How To Be (and not be) Innovative in Business

Your clients like what you offer. And you want to keep it that way.  But then, suddenly, your competitor metaphorically drives by in a shiny new vehicle with apps and features you had never considered. And now you also want that metaphorical new car.  How not to be innovative So you start developing your product…

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Where do you get your best ideas?

A global pandemic is a rare and unusual form of disruption.  Although the whole point is that we never see it coming. Disruption comes from unexpected places, and even hindsight is often short-sighted on learning its lessons. Let’s walk through three lessons from three highly disruptive episodes of recent business generations.  Disruption story one: Uber…

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How to plan to be spontaneous

“The last thing I want for my business is a plan or a process. I need my people to be spontaneous and adaptable”.  This is an actual quote from a business owner who is terrified of turning his employees into automatons.  His fear is valid: at what point is too much instruction removing any capability…

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When will your next competitor arrive?

The way other companies compete with you isn’t always about you.  We have already considered replacement competitors, generic competitors, and budget competitors.  What about your direct competitors? And in particular: the new ones that will show up just around the corner? How difficult is it to start your company? Barriers to entry What does the…

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How to always learn from failure

It is a common trope that failure is a lesson. The question is: are we learning it? In school, we had lesson plans, curricula, lectures, and homework. To truly learn our lessons from failure – or mistakes, or problems, or imperfections – we need a lesson plan.  When you find that something has gone wrong…

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How to communicate with your remote team

Get out of email: we covered that in the last blog post.  And you can’t just pop your head around the corner and ask a quick question since you are all working in different locations.  The question remains: how do you replace these communication methods and still maintain good communication habits? While you can’t simply…

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Four Simple Rules For Successful Remote Teams

How many times have you heard the phrase: Remote working is the new normal. Do you know what the new normal actually is?  The New Normal is knowing that we could have to adapt our work practices very suddenly, at any given moment. The New Normal is the realization that we can’t predict disruption and…

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Success Is Not Final

Starting at a young age, we are led to believe that life is fairly linear.  You go to school, then you specialize your field of study, then you start working, then you get promoted, then you retire and start playing bridge.  At some point, we start to suspect this is not entirely true…  The way…

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The Four Stages of Business Growth

Each business will determine its own priorities, ingredients, and exact steps as it develops and grows. But within those variations, there remain four essential stages that a business leader must recognize and manage.  Much like in Italian cooking. There are many ways to make a tomato sauce, but you will have to use certain base…

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Make Change Easy

I was once talking to a friend who worked in a major investment bank and I mentioned that I had just had a lunch meeting with their Head of Change Management. She thought for a second, and then shook her head and said “we don’t have that position”. (To this day I don’t know why…

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