Dave Gardner’s “Thank God It’s Monday” 26DEC11

December 26, 2011

“Thank God It’s Monday” is to help companies thrive!

This week’s focus: information technology

Earlier this year, I had the pleasure of hearing Vivek Kundra, the very first Chief Information Officer of the United States government, speak at Dell World 2011.

Kundra had a thought-provoking story to share of the need for innovative thinking and reinvention across the the U.S. government in terms of I.T. systems and solutions. [Please read this fascinating story in my Forbes.com guest blog post here.]

Michelle Bailey, Vice President at IDC, an industry analyst firm, offers “Kundra is a great example of how the future CIO needs to set a strategy and change the people, not just the technology.”

Vivek Kundra asked the tough questions that needed to be asked and took action. What tough questions are you asking to help you and your company thrive?

Thought for the week:

“Vision without execution is daydreaming.” – Bill Gates

What do you think? I welcome your blog comments!

___

Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting

http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2011 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

Note:  To receive an email version of “Thank God It’s Monday” to start your week, please subscribe here.  I would very much appreciate your suggesting to others that they subscribe.

Privacy Statement:  Our subscriber lists are never rented, sold, or loaned to any other parties for any reason.

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Dave Gardner’s “Thank God It’s Monday” 19DEC11

December 19, 2011

“Thank God It’s Monday” is to help companies thrive!

This week’s focus: mergers and acquisitions

Up to 80% of acquisitions fail to deliver on expectations. That’s staggering.

For the past year, I’ve been watching Dell acquiring and integrating companies in a far superior manner to what I observe contrasted with companies like HP, Cisco, Yahoo, Microsoft, Google, etc.

I interviewed a number of Dell executives to learn about the “secret sauce” that makes Dell’s acquisition process so successful and exciting.

If you’re an entrepreneur (or know an entrepreneur) and you are thinking that your “big payday” will come as a result of being acquired, grab your favorite beverage, find a quiet place and read the following Fast Company Expert Blog post: “If I Sell You My Company, Will You Respect Me in the Morning?

The best practices in this article will help you and your company thrive.

Thought for the week:

Happy Holidays to all who allow me share my insights and provide value each week via “Thank God It’s Monday.  – Dave Gardner

What do you think? I welcome your blog comments!

___

Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting

http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2011 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

Note:  To receive an email version of “Thank God It’s Monday” to start your week, please subscribe here.  I would very much appreciate your suggesting to others that they subscribe.

Privacy Statement:  Our subscriber lists are never rented, sold, or loaned to any other parties for any reason.


Dave Gardner’s “Thank God It’s Monday” 12DEC11

December 12, 2011

“Thank God It’s Monday” is to help companies thrive!

This week’s focus: dress for success

Gentlemen: If you are going to speak at a technology conference, please consider the following so people can focus on your message and not be praying the fashion police arrive to escort you off stage:

    • Well-worn blue jeans that you’d wear to clean out the garage, mow the lawn or watch TV in the privacy of your own home look dreadful on the 15 foot x 15 foot high-definition TV screens at the front of the meeting room. Dress jeans are available for purchase that can be tailored to look great.
    • A shirt that looks like it was just fished out of a laundry hamper doesn’t work.
    • Ill-fitting clothes create a distraction. Wearing a sports coat that was stylish and fit you well 20 years ago doesn’t work, particularly if you’re 30 pounds heavier. Think of what you’d look like if you were wearing a child’s cowboy hat.
    • Not every suit jacket or sports coat color or fabric looks good with jeans. Look in the mirror to determine what you look like. If you are unsure, ask for help.
    • We can see your shoes and socks when you’re seated on stage. They should not distract from your overall appearance. Black socks with bright red shiny dots? Green and yellow argyle socks? Saddle shoes? Really?
    • If you’re 50 years old, dressing like you’re 20 won’t fool anyone. You’re still 50.  This doesn’t work any better for men than women.

Dressing like you just fell out of bed isn’t cool. It’s an assault on our senses. It just might create a missed opportunity for your audience to hear the message that could help your company thrive.

Thought for the week:

“The brave do not live forever–but the cautious do not live at all!”  – Sir Richard Branson


What do you think? I welcome your blog comments!

___

Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting

http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2011 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

Note:  To receive an email version of “Thank God It’s Monday” to start your week, please subscribe here.  I would very much appreciate your suggesting to others that they subscribe.

Privacy Statement:  Our subscriber lists are never rented, sold, or loaned to any other parties for any reason.


