Tag Archives: Management

What Is the Value of Experience as an Entrepreneur?

Not too long ago, I was asked to participate on a panel to speak about entrepreneurialism and evaluate business proposals prepared by college students enrolled in the Bachelors of Innovation program at a local college. The request got me thinking – What could I, a person with no formal academic education, offer to a college student who has attended nearly [...]

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The Anatomy of a Business Owner

Inside every small business are 3 personas, each competing for time as the leader. The three personas are the technical (workers), president (inwardly-focused), and chief executive officer (outwardly focused). To succeed, a business must possess all three personas. The technical persona is about the present and doing the work. The president persona uses the past to find trends and improve execution. [...]

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Are Your Employees Free-Agents?

My 89-year-old mother lives in an independent living facility that has several businesses connected to them. They have a bank, a maid service, and even a beauty parlor as my mom calls it. During a recent visit, my mom was telling me about how her hairdresser was let go because she was in such high demand that the other hairdressers [...]

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Are Large Corporations Past Their Prime?

Corporations came into being to allow multiple investors to invest a portion of their capital across several risky, but potentially highly profitable endeavors.  When sailing ships were constructed to carry on world trading, it was a highly lucrative proposition but was fraught with risk from storms that sunk many vessels. If the ship returned, the investors were often rewarded handsomely. [...]

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Who Is Stronger, The Board of Directors or CEO?

In most businesses that employ a Board of Directors, the board consists of key employees of the company like the CEO, presidents, and vice presidents as well as key investors. Contrary to conventional wisdom, the smaller the board the stronger it is. When you have a big board, the power of the CEO increases since the board is often ineffective has [...]

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Stage 4: The Guardians of Business

When a business advances from stage 3 to stage 4, the business transformation is nearly complete. During stage 4, company decay can often begin to set in as the administration of the business is placed in the hands of a “guardian.” The primary motives of the business guardian are comfort and security. Unity towards a purpose is absent and replaced with self-interest. [...]

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Stage 3: The Athletes and Performers of Business

For a business to advance from stage 2 to stage 3, the business undergoes a substantial shift from being on the offensive and growth-oriented to becoming more defensive and focused on process improvement through business segmentation. The business segmentation associated with stage 3 sets up the business for shared leadership and management by creating multiple divisions. In stage 3, true leadership [...]

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Stage 2: The Generals of Business

For a business to advance from stage 1 to stage 2, the business requires that the role of the Oracle be supported or replaced by a business development person. I refer to this new leader as the “General.” In our McDonald's example from a previous post, it was a guy by the name of Ray Kroc. Ray Kroc bought the [...]

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Stage 1: The Oracles of Business

Stage 1 encompasses the pre-start-up and early start-up period of a business. A company is started by a founder who is essentially the idea person behind the business. I refer to this person as the “oracle.” In classical antiquity, an Oracle is a person who can see and predict the future. The Oracle of a business is the charismatic and often [...]

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