This is Safari Paul coming to you from South Africa where I just got to witness my first kill!
As we watched from our Land Rover, a Mama Cheetah came out of nowhere and pounced on a weak Impala. Swiftly, and with precision, the Cheetah accomplished her goal to kill the Impala. It was all over in less than 15 seconds but left an impression on me - Survival of the Fittest is a real thing on the African Plains. Most animals have to decide how to allocate their time between eating, procreating, protecting their turf and not getting killed by predators. Making the wrong allocation of time, not being one of the fittest or taking on too much risk (straying from the herd) dramatically increases the chances of living a short life.
There are significant parallels between my African Safari experience and businesses that die or suffer during recessions, self-inflicted wounds from bad decisions, lack of strategic focus or carrying too many C-Players. Jonathan Slain and I have put together a recession readiness assessment (www.recession.com/ready) that you can take for free to see where you stand vs. others in the business survival of the fittest. If you discover you’re the Impala (score of under 70 on the assessment) and you are at risk of a predator pouncing on you, look into buying our Rock the Recession workbook which will walk you through how to get ready. If you are already a Cheetah (score over 70), this workbook will teach you how to pounce more effectively during the coming downturn!
Are you in denial about when a recession will hit?
David Rosenberg, Chief Economist & Strategist at Gluskin Sheff (frequently on CNBC) recently tweeted:
“I can’t see a recession!” “Where’s the recession!” I can’t tell you how much I hear this every single day. It’s like saying “I can’t smell the carbon monoxide.” By the time you “see the recession”, your head’s sliced off (Yikes).
From what I witnessed, I chose to be a Cheetah in the next recession, the Rock the Recession workbook is your guide to preparing to pounce!
P.S. - Put an African Safari on your bucket list! If you haven’t gone it’s is a life changing experience.
Being successful is hard enough without putting a self-induced finger in your eye. Often when companies make bad decisions, it’s not actually the company: It comes back to you, the CEO. Although, I ran a very successful company for 15 years and had a once-in-a-lifetime exit, I made three mistakes I wish I could take back. On the other hand, my lessons learned are now advice I can pass along to you so you can improve your decision-making ability.
One of the things a company needs to do well to stay in business over the long term is constantly improve. If everyone in your company improved their productivity by just 5% a year, the compounding of that alone would give you a cost advantage vs. your competition. The question is, how do you get everyone on board and willing to improve their productivity?
When you’ve done the work ahead of time with your exit planning process, you’ll be ready should the decision be made to sell the business. However, you likely aren’t sure what to expect when that time comes. Below is a recap of my experience as CEO of Roth Bros, Inc., when we decided to sell the business. Although it is business, it’s also emotional, and it can be a long, drawn-out process finding the right buyer and making the sale happen. In that way, it’s much like getting married.
When I was CEO of Roth Bros., Inc., and we made the decision to sell the company, we opted for a strategic rather than a financial buyer. After the sale, I was still involved with the company for another three years. That time was a challenge I did not fully expect. To prepare you for the after-the-sale experience as CEO, I offer my story.
As President of Roth, a national service contracting firm, I thought we had all the boxes checked for running a great business. Believing you're good without knowing if you really are is a scary thing. Yes, we were profitable and growing but could we perform better? How could we improve if I didn't know where we weren't best in class?Read More...
Many CEOs who run contracting or facility service companies are much stronger with the technical aspect of what their company does vs. the financial aspect. I was just the opposite. I grew up in the financial world. In fact, before running Roth Bros. Inc., a national service contracting firm, I was CFO of a $500 million company. Therefore, I am uniquely qualified to provide insight into how you can know the numbers that matter in order to successfully run your company.
CEO coaches, like coaches of athletes, can help you dramatically improve your performance (and therefore business) in a short period of time. I do not know of a competitive athlete without a coach. Athletes who are at the top of their game all have coaches. And business is a lot like athletics.Read More...