Finding Eternal Year Over Year Business Growth

March 31, 2014

Fishing Village on Bosphorus River near Istanbul

Note: This posting is based on my weekly “Thank God It’s Monday” that helps you and your company thrive!

This week’s focus: accelerating growth

Just as Ponce de Leon sought an eternal fountain of youth, business leaders have sought a key to year over year success. Let’s try this on for size:

“We all know that ideas are the currency of success these days. To win in your marketplace, it’s mission-critical to out-think, out-innovate, and out-create your competition. The person with the biggest ideas then blended with the best execution will lead the field.” -Robin Sharma, Little Black Book for Stunning Success, Page 25

Sound simple? It’s not. If it were, every person and company would be doing it. This is how you accelerate growth.

Thought for the week:

“Knowledge has to be improved, challenged, and increased constantly, or it vanishes.” – Peter Drucker
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What do you think? I welcome your comments!
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Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2014 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.

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Wildfire & Google–Not A Marriage Made In Heaven

March 24, 2014

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Note: This posting is based on my weekly “Thank God It’s Monday” that helps you and your company thrive!

This week’s focus: mergers and acquisitions

There was a lot of excitement when Wildfire was acquired by Google. The Altimeter Group writes on March 14, 2014:

When Google bought Wildfire for $350M, it took many by surprise. What did Google want with a Social Relationship Management company? Google is in the ad business, not the SRM business. Last year Google announced it was integrating Wildfire’s technology into DoubleClick, and Wildfire dropped off the radar as a social business tool since then. So yesterday’s announcement that Wildfire Social Marketing Suite was being sunsetted was not a shock.

While getting acquired by Google had to feel wonderful at the time, Google acquired it for what Google would consider chump change. And, seeing that Google spent so little, the acquisition cost almost implies “we’ll try it and if things don’t work out so well, oh well.”

I wrote If I Sell You My Company Will You Respect Me In The Morning? In a relatively short time, we learned that Google didn’t respect Wildfire. Is there a lesson here?

Entrepreneurs much look at the bigger strategic fit and not get dazzled by the offering price or the suitor’s name. They must also consider potential downside should the acquiring company suddenly lose interest, e.g., Palm (HP), Pure Digital’s Flip Cameras (Cisco).

Thought for the week:

“An entrepreneur is an innovator, a job creator, a game changer, a business leader, a disruptor, an adventurer.” – Sir Richard Branson

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What do you think? I welcome your comments!
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Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2014 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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Driving Better Execution of Strategy

March 17, 2014

Note: This posting is based on my weekly “Thank God It’s Monday” that helps you and your company thrive!

This week’s focus: strategy versus execution

What’s more important: strategy or execution? They are equally important. Here’s what we know anecdotally:

  • Too many companies have poor execution of their strategy.
  • We seldom hear about companies with great execution and a poor strategy.

Many top executives see their role as setting strategy. Yet, they are too trusting that their strategy will be properly executed by their teams.

The problem stems from not aligning the teams with the strategy and holding people accountable for executing their portion of the strategy. Poor execution of a great strategy leads to disappointment or worse.

The business world is littered with executives who had great strategic intentions but could not drive actual execution. This is an age-old business problem.

Are you interested in accelerating your growth? Call me so we have a discussion about a process and tools that can help you and your company thrive at strategy execution.

Thought for the week:

“The cost of being wrong is less than the cost of doing nothing”  – Seth Godin
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What do you think? I welcome your comments!
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Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2013 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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What Happened to Malaysia Airlines Flight 370?

March 11, 2014

There’s been a lot of speculation in the media about what happened to Malaysia Airlines Flight 370.  I have some ideas based on my passion for flying. [Full disclosure: I am not a pilot.]

A transponder is a device that “squawks” a unique code for each airplane allowing people on the ground to know where the plane is. I called a good friend and colleague, a former U.S. Navy Top Gun fighter pilot.  I wanted to confirm that a transponder can be switched off.  It can also “squawk” an emergency code to advise people the plan has been hijacked.