Xavier and University of Cincinnati Basketball Brawl

December 11, 2011

As I stood in line waiting to order lunch at one of my favorite burger emporiums yesterday, I witnessed one of the most horrifying intercollegiate fights I’ve ever witnessed between University of Cincinnati (UC) and Xavier University’s men’s basketball teams as they played in a cross-town rivalry. The disturbing images are seared in my mind. I’ve not seen anything like it and hope to never again.

I’ll never forget the rage on the face of one UC player as he fought to breakaway from those holding him back from getting further involved in the fracas. If he had broken loose from the people holding him back, someone would be dead. He wasn’t looking to help break up the fight—he wanted a piece of anybody on the opposing team he could get his hands on. It was hard to believe that I was watching teams from two prestigious universities.

As is the case with many a cross-town rivalry, there was “normal” trash-talking back and forth prior to the game and, apparently, quite a bit during the game. The UC coach encouraged the officials to stop it, call technical fouls if they needed to, but the officials did nothing. This is a serious officiating breakdown and contributed mightily to this brawl.

I’m sure television replays of the brawl have been played hundreds of times on TV. But, that’s not important. I want to focus on what the UC coach, Mick Chronin, said about this after the game:

  • He pointed out he had confiscated the jerseys of everyone of his team and will make a determination about who will be allowed to continue to play for UC. He’s not going to wait for the NCAA or his conference to tell him what to do—he’s going to “do the right thing” on his own. Fantastic!
  • He said the UC players are on full scholarships for the purpose of getting an education. In exchange for the opportunity to get their education, they have the opportunity to represent the university on the basketball team. If they represent UC poorly, they won’t be playing ball on his team. Right on, Coach!
  • He says few will ever see a dime for playing basketball anywhere. That is why they need to get their education.
  • He said he hoped the UC athletic director and president would allow him to continue to coach the team. [Me, too! Mick is a class act!]
  • He pointed out that, as an athlete, you need to know how to lose as well as how to win. Excellent point. While Xavier blew out UC in the game, Xavier needs to take a look at how they win.

Xavier, a Jesuit university, has an obligation to make the same determinations that Coach Chronin will for his team. They are not blameless in this ugly brawl. The post-game press conference by Xavier suggests that a couple of players need to be disciplined severely if not thrown off the team entirely. Here’s what one Xavier player said:

“That’s what you’re going to see from Xavier and Cincinnati,” Holloway said. “We got disrespected a little bit before the game, guys calling us out. We’re a tougher team. We’re grown men over here. We’ve got a whole bunch of gangsters in the locker room – not thugs, but tough guys on the court. And we went out there and zipped them up at the end of the game.”

Well, Mr. Holloway, you get no respect from me. You didn’t gain my respect; you threw away any chance for it. “Gangster” and the notion of a Jesuit university are incompatible. You disrespect yourself, your team, your coach and Xavier University with your comments. The thing that really bothers me most is your comments are heartfelt—they come from you believe in your heart. There’s no place for you in intercollegiate sports, not with an attitude like that.

I’m a graduate of Santa Clara University, a Jesuit university. What I saw and heard yesterday is incompatible with the ideals of a Jesuit university. I’m certain Xavier will take bold action in response. But, I’m stunned that Xavier has complicity in this ugly event.

Dave Gardner

© 2011 Dave Gardner

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Dave Gardner’s “Thank God It’s Monday” 05DEC11

December 5, 2011

“Thank God It’s Monday” is to help companies thrive!

This week’s focus: information technology

John le Carré offered, “A desk is a dangerous place from which to watch the world.”

Often, I.T. professionals are too separated from business process owners and the actual problems the business process owners are attempting to solve using information technology.

If more I.T. professionals would simply go to where the work is–watch and experience it first hand–they would be adding value beyond belief and helping their organizations achieve greater effectiveness.

This is how I.T. and Chief Information Officers can help their organizations thrive.

[Note: Read my entire Forbes.com guest blog post here.]

Thought for the week:

“Expertise is only as good as the actions you take with it. What you do with it is up to you.” – Jay Abraham

What do you think? I welcome your blog comments!

___

Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting

http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2011 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

Note:  To receive an email version of “Thank God It’s Monday” to start your week, please subscribe here.  I would very much appreciate your suggesting to others that they subscribe.

Privacy Statement:  Our subscriber lists are never rented, sold, or loaned to any other parties for any reason.