I recently sat down to conduct an interview with author Mike Paton about his book entitled “Get A Grip” which is the companion to the bestselling book “Traction”  We discuss both books in this interview, because the content  of “Get A Grip compliments the content in “Traction”.

If you are like most entrepreneurs your daily life is filled with new challenges and opportunities.  It is not an easy job to juggle everything and keep your sanity.  I personally know because I am an entrepreneur and I have worked with hundreds of visionaries with similar challenges .  What I appreciate about “Get A Grip” is that the book provides the reader with tools and practices which if followed will make their life simpler and more efficient.

An important point that Mike Paton makes during our interview , is that many visionaries/entrepreneurs don’t have an integrator in their business.  So just what is an integrator?  This is someone who compliments the visionaries role by who’s role is to guide, direct the organization while seizing the opportunities.

The integrators role is to analyze the P&L, remove obstacles, work on legal and compliance issues and overall handle the daily operations of the business.  A visionary can not operate their business without an integrator.   Now while this may sound obvious to many of you reading this, believe me many businesses have not identified who the integrator is, or they don’t have one and this can lead to chaos.  The visionary is not the right person to be playing this kind of role, nor do they usually have the business acumen for the role of a integrator.

Mike spoke about the Six Key Components  and  the philosophy of EOS Worldwide the company behind both books.  Mike stated that “First is that there is a “Vision” shared by all in the organization, Second is that of “People” putting the right people in the right seats. Third, track the “Issues” keep an issues list. Forth, is Traction to keep momentum you need to have meetings that Mike refers to as “Rocks”, Fifth is Process that is the documentation followed by all.   Sixth and lastly is Data, keep a scorecard and measure the progress of the organization in the critical areas.”

If you are really interested in simplifying your business and being provided with great tools and techniques I highly recommend reading “Get A Grip” and “Traction” both great books on business growth and organization.

To learn more about the processes and tools discuss in “Get a Grip” please click here to be directed to the EOS Worldwide website.

I hope you enjoy this great interview with Mike Paton, author and EOS Worldwide Integrator.

 

I really love business books that provide value to the reader, and this book “Rocket Fuel” is an easy to read book that is chalk full of value.

In my interview with author Mark C. Winter we explore one of the most important realizations by successful entrepreneurs and that if you want to develop a business it takes someone in the passenger seat, and that person is called an Integrator.  An “Integrator” compliments a “Visionary” and the right combination of these two people is imperative for the success of any business.

What you will learn by reading “Rocket Fuel” is that “Visionaries” have certain characteristics as do “Integrators”. When each person knows and plays their role in the organization you obtain “Rocket Fuel” as the book suggests.

Mark also discusses with me something he refers to as the “Accountability Chart”.  This is not just a normal organizational chart, the “Accountability Chart” helps you define the functions of the organization but to compliment that is defines the five (5) major roles of each of the people in the organization.  When you accomplish this task, it make everything much clearer and allows for leadership team to function with clear lines of communication.

What I appreciate most about “Rocket Fuel” and Mark C. Winters is the fact that all the techniques and tools outlined in the the book are tried and true tools.  Mark’s co-author Gino Wickman is the founder of EOS (Entrepreneur Operating System) out of Detroit Michigan.  EOS Worldwide provides the reader with amazing free resources as well as an opportunity to hire a business coach called an Implementer.

If you want to learn more about Rocket Fuel please click here to be directed to the book website, if you want to learn more about EOS Worldwide please click here to be directed to their website.  

I particularly enjoyed this animated YouTube Video titled “Why Entrepreneurial Companies Need a Visionary and an Integrator.”  I hope you enjoy my interview with Mark C. Winters.

 

I don’t think that there is an entrepreneur on the face of the planet that doesn’t understand the challenges of starting-up a new company. Most startups are faced with a myriad of issues, not to mention one of the biggest issues of finding capital to drive the new venture forward.

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Hap Klopp the founder of North Face, about his new book entitled “Almost-12 Electric Months Chasing A Silicon Valley Dream“. Our interview is a must listen too for those who are in business, and especially if you might be seeking funding for your new venture. His book tells the story about the issues that a company by the name of “Ardica” in the Silicon Valley had in finding funds, and the dynamics of the personalities working in the business. Hap, was the marketing director and was on the board of directors of Ardica. It is a wonderfully told story about a group of very bright engineers attempting to revolutionize the energy business, and in the process finding obstacles at almost every intersection partially due to the disfunction of the organization and the other as a result of a cash burn rate that was exceeding income.

