08/8/17

Graduation — CEO Coach

Big Red Car here in the ATX in a grayish, cool day. A great day for a ride in a convertible!

So, I’ve been in CEO coaching mode for about five years now and there have been some great successes. Some failures, but way more successes.

CEO coaching assignments don’t last forever — neither does high school or college.

There comes a time when a CEO is best served by getting a different view of things or to just take a breather. Some CEOs finish their work and are ready to move. Other CEOs sell the company and no longer are CEOs.

The Big Red Car (actually The Boss, but I’m taking over the space in his head) has had all of the above.

Continue reading

08/6/17

Heads Up — CEO Shoptalk

Heads Up, Big Red Car? Really?

Big Red Car here on a muggy Sunday morning which is a little gray. We get the cooler temps in return for the grayness. Fair trade?

So, the Big Red Car, has spent the last couple of hours removing cast iron sinks from black granite countertops in anticipation of new countertops — Carrara marble — on Wednesday!

[Big Red Car’s vision of Hell is removing cast iron sinks (weigh 400 lbs) with a plastic putty knife and spit, bare hands.]

But, that’s not what we want to talk about, is it?

No, we want to talk about a CEO with his head down working his butt off. [You may re-gender the “his” to “her” at your leisure.]

Continue reading

08/2/17

Flying Solo — For CEOs Only, CEO Shoptalk

Flying solo, Big Red Car? Where did that come from?

Big Red Car here on a cool and gray ATX day. Only getting to 88F today, downright cool. Hot tub tonight for the BRC? Hell, yes!

OK, so there are a number of analogies between flying airplanes and startups — takeoff, reaching cruise, landing. Startup, scale, exit?

One of the most apt analogies is the idea of FLYING SOLO.

Me, the Big Red Car, and the Bonanza with the cross country tip tanks hanging talking aviation v startup mojo. Yeah, I’m looking pretty damn RED.

In life, one doesn’t receive power, one TAKES power. Think about that for a second. Flying solo is about taking power.

Continue reading

07/31/17

Accumulate Then Share

We strivers are Heaven bent on securing wealth and wisdom. No or yes?

Big Red Car here still under the glow of an excellent sermon yesterday at church. The sermon giver (not the regular guy) was dynamic and entertaining. He left me with a very good lesson — which is why I go to church in the first place, right?

So, here it is — in the game of life, there is nothing wrong with accumulating wealth, wisdom. We are supposed to do just that. With me so far?

What is also true is that we are supposed to share it thereafter. That’s it. All there is. Right there.

First, we accumulate wealth and wisdom.

Then, we share it with our families and the world.

Continue reading

07/28/17

Startup ideas — where do they come from?

Startup ideas, Big Red Car? Huh?

Big Red Car here on a sunny Texas day. On Earth as it is in Texas and it’s going to be 105F today, y’all. Hell, that’s not even hot anymore, is it? Hey, Mother Nature, bring it. Take your best shot.

The Big Red car will be taking some quiet pool time this afternoon.

So where do business ideas come from, you ask? [I know you didn’t ask, but I have to bang out a blog post, so go along with it, please?]

Every startup has to come up with a hypothesis to justify their existence. How does one do that?

Today, the Big Red Car works its mojo with you and helps ‘splain a framework for you to think about.

Continue reading

07/21/17

Risk — A Four Letter Word, CEO Shoptalk

Today, we talk RISK, y’all. It is a four letter word and it can be profane, if you let it.

Big Red Car here on a sunny, Texas day which will give rise to a 103F temperature during which the BRC will be hanging in the pool, floating.

OK, so today we talk about risk. Risk is what drives startups. When you overcome a risk, you wander into the Winner’s Circle and collect your winnings at the mythical PAYWINDOW.

But, what is risk? Risk is different to different people. If you are a green, first time founder/CEO, then everything is risky after you have tied your shoes (the reason why new CEOs should wear slip-ons).

If you are a fifth time, serial entrepreneur, then your view of risk is different.

Continue reading

05/20/17

CEOs — Doing Tough Things Shoptalk

No tough things for a Big Red Car today, just chores.

Big Red Car here on a big day for chores, accumulated, undone chores. Bah humbug!

Before we head to do our chores, how about a bit of shoptalk for CEOs?

Being a CEO is a great job. Don’t listen to the hair-shirt-of-the-month club and their “it’s lonely, so lonely at the top.”

But, if you’re going to be a CEO, you have to do tough stuff sometimes.

Italy 2010 Computer 020

What seems tough the first time, isn’t tough the third time and when you do tough stuff, you get used to and comfortable with doing tough stuff.

Continue reading

05/16/17

CEO Currency — Getting Paid

CEO currency, Big Red Car?

Big Red Car here on a brightening Austin morning, y’all. On Earth as it is in Texas!

So, The Boss gets a call from a CEO pal and they get into a chat. Chat takes a turn toward the philosophical.

CEO sayeth, “I need to get paid.”

The Boss says, “Have I ever shared with you my views on CEO currency?”

“No, but something tells me that’s about to change. Bring it.”

Continue reading

04/26/17

Leadership Style — CEO Shop Talk

Leadership style or cattle today? Hmmm, which one?

Big Red Car here on one of those Texas days that makes you want to get on a horse and herd cattle up the trail, cross the Red River into the Indian Territory, and kick up your heels at a dance hall in Abilene, Kansas.

IMG_1658

Listen, Big Red Car, I am not going to Abilene, Kansas. I like it right here. Go away, Big Red Car. Notice the lovely earrings. Cattle are controlled by numbers and they are assets on the hoof.

Maybe not.

OK, so I wrote a blog post a while ago about finding your “authentic” leadership style. I was talking to some CEOs (me, the Big Red Car, not that other guy, The Boss) and we got on the subject of leadership style. Everybody got hung up on the word “authentic.” Haha, it was funny.

Finding Your Authentic Leadership Style <<< read this

Continue reading

04/14/17

Vision — Selling and Living the Vision

Vision, Big Red Car?

Big Red Car here on a gloomy and threatening Texas morning in the ATX, which is still a great place to be even if there is thunder on the horizon. On Earth as it is in Heaven. [Haha, On Earth as it is in TEXAS! Were you paying attention?]

The Boss has been at this CEO coaching thing for about five years now. During that time period, he’s worked with a lot of CEOs and C suite potentates. Like all things, folks approach life and the business of CEOing in different ways and have different outcomes.

The Boss has told a very small number of CEOs — “This doesn’t look like it’s going to work.”

There has never been a single CEO with whom The Boss has had that conversation who has been surprised. Most of them came to him with their bags packed and The Boss told them they were right and discussed how to wind things up correctly.

The Boss is likely to be more optimistic than a troubled CEO because he has seen CEOs turn things around. When you have seen lead made into gold, you begin to think anyone can do it.

That is, unfortunately, not true. But, there is a common denominator amongst those who do and today we talk about that.

Continue reading