How to Whack-Away the Whack-A-Mole

How to Whack-Away the Whack-A-Mole

Management can sometimes seem like the fairground game of ‘whack-a-mole’. As soon as you have beaten one mole away, another pops its head up. And, like the game, the ‘fun’ never stops; management time is perpetually focused on periodically batting away the same set of...
Business Rocks: U-Turn If You Want To

Business Rocks: U-Turn If You Want To

Last week, Sir James Dyson announced that he was scrapping his company’s electric car project. His decision was criticized in the media and described as a ‘humbling U-turn.’ I disagree. Yes, the decision represented a U-turn, but it was far from...
Growing on Purpose

Growing on Purpose

I’ve had two strategy books published. And over the last decade I’ve worked with dozens of organisations on their strategy. Yet it’s only in the last two or three years that I’ve really understood the importance of having a clear organisational purpose at the heart of...
Business Rocks: U-Turn If You Want To

Business Rocks: How To Create New Habits

Our eldest son is due to sit his A-Levels next summer. He’s previously crammed for his exams, but that approach is proving less successful over time. As a result, I’m trying to help him to create a daily routine of learning. For example, he’s...
How To Coach Yourself

How To Coach Yourself

There is a lot of mystique surrounding coaching, but it is a relatively simple, common sense process. In recent years, I have added coaching services to my business, helping successful executives become even more effective.   Here are 7 steps below for you to...
Business Rocks: U-Turn If You Want To

Business Rocks: The Power of Showing Up

This is the 200th edition of Business Rocks, which I launched five years ago (following 150 editions of a previous newsletter called Friday Focus). We have a little over 1,000 subscribers (plus those who read it through social media) to Business Rocks – up from...
13 Behaviours of Highly Strategic Leaders

13 Behaviours of Highly Strategic Leaders

As I’ve consulted with different organisations – from small enterprises to some of the largest corporations on the planet – I’ve learned that a high degree of mystery and confusion surrounds the term “strategy”. However, strategy is, at its heart, a simple concept. It...
5 Wrong Ways To Deliver Innovation

5 Wrong Ways To Deliver Innovation

Innovation has never been more important to companies as it is now. The recession is creating new needs and new forms of value are needed to fulfill them. Yet there remains a yawning gulf between business leaders’ rhetoric on innovation and the reality on the ground....
9 Essentials for Strategy Success

9 Essentials for Strategy Success

Twice a year I host a Chief Officers’ Forum, where senior executive directors from some of the UK’s leading companies have a roundtable discussion on wide-ranging topics. At one of our meetings we agreed some golden rules for strategy development. Which of them could...
Business Rocks: U-Turn If You Want To

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: U-Turn If You Want To

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...