It’s been said “the plane disappeared from radar.”  This isn’t exactly true.  What is true is the plane stopped squawking it unique identifier telling others on the ground it’s airline, flight number, aircraft type, altitude, speed, departure airport and arrival airport. For example, when I look at www.flightaware.com for an inbound flight into San Jose, I see a flight with the following information transmitted via its transponder:

SWA1188 = Southwest Airlines Flight 1188

B737 = Boeing 737 Aircraft

71  260 where “71” equals the altitude (7100 feet) and 260 equals 260 knots forward speed

KLAX KSJC tells me the flight departed from Los Angeles International and is destined for San Jose, California

3:28 pm is the estimated arrival time

So, what do I think could have happened?

The transponder quit transmitting which suggests it was either destroyed in either a catastrophic explosion or turned off  someone in the cockpit intent on bringing down the plane. With the transponder “off,” people on the ground really have no idea where the plane traveled next.

  • The fact that there has been no debris found in the area where the plane last was identified suggests the possibility of that the plane may have flown away from where it was last identified via its transponder. The searchers simply aren’t looking in the right area.
  • It is possible that one of the cockpit crew wanted to use the plane as a means to commit suicide. If someone was intent on doing that, it would be reasonable to turn off the transponder. And, they might fly in a different direction with the transponder off to make it harder to confirm what actually happened in an attempt to cover up their intent.
  • If an intruder or terrorist hijacked the plane, they, too, would want the transponder turned off so the plane could not be tracked.
  • If there was a catastophic explosion, that, too, could disable the transponder.

I’m not hearing the media discussing these scenarios.

I pray for all who have died and all the families and friends of those who perished and are struggling with their loss.

What do you think?

Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2014 Dave Gardner

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No Ordinary Business

March 10, 2014

Note: This posting is based on my weekly “Thank God It’s Monday” that helps you and your company thrive!

This week’s focus: no ordinary business

As I headed to a Dell media event in San Francisco, I stumbled across a furniture store:

H.D. Buttercup
This is no ordinary furniture store

I love the tag line. It’s got attitude. It beckons one to, “Come in and find out why we are no ordinary furniture store.”

I entered to find out what makes the store not ordinary. I found a very eclectic collection of art, tables, furniture, chairs, couches, end tables, etc. With the exception of the price tags, it was more like a gallery than a store. It was fun.

If you are going to be in any business, why would you want to be ordinary? Why would you want to be differentiated only by price, location, variety, etc. How exciting is that?

I don’t know about you, but, I prefer things that aren’t ordinary. Ordinary is pretty boring. I don’t crave an ordinary bank, airline, hotel, car rental agency, doctor, hotel chain, etc. I don’t offer what you can get from an ordinary consulting firm.

If your business is ordinary, it’s time to make it stand out. If there are functions within your business that are ordinary or not up to par, it’s time to attend to those gaps. How else can you expect to accelerate growth?

Thought for the week:

“If you’re not solving a problem in a new or interesting way, then what’s the point of your product or service?” – Sean D’Souza, The Brain Audit 
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What do you think? I welcome your comments!
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Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2014 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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What Is Your Legacy Going to Be?

March 3, 2014

Note: This posting is based on my weekly “Thank God It’s Monday” that helps you and your company thrive!

This week’s focus: your legacy

Barack Obama’s legacy will likely be about giving millions of Americans access to health care. This, of course, is occurring in the face of strong opposition.

California Governor Jerry Brown is committed to building his legacy around high-speed rail. Like his father, Pat Brown, who, as governor, led a huge infrastructure project called the State Water Project, Jerry Brown is evangelizing a major infrastructure project that will connect Northern California with Southern California. He faces continuing opposition.

Barack Obama and Jerry Brown have defined and are acting on what they want their legacies to be. And, in the face of steep opposition, they forge ahead.

What is your legacy going to be?

  • What is going to be your standout accomplishment in your current job?
  • What are your standout accomplishments going to be over the course of your career?
  • What risk are you taking to move the needle within your company, your department, a critical business process, etc.?
  • What are you going to be remembered for after you’ve been promoted into another position or left the company?
  • Are you willing to stand up to your opposition because you believe in your cause or purpose?

Thought for the week:

“Don’t seek a position in life, seek instead a purpose.” – U.S. Senator Corey Booker via Twitter
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What do you think? I welcome your comments!
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Dave Gardner, Gardner & Associates Consulting http://www.gardnerandassoc.com

© 2014 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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