I hope you will take the time to listen to this great interview with Hap Klopp about his new book “Almost-12 Electric Months Chasing A Silicon Valley Dream.” If you want more information about Hap please click here to be linked to a great article from the Stanford Business School.  You can also learn more about Ardica by clicking here to visit their website.

 

Leadership, it is a hot topic these days.  If you look inside businesses most organizations are looking for good leaders.

In my recent interview with author Scott Edinger we discuss his new book entitled “The Hidden Leader’.  Scott has been working with leaders for years developing the best and the brightest.  In his his new book we discuss the characteristics that he finds in all good leaders, and frequently these hidden leaders are overlooked by the management of the organization.

There are probably many people you can think of that are hidden leaders within your organization.  Most of these hidden leaders have amazing interpersonal skills,  strong values, high levels of integrity, focus on results and the customer.  They have already developed the traits and characteristics of a leader, and have not officially been given the title.  If you want to learn more about discovering and developing the greatness within your organization I recommend listening to my interview with Scott Edinger the author of “The Hidden Leader“.

If you would like to view Scott’s website just click here, or you can connect with him via Twitter by clicking the link.  I hope you enjoy this great interview with Scott Edinger.

The new book Holacracy-The New Management System for a Rapidly Changing World is a book that will get anyone in business thinking about how to organize their company.  As a matter of fact, many major companies have embraced Brian Robertson’s Holacracy System including the forward thinking organization Zappos.

In my interview with Brian we take an in-depth look into how to design an organization with this new management model.  Holacracy is a combination of individual accountability, team transparency, and flexible, face-paced tactical meetings to help in creating greater levels of efficiency, adaptability and productive operations.  Holacracy also develops absolute habits of making commitments about when you will deliver a particular project or action.  For instance in tactical meetings you capture next action, but do not attach deadlines or commitment to them.  You might be asking why?  Committing to deadlines has downsides and obscures a more dynamic, reality-based approach.  Brian states that by accepting the next action item in your role, is by definition making the commitment to continuously track the action, and to consciously do the action as soon as it becomes the most important item among your possible actions.

I encourage you to listen, take notes and learn from Brian Robertson a man on a mission to transform how organization run, and how the cultures are transformed.  He has a fascinating approach and one that is worth your investigation of time to understand.  If you want more information about Holacracy you can click here to be directed to his book site, or click here to be directed to Holacracy.org.

Every year for the last six years I have been attending the Natural Products West Expo in Anaheim, CA.  This event is a blast, loaded with new food products that are designed to be healthy and nutritious.  My intention in going to this event as a press person is to find up and coming organizations and authors that have a great products and cause for being in business.

This year I felt that I hit the jackpot.  I happen to come across the KIND Healthy Snacks.  I know that almost anyone reading this blog entry has heard of KIND, but do you know the story behind the organization?  I know that I didn’t, and recently had the honor of interviewing Daniel Lubetzky the founder about his new book ” Do the KIND Thing“.

Daniel has a fascinating personal story, but more importantly he has developed an organization, that is passionate about their purpose and committed to making this planet a better place to live.  Daniel is not only socially responsible entrepreneur, but really a KIND person fostering acts of KINDNESS.

While building a large organization like KIND Healthy Snacks is not an easy feat, Daniel has done it with persistence and the ten (10) tenants which make up the foundation of the company.  In my interview we discuss everything from this influence his father had on him who as a survivor from the concentration camps and the Holocaust, to his failures in business which gave him the grit and determination to keep going in times of adversity.

empathetic, understanding and compassionate toward others–a quality that is becoming harder and harder to find.  “Do the KIND Thing” is more than a book about business, it is a book designed to get the reader to understand what it takes to mold your into one of service, and in so doing reap the rewards and share in the profits–all kinds of profits.

If you would like to learn more about Daniel Lubetzky the author of “Do the KIND Thing” please click here to be directed to their website.  Or you can click here to be directed to the organization’s Facebook page.  I hope you enjoy this great interview with author Daniel Lubetzky.

