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Archive for the tag “sustainability”

The top number 1 reason why people and companies fail


The top number 1 reason why people and companies fail Puzzled

The road to success does not have an intersection with the path of least resistance or the off ramp of what is popular. Yet, so many take the sugar rush of a quick fix. In the end they have made it so much tougher reaching a sustainable goal and therefore long lasting success.

Most enterprises will go out of their way generating profit at the end of each month in order to look good to their share and stake holders. In fact, whole goal and strategy sessions are designed on the simple premise to stay in the positive numbers.

The kicker is that the “easier” we make things the more complacency sets in, the greater the number of hidden agendas and blind spots there will be. The easier we try making it less we have to stretch and think out of the box. For instance, when we make financial success a goal – the goal – in itself watch what will happen. More promising but less popular and more costly solutions will not be thought of, or if they exist they will never be implemented. This all comes down to merely keeping it to the status quo and thus no longer allowing innovation and risk taking to occur. It is the opposite of what entrepreneurs would want to normally do and be like.

In the case of financial goals they should never be a goal by themselves, but rather the report card (measurement) as to how well everyone did. Do not get me wrong here. Of course there needs to be proper and prudent financial planning in any endeavor, but never ever take the quick route and use this tool in place of a solid vision, mission, and other goals that should describe your future way of being and doing.

Think of how little motivation can be derived of financial goals. That is so much different when you have you and your teams working solid goals that are inspiring because they involve curiosity, courage, risk, venturing into unknown territory, etc. Ultimately that is a lot of fun along the way because it fulfills a mission greater than the sum of all people and parts. So, do you want easy or long lasting success that ultimately leads to significance? Most of the times it may be less popular staying on a tough road, but that’s where you’ll find me. See you there.

Ralf

The worst case scenario is sometimes not what you think


In business most of us would think that the worst case scenario is when you open for business and do not get enough customers.  While that can be a huge problem, with a well-executed concept and your “why” in place the diametrically opposite thing can happen to you:  The worst case scenario is when you have success and you get all the customers and business that you want. 

You do not believe me?  Well, let’s go over a few case scenarios then. 

  1. Business is so great that you book orders in record numbers.  If you have to buy more equipment, need more people, need to make progress payments for long term delivery items, etc you can ran out of cash really quickly.  It gets tied up elsewhere and how about those customers that do not believe paying on time or ever? 
  2. You are a startup company and with few folks can do the impossible.  Ship on time and attract more business.  Everyone knows everything and the “why” (the entrepreneurial idea) is well known and applied by all of your folks.  Enter rapid growth into this equation and you will need to formalize processes and learn how to hire the best people. 
  3. In the event that you have partners and / or investors they can throw major monkey wrenches in your way.  What if they all of the sudden want to get out, sell out, or do something completely different with the earnings?  Money can change your best friends and definitely family overnight. 
  4. Success breeds success.  Ideas will start flowing how to refine things, do them differently and perhaps other things should be pursued.  While this is great, only a few good concepts and only ones with a tie in to your company’s purpose will get you anywhere – the rest are bunny trails that suck cash and manpower out of your organization. 
  5. Your business grew beyond expectations.  Now you are putting in more hours than ever.  It is no longer fun. Adding people adds overhead costs and it can take a while looking for people.  You are stuck in the muck. 

Before you even start with a project or a new business make sure to ponder what you and your organization’s purpose is.  If at all possible, think and then write about the vision and mission of this endeavor.  Yes, that is correct; no eyewash just good pieces of information that will later make it so much easier providing a shared picture with any employee later.  Generate goals and flesh them out with strategies and tactics.  Implement and execute your plan and follow it with almost ruthless accuracy.  It is tough to do that especially when business is fun and you enjoy working in the trenches every day.  If you fail to do this you are standing on proverbial railroad tracks and the freight train that will hit you soon is already headed your way. 

Ralf

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