"…out-learning the competition"
Successful Turnaround — last November an insight reader emailed me to see if I had any recommendations on books/seminars that would help him turnaround a medical equipment business he just purchased… the key resource I recommended (and his results) are below, but first:
Thursday Webinar – Good vs. Great Planning — As you prepare for annual planning – join Patrick Thean, CEO of Gazelles Systems, for his webcast "Is Your Annual Plan Helping You Double Your Business?"A good annual plan identifies the 3-5 things to focus on for the year; a great annual plan helps you focus on the year AND drive your long term strategy. October 18th @ 1:00pm ET – no cost.
#1 Challenge – Hiring Great People — as I'm traveling the globe and surveying my audiences, the focus in 2012 has dramatically shifted to hiring the right talent (2011 was Strategy). In turn, the surest way to drive down morale is to hire B or C players who demotivate the A players – so the cost of making a hiring mistake is costly in time, money, and team energy/enthusiasm. The only hiring method measured to deliver a 90% success rate is Topgrading.
Topgrading Webinar Thursday — following Patrick's webinar, dial into a thorough review of the new 12 step Topgrading Process — 2pm – 3pm ET Thursday, October 18. The Topgrading hiring process has been updated, resulting in 12 practical and easy to implement steps. And research confirms a greater than 90% success rate if you follow these steps.
Peter Drucker Exclaims — The toughest decisions in organizations are people decisions – hiring, firing, promotion, etc. These are the decisions that receive the least attention and are the hardest to unmake. As such, hiring is one of the top 2 skills all leaders must master. And Topgrading is used by firms like GE to also determine who is promoted.
Keith Wright, CEO Sensatronics — a recent graduate of the Topgrading Executive Class notes:
Bob Bloom Online — Gazelles Growth Institutes' latest one hour online seminar is now available – Bob Bloom's "Inside Advantage: The Strategy That Unlocks the Hidden Growth In Your Business." The retired CEO of Publicis, the third largest ad agency in the world, Bob wrote my favorite "how to" strategy book that supports strata 2 of our "7 Strata of Strategy" framework – how do you define succinctly your best customer ("who") and then describe as succinctly your product/service ("what") – then how do you frame the messaging to maximize attention. As always, full money back guarantee if you didn't benefit from the online course.
Southwest Airlines — recognized by Harvard strategist Michael Porter (featured in his famous "What is Strategy" HBR article) and by Jim Collins as one of the best companies in the world, Southwest Airlines was birthed in Bob Bloom's offices in Dallas. And Bob helped shape Southwest's messaging for a decade. Bob understands branding and messaging, something he's shaped for hundreds of the top brands in the world, and delivers his concrete ideas in his one hour online presentation. Watch it at your next weekly marketing meeting.$99 single license (unlimited individual access); $495 company license (unlimited access for all employees).
Turnaround Success — …here's the response I emailed him last November 18 "I would watch the Greg Brenneman one-hour online seminar – he's the top turnaround guy in the US – turned around Continental, Burger King, Quiznos, and 50 other firms – and it includes his one-page turnaround plans for Burger King and Quiznos. I would also read the Continental Airlines HRB article about the turnaround…and if it isn't helpful, happy to give your money back!"
His Response — "Verne, hope all is well. Loved the Brenneman seminar and article. I have turned the business around in 8 months to become profitable from near bankruptcy…I don't want to spike the ball before the end zone so once I hit the end zone we can maybe go into more detail as to exactly what I implemented from the seminar." In the meantime, he asked me to keep his identity anonymous, but he wanted others to know how useful this simple one-hour seminar was to his turnaround.
For "A" Players — Fortune Growth Summit Next Week — I look forward to meeting all of you attending this "mini-Think Week" featuring 7 of the most important biz books ever written taught by the authors themselves. As Brad Smart of Topgrading fame discovered, what separates A player execs from B and C was simply reading on average 24 books per year – 12 of which were biz books; the rest for fun. "Keep on growing."