04/19/18

CEO Shoptalk – Setting Standards

There is much to be learned about setting standards by looking at how successful companies do just that.

OMG, it is so damn beautiful in Austin By God Texas, y’all.

Today, we talk about CEOs setting standards taking our inspiration from the recent Amazon shareowner letter which revealed that Amazon Prime had surpassed 100,000,000 members (Big Red Car is one of them).

Here is a link to the Amazon Shareowner 2017 Letter. Read it after you finish this post.

There are a number of interesting things to focus on, but today, I want to focus on the issue of setting standards.

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02/13/18

Reading – CEO Shoptalk

One of the keys to personal development and success in business is reading, y’all.

Big Red Car here on a early Tuesday morning (40F headed to 49F and cloudy) with a lot to do today, but I will find the time to read for an hour today without fail.

Reading is the difference between being the King of the Jungle or a cub. Not bad to be a cub, but you, dear reader, want to be the King of the Jungle, don’t you?

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10/26/17

Exit Interview — CEO Shoptalk

Exit interview, y’all?

Hello, dear readers. It is 66F here in Austin By God Texas. It is clear, crisp, and lovely. It is sweater weather.

So, the last couple of posts we have discussed how to fire and layoff employees.

When you part company with an employee, a useful exercise is conducting an exit interview. An exit interview may provide a soon-to-be-former employee an opportunity to harness their candor and tell you some things they might not if they were dependent upon you for their next paycheck.

The question is how to conduct the exit interview?

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10/14/17

Principles and practices – CEO Shoptalk

Principles, Big Red Car? How about a Texas v Oklahoma prediction instead?

Big Red Car here on a cloudy Saturday waiting for the Texas v Oklahoma football game to start. We light it up at 2:30 PM Texas time.

I used to go to the game in Dallas for about a third of a century. Then #1 son took his show on the road and I stopped going. Sigh.

Now, I am going to watch it on the telly. But, I can get snacks all the time. Unlimited beef jerky, the thick kind. Also, Orangina. Lots of orangina.

So, today we talk about the way a CEO guides their company to the Promised Land. The Promised Land is a self-defined concept, but it is whatever you want it to be.

We talked about the difference between firings and layoffs last week.

Layoffs — CEO Shoptalk

Firing People — CEO Shoptalk

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10/11/17

Layoffs — CEO Shoptalk

Layoffs are never fun. Here’s how to think about and do it.

So, it is gorgeous in the ATX — high 0f 78F, currently sunny and 67F. On Earth as it is in Texas! A day to eat outside.

So, we spoke earlier about firing folks for cause, remember?

Firing People — CEO Shoptalk

Today, we follow up on that by talking about layoffs. Layoffs are “not for cause” terminations, while firing people is “for cause.” Know the distinction. Either way, it is a hard day at Slippery Rock when you have to fire or layoff folks.

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09/28/17

Critique — CEO Shoptalk

Everybody needs a good critique, right? Ahhh, criticism is the breakfast of champions, no?

Big Red Car here on a cloudy Texas day. Only going to be in the low 80s today. Time to start thinking about the swimming pool, eh? Haha, Hell no. Swimming today, y’all.

So when you’re a CEO you will receive and give critiques. Makes sense, no? Performance appraisal — feedback — is the breakfast of champions.

Today, I want to get your mind right about how to receive this when it is you being critiqued. Ready?

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09/23/17

Facts & Strategy

Facts are nice things. Not as nice as a root beer float, but nice.

Big Red Car here on a cool Texas morning with the Fahrenheit set at 72. Hello, Fall!

So, I am in the midst of helping a bunch of CEOs either craft their first crack at strategy or to revise something they did some time ago.

Writing strategy is an exercise in storytelling. It is fiction. It is the future and all writing about the future is fiction. It is fiction you intend to make come true, but it is still fiction.

It is, however, based on facts.

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07/26/17

Training — Baron von Steuben Style for CEOs

Training again, Big Red Car? Really?

OK, dear reader, we will have one last crack at training for the CEO. Promise.

Today, we discuss Baron von Steuben. You know the Baron, right? Drillmaster of Valley Forge, no?

Get this book by Paul Lockhart. Great read. Been around for some time and it is a great book to inspire a CEO.

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05/25/17

Courage — CEO Shoptalk

Courage is quiet. It is unassuming in its moment.

Big Red Car here in the ATX where it is that time of the year when it’s 65F at dawn and this afternoon it will be in the low 90s. Those first warm days are a blessing, but it’s almost June and it’s almost summer, so bring it, Mother Nature. Hit me with your best shot!

Today, we talk about courage. The dictionary would have you believe that courage is the ability to face danger or difficulty without fear; or, the ability to act in accordance with one’s beliefs or convictions in spite of criticism.

Not buying it, y’all. Courage is the ability to act despite the fact you are wracked with fear. It does not vanquish fear. It acts in spite of fear.

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