|Business Management Information|
CEOs Role in Family Business
I first met Roland (not his real name) in 1972. He was a high school student working a summer job in his father's business.
"We're teaching him the business from the ground up," his father told me proudly as he introduced me to the tall good looking kid. We shook hands, exchanged a few words, then Roland jumped on a fork lift and was off to stage another delivery.
The next time I saw Roland, he was approaching 40 years of age and had served four years as company president.
The business was located in a fast-growing metro market, but under Roland's leadership, sales had not kept pace with the growth of the market. His father, now retired, suggested that he bring in a consultant to take a look at the business.
We met at my hotel for breakfast. In many ways, he had not changed all that much. He was wearing jeans, a red flannel shirt, and a pair of cowboy boots. His image was far from that of a company president.
Roland got immediately to the point, "What do you need from me to get this project started?"
"Let me begin by asking a couple of questions," I answered, "What is your vision for this business?"
"How do you mean?" Roland asked.
"What are you trying to make happen here? When December 31st rolls around, what evidence do you look for to determine if you've had a satisfactory year?" I said, trying to clarify my question.
"Well, if you're talking about strategic planning or budgeting, things like that, I don't do any of that," he responded bluntly.
"How do you personally spend you time every day," I asked, trying a different approach.
"It depends on where I'm needed," he said. "Sometimes I'm doing the buying, but other times, like when the warehouse foreman doesn't show up, I'm working out back."
"How much time do you spend in the office?" I probed.
"As little as possible," he fired back with the hint of a smile.
"Sounds as if you don't like office work," I asked in a feeble attempt at humor.
"You got that right."
"Your dad says that sales haven't kept pace with the market. Do you have an explanation?"
"Yeah, I can't find decent salespeople."
"Who's in charge of recruiting salespeople?"
Roland didn't have a clue what role a CEO should play. He had graduated from college, but with a meaningless degree. When he rejoined the family business, he received no preparation for taking over the reins; he had grown up working with his hands and that is still what he enjoyed most. When he was made president, it was in name only.
I interviewed a couple of salespeople whom Roland had been unable to hire. They told me that they didn't want to work for a man like Roland, and referred to his lack of sophistication and his abrupt communication style. Their image of Roland was not that of a leader, so they each opted to take jobs with more progressive businesses in the area.
At the end of my visit, I suggested that Roland hire a general manager who had the talent to perform the essential business functions that Roland hated so much. To my surprise, he didn't resist the idea. He was not stupid; he knew full well that being a company president was not his cup of tea.
Today, the company is growing and earning more bottom line profit than ever before. Roland is the happiest he has been in years.
Lesson: If the owner doesn't have the talent or the willingness to prepare a strategic marketing plan or hammer out an annual capital expenditure budget and an operations budget, hire someone who does. There is no rule in business that says the owner has to be the general manager.
Management acumen is not always passed down to the next generation.
Bill Lee is a business consultant who works with owners who want to put more money on the bottom line. He is author of Gross Margin: 26 Factors Affecting Your Bottom Line. $29.95 + $5 S&H. http://www.mygrossmargin.com; Blee@mygrossmargin.com
CEOs Are Great, Top CEOs Are Greater
People in leading positions are often in a dilemma: on one hand they are supposed to give great performances, make the right decisions and so forth; on the other hand, they have to fill the role of a very confident and self-assured manager. This may be considered a dilemma because CEOs are expected to be almost supernatural, and asking for assistance in what is supposed to be their core competence (leadership!) simply does not fit the picture, no matter how necessary it may be.
Using an Appraisal to Benefit Your Organization
PERFORMANCE APPRAISALS BENEFIT THE ORGANIZATION:
Invite Self-Managed Staff
"Treat people as if they were what they ought to be, and you help them to become what they are capable of being." -Goethe
Innovation Management: The Power of Emotional Attachment
Creativity can be defined as problem identification and idea generation whilst innovation can be defined as idea selection, development and commercialisation.
Creating Advisory Boards
There is no substitute for soliciting the opinions of the executive team, the people who will be most affected by change or its absence. However, often the answers to complicated questions don't lie within those most affected. Frequently the CEO will need to look outside the organization for advice and wisdom. Sometimes this comes for a Board of Directors, a body of individuals that has the duty of influencing a company's direction. Members of this board have a fiduciary responsibility to represent the shareholders by making pivotal decisions.
Too many managers waste both time and energy performing tasks an employee could perform just as well, thereby lowering productivity while raising operating costs. The answer to the problem is easy-delegation. However, many managers still limit their own effectiveness, create imbalances in the organization, waste their department's time and energies, and fail to develop their subordinates by either ignoring or mismanaging the techniques of delegation.
