Tuesday, May 6, 2008

A-Team 80 Cult Heros or Business Mentors

I love the A-team. They were tops in the 80's when I was a kid. I remember risking parental fury each time I watched it, but I knew someday it would pay off!

Here is a group of dissimilarly skilled people led by a knowledgeable leader that had good intentions in mind. Does this sound like the perfect business or what?

Why is this so important to remember now?

I am once again trying to take on too much of the business. I know others can do it better and I try to rationalize it has to do with money, but people know more than I do and are smarter than me. Do you do the same?

Get over it!

Some of the most successful companies in the world are run by people that simply know how to lead. Nothing else.

But what is leadership?

I remember once telling a vice president that leadership is when you can get someone to follow you despite everything they personally know about you. In other words, would you follow this guy/gal to death?

I NEVER in a million years thought I would become that person. But I am convinced now, I have become that person. Sounds arrogant but that is what you need. Hannibal was arrogant, confident, knew his sh!t and was not afraid to make mistakes. All qualities of a leader.

However, the most important quality he had was his ability to turn over the "responsibility" to those he led.

OK, I am an 80's TV junkie but look where it got me!

To Boldy Go Where No Marketing Has Gone Before

I am diabetic type I (insulin dependant) and have been so for 15 years. Each day I am supposed to use a meter to measure my blood sugar and record it into a "log book". The doctor then uses the book to determine my progress or to adjust the medication.

The nurse recently gave me a couple new free log books. The meter companies give them away like candy (ok sugar-free candy).

Imagine my surprise when I begin using it and every few pages there is an ad for one diabetic product or another. Coupons are even included which I would actually use. Absolutely brilliant marketing. Commercials have reached my LOG BOOK!


Where else are you going to be able to get your AD before the eyes of 100% of your target market; diabetics?

If the companies would have put ads in a magazine, the average of diabetics that would see it would be exactly the national average of diabetics; about 7% of the population.

Man if I would have thought of that I would be charging these companies a fortune to advertise because now 100% of their advertising dollars are used to reach 100% of their target market. Such a deal!

It is exactly like putting an ad for color prints inbetween shots on a digital camera. Or think of a printer that printed a coupon for 1/2 off your next ink cartridge at Staples at the end of the cartridge. Wow, the possibilites are endless.

As I always say, know they customer to the point of almost knowing their name. Then only advertise to them; not the rest of the world.

For more information on marketing, check out this great site: http://www.psychotactics.com/marketing-strategy

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Whatever the Mind of Man Can Conceive...

When I first got my last job I was so excited. I used to ride the train with a good friend of mine and he asked me one day, "How is it going at the new job?"

I said, "Great! I am getting paid to think".

He says, "That's funny, I get paid NOT to think!"

Three years after he said it, I can see why he said it.

Businesses that are growing require a huge inflow of ideas to turn to cash. It is a SIMPLE process. Think of good ideas based-off business experience and turn it into cash as fast as you can. Refine the idea. Do it over and over and over. It's the nature of business.

However, once a business matures, the "ideas to cash" process turns to these policies or rules instead:

1) Do what you are told. We are the experts and we didn't think of it, so how could you have. (untrained, inexperienced managers stating this)
2) If you think of ideas to improve profits, write them down and put them in the suggestion box (in other words, trash!).
3) Ideas cost too much to implement. (when, in fact, they cost too much to not implement.)
4) We need to take that idea through the RFQ, RFI, blah blah process to determine its advantage to the company's bottom line. (in other words, bury it in paperwork).

The basis of Napoleon Hill's book "Think and Grow Rich" is "Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve."

Always encourage these ideas to flow from your employees, friends and family and develop them FAST! Don't turn this money generating machine (the human mind) into, well, a robot.