Business Lessons

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After 20+ years in High Technology, I think I have learned a couple of things. here is my list for what it is worth:
Communication and Management
  • When you are tired of saying something, your audience is hearing it for the first time
  • Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
  • Keep your message simple and singular (one point per message)
  • Create the vision, co-develop the strategy and get the hell out of the way of great people
  • Create a diverse team and enjoy the creative benefits while accepting the leadership challenges
  • Demand full participation from everyone on your team while respecting their style
  • Let your Org Chart communicate roles, responsibilities, measures and objectives
  • The best slides are simple, limited clip art, and are self explanatory

  • Keep outsourcing management simple and focused
  • Negotiate price, never compromise on quality
  • Your partner making a fair profit is a requirement for a win-win relationship
  • Communicate key measures often, simply and consistently
  • Customers are why we are here
  • When in doubt, spend time at a customer's site … often.
  • Customer satisfaction is a point in time, loyalty is the long term relationship with your company
  • Be visible to all levels of your organization on a regular basis
  • Active and honest feedback is a measure of how much you care about your employee
  • Hire people better than you
  • Employees learn more about you by what you do versus what you say
  • On a bad day, spend half an hour with your first level employees to get re-energized
  • A lunch a week with customers and another with employees will keep you in touch with reality
Strategy and Results
  • Centralize the process design to manage a consistent strategy
  • Two points make a straight line. Act on trends swiftly
  • Boiling frogs jump out, warming frogs die in the pot: watch the little signs that things are not well
  • Localize the implementation to satisfy the customer
  • Manage the numbers and don't let them manage you
  • Fast decision making without effective follow through is chaos
  • Anticipate versus react
  • The magic triangle: happy employees, loyal customers, solid business results
  • When evaluating a difficult situation, ask: "Is it impossible, or is it just hard to do?"
  • Think Big, be Big
Organizational Model
  • Organizational models are about managing the boundaries between different organizations
  • There is always a large loss in productivity when you re-organize so there must be a larger gain from new organization to justify the re-organization
  • Prior organizational models seem to always return, so don't criticize them too much