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Home Archive for category "Best Practices"

“Compensation is an equity issue. People want to know that they are being compensated fairly . . . “

The Overture Group is an executive search firm with an additional specialty in compensation consulting.  We recently heard a presentation by Bob Lindeman and Mark Reilly, both managing directors of that firm.  They reminded us that compensation is (or should be) a strategic issue, not a simple, tactical, what-are-we-gonna-pay-this-person issue.  And our strategy should consider

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“Prioritizing causes us to do things that are, at the least, uncomfortable and sometimes downright painful.”

Setting priorities.  That’s something many entrepreneurs struggle with.  In fact, entrepreneurs are sometimes likened to crows who get distracted by every new shiny thing that comes along.  Unfortunately, this creates confusion as employees try to keep up with ever-shifting priorities.  In other cases, instead of setting priorities vertically with the most important at the top

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“A key to achieving success is to assemble a strong and stable management team.”

Almost everything that gets done in business gets done by teams.  Even the road warrior sales person who is out there, far from the office and hunting his next prey, needs the support of a sales team.  Keynote speaker and best-selling business author, Patrick Lencioni, talks extensively about teams in his book, “The Ideal Team

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“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” ~ Peter Drucker

We have used this space to talk about leadership many times in the past, and no doubt, will continue to talk about it in the future.  It is, after all, a critically important topic.  If you go to the business section of a bookstore or a library, you’ll find the shelves are packed with books

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“I found success becomes a catalyst for failure because it leads to what Jim Collins called the ‘undisciplined pursuit of more.’ “

Greg McKeown is a leadership and business consultant, public speaker, and author.  His most recent book is, “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less.”  In that book, he puts forward his very unusual belief that success in business can be its own worst enemy.  In his view, success doesn’t necessarily beget more success.  In fact, an initial success

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Don’t produce a budget. Map out a Profit Plan. (Part II)

We have been talking about an annual planning process.  It began two postings ago when we talked about laying out three to five strategic initiatives aimed at moving the company forward.  Then with our last posting, we began a 2-part discussion on what some call a “budget,” but what we prefer to call a “profit

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Don’t produce a budget. Map out a Profit Plan. (Part 1)

In our last posting, we talked about building an annual plan around three to five strategic initiatives.  We also suggested that you open up your planning process to as many of your employees as possible . . . don’t restrict it to only you and your top managers.  Make your planning process as inclusive as

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“The nicest thing about not planning is that failure always comes as a complete surprise and is not preceded by a period of worry and desperation.”

About this time every year . . . somewhere around the beginning of the 4th quarter . . . is a good time to begin planning for next year.  Unfortunately, planning is not an activity that most small businesses engage in . . . at least, not in any meaningful way.  The owner may have

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Be the gatekeeper of your company’s culture.

During the Great Recession, hiring was not much of a problem because most companies weren’t doing any of it.  Some imposed a hiring freeze, others laid people off.  Now we have the opposite problem: companies want to hire but can’t find the people they want.  Best-selling business author Jim Collins uses the analogy of a

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“No person can get very far in this life on a 40-hour week.”

Working more hours does not make us more productive.  That seems counter-intuitive, but it’s true.  This was demonstrated by many studies conducted from the early 1900s to the 1950s.  In fact, Henry Ford, who was an early adopter of working fewer hours, reduced the work day in his plants from 10 hours to eight, and

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