03/6/17

Advice Redux — CEOs Only

Big Red Car here working on a few wire taps, wait, no I’m not. I’m getting ready to give y’all some free advice.

We talked about advice a lot in the past few years, but it’s probably alright to update our thinking just a little, why not?

So, CEOs need advice from time to time. Why, you ask? Because a lot of startup CEOs are in their twenties and do not have a deep font of life experience upon which to draw to develop their own thoughts. This is not fatal. This is just being young and being young is good. Most of the time.

Experience is expensive. Renting experience — advice — is cheaper. Plus, you can get someone who’s been a CEO for two or three decades to lend you their advice.

Big takeaway — get advice from someone who has actually been a CEO.

Not your dentist, your shrink, some accountant (unless it’s accounting advice), father-in-law (unless he’s an experienced CEO), not a lawyer (unless it’s legal advice), not a VC (unless it’s pitching or funding advice and even then someone who has been seated n your side of the table may be more helpful) — someone who has been a CEO.

Continue reading

11/23/16

Finish Strong

Finish strong, Big Red? [I like calling you Big Red rather than Big Red Car, seems so much more familiar and folksy, no?]

Big Red Car here on the strength of a trip to NYC to conduct recon on the comings and goings of our nation’s first capital. You did know that, right? NYC was our first capital.

So, The Boss is talking to several CEOs — brilliant persons all — and I (eavesdropper that I am) overhear a common lament: CEOs are struggling to find the finish line in the development of their products. This happens across the board whether it is a bit of software alchemy or a website or a product. Or, even, an organizational development, like hiring some more salespersons.

You have to force a finish line and you have to finish strong.

Big Red Car, can you ‘splain that, please?

Continue reading

11/21/16

Budgets 2017 — Get Back To Work, Y’all! Shop Talk

Budgets. Nothing says the holidays are coming like budgets. Budgets make the world go around.

Big Red Car here on a lovely, sunny Monday in the ATX. Ahhh, on Earth as it is in Texas!

So, the election has everybody off their schedule with their lamentations and celebrating.

But, what are you supposed to be doing, y’all?

Of course, you know, you’re supposed to be finalizing your 2017 budgets, Ms. Startup CEO.

Continue reading

09/5/16

Delegation — For CEOs Only

Delegation. Today we talk about delegation.

But, first, a weather report. It is a perfect day in the ATX because the Texas Longhorns beat the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame last night in a fabulous game decided in two overtimes. Go Horns! It is the start of the Shane Buechele era in Longhorn football but it was a great win all around. OK, that’s enough. Sorry. Hook ’em, Horns!

The ability of a CEO to delegate tasks effectively is a force multiplier and one of the most important skills a CEO can develop. It is a mechanical skill and today the Big Red Car is going to help you learn how to do it. It’s like being able to fly fish. A bit of local knowledge plus a ten-to-two cast and you are eating smoked trout whenever you want. Listen.

Continue reading

08/10/16

Board Meeting Agenda

Board Meeting Agenda? What is that Big Red Car?

Big Red Car here in the sunny ATX with the sun beaming down and making it hot, very hot. Like Gen Wm Tecumseh Sherman (America’s first home grown war criminal) said, “If I owned Hell and Texas, I’d live in Hell and rent out Texas!”

So, today, we continue talking shop about the board meeting.

Continue reading

04/23/16

Decisions Better Ones – For CEOs

Big Red Car here. Decisions, y’all. Decisions.

This is a post redux from the The Characteristics Traits and Skills of the Successful CEO — Decisionmaking post from some time earlier. I am running it again because I continue to see a number of CEOs who are struggling with forming and making decisions.

CEOs have a hard job which entails making a lot of decisions many of which they are making for the first time. Sorry, that’s the job you’ve chosen.

But it doesn’t have to be as hard as you make it. You can streamline it by taking a process approach to how you frame and make decisions. A better methodology will end up with better decisions and you will expend less energy and create less angst by having such a process at your fingertips.

Continue reading

04/12/16

Changing CEOs — What Is The Process?

Big Red Car here in the ATX waiting on another dawn and another great day cause this is Austin by God Texas. On Earth as it is in Texas!

So, today, we chat about the orderly change of command when you get a new CEO. This is really targeted on current CEOs and to be new CEOs.

Nobody ever talks about how CEOs hand companies over to new CEOs because it is often accomplished at the end of a plank when a CEO is unceremoniously deleted — no, I meant “fired” or “terminated” or sent to “pursue other interests.” No, I meant fired. Sorry.

It happens.

Continue reading

02/16/16

CEOs at the Nexus — For CEOs Only — Throwing Off the Winter Blues

Big Red Car here on a day when he could not come up with a good Google Adwords title for the post. Sorry.

But, hey, not to worry, going to be 85F today in the ATX. Ahhh, a Texas winter!

So, I’m eavesdropping on The Boss and a couple of his CEOs chattering about this and that and the subject comes to — “How does a CEO grab the company and shake them up a little when things are going fine? No crisis but needing a little shaking up? Throw off the winter blues?”

Continue reading