I recently interviewed author Ron Friedman PhD the author of a new book entitled “The Best Place to Work, The Art and Science of Creating an Extraordinary Workplace”.  As many of you might be aware the levels of engagement in the US workforce is abysmal with levels of disengagement at about 71%.  So just why do we have such an amazingly high rate of disengagement from employees?

The answer to this question and many more can be found in Ron” new book ” The Best Place to Work“.  Ron spent years studying the best places to work, he interviewed people and heard stories. He researched motivation, creativity, management, behavioral economics, neuroscience and combined this into his new book.  In my interview with Ron he provides insights into what is required to create the “Best Place to Work.”  It is not an easy formula for their are so many factors that affect how people perform and engage at work.  Autonomy, Purpose, Meaning, Fun, Play are just a few of the many elements of the workplace formula that Ron and I discuss in our interview.

I know that you will find my interview with author Ron Friedman to be enlightening and give you new perspective on what companies are doing and can do to develop environments in the workplace that foster  more productivity, creativity and innovation.

I hope you enjoy my interview with Ron and please check out his book website for the book by clicking here, you can also follow him on Twitter, and learn about his consulting organization called Ignite 80 by clicking the link.

 

You might be familiar with all the buzz around something called the “Business Model Canvas”.  There are currently three books in the series which started with “Business Model Generation” then “Business Model You” now a new book ” Value Proposition Design“.  So why the interest from the business communities in this interesting way of developing a business model.  Simply put, it is engaging, inclusive ,compelling and it works.

Authors Alex Osterwalder, Yves Pingeur, Greg Bernarda and Alan Smith are the dynamic team behind the business model canvas.  I recently had the pleasure of having a dialogue with Alex Smith the brains behind the book designs, which I might add are a big reason for the success of the books.

During our dialogue we discuss the key elements in creating a great value for customers, we also get into the steps necessary to create the value proposition canvas: Customer Profile, Value Map and Fit all  extremely important considerations in the developing a any new product design.  Alan and his colleagues refer to gain creators, and pain relievers as one of the most important elements in developing great designs.

While this all might sound simple it is daunting to create a new product, test it and know that you are creating something that is really needed and wanted by your customers.  Developing something in a vacuum is crazy,  where your perception of what will relieve your customers pains is exactly that a perception and not the reality of the situation.  Developing then testing your product is so important, I speak from experience I have developed a few products and testing is so important so you can gain feedback.

Alan and his team have recently released a cloud based software system allowing teams to collaborate on developing a business model canvases, it is called Strategyzer.  In my humble opinion I have never seen software as simple as Strategyzer, providing results in minutes.  If you work with a team and you are in the process of developing a new product or service I would highly recommend checking out this amazing new cloud based software.

I encourage you to listen closely to Alan Smith as he guides the listener to a better understanding of Business Model Canvas and Value Proposition Design.  If you want to just click on the links provided below that will take you to the related websites associated with Value Proposition Design.

Value Proposition Design

Strategyzer

I am certain that the talk around the water cooler doesn’t default to leadership in this country, but I am certain that it is a topic of discussion more than we think.  It seems like everywhere we turn we see leaders falling from grace due to improprieties in their judgement and or just not doing an adequate job.  What is happening?  Is there a lack of competent leaders with great skills and strong emotional intelligence.

In my recent interview with author Jeffrey Krames we discuss his new book entitled ” Lead with Humility-12 Leadership Lessons from Pope Francis”.   What is it about the new Pope that is attracting lost Catholics back to the church, and his acceptance by the congregation at one of the highest in history.  According to Jeffrey Krames Pope Francis possess amazing leadership skills such as  1) Leading with Humility, he states that authentic humility empowers leaders like no other leadership quality.  How this translates for business leaders is never use you position of leadership for selfish reasons, and make yourself accessible to your employees.   2) Smell Like Your Flock: which means to immerse yourself deeply into whatever group you lead to aspire to lead, in a meaningful way.

I know you are going to thoroughly enjoy my interview with author Jeffrey Krames, you will also learn more about the traits and qualities that Pope Francis possess that make him one of the greatest leaders in modern history of the Catholic Church.

To learn more about Jeffrey Krames and his other books please click here to learn more, you can also learn more about the book by clicking here to be directed to the Facebook landing page.