Category Archives: Business Acumen

Optimize the Overall Business

As business leaders, we strive to have each of our areas improve its efficiency and effectiveness. Accounting, Sales, Marketing, Engineering, Operations, Project Management, Customer Service – each of these parts of the business needs to be as effective as possible.  Likewise, … Continue reading

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Think Twice and Do Once

Every Do-It-Yourselfer knows the carpenter’s advice: Measure twice cut once.  In successful businesses, a similar recommendation holds true: Think twice and do once. To so many of us, immediate action appears to be essential: We are just doing it! We … Continue reading

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Remind…Don’t Teach

A fundamental task of a leader is to train and develop his or her team. This often involves coaching and teaching the team on the strategic, operational and leadership skills that are required for them to reach the next level. … Continue reading

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8 Ways To Be As Smart As We Can Be

To do our best in business, we need to be as smart as we can be. Alas, I do not have any tremendous insight or magic elixir to make myself or anyone else be smarter.  Sorry. What I do have … Continue reading

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Never Split the Difference – Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It

Following up on my blog from August 2017, Negotiation – An Overview, I summarize the excellent book, Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It, from former FBI negotiator, Chris Voss. I highly recommend that you read … Continue reading

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5 Steps to Creating a Unique Strategic Vision

Today, companies struggle to consistently increase sales and profits faster than the overall market. In too many cases, these companies lack a unique strategic vision that would differentiate the company and its products and services from the competition. Instead, their … Continue reading

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Operations – The Five Daily Fundamentals

Most companies still provide a tangible product or service. This means that companies need to have operations employing people to produce the product, deliver the product, or provide the service. These operations are essential to great customer service and building … Continue reading

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What Does a Buyer Want?

I recently interviewed a professional buyer at a customer company who was looking to move into a sales role for our company. I asked how she would use her current experience as a buyer to be a better salesperson. Her … Continue reading

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Don’t Upsell…Right Sell

“Would you like to supersize your order?” As I wrote previously (“Do You Want Fries With That?” – An Opportunity for Profitable Growth), upselling can bring additional value to our customers, create additional sales and profits, and cement our relationships … Continue reading

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Lead With Questions

As leaders, we often have an employee come to us with an issue or problem. As “make it happen” managers, we then focus on getting the problem solved and getting it done as quickly as possible. Thus, we take charge, … Continue reading

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6 Steps to a Successful Team Project

Today, more than ever, employees need to be able to work in teams as businesses try to solve every more difficult tasks. Alas, many team projects start off with high hopes and ambitious targets only to end up with diminished … Continue reading

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Get to the Front Lines

Undercover Boss has become a hit TV series by showing big corporate bosses going undercover and discovering the reality of the work lives of their employees. As leaders, we do not need to go undercover; we just need to get … Continue reading

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Go Where the Growth Is

In today’s low growth world, B2B companies need to be looking for those market segments and niches that are growing faster than the overall economy. ‘Going where the growth is’ offers our companies the promise of increasing sales to growing … Continue reading

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Business Success by the Numbers

What numbers lead to business success? 0 – As in 0 /0 (zero injuries and zero accidents). In any company, the safety of employees and customers each and every day should be of highest concern.   1 – As in … Continue reading

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An Open Letter From Your B2B Customer

Dear Mr. or Ms. Sales Manager, I am writing to remind you that I need you. You and your salespeople provide products and services that I need to help me succeed in my business. Unfortunately, many of your salespeople do … Continue reading

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Be Easy to Do Business With

In a previous blog, Lessons from a Customer, I related my experience in dealing with 106 companies while I moved from Arizona to California. My conclusion was that most companies provide inadequate customer service and make it too difficult to … Continue reading

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Do We Spend Enough Time Selling? – The Cost of Chaos

We have and need salespeople in order to sell, that is, in order to move deals forward. But, how much time do our salespeople really spend selling each week? Rick McPartlin, the CEO of The Revenue Game (and someone with … Continue reading

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Determining the ROI of Product Development

This is a guest blog by K. Armen Miamidian, a time-tested CFO for successful mid-market companies. What’s Pumping Your Profits: An Internal Look at the ROI of Product Development? When are expenses not just costs? Why do risky assumptions become … Continue reading

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Three Paradoxes of Leading Multiple Business Units

As your company expands or as you progress up the ranks in your company, you will likely move from having P&L (profit and loss) responsibility for one business unit to having P&L responsibility for several different business units (usually located … Continue reading

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We Need Less Leadership!

In her thought-provoking book, The End of Leadership, Barbara Kellerman writes: One of the problems plaguing the leadership industry is its fixation on developing good leaders, while ignoring completely the problem of stopping or at least slowing bad leaders. Stopping … Continue reading

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