Saturday, January 17, 2009

Jack Smith, of Collaborative Strategies, Inc., a World President's Organization member: 10 Thoughts for Business Leaders in 2009

Ten Thoughts For Business Leaders in 2009

1. Face, understand, and share the brutal facts (including the realistic worse case).

2. Be bold, (i.e., wake up every morning and ask: What is the boldest, most aggressive action and/or decision I could make today?).

3. Focus, protect, and plan around your strengths (e.g., key people, capabilities, and customers).

4. Prune everything that is weak, marginal, or unprofitable.

5. Have a six month supply of cash on hand or in clear view (at a minimum).

6. Raise and/or reset your expectations of employees and suppliers (e.g., hours worked, breadth/depth of responsibility, performance metrics, terms, etc.). Note: Use these difficult times to re-orientate your thinking and make your business stronger.

7. Communicate with and inspire/energize your people and your customers (e.g., positive recognition costs nothing and your ability to help absorb anxiety is greater than you think). Note: Get out of your office and on the phone!

8. Don’t think you have to go through it all alone. Most of the very successful CEO’s I know place considerable importance on having people outside of the firm that they can confide in.

9. Know that the years 2011, 2012, and beyond are likely to be some of the best years yet for your business in terms of growth and profitability (if you manage effectively in 2009).

10. Money has never been and will never determine who you are. You are…how you treat your family, friends, employees, business relationships, and what you do for charity, community, and our country.

Lastly, a favorite quotes for these times:
“We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.” -Bertha Calloway

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