In Natal (Brazil) I decided for the first time in a long time not to use slides for my 90-minute presentation—the client was apparently happy, said my direct contact with the audience was even more intense than usual.
Upon getting home, I decided to transfer my notes to a 1-page word doc. Fact is, it has taken the better part of 5 days (and nights!) to get this 1-pager, which became a 2-pager, but no more, into a form that I can call (for now) final.
Somewhere along the agonizing way I discovered that, in a way, I was attempting to summarize the last 45 years’ effort observing good and bad organizations into, yes … 2 pages.
Have I succeeded? Of course not, but it ain’t bad. You will find it here as a blog post; far more important (to me) is the 2-page “EXCELLENCE. Now. EXCELLENCE. Always.” pdf that you’ll also find.
45 years to prepare.
5 days and nights to write.
All yours …
1. People first, second, third, fourth … /The “business” of leaders is people: to inspire/engage/provide a trajectory of opportunity—enterprise of every size and type as “cathedral” for human development. “When I hire someone, that’s when I go to work for them.”—John DiJulius
1A. Customer comes 2nd/If you want to best “Wow!” customers then you must first Wow! those who serve the customers/“If you want staff to give great service, give great service to staff.”—Ari Weinzweig, Zingerman’s/“You have to treat your employees like customers.”—Herb Kelleher, on his #1 “secret to success”
1B. Manager’s sole raison d’etre: Make each of my team members successful!
1C. Effective organizations: No bit players!
1D. Appreciation. Acknowledgement. “The deepest human need is the need to be appreciated.”—Believe it! A few kind words are often remembered for years!
1E. 1st line supervisors. Every organization’s … most important … leadership cadre. Productivity is largely determined by the caliber of the 1st line boss. Selection and development of your “sergeants” must become an “obsession”—almost all do a half-assed job.
1F. Weird/There are no “normals” in the history books!/Ensure a healthy supply of oddballs/
Diversity of every flavor = Fresh perspectives! Better decisions!
1G. Memories That Matter. And Don’t./”People stuff” sticks with you: You’ll look back on the handful of people you developed who proceeded to change the world—and the multitude (if you’ve earned it) who say, “I grew most when I worked with you.” Ever seen a tombstone engraved with the deceased’s net worth?
2. You/me: Businesses no longer coddle. You’re in charge!/“Brand you”—stand out for something valuable, or else; learn something new every day, or else!/“Distinct or Extinct!”
3. Organizations Exist to Serve. PERIOD.
4. EXECUTION/“Don’t forget to tuck the shower curtain into the bath tub.”—Conrad Hilton on his “sweat the details” obsession and #1 “success secret”/“Execution is strategy.”—Fred Malek/
“Execution is the leader’s job #1.”—Larry Bossidy
4A. “They do … ONE big thing at a time.”—Drucker on successful managers’ #1 trait
4B. Resilience circa 2011: Understand it. Hire for it. Promote for it. Obsess on it.
5. MBWA/Managing By Wandering Around/
Starbucks’ Schultz visits 25 stores a week/“In touch” is “not optional”/You = Your calendar/Calendars never lie!
5A. Listening per se = Candidate for Core Value #1/
Listening per se is a profession./”If you don’t listen, you don’t sell anything.”/Docs interrupt patients after … 18 seconds. And you?
5B. “What do you think?” “How can I help?”—MBWA 8/Eight words, repeated like a mantra while “wandering around,” that unlock engagement/success for multitudes.
5C. Innovate by “Hanging out”/”You are what you eat.”/“You will become like the five people you associate with the most—a blessing or a curse.”/Want “cool”? Expose yourself to cool!/Manage “hanging out” zealously-formally—with customers, interesting outsiders, etc.
5D. K = R = P (Kindness = Repeat business = Profit.) “Hard is soft. Soft is hard.”—#1 finding In Search of Excellence. Kindness is “hard”—and pays off in $$$$.
5E. Apology Power—Awesome power: 3-minute “I’m sorry” call heals anything—do it religiously!/”Over-the-top” response to even small booboo strengthens customer relationships!
6. “Little BIG Things”/Focus on “multipliers”: Walmart goes to big shopping cart = +50% “big stuff” sales boost!/“Wash your Hands”—save thousands of lives P.A. in hospitals!
6A. “Little BIG Things”: SMEs bedrock of all economies. Nurture them. SME’s battle cry per George Whalin: “Be the best. It’s the only market that’s not crowded.”
7. Apple > Exxon in market cap courtesy … DESIGN!/The big “Duh”: “Cool beats un- cool!”/Design candidate for “best way to differentiate goods-services in competitive markets.”
7A. TGRs/Things Gone Right. Wagon Wheel restaurant, Gill MA—clean restroom with fresh flowers—we remember such touches more or less forever/Manage-measure TGRs.
7B. Scintillating Experiences. Howard Schultz on Starbucks: “At our core, we’re a coffee company, but the opportunity we have to extend the brand is beyond coffee; it’s entertainment.”
8. WOMEN Buy! WOMEN Rule! WOMEN’s World! Women buy 80% of everything—$28T world market/“Why Warren Buffett Invests Like a Girl”—e.g., studies harder-holds longer-less frenzied buying and selling/Women’s leadership style fits 21st century less-hierarchical enterprise./Evidence clear—Women well on the way to 21st century economic domination! Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff at UN: “the century of women.”
9. Web-Social Media/”Everyone becomes our valued partner, a member of our community—and watchdog”/The Power of Co-creation—my “Top Biz Book 2010″/SM lynchpin of transformative strategy—for organizations of every shape and size!
10. Value added via transformation from “Customer satisfaction” to “Customer success”—huge difference-opportunity!/E.g., IBM Global Services, from afterthought to $60B/UPS Logistics/MasterCard Advisors/IDEO, help clients create “culture of innovation”/“The Geek Squad”—BestBuy’s #1 strategic point of differentiation.
11. Innovation “secret” #1: “Most tries wins.”/“A Bias for Action”—excellence trait #1, In Search of Excellence/“Ready. Fire! Aim.”—Ross Perot/“Instead of trying to figure out the best way to do something and sticking to it, just try out an approach and keep fixing it.”—Bert Rutan/“You miss 100% of the shots you never take.”—Wayne Gretzky
11A. Try a lot = Fail a lot/“Fail. Forward. Fast.”/”Fail faster, succeed sooner”—David Kelley/“Reward excellent failures, punish mediocre successes.”/
Whoever Makes the Most Mistakes Wins—Richard Farson
12. Live WOW!/Zappos creed … “WOW Customers”/eBay 14,000 employees, Amazon 20,000 employees, Craig’s List 30 employees: regardless of issue, Where’s your “Wild and Wooly Craig’s List Option”?/Final point in superstar adman Kevin Roberts’ Credo: “Avoid moderation!”
13. EXCELLENCE is a personal choice … not an institutional choice!
EXCELLENCE is not an “aspiration”—it’s the next five minutes!
13A. EXCELLENCE. Always. If not EXCELLENCE, What?
If not EXCELLENCE Now, When?