Looking for Opportunities for the New Year

January 6th, 2015
look for opportunities

A brand new year is the logical time to look for business growth opportunities. The trick is in spotting the right chances and acting on them.

It seems like a good idea to look for opportunities to grow your business, elevate your business performance and/or dramatically increase the value of your business, right? Of course! Yet the question remains: How?

I’ve found that identifying opportunities can be quite simple yet is rarely done. It requires a few key traits: 1) The power of observation – do you notice what is going on around you? Do you notice changes?  Are your employees moping around one minute and energetic again the next week?  What changed?  2) The right priorities – you are most likely working hard, but are you wasting effort? I find that this is a common problem. Take a step back to make sure you are working on the correct items. Are they the ones that will help you achieve your strategy? Are they urgent and have a significant return on investment? Or are they related to who is shouting the loudest?  3) Spotting trends – are you tracking key performance indicators? Which metrics will tell you if you are making progress? Who knew it would be so hard just to make sure you are making progress on items that will “move the needle” in the right direction on your main objectives! I find that my clients often times are progressing but they might be expending a lot of effort to barely move the needle at all on the final metric. It isn’t tragic but you must identify the issue and adjust immediately!

What can you do to improve these three key traits?  The more proficient you become, the more of an eagle eye you will develop. 

Continue reading on how to strengthen your Eagle Eye:

What is Eagle Eye Strategic Focus? 

Are You Working on the Right Priorities?


The Value of Relationships

January 5th, 2015

supply chainOn the 2nd day of 2015, I’m reminded of the power of relationships. I just finished a lunch with a wonderful, 20-year friend and former colleague, and this topic is top of mind. What could be more important in our personal and business lives? The holidays tend to bring this topic up as we get together with long-lost relatives (or celebrate remotely with them via Facebook, the phone or with tools like Skype), family, friends and colleagues. Actually those who have worked this week might have strengthened relationships with co-workers as there are typically so few people working that it provides a “common ground”.

As we go into the New Year, we all have plans, goals, resolutions and the like (whether verbalized or in our mind). Shouldn’t maintaining and strengthening relationships be at the top of our list? Who would you call if your car broke down? How about if you needed a last minute shipment from a key supplier? Or that last piece of data to fill out a potential contract with a customer? One of your relationships!

One tip to implement this week:

Relationships do not cost a cent; instead, the cost is in time and focus. What can you do to make your key relationships know they are appreciated? How about you pick up the phone and call one person each day next week to let them know they are appreciated and to provide one idea you think might help them? Not hard or time consuming yet powerful. It means you need to put yourself in someone else’s shoes and call with the thought process to bring them value. I guarantee your 2015 will be off to a great start. 

Looking for more ideas to keep your supply chain connected? Access more tips and resources on my blog. And keep connected by subscribing to my newsletter and email feed of “I’ve Been Thinking…”