Archive

Archive for the ‘Random Thoughts’ Category

IKEA’s success may have more to do with accident than design

April 5th, 2018

As much as I love talking about strategy and execution and all that cool stuff I have always felt that a “magic potion” simply does not exist and great strategy is usually only recognized in hindsight and has way more to do with how people in a leadership role respond to opportunities that pop up from time to time and challenges that pop up all the time. Read more…

Should Governments step in to assist businesses in trouble?

March 25th, 2018

And is this something business advisors should think about? Read more…

Discounting as a Pricing Strategy: A 100 Year Old Story

October 1st, 2016

I’m inviting you to Boston MA 1891. In that year Edward and Lincoln Filene took over the management of their father’s retail store called Filenes. At the time it was quite a successful business that specialized in women’s fashions and accessories but the two brothers built it into one of the world’s leading retail companies by implementing a non-traditional business model. Read more…

Managing Working Capital Is Key to Growth and Survival: Hard & Costly Lessons

September 1st, 2016

In this post I want to share a story with you. It arises from a chance conversation with a member who is working with a client who has an inventory management challenge which came on the back of an article another friend of mine sent me about a report on the failure of the Dick Smith retail group in Australia. Read more…

A Couple of Things We Could Learn From Sam Walton

June 1st, 2015

The richest family in the world – The Waltons, estimated total wealth $150 billion – owe their fortune to the genius of Sam. From what I have read about his he would be the first to say he was nowhere near the vicinity of genius but if seeing what others don’t see and persevering in the pursuit of a vision is genius then he most certainly was. Read more…

Non-creativity is a learned trait and the good news is, so is Creativity

January 15th, 2015

In 1993 George Land, who is a US general systems scientist (whatever that means) undertook a longitudinal study of 1,600 children of various ages in which he administered a modified standard creativity test that had originally been developed by him for NASA to help in the selection of engineers. Read more…

Why technology is not necessarily the answer

November 29th, 2014

I had a conversation with a leader in the media recently during which he mentioned that a software vendor had told him his company’s product could help accountants perform in 15 minutes a task that typically would take 3 hours when done in a traditional manner. Read more…

Nothing is forever … take Kodak for example

July 28th, 2014

In the mid 1970s Steven Sasson, an employee of Kodak, demonstrated a prototype of a device that weighed 8 pounds and needed a suitcase to transport. It was the world’s first digital camera. The photos were stored on a cassette tape, they took 21 seconds to raster and boasted quality of 0.01 megapixels. Read more…

If not excellence what? If not excellence now, when?

July 6th, 2014

The first business book I picked up and enthusiastically read, because it was inherently readable and extraordinarily interesting, was In Search of Excellence by Tom Peters and Bob Waterman.  In a sense it changed my life because it was the catalyst that led to my moving out of academia into the “real” world of public accounting. Read more…

Service Positioning When Your Prospects Are Human

June 1st, 2014

When you put a service proposal in front of a client she will make a decision to go ahead with the proposal or reject it. If she was acting as a rational economic agent she would assess the potential payoff against the expected cost of the proposal and she would go ahead with the proposal if the payoff exceeded the cost. In the real world it’s more complicated than that and the way you frame your proposal can have a dramatic impact of whether it is accepted or rejected.  Read more…