for an interesting presenter and sit in the back so you can check your email. Therefore, I was surprised when I experienced a big Aha! moment in the middle of the presentation.Read more
During a follow up call with Marie, a Strategic Plan-tingWorkshop attendee, she mentioned that she was still working on her strategic priority for the quarter: updating her website. She was excited that she was making progress, but mentioned it wasn’t going as fast as she had indicated it should when she created her action plan for the task.
I smiled in response to her remarks for two reasons.Read more
I remember the day clearly. It was February 2011 and I had just finished adding a Google campaign that had 2 sub-campaigns and 4 different Google ads. Why do I remember it so clearly? Because it took only 35 minutes which is nothing short of a miracle. The last time I had set up a Google campaign it took me more than 3 hours to place just 2 ads.
“Strategy is not planning – it is the making of an integrated set of choices that collectively position the firm in its industry so as to create sustainable advantage relative to competition and deliver superior financial returns.” Roger Martin, Dean of Rotman School of Management at University of Toronto
Whew – what a mouth full. If you get this, I mean really get it down to your soul, then feel free to move on to another of our blog posts or click on the link and read Roger Martin’s full blog on the Harvard Business Review blogsite. If you have no idea what this means or are not sure, then keep reading because this is an important statement for small business owners to both understand and embody.Read more
Consultants, myself included, tend to ask potential clients “What’s not going well? Where are you feeling the pain?” We do this to help the potential client see their need for our services because we understand that a person is more likely to spend money to fix something that is broken and causing pain.
Today, I challenge you to answer a different question.Read more
Jane (not her real name), Executive Director of a small family therapy center, needed to hire psychiatrists in order for the center to become licensed. But, the psychiatrists kept quitting – sometimes faster than she could hire them.
In her words: “This is hopeless. We’ll never be able to keep psychiatrists on staff!”Read more
Can you remember a time that you were extraordinarily productive and moved quickly towards your goals? How about a time when you had trouble accomplishing even daily tasks and long-term goals lay stagnant awaiting your attention?
What was it that differentiated these two times?Read more
According to Malcolm Gladwell, there are two different types of risk: Operational and Social.
The 2007 sub-prime mortgage debacle is a good example of operational risk-taking. Banks strayed from their core competencies – an operational risk. And they went for the big return without respecting the possible consequences – another operational risk. According to Malcolm Gladwell, large companies are more likely to experience operational risk-taking.Read more