Hiring Productive Employees: A Checklist for Assessing Their Appeal
The characteristics of job applicants have a strong influence on whether or not they get hired. Their characteristics also indicate the level of their productivity. If you are about to hire employees, consider the characteristics listed below in checklist form. The candidates who possess them are probably the ones who will be readily accepted by your staff. This acceptance plays an important role in the team-building process and the productivity of the staff.
Hire Winners: Ask the Right Questions
How do you as a manager, supervisor or team leader hire winners? One very successful interviewing technique is behavioral interviewing---selecting the right person for the right job using a job-related rather than a gut feel approach. A job-related approach is asking for a behavioral example of skills and traits that are required for a position.
Holding Effective Meetings Can Be Easier than You Think!
I'm sure you've experienced those typical "headache" meetings! You know the kind I'm talking about -- the ones where the key players are running late, no one knows exactly why the meeting was called, and there's not a single agenda in sight. Everyone's sitting around wondering, "Will this last 20 minutes or will we be here all day?" It's impossible to tell!
Status Quo Pep Talks That Can Threaten Your Leadership
Organizations live and die by results. Yet most organizations get a fraction of the results they are capable of. There are many reasons for this: poor strategy, poor leadership, insufficient resources, etc. But one main reason is overlooked by most leaders. Many organizations stumble because they are permeated with a robust status quo.
Change Management: Getting Everyone on Board the Change Train
How do you get everyone on board the change train that is gaining speed and heading out of the station? How do you get your people to, not only go through the motions, but also actually "buy into" the changes that are necessary? People's resistance to change is not entirely irrational; it stems from good and understandable concerns. Here are the six most common reasons people resist change and tactics to convert this resistance to commitment.
The Comfort Zone
The Comfort Zone I have a friend named Gene, a serial entrepreneur who currently runs a software business. Like many people, last year was a tough one for his company. They survived largely by providing add-on services to existing customers - a decent response to difficult circumstances. They even grew revenues a bit. But here's something else that happened: They got comfortable. They decided they could exist on their base of customers, and then they "realized" there would be no new ones.
The Cheapest, Forget It !
Wouldn't it be great if we got get the cheapest price on everything. I know I wouldn't want it. Would you? Do you strive to get the cheapest automoblie? The cheapest mobile home to live in? The cheapest place to eat? Rather than look for the cheapest we tend to look for value for our money. We know we all work hard for our money and would like to be compensated if we are to give it up.
Gossip And Rumors And Hearsay, Oh Why?
In the Wizard of Oz, it was "Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!" Many organizations today are singing a slightly different tune: "Gossip and rumors and hearsay, oh why?"
Hire Winners: Avoid These 10 Interview No-No?s
Have you ever hired someone who did not live up to expectations? I'm sure many of us have at one time. The purpose of the interview is to obtain good information about an applicant to make a wise selection decision. It may sound simple but then why are there so many poor hires? The reason is that many hiring managers make 10 key interviewing errors that prevent them from hiring the best people.
Involving People Gave Us the Improvements We Needed
We had a problem with handling materials in a production department. Our process required raw materials to enter the department, be processed, and leave the department. The raw material was placed on pods, delivered for production, removed from the pods, placed on a staging fixture, removed from the fixture and process materials were then placed on another pod and delivered to an internal customer. Internal customer had to place on still another pod.
The Three-Dimensional Communication System
Human communication is always three-dimensional. No spoken or written message is ever just words or rational thoughts. Every interchange between you and another person has and takes place at the following three intimately related levels, or dimensions, of being: emotional, physical, and rational. Any attempt to communicate will succeed if all of these dimensions are adhered to. Knowledge of this three-dimensional nature is the foundation of training. You can't get much closer to real understanding without these realizations.
Organizational Culture and Creative Blocks ? the Similarities
Few Decision makers see the link between between creativity and innovation management, as performed by MBA's in firms, and creative endeavours such as screenwriting. In fact, there are very strong linkages.
A Corporate Facelift With Sound Bytes
If Baby Boomers can get botox and tummy tucks, then why don't companies receive facelifts to improve their image as well? The telephone is the lifeblood of any business. Use it respectfully. Don't leave your clients on-hold to listen to radio static or elevator music. With digital recording and delivery of sound files, professional production of on-hold advertising is both economical and necessary for a positive image. That's right ? it's imperative that the first impression a client receives of your business (even though they may never visit) is how they're treated on the telephone. How many times have you called a business to hear "Thank you for calling ABC Dental Office please hold" before you can get a word in edge-wise." In many cases , what they have on-hold is your first impression of that company.
Structure Your Payment Offers to Sell More Products
The way you structure your payment offers can increase your sales. I'm not talking about the way people pay like credit cards, digital payments, checks, and cash options. What I'm taking about is can your customers try before they buy, pay later, make payments, do they get a rebate, etc. Below are six payment offers that will sell like your products or services like crazy:
|home | site map|