03/28/17

Board of Directors

Big Red Car here waiting for Saturday and the Final Four contests. OK, but I am getting a lot of questions about all things pertinent to a Board of Directors and how to run board meetings and how to deal with board members.

We’ve talked about this before, so let me give you some frames of reference.

Know that I’ve stolen all of this from The Boss who had a lot of boards, board members, and board meetings in thirty-three years of CEOing.

Here it is for your use.

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03/28/17

Lobster Roll v Lobster Sandwich

Big Red Car here thinking about lobster and counting down the hours until Saturday when the Final Four will tangle and the Carolina Tarheels will emerge triumphant and be headed to the Big Game. Hook ’em Heels!

So, The Boss likes lobster. There is a lot of lobster in the ATX even though we don’t have a seacoast.

You can find him enjoying lobster from time to time at one of his favorite places: Barton Creek Country Club (the little deck behind the golf pro shop, shhh, a big secret), Perla’s (just the power of money over seafood), Red Lobster (largest buyer of fresh lobster on the planet and the cheese biscuits?), or Garbo’s in north Austin.

Ooops, forgot Clarkes. How did that happen?

Lobster club

This is the lobster club sandwich at Barton Creek Country Club served on the little back deck behind the golf clubhouse. It is a secret place to go after church on Sundays. [Do NOT tell anyone.]

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03/27/17

Packaging and Bird Dog Bay — For CEOs Only

Packaging and Bird Dog Bay — bet you didn’t see that coming?

Big Red Car here on the day after the Tarheels’ victory over Kentucky sending them to the Final Four. Final Four, baby! Is this a great country or what?

OK, so the topic for today is PACKAGING — like the Four P’s (Product, Pricing Promotion, Placement).

[Uhhhhh, Big Red Car, “packaging” is not one of the Four P’s. You did notice that, right?]

Sometimes, people can be so damn annoying. Have you noticed that?

As I was saying, packaging is important. It can be the hook between an eye catching product and an impulse buy.

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Bird Dog Bay shirt packaged for shipment and as received by The Boss in the ATX. Nice packaging?

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03/27/17

Writing and One Story

Writing, One Story, and short stories.

Big Red Car here in the ATX celebrating the Tarheels victory against Kentucky last night. Is this a great country or what? Hook ‘Em Heels!

While waiting for the games to start, I read. I read short stories from One Story.

One Story prints them in cute, colorful publications which it sells for $2.50/each.

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One Story — a new short story every month for the rest of time.

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03/26/17

Deadlines — Moving the Goalpost (CEOs Only)

Deadlines, Big Red Car?

Big Red Car here on a spectacular Sunday morning. The Boss is enroute to church, so I can finally use the damn computer.

So, here it is, y’all. We are going to talk about deadlines.

You will recall I ragged you pretty good about creating SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time Constrained) goals.

OK, so you see the part about “time constrained?” That is the deadline, the goal post.

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03/25/17

J & H Upholstery — Rehab Your Leather

Big Red Car here in a sunny ATX with the good vibe of the Carolina Tarheels making it to the Elite Eight. Gotta love those Heels. OK, now they play … Kentucky, who beat them 103-100 in the regular season, but that “regular” season was a long time ago. I thought Kentucky looked fabulous beating UCLA.

So, today the Big Red Car is keeping company with a slightly oldish 2006 GMC Yukon, which The Boss received for free. Free is good. Free is also complicated.

Free — after $2,250 worth of upholstery repair, fluid changes, A/C work, new brakes, shocks, bit of power steering work — is not always inexpensive. Still, let us not look a gift horse in the mouth as it rides like silk and will be a great road trip car.

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03/23/17

The Power of Monkey See – Monkey Do — For CEOs Only

Monkey See, Monkey Do — Big Red Car, have you lost our mind?

Big Red Car here on another spectacular Texas day in the making. On Earth as it is in Texas, y’all. [Does that irritate you?]

So, The Boss is talking to a newish CEO and they get on the subject of performance appraisals. The Boss was a CEO for 33 years and in that time period appraised a lot of performances.

