Category Archives: Improve / Turnaround

10 Fundamentals of Continuous Improvement

When continuous improvement is a fundamental part of our company culture, our business gets better every day and will soon out-run and out-perform the competition.  Over 100 years ago, Henry Ford wrote: The competitor to be feared is the one … Continue reading

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Crisis Leadership

As I write this blog, we are in the midst of the Covid-19 Pandemic.  Each day brings changes to how and where we can conduct business; we have little visibility into what the next month, three months, or six months … Continue reading

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To Improve Our Meetings, We Need to Do Our Homework

The consultant, Stan Sipes, once commented: “The most common weakness I see in organizations is the lack of work that is done in a meeting.”  Today, more than ever, so little work is done in meetings because no one has … Continue reading

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Survival of the Fittest and Leadership Flexibility

Hawaiians and other Polynesians are the descendants of peoples who traveled by boat from East Asia to settle their islands.  Those most likely to survive the long and arduous journey were those with “thrifty genes”.  They were those ancestors who … Continue reading

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Four Ways To Do Training Right

In corporate America, approximately $100 billion is spent each year on training.  Yet, many studies show that training is only 10% – 15% effective.  As Harvard Business School Professor Michael Beer writes, this is… the great training robbery Yet, training … Continue reading

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Communicate in One Page

Idea Summary To run our businesses more effectively, most documents and reports in our businesses (including summaries, plans, reviews, and analysis) should be kept to one page.   Perspective Businesses are awash in information, specifically reports, analysis, weekly updates or … Continue reading

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Experiment… A Little

To move our companies forward, we need to experiment.  We need to try out new products, new sales/ marketing strategies, new processes, and new leadership styles.  We cannot be certain if all of these will work.  But, to not experiment … Continue reading

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Avoiding Micromanagement

Guilty as charged!!  I confess that I do, at times, micromanage. However, soon after slipping into micromanagement, I become aware (yet again) that micromanagement is truly just mis-management.  It would have been far better for me to avoid the trap … Continue reading

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Checklists

Several years ago, a medical surgeon, Atul Gawande, wrote a best-selling book, The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right, that discusses the advantages of using checklists in all types of activities from surgery to disaster recovery to business. As … Continue reading

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Leading When Overwhelmed

It happens to all of us. A direct report either gets promoted, quits or gets fired, and we have to manage his or her direct reports in addition to all of our other duties. We are assigned to a special … 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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Communicate Upward

As managers, we need to encourage each of our employees to keep us informed about what is really going on in our companies, both the good and the bad.  We need to be kept in the loop about the larger … Continue reading

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Continuous Improvement and Lean

Driving continuous improvement throughout our organizations is fundamental to short and long-term business success. Continuous improvement requires daily improvement in everything that we (and our teams) do…even when we are too busy! Are we better today than we were yesterday? … 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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The Five Whys of Follow-Up

When General Dwight D. Eisenhower was first elected President in 1952, then President Harry S. Truman remarked: He’ll sit here, and he’ll say, Do this! Do that! And nothing will happen.  Poor Ike [nickname for Eisenhower].  It won’t be a … Continue reading

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10 Ways to Really (and Truly) Be Organized

With all the meetings, E-Mails, objectives and communications in a typical company, staying organized is a never-ending task. Yet, there are a few fundamentals to follow to ensure that you stay organized and focused on the most important tasks each … Continue reading

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2 Second Lean: How to Make Your People and Your Business Better Every Day

I summarize some of the key concepts from the excellent book: 2 Second Lean: How to Grow People and Build a Fun Lean Culture. Written by Paul Akers, 2 Second Lean is a quick and easy ready that will help … 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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We Need to Create Time For Our Teams

Many of us aspire to personally be as productive and effective as possible.  We read articles and blogs (including some of mine – How to Be 10X More Effective…) and take classes to learn how to get more done in … Continue reading

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The Power of Active Follow Up

To make change happen effectively (for our companies and for ourselves) requires daily attention and regular follow up. People don’t get better without follow up.  So let’s get better at following up with our people.  The quote above is from … Continue reading

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