Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

This week’s focus: One of the biggest things I’ve learned as a football coach is the importance of transitions. These are the points when one team wins possession of the ball from the other.   For the team who has just lost the ball, this is a dangerous...
Sniffing Out New Opportunities

Sniffing Out New Opportunities

Yesterday, I was walking in a field with Finney, our cocker spaniel. As is Finney’s habit, he had his head down, carefully sniffing the ground in a bid to track a hare, rabbit or pheasant.   When Finney’s sniffing like this, it’s hard for him to hear my calls or...
Nuthatch Opportunities

Nuthatch Opportunities

As I pulled back the curtains yesterday morning, I saw three birds on the trunk of the tree at the front of our house: a pair of green woodpeckers and a nuthatch.   Now, I’m not an overly knowledgeable ornithologist, but I’ve never seen a pair of woodpeckers on...
Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

Business Rocks: The Two Types Of Success

This week’s focus: Instant solutions and quick wins get all the attention. We seem to crave silver bullets, magic pills and overnight successes both in business and life.   These successes are great when they happen. I remember during my time at Boots, for...
What Market Are You Really In?

What Market Are You Really In?

When Apple first launched its ground-breaking iPad, the comment that made me really stop and listen was when Steve Jobs said that Apple were now the world’s largest player in the mobile devices market.   It struck me that Apple’s perception of its market had...
7 Steps to Pitch-Perfect Business Proposals

7 Steps to Pitch-Perfect Business Proposals

One of the key tasks of managers is to gain support and approval for new ideas. Sometimes this can be done quickly and informally, but for bigger decisions, a more formal approach is required. So, whether you want funding for a new product or service idea, approval...
Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

Business Rocks: Early Warning Signs

As you read this, I will (hopefully!) be recovering from an operation to remove a rather large kidney stone.   The stone has built up over the years and even though the warning signs were there – I occasionally suffered from pain, particularly when I was...
Why Strategy Retreats Don’t Work

Why Strategy Retreats Don’t Work

The annual off-site leadership meeting, when the top team spend time in a nice hotel to review performance and some longer-term objectives, is a ritual pursued by most companies. But, all too often, these strategy retreats are lost opportunities that produce, at best,...
Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

Business Rocks: Leaking Pipes

This week’s focus: When you have leaking pipes in your home, there are a couple of things you can do about it. First, you could call out a plumber to fix the leak, or, second, you could simply place a bucket under the leak, collect the water and empty it every...
The 100-Year Life: Book Recommendation

The 100-Year Life: Book Recommendation

I don’t often give out book recommendations, but wanted to suggest that you make time to read The 100-Year Life by Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott.   Published in 2016, this is one of the most thoughtful and thought-provoking books I’ve recently read. The authors...
Quick Wins vs Hard Wins

Quick Wins vs Hard Wins

I’m undertaking a learning review of a relatively complex project today. The project has gone well, but the big question is ‘How do we replicate our success across the business?’   The answer to that question has two responses. First, there are some actions –...
Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

Business Rocks: Accelerators and Brakes

Are you an accelerator or a brake? A car needs both an accelerator and a brake. Without an accelerator, you will never move forward, but without a brake, you will quickly find yourself out of control. Similarly, organisations need to have access to both accelerators...
How to Deliver 5x Sales Growth in 3 Months

How to Deliver 5x Sales Growth in 3 Months

I am three-quarters of a way through the first stage of a client project to step-change the sales performance of a retail department. In the future, and with my client’s consent, I’ll hopefully be able to provide more details, but here is a summary of the results so...
Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

Business Rocks: Is Your Bias Showing?

This week’s focus: I don’t need to remind my UK-based readers that the country took part in last week’s European Parliamentary elections. As the results came in they were immediately used by each of the main parties to support their own particular views on...
How to Cut Costs Effectively

How to Cut Costs Effectively

I have been involved in several major cost reduction initiatives, adopting a variety of roles. My experience is that very few managers look positively on these projects and will do almost everything they can to avoid them.   The result is that relatively few cost...
Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

Business Rocks: Digital Immigrants

A digital native is a person that has grown up in the digital age. Conversely, a digital immigrant is someone who has become familiar with these systems as an adult. And, like adults who move to a new country and master a new language, digital immigrants tend to...
The Best Strategy Conversations

The Best Strategy Conversations

The best strategy conversations start with two words: What if……   What if we became a truly digital business? What if we halved our product offering? What if we could double our speed to market? What if we were able to create completely bespoke solutions for all...
Business Rocks: The Power Of Transitions

Business Rocks: More Competition, Please

This week’s focus: I’ve been in many strategy meetings where executives say something like, “We need to kill the competition.” There seems to be an innate desire to do away with competitors so that it makes your life easier. That desire is wrong. A lack of...
How To Make Sure Your Projects Don’t Deliver

How To Make Sure Your Projects Don’t Deliver

Are you suffering from a surfeit of successful initiatives? Is your organisation sick and tired of delivering new ideas and solutions?   Don’t worry. Here are seven ways that you can ensure that your projects will struggle and fail, helping you to remove a lot of...