Leadership and Digital Transformation

News Flash: The #1 thing leaders need to understand is that the Digital Transformation train left the station a few years ago. If you weren't onboard back then, you need to stop looking for the next train and rapidly go in search of building a rocket ship. Businesses simply have run out of time to embark on multi-year transformation projects - that window has closed. In the text that follows,…

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10 Tips That Make Complex Leadership Ideas Really Simple

Like many Inc.com columnists, I am a consultant and business author. I've written five books over the past 25 years and am proud of all of them. My latest, It's Good To Be King, has done well probably because it simplified what many make complex: leadership principles. There are over 60 leadership tips presented through the text. Let me share with you my top 10 leadership tips from the book. At…

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MFG of South Dakota: Trying To Do Some Good in the World

MFG of South Dakota is a subsidiary of the Molded Fiber Glass Companies (MFG), a leader in the field of reinforced plastics and composites, serving diverse markets with a variety of composite material systems and processes. A family-owned business for more than 60 years, the company has 13 operating entities throughout North America and is headquartered in Ashtabula, Ohio. On December 6, 2017,…

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High EQ: The most desirable leadership tenet of them all?

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is the ability to identify, use, understand and manage emotions in an effective and positive way. And, in many organisations around the world, it is on the rise! Contrary to popular belief, The Millennials, Generation Y and Gen Next (those engrossed by tablets and screens) hold, on average, higher EQ levels than generations before them. In the business environment,…

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McDonald’s Black Friday Marketing: Epic Fail or Nifty Strategy?

Last Friday, McDonalds tweeted from its @McDonaldsCorp account: Black Friday **** Need copy and link**** — McDonald's Corporation (@McDonaldsCorp) November 24, 2017 Interestingly, it seemingly failed to include any promo content in the tweet, leaving readers to wonder was this an epic fail in the marketing department or a deliberate action intended to drum up interest and buzz for the brand.  I…

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Time for a Brand Overhaul at Harley-Davidson

Harley-Davidson announced its third quarter results last month and the news wasn't great.  Harley's worldwide sales was down nearly 7%, while American retail sales slumped by over 8%.  This all translated into about a 40% drop in profits as compared to the year-ago quarter.  Prompting its CEO to comment in its earnings press release:  "The continued weakness in the U.S. motorcycle industry only…

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For CEOs, Safe Decisions Aren’t Always Safe

News Flash: safe decisions rarely are. The best chief executives possess the courage to not only seek out the right decision, but they also understand the importance of giving others permission to do the same. We need CEOs who want others to do better and be better. What we don’t need is more CEOs who hide in safe harbors. If you sit in the big chair, you don’t get paid to make safe decisions;…

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What Was Unilever Thinking?

The PR Disaster that resulted when Unilever decided a run a Dove Soap ad on its U.S. Facebook page last Friday, that showed a black woman turning white, could have been avoided with better leadership. It's that simple! No more discussion or debate needed. It was a lack of leadership that led to this kind of tone deaf flub on the part of the company. Here are some thoughts on the matter: The…

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Free Advice For Uber’s New CEO

In June, under immense pressure from incensed investors who didn't take kindly to Uber's unrestrained "Bro" culture, Travis Kalanick stepped down as its CEO. Able to retain his seat on the firm's 11-member board, Kalanick was able to maintain extra voting power granted him in the Company's original by-laws. This extra voting power could have been used to help him to control the company's future…

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The Leadership Wisdom of Kung Fu

You may not remember the hit TV series from the 70s that traced the adventures of a Shaolin Monk, Kwai Chang Caine (played by the late David Carradine) as he wanders the American West armed only with his spiritual training and skill in Kung Fu. But, if you were a young boy back then, as I was, there was really nothing better on TV! The Kung Fu television show aired on ABC from 1972 through 1975.…

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Speeding Change by Slowing Down

I have always believed that the fastest path to the future is found through increasing velocity of change. I don’t believe I’ll get much push-back on that statement, but I’m rather certain I’ll encounter some resistance with my next one: Increasing velocity of change is best accomplished by slowing down. Most CEOs feel as if they’re in a race to change the future, and they would be correct. By…

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The Value of Value Chain Analysis in Transforming Your Business

I have a different take on value chain analysis. Most think of it as positioning a business within its ecosystem. I think of a value chain as a graphical representation of all of the work that must be done by a business or work area in order to provide its goods/services (i.e., "value") to its customers. Value chains are a valuable means of presenting a normalized view of the business. It is free…

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Thought Leadership – Piercing The Bubble

News Flash: If you value your own opinion more than others do, you might be suffering from a common form of self-delusion. Referring to yourself as a thought leader makes you a tone-deaf narcissist; not necessarily a great thinker. For my part, I’m in the process of trying to eliminate the term “thought leadership” from my vocabulary. This week, after months of reflection, I’ll be instructing…

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Emotional Intelligence As Competitive Differentiator

People with high emotional intelligence quotients (EQ) are easy to talk with. They are great listeners and strong communicators in both the written and spoken word. People with high EQ know who they are and are the ones that can resolve conflicts before they escalate beyond repair. These people regulate their reactions to everyday work situations and can keep their cool no matter what comes their…

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This Word Unleashes Change & Innovation

Have you ever worked for a boss who always said no? If you have, my first guess is it was a frustrating experience. My second guess is you don't hold said boss in high regard as a leader. I've always been amazed at the number of well known axioms espousing the benefits of learning to use the word "no" with greater frequency. In fact, there are some very bright people who believe you simply cannot…

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Memorial Day Should Make Us All Better Leaders

Is Memorial Day weekend just another holiday, or does it mean something more to you? While this weekend simply signifies a long awaited prelude to summer for some, it is much more than that for others. As a veteran and lifelong student of leadership I have always found Memorial Day weekend to be one of the most meaningful and significant of all holidays. In the text below I’ll share why I believe…

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