Great Stuff But Who Has Time For It?

September 14, 2015

 

8317353105_b56290c049_m

When I consulted for a Fortune 50 company, I noticed the constant bombardment of emails to the sales team from the marketing team.

The incoming emails had to feel like incoming missiles to be dodged on a daily basis. Oh, sure, they had the engineering specs, the use cases, customer testimonials–everything you’d need to be successful if only the messages were opened and read which they weren’t.

If you were a sales person, what would you focus on? I’d focus on meeting quota and focusing on what my sales manager told me was important. I wouldn’t have time to read and digest all the incoming messages. I would sell what I understood and that would likely mean not selling the latest, greatest stuff unless my sales manager insisted I do so.

Sales and customers live in a very noisy world. What are you going to do to stand out and be heard? Of what value is innovation if you aren’t heard?

You need to have the mindset of making the complex simple for those with whom you need support.

Photo Credit: Kevin Dooley, Flickr

Thought for the week:

“Success isn’t a result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire.” – Arnold H. Glasow
__
What do you think? I welcome your comments!
___

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

© 2015 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

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


Criticality of Innovation

August 24, 2015

F5B2659E-2500-4E53-9958-037117F5D733

People diagnosed with certain serious medical maladies today are lucky that they didn’t weren’t diagnosed 5, 10 pr 20 years ago. Why? Innovation.

Constant innovation in medicine promotes better patient outcomes than were possible 5, 10 or 20 years ago.

Constant innovation means

  • Not settling for treatments that have a certain efficacy today.
  • Reducing the cost and healing time associated with treatments.

It’s also important to consider that some patient outcomes can be positively influenced by treatments outside what is often referred to as “Western medicine.” These treatments are commonly referred to as “alternative medicine.” Every course of treatment is really an alternative if you think about it that way.

Is your company driving innovation to improve customer outcomes? Or, are you focused on preserving the status quo while a more agile competitor catches you flat-footed and takes your market share?

Thought for the week:

“I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.” – Stephen Covey
__
What do you think? I welcome your comments!
___

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

© 2015 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

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


Collaborative Partners Speed Go-to-Market

May 4, 2015

Jabil_FullColorLogo

I attended the grand opening of Jabil’s new Silicon Valley Blue Sky Center. As CEO Mark Mondello offered,

“The Jabil Blue Sky Center is a hands-on showcase of our broad range of world-class capabilities. We’re working with customers who have innovative new product ideas and our Blue Sky Center is where we turn dreams and ideas into reality.”

Jabil has evolved tremendously from the company I knew in the 1990’s that made printed circuit board and cable assemblies as a sub-contract manufacturer.

Today, Jabil is a $20 billion company with 180,000 employees working in 90 different locations in 24 countries across the globe.

Jabil understands that it is important to engage with large clients during the ideation phase of new product development. Customers validated the critical relationship they enjoy with Jabil. One of their large customers said they do business with Jabil due to the Jabil culture. Jabil is more than a vendor–they are a partner in their customer’s success.

How important is it to have partners? A recent study commissioned by Jabil uncovered that 50% of new product ideas are abandoned due to the inability of a company to execute a new product strategy. This isn’t a noise-level problem. A partner like Jabil can help entrepreneurs and large companies alike develop, ramp and scale.

What are the critical trends that are driving today’s markets?

  • Personalization
  • Customization
  • Differentiation
  • Risk of customer satisfaction is in execution

The Blue Sky Center will enable current and future customers to explore and realize innovation across the full life cycle of new products. Of course, a big part of Jabil’s future is supporting the Internet of Things or IoT. The Blue Sky Center will enable companies to prototype new products and capabilities.

Is your company leaving money on the table by thinking you can’t do it all? Perhaps you can do more for your customers and yourself. You may be one partner away from seizing competitive advantage you heretofore could not imagine.

Thought for the week:

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
__
What do you think? I welcome your comments!
___

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

© 2015 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

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


Lessons from Blackberry & John Chen

August 11, 2014

Blackberry Logo

John Chen, a turnaround artist and current CEO of Blackberry, has a formidable task ahead of him: Make Blackberry a viable firm once again now that the luster has long since worn off. In an article in the San Jose Mercury News, Michelle Quinn provides thoughtful insights:

Silicon Valley has a predictable cycle: Companies experience periods of rapid growth and then, for most of them, a maturation period of flatter growth. For others, contracting revenues can start a tailspin of contracting ambition. Not many survive as independent companies. BlackBerry may not be a survivor. Even Chen compares BlackBerry to a patient in critical condition.

John Chen’s offers his turn-around formula:

“The first thing you do is stabilization,” he said, “which means in business getting the financials in order.” Then, “you examine what is driving you to disconnect with customers. If you weren’t disconnecting from customers, then you wouldn’t need me.”

