Failure and Success

How the Most Spectacular Failures can Lead to the Most Incredible Accomplishments.

Failure.  The word is loaded with connotations.  With many executives, it’s a highly unpopular word.  After all, how many highly driven Type A people do you know that enjoy failing?

Yet, there is so much to be gained from failure.  Failure is the key to innovation and success.  Rarely can innovation or success be achieved without failing first.  So, what bridges the gap from failure to success?   Continue reading

Problem Solving for Business

The Thinking Man sculpture at Musée Rodin in ParisChange Your Thinking and Improve Your Odds of Success.

A few weeks ago, I met with a client, whom we’ll call “Jack.”  Jack built a career on developing ideas for technology products based on patterns in user data.  As you can imagine with the tech boom in San Francisco, Jack had been incredibly successful.

However, Jack’s “hot streak” (as he called it) had gone ice cold.  He was frustrated and out of ideas.  No matter what he did, it didn’t seem to work.  Moreover, his CEO was becoming ill tempered with Jack’s missteps.  So, what threw ice water on his fire? Continue reading

The Secret Weapon of Business

Top SecretBuilding a Strong Culture.

Do you ever wonder how some businesses are amazing places to work with growing profits and incredible people while other business environments are rivaled by Dante’s ninth circle of hell?  How does this happen?  Is it happenstance or intentional?

Having worked with heaps of businesses in both camps, here are my recommendations for making your business thrive in 2013. Continue reading

What I Learned about Business from U2

How Business and Life Work in Mysterious Ways.

Lessons in business are everywhere.  This week, I found them on my iPod.  As I’ve shared before, I am a huge fan of U2.  I adore the band’s music, creativity and social activism.  I never realized that their songs are also lessons in business and life for that matter. Continue reading

The Power of Purpose

What’s the use in running if you’re on the wrong road?

A few years ago, I was hired by a company (let’s call it “Acme”) to improve profitability.  At the start of any project, my colleagues and I always do a Discovery Process, where we split up and interview people at all levels in the company.  At the end, we sync back up, share our findings and look for patterns.  The process always provides incredible insight into the business, its leadership, how it operates and its culture.  Moreover, it usually enables us to pinpoint the source of an issue – like low profitability. Continue reading