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Posted by on Dec 9, 2009 in Leadership | 0 comments

Choreographing Your Business

Whether you’re an emerging entrepreneur with a small management team or a corporate leader with a much larger staff, you know that the unique talents of your team make up the overall effectiveness of your company. Each person has a talent that makes your company move forward. You, as the entrepreneur, have to give direction to your teams’ talents. And you, as a team member have to work towards that entrepreneurial vision. In many ways, a team dynamic in the office parallels that on the performers stage. While I’m not a huge fan of choreography, this video is quite fascinating and illustrates the team...

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Posted by on Dec 8, 2009 in Leadership | 0 comments

Growing Exponentially

When Facebook opened its doors to the non-.edu audience, the site grew exponentially. They refined and refined to make a great social media space, then opened its doors to the rest of the world. Essentially, it went out of beta. Google does this all the time. It puts limits on accessibility (think invitation, developer preview only) to refine the product — makes it more stable, enhance its features, etc — then launches it to the world. From there, it grows exponentially. Both Facebook and Google exemplify how limiting access during the fine tuning stages can make for a better product when it is unveiled to the broader audience. It’s interesting then, why Pandora recently created a 40-hour listening limit per month. Now that they’ve had years to refine and grow their product and audience, the online music streaming service is turning back the clock. If anything, they are penalizing their strongest advocates. You’d imagine Pandora would try to make their product more accessible — similar to the Google /...

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Posted by on Dec 7, 2009 in Leadership | 0 comments

Investing in the Future

You never know who you’re going to work alongside in say 15 years. Consider this picture of Ronald Regan in 1988 shaking hands with the pre-pubescent Vladimir Putin. Who are you going to cross paths with now that will rise through the ranks to join you someday on the same level: If you’re an established industry leader, investing in young talent is key to injecting new life and ideas into your company. Even more important is finding the right talent to begin with. The strategy is to invest in young talent with drive, motivation. This signals potential to grow and flourish within your company. The secondary attribute your should look for is the right personality. If you do not mesh on your first interview, you might not want to hire them though they are talented and driven. You are as efficient and effective as your ability to communicate and share your ideas. Gut feelings are powerful and while you should not always rely on them, it’s not wise to...

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Posted by on Dec 4, 2009 in Leadership | 0 comments

Working Through the Details

Details make everything seem a bit more real. For instance, it’s much more interesting to say “the woman wore a deep red coat with a lace collar that looked like a delicate hands choking her neck,” than to say, “the woman wore a red coat.” You can imagine the red coat with the lace, can’t you? The video below illustrates my point about detail. Look at the camera and the way the film is shot: Now think about the same video with a steady camera that you typically find in movies. It wouldn’t be the same, would it? Shaking the camera brings you closer to the action — it makes it more real, tangible and chilling. Now think about how you can add detail to your business. Is it describing the pecan sauce in the description of your menu item (think high-end restaurants) or mailing your client a thank you card or even something as simple as saying good job to your employees. You’d be surprised what a little...

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Posted by on Dec 3, 2009 in Leadership | 0 comments

Focus, Focus, Focus

One of Mac’s most famous pioneers, Guy Kawasaki (behind Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak) and Microsoft’s CEO, Steve Ballmer go head-to-head in this video: The point Steve makes about Microsoft innovating on many different fronts is interesting. While Microsoft is developing MP3 players, mobile and desktop OS, gaming systems, browsers and search engines, the question becomes, are they losing focus? Are they concentrating on too many areas and diluting their efforts? Microsoft is suffering on several areas. The software giant lost 28% market share in mobile OS this past year, Internet Explore’s grip in the browser market is slipping to Mozilla and Chrome (down from 75.47% in January to as low as 64.13%) and the Zune is continuing to choke. The company faces even more competition from Google (beyond browsers and search engines) with their new Chrome OS. So while Ballmer says he wants to innovate on many different fronts, should they be instead re-tooling their strategy? One that brings more focus to their efforts? This is a similar...

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Posted by on Nov 28, 2009 in Leadership | 0 comments

How the MS Cure Could Cure your Business

Italian doctors may have found a surprisingly simple cure for MS. Italian doctors have discovered by simply opening the bloodflow to the brain, 73% of patients had no symptoms of MS after two years. Incredible that such a simple solution could have such an incredible impact. The procedure that could prevent the over 2.5 million people suffering from MS, might shed some light on how emerging and established industry leaders can make their businesses more effecient. Often times, managers have a narrow view of the entire operation. For instance, let’s say you oversee a team of managers, who then oversee entry level employees. You rely on those managers to give you a realistic picture of what’s happening on the ground floor. One of your managers appears to be productive, but in reality, they push the people they oversee to work harder so the manager doesn’t have to work as hard. As their superior, you might not see this — as long as they appear productive, you think everything is...

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