Did Your Mama Teach You The Magic Words?

I was in line at a small bookstore at the end of a day; there was only one clerk behind the counter.  Suddenly the door opened and a woman stepped in front of me, interrupting the clerk (who was helping another customer) and totally ignoring those patiently waiting their turn.  She demanded immediate service.   

Don’t Believe Everything You Think

The bumper sticker on the car ahead of me read: Don’t believe everything you think. My reaction was, “Say what??”  Then I stepped back and considered the statement.  The average person thinks between 50,000 and 70,000 thoughts per day; they range from the mundane (Pick up bread on the way home.) to significant (I love you.) to the self-destructive (I’m

It Only Takes One Bad Apple

In almost every roundtable I facilitate, one business owner laments the difficulty in finding skilled employees in today’s economy. That’s why it’s easy to talk yourself into keeping a “bad apple”, but beware.  A bad apple is a person whose negative behavior affects the rest of the group to varying degrees.  Bad apples are like a virus to their teams

I Think I Need A “Think Week”!

Twice a year, for the past twelve years, Bill Gates has gone into seclusion for a “Think Week”, retreat where employees, friends and even family are banned.  The insights gleaned from “Think Week” help determine Microsoft’s future.

Could You Be A Helicopter Boss?

We’ve all heard the term “helicopter parent,” a reference to moms and dads who constantly hover over their children, never giving them the opportunity to make their own decisions or mistakes, swooping in to save the day when things get the least bit challenging.

Do You Need A Reverse Mentor?

Jack Welch, former GE Chairman popularized “reverse mentoring” over a decade ago.  He ordered his top 600 managers to find Internet junkies among their ranks and become their students. With the ever-increasing role of technology in business, the concept is now even more relevant.

Play Your Way To Solutions!

It isn’t easy staying ahead of the curve.  It’s even harder to engage employees in creative problem solving. They may have innovative ideas but are so busy with their day to day activities, they don’t have time to ponder “What could make this better, faster, cheaper or unnecessary?”

You Can’t Buy Loyalty!

Coupons won’t do it.  Reducing your prices won’t do it; there’s always someone willing to make less money than you.  Inspiring loyalty means you have to build value into the very fabric of your business – excellent products supported by dedicated and friendly people. Make (and keep) your big promises What you do after making the sale may be more

Where Do You Keep The Ketchup?

When we consider diversity in the workplace, we often react negatively, thinking of being required to hire xx% of employees representing different races and ethnic backgrounds.Scott Page, Professor of Complex Systems at the University of Michigan, takes a different approach.  Instead of pondering moral questions like, “Why can’t we all get along?” he asks; “How can we all be more

2016 The Year To Stop Putting Off

The first of the year is a time to start new things: the diet, the exercise program or learning a new skill.  But are there issues hovering from the past that need to be confronted?