The subject isn’t really about performance appraisals. The subject is about using easy tools to do most of the work. To find things that work and mimic the Hell out of them. To stop re-inventing the wheel. Sheesh!

[Normally, the Big Red Car will say, “Your generation didn’t invent sex or business, dear reader.” But, today, I will not.]

Performance appraisal is one of those subjects that rears its ugly head every few years and somebody adds a twist (360-degree performance, full moon appraisals being one of the most recent) which is supposed to make already sliced bread even better. [Big Red Car, a lot of tired ass cliches today. WTF?]

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03/22/17

Reckless Endangerment — Travis County Sheriff’s Office v ICE

Bit early in the ATX, but the Big Red Car has to tell you about the reckless behavior of our Travis County Sheriff, Sally Hernandez as it relates to ICE and not honoring detainers. Travis County is the home county of the city of Austin By God Texas. Austin is sometimes referred to as The People’s Republic of Austin.

On 1 February 2017, Sheriff Hernandez announced her new policy of not cooperating with ICE (US Immigration and Customs Enforcement) as it relates to honoring certain (almost all) detainer requests.

This is on the forward edge of the battle area between the Federal government’s objective of deporting criminal aliens, thereby Making American Safe Again (couldn’t resist, sorry), and the sanctuary city movement.

Already, the State of Texas (in the person of Governor Greg Abbott) has taken action against Travis County and canceled state grants for veterans (amongst other worthy endeavors) to the tune of $1,500,000. Seems a small amount, but it is meaningful if you are one of those veterans impacted. [Full Disclosure: The Boss is a veteran and this really pisses him off.]

Bottom line: Our Sheriff is releasing criminals into Travis County. These criminals (charged with and/0r convicted of serious crimes)  would, otherwise, be deported to their country of origin.  Sheriff Hernandez’s actions, in failing to cooperate with ICE, are recklessly endangering the safety of Travis County citizens and Texans, in general.

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03/21/17

Employment Agreement Series One More Time

This post was made four years ago and is still relevant today. If you are a CEO, you need an Employment Agreement. Get one and consider the following information when you do.

Here are some blog posts on the issue of C Level Employment Agreements.  Click on each link to read the pertinent blog post.

The Design of Compensation Packages for C Level Execs and Senior Management

C Level Employment Agreement Provisions

C Level Employment Agreement — Position

 C Level Employment Agreement — Salary

C Level Employment Agreement — Benefits

C Level Employment Agreement — Short Term Incentive Compensation

C Level Employment Agreement — Long Term Incentive Compensation

C Level Employment Agreement — Compensation, Something Special

C Level Employment Agreement — Managing the At Will Employee Relationship

C Level Employment Agreement — Termination

C Level Employment Agreement — Severance Package

C Level Employment Agreement — Change of Control Provision

C Level Employment Agreement — Parting Shots

You can do this. I’m counting on you. But, hey, what the Hell do I really know anyway? I’m just a Big Red Car.cropped-LTFD-illust_300.png

03/20/17

Uber – Cultural Wheels Falling Off?

Big Red Car here on a slightly cloudy Texas day. It is a good day because The Boss’s North Carolina Tarheels prevailed while the wicked Dukies were defeated by the valiant South Carolina Gamecocks. Go to Hell, Duke. [The Heels didn’t exactly cover themselves in glory, but they won and they advance.]

Duke loses

Duke’s Grayson “Tripper” Allen catches a glimpse of the scoreboard which says: “Y’all are losers, Dukies.” OMG, is that sweet or what? [Full disclosure, the second the Tarheels are out of the Dance, the Big Red Car is all, “Go Duke!”]

So, “Uber Uber Uber alles, Uber alles in der Welt” is having a few cultural issues. Recognize them for what they are — cultural challenges which start at the top.

Cultures are defined by the VALUES of the top dog. Lots of folks want to believe that culture comes mythically from the Culture Fairy, but, alas, that is not so. The CEO (founder) defines the culture when he unpacks his values in his fancy new office.

Therein lies the problem at Uber. The top dog, one Travis Cordell Kalanick has some very questionable values. No, let’s not say that. Let’s explore what’s happening over there at Uber and let you decide. So, no judgmental nonsense from the Big Red Car. You decide.

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