Quinn offers, “For now, BlackBerry is focused on its core customers in government and industries like finance, banking and health care who value security and long battery life.” Here’s another take:

“I don’t envy the guy,” said Mike Levin, partner and co-founder of Consumer Intelligence Research Partners, which pegs BlackBerry’s U.S. consumer market penetration as rounding down to 0 percent. “Smartphones are more than a consumer product now. The challenge is going to be to find something distinctive that competitors don’t have or won’t be able to copy within a year.”

The world has innovated around Blackberry. Blackberry, like so many firms before it, was caught flat-footed watching its market share erode quarter after quarter for a number of years now.

Once a firm loses its luster, it’s nearly impossible to become highly desirable again. Best case, Blackberry can be niche player if John Chen can connect Blackberry as being the preferred smartphone in one or more niches.

How is your business trending? Are you growing? If you aren’t growing, you’re on the decline. That’s no way to thrive. If customers turn off and tune out–as they have at Blackberry–it’s nearly impossible to win them back.

Photo Credit: Flickr, Ian Lamont  “In 30 Minutes guides

Thought for the week:

“The middle of creating anything new can be messy & miserable. Keep moving, step at a time, & suddenly see finish line.” – Rosabeth Moss Kanter
__
What do you think? I welcome your comments!
___

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

© 2014 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

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


Innovate Or Face Extinction Like Dinosaurs

July 14, 2014

457428714_74e4c3016a_z

 I attended a breakfast meeting this past week with several people who had worked for Silicon Graphics, the once high-flying technology company that enabled innovations such as the dinosaurs in the movie Jurassic Park. SGI offered high-performance workstations that supported state-of-the-art graphics and animations.

Where is SGI today? Extinct–just like the dinosaurs it helped depict on the big screen. What happened?

SGI failed to understand and react to the looming market transition that eliminated the need for companies to buy their high-performance workstations. Why would a company invest in an expensive, proprietary solution when a personal computer could deliver a satisfactory result?

SGI owned their space until competitors caught up. SGI went from tech darling to an irrelevant company quite rapidly. SGI lived in denial that their world was changing. As my mentor Alan Weiss would say, SGI got caught “breathing their own exhaust.”

Is your company facing similar risk? Are your competitors about to render your solution irrelevant? This is no way to thrive.

Photo Credit: Scott Kinmartin on Flickr

 

Thought for the week:

“The world is moving so fast that the man who says it can’t be done is generally interrupted by someone doing it.” – Elbert Hubbard
__
What do you think? I welcome your comments!
___

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

© 2014 Gardner & Associates Consulting  All Rights Reserved

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


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
__
What do you think? I welcome your comments!
___

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.

 

Share


Preventing businesses from stalling and crashing

September 23, 2013

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

This week’s focus: preventing businesses from stalling and crashing

Like Kodak, Polaroid, Blockbuster, Sears, Pan Am and many others, Blackberry has finally made the list of corporations that consumers will be able to live without. This PC World headline says it all: New 5-inch Blackberry Z30 Carries Same Old Stench of Death

What does failure look like? At first, it happens slowly and then gains greater and greater speed. Watching these legacy companies fail is like watching a car crash in slow-motion. Quarterly reports reveal the struggle.

For the aforementioned companies, their demise was forseeable. What are the ingredients of their demise?

  • Executives and their boards are in denial and non-responsive to the obvious realities their companies face
  • The leadership teams believe“we’re too big to fail”
  • Being too wedded to the status quo
  • Missing or sitting out market transitions
  • Too much incrementalism in products and services
  • An internal focus rather than a customer focus
  • Blind spots with respect to what the competition is doing
  • Defending markets rather than driving innovation to stay fresh and vibrant in ways that truly matter to customers
  • Taking customers for granted
  • Delivering half-baked new products and services in spite of the fact competitors have already set a much higher bar
  • Assuming customers don’t mind paying premiums for their products and services in spite of the fact there is no obvious difference in value

There are companies we see everyday who face an uncertain future: HP, Dell and Yahoo are top of mind. Marissa Mayer seems to be leading a healthy charge at Yahoo. I have great confidence in Michael Dell and the reinvention he is leading. HP has yet to find a solid footing.

Has your company lost its luster? What actions are you taking today to ensure you thrive?

Thought for the week:

“Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you couldn’t.” – Rikki Rogers

=> NEW Accelerate Growth Offering <=

Identifying & Leveraging Your Strengths!

This is a half-day, facilitated discussion with your team to identify and leverage your strengths and begin to look at alternative futures for your company or your department. We’ll review the critical areas of your strategy and execution. It’s a great way to ignite your thinking for the coming year.

Book and pay by October 4th for a program delivered this year and save $500 off my normal fee. Your investment is only $995 for this program delivered as a teleseminar or in person for $1995 (plus travel if outside the San Francisco Bay Area). Call me at 775-722-8230 to book your session.

__
What do you think? I welcome your comments!
___

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.

Share