Brands, people and desire

Brands satisfy a need – often a practical and emotional need at the same time.

Most can agree with that.

But - what about our people?  When they join it’s the same for them - they have a practical and emotional need.

Do we pull out all the stops in the same way as we do for our customers?  After all, it’s the same mechanism.

It’s just a shift in perception: no extra money is required, no change programme is required, no transformation project is required.  But the world is different.

And it’s free.


Misplaced trust

There is a crisis in business leadership.  And men are responsible.

Why? - Because most business leaders are men.

And we seem to have failed.

The crisis reflects an unwillingness to connect our actions with the consequences in our organisations and society.

The soundtrack is about misplaced trust - loyalty is not acknowledged.  And your customers sense it.

So, what can we do about it?


Time and Miracles

Time is probably your most expensive resource. And logic is not the best use of it - because logic is linear.

But breakthroughs - even subtle ones – are more like miracles.

Miracles are statistically unlikely but they do save time - no time is involved.

And you have more chance of a miracle if you are using your mid brain.

Developing competitive advantage is a bit of a miracle too.  Nothing seems to change yet everything does.

So if you had new strategy tools that collapse time would you be interested?


Acquisition failure

Last week I talked about my failure in decision making with a major client and a ten year cost in time.

Today, you may be interested in some acquisition research which is also sobering.

Michael E Porter of Harvard (From Competitive Advantage to Corporate Strategy) studied 33 companies – many of whom had good reputations for management – between 1950 and 1986.

Each company had entered an average of 80 new industries.  Just over 70% were acquisitions.


Save 10 years

This Executive Strategies workshop might save you ten years.

About twenty ago I made a poor decision.  We held onto a client contract against the wishes of the new managing director even though my instincts were telling me to let it go.

What followed was brutal.  He was brutal.  It cost us ten years.

Sometimes it takes a hard lesson to teach us to trust our own decision making in the face of seductive numbers and sales pressure.

When we helped Bayer walk away from a new market acquisition they benefited from my experience. 


Harvard talk purpose

This retreat addresses the single most important aspect of strategy.

And you don’t have to take my word for it.  Cynthia Montgomery runs the world renowned Harvard strategy course called Entrepreneur, Owner, President - EOP.

She says, ‘Every concept of strategy that has entered the conversation of business managers – sustainable competitive advantage, positioning, differentiation, added value, even the firm effect - flows from purpose’.*


Hypnosis and everyday business language

Dr Milton Erickson is famous in the history of hypnosis and its clinical applications.

Erickson discovered that he could lead you into trance without any formal induction by telling stories.  Stories that engage the curiosity of your unconscious mind.


Clean hearts but dirty hands ...

‘You can restore trust in your strategic leadership.’  

I am not suggesting there is a problem with the trust or quality of strategic leadership in your business.  But there is in most.  And it’s under the radar.  So it’s worth knowing about.

It is probably the single biggest issue in organisations today.  And much of the damage is self-inflicted.

As you know, business news feeds tell us stories of bribery, mis-selling, and inflated executive packages unrelated to performance.


You will get at least five years warning of a scandal

'All of the major scandals have occurred with the full knowledge of management that this was a concern and had been a concern in that organisation for about five and a half years before the scandal ever broke' 

(Andrew Kakabadse, Professor of International Management Development at Cranfield.)

As you probably know, the gap between strategic thinking and the collective action of hearts and minds is a common problem today.

Andrew explains this is not about the quality of your thinking, your diversity, or your people.


Clarify your thinking, transform your performance

As you know - as chief executive - you have a responsibility to both develop and articulate strategy.  This workshop does both.  It will clarify your thinking and transform your performance.

“I am a key decision maker in my organisation, and sometimes it is important to think about that role and whether I am making the right decisions, for the right reasons, in the most productive way.”