Death of a Business: The Problem with Choosing the Wrong Strategy

“The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do.” Michael Porter When I was a kid in the 1970s there was only one place to go for good fast-food fish and chips. And you didn’t have to go far to find it. Arthur Treacher's Fish & Chips had more than 820 restaurants across the... Continue Reading →

12 Rules for Success that Turned a Small Family Business into a Global Brand

Bill Marriott, former CEO of Marriott International, learned business and leadership by observing his father, J. Willard Marriott. The elder Marriott was one of the most successful startup founders in U.S. history. He turned a small family root beer shop into a chain of hotels in the 1950s. Bill Marriott joined the young company in... Continue Reading →

The Truth about Authenticity

  While fake news is often hard to spot, phony advertising, inauthentic companies, and fake people aren’t. I was listening to my favorite podcast the other day and I heard it. I wasn’t listening for it, but it was obvious. Commercials on podcasts usually involve the host telling you how great a product or service... Continue Reading →

Belichick on Bringing your Team Back to Earth

Celebrating success and honoring achievement is an important aspect of leadership but, if you want to be successful over the long run, you can't spend too much time resting on your laurels. Bill Belichick, arguably the best football coach in NFL history, knows this first hand. The day after his team celebrated their latest Super... Continue Reading →

The Bleeding Edge: When Innovation Fails

In 2002, in the early days of Bluetooth, I toured the Bosch white goods factory in Germany. They presented to us their concept of the washing machine of the future which had Bluetooth connectivity. The idea was that your washing machine could communicate with your cell phone and you could control its activities. I remember... Continue Reading →

Why Entrepreneurs Love when Big Companies Don’t Care

The world was shocked to see a viral video of a paying customer being dragged from a United Airlines flight. It was unthinkable to believe a big company could treat a customer that way. You know who wasn’t surprised? Business travelers. Those of us who travel frequently have been dealing with delayed flights, shrinking seats,... Continue Reading →

3 Lessons in Customer Service from a Captain Who Cared

Customers don’t expect you to be perfect. They do expect you to fix things when they go wrong. ~ Donald Porter If you’re looking for great examples of customer service, don’t travel by air. Delayed flights, lost luggage, crowded airports, long lines and disinterested employees seem to be the norm across the country. There appears to be... Continue Reading →

5 Ways Leadership can Transform a Conflicted Workplace

When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you. ~ African proverb If you’ve spent any time in the corporate world, you have dealt with office politics and departmental conflict. Over the past 20 years, I think I have seen every type of workplace culture, from teams that were aligned, externally-focused, and... Continue Reading →

10 Step Guide to Lead your Team into the New Year

If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll wind up somewhere else. – Yogi Berra It’s a new year and a fresh start for you and your team. It’s also one of the most important times for you as a leader. While it’s fun reminiscing about 2014, it’s critical that you quickly align your leadership... Continue Reading →

Take Care of your Employees

I met with the CEO of one of my large customers last year and he said something I will never forget.  When describing his business philosophy, he told me it was very simple, "We take care of our employees and our customers and the rest works itself out." How refreshing!

3 Crazy Business Lessons from B’s Barbecue

  “If I was on death row their BBQ plate would be my final meal.” ~ John Dillanger, B’s Barbecue review on Google + Located in Greenville, NC, in an old country store that almost looks abandoned, lies one of the greatest Eastern-style barbecue joints in North Carolina. How do I know? Partly because it has been featured... Continue Reading →

Don’t Underestimate the Emotional Power of your Brand

Three years ago, I had a sales experience that was a real wake up call. After providing a compelling argument to a prospective customer about our company’s latest product, showing how it was clearly superior to the competitor’s offering in every way, our team was flatly shut down by the client. He told us that,... Continue Reading →

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