Poke the Box, Self-Development, Growth, Improvement, Business Mentoring, Business Coaching

Book Review: Poke The Box by Seth Godin

Want to give yourself a kick in the butt? Need  inspiration so you can move forward and create results? Poke the Box by Seth Godin is book to help you that person who needs that little push to get them going again.

When you look at the cover of the book, it asks you ‘When was the last time you did something for the first time?’  That caused me to reflect when was the last time I tried something new? When was the last time I felt uncomfortable? As an entrepreneur, it gets harder to become uncomfortable because it is a common feeling.

The largest take away from Poke The Box is the separation of people into 2 general groups.

Poke The Box Do-er:

Some people are programmed to take action. They map out future  activities or not, they ask for help or not, but in the end, they do what is required. These people are not dreamers, happy with the status quo, or lazy. They want to get their fingers dirty, build something, and leave an impact.

Poke The Box Dreamer:

Some people would rather sit back and think, think, and think some more. Maybe they like status quo. Many people don’t like change. Change is not something that we do the best naturally. It is also much easier to dream then to get up and create change.

Where would you but yourself? As a Do-er or Dreamer?

Have an awesome week.

Kevin

Kevin MacDonald is a Business Consultant at L6S Business Consulting Inc (http://www.l6sbc.ca/). L6S offers services in business mentorship and Lean & Lean Six Sigma management with either project work or mentoring of staff. Kevin has his CMA accounting designation along with a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Kevin is active in the community by volunteering for the South Edmonton Business Association, the Fringe Festival, and Goodwill Industries of Alberta and donates blood at the Canadian Blood Services.

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Enterprise Resource Planning, ERP, Computers, Systems,

Best-in-Class vs ERP Suite

Below, please find a blog posting from a referral partner of L6S Business Consulting, Josh Szakal of Black River Technologies.

The age old decision between choosing a Best-in-Class software solution vs an All-in-One Suite package is a heated topic that should be at the forefront of your mind when selecting a software solution.

Before making the decision, you first need to understand what the key differences are. The aim of a traditional suite software package is to provide businesses with one stop shopping for all their software needs. In the world of ERP software, suite vendors provide solutions that handle everything from financial management, and point-of-sale, to CRM.

The benefit of moving forward with a suite software package is that all of your data is located in one place, and integration between applications is handled by one developer. On the flip-side, the biggest downside to suite packages is that they are usually ‘a mile wide and an inch deep’. You may take comfort in the fact that you have an all-in-one solution that handles your entire business, but might soon find that the functionality you really wanted is seriously lacking. Restricting yourself to a suite software package restricts you the R&D efforts of its software developer, which is likely spread over a wide range of products, instead of focusing on one specific area that makes them best-in-class.

A Best-In-Class software solution on the other hand strives to be the best in one area of significance and focuses all of its efforts in this one area. Choosing a best-in-class approach allows you to choose the best solution for each part of your business, enabling you to get the most out of software automation. Using Intacct as an example, financial management is the #1 priority of software development. The solution provides greater functionality and flexibility with respect to your finance and reporting needs, and offers integration to other software systems where applicable. Take Salesforce.com as an example. This software is the leader in providing CRM solutions to its customers, and seamlessly integrates with the Intacct Quote-to-Cash process, allowing the experts to focus on their respective areas of functionality where they each do extremely well.

We at Black River Technologies believe that a best-in-class approach is the direction your organization needs to take to truly excel in your business processes. This is the approach that is going to allow you the freedom to make the right decisions with respect to software automation at each stage in your business’s growth cycle.

Want to learn more about what best-in-class ERP software has in store for your organization? Click here to learn how to elevate your ERP experience!

UnMarketing, Relationships, People, Interaction, Engagement, Social Selling

UnMarketing: Stop Marketing. Start Engaging

UnMarketing, Relationships, People, Interaction, Engagement, Social Selling

Relationships, People, Interaction, Engagement, Social Selling

The latest ‘trending’ word in business is ‘Social Selling’. As per Wikipedia, social selling is known to be ‘the process of developing relationships as part of the sales process’.1  Social selling is essentially the same thing as developing a relationship….but on social media platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter. UnMarketing is all about ‘social selling’ or building a relationship.

A friend recently lent me the book “UnMarketing” by Scott Stratten (Twitter: @unmarketing) which is all about engaging and building relationships on social media and in the real world. Social selling is important because it develops a strong relationship has trust between the members.

I had a great experience with social selling a few years ago. On my Twitter account (@L6SBC), I had a follower ask their network a few times for help on being connected with people with a certain skill set. Each time I saw these tweets, I would respond by tagging people within my network that could fulfil the request.  One day, I received a direct message from this person. She ask me if I could help her with a business plan. I said sure, I would love to help since I have done a 1,000 or so plans.

Upon our first meeting, I asked why she sent me a direct message about helping her with her business plan. She responded by saying that as a result of the great leads I have give her, she knew she could trust me. I built up a relationship of giving value to her rather than taking from her. I filled her trust bucket, therefore, she was willing to use it with me.  Relationship built online..taken offline equals success.

UnMarketing is great business book for anyone at any level. Wondering why? Well, here it is.

Social Media & Marketing

UnMarketing takes you back to basics to teach you the  ‘simple’things. Do you know why someone buys from you? Is there a gap between your marketing and target market? What is the difference between Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn anyways? The platforms are each different, therefore, the audiences are different.

Tool Kit

Different tools are introduced, from Hootsuite to HARO, to help build up your platform or community.  These tools can be used to help manage and grow your community on social media, and even extend into the traditional media world.

The Power of…

UnMarketing takes you into real world examples of  the power of social media. The cafeterias at Tufts University uses Twitter to help increase their level of customer service and gain relevant and timely feedback. Another example is given of a coffee shop and how not to interact with your paying customers.  Various other examples are given in regards to how relationships and trust can help make or break a current or future transaction. I am sure that you are aware, but customers engage with people that offer an experience.

Authenticity

When online, don’t take on another personality. Don’t be who you think your prospective customer pictures you to be. Be yourself. Be authentic and transparent. I consistently speak with someone on my personal Twitter account (@k_macd11) who is great to engage with. We had lunch and it was a world of difference. Due to the results of that lunch, I will admit, I never want to see that person in real life again…I am happy to keep them on Twitter.

Remember, at one time or another, you will want to meet that person in real life. If that is the case, you should be yourself right from the start.

Being yourself can be extended to how you interact with your community. I know a few people that are comfortable to cameras therefore they respond to tweets using video. It fits their personality and they are comfortable with who they are on camera.

Channels

Different channels for meeting new people and growing your business are also covered in UnMarketing. Have you ever thought about doing seminars? What about tele-seminars or trade shows? You have enough information to get start on each, as the time is right for you.

I highly recommend that every entrepreneur picks up UnMarketing, writes in it, and take notes. Relationships are the foundation of any business, whether you know it or not. As we become a more technology drive world, precious human relationships will become the point of differentiation for many businesses. Think of the brands that you enjoy the most. How do they treat you? How do they make you feel?

Have you read UnMarketing? What was your biggest takeaway? What are other business books that you would recommend?

Have a great week.

Kevin

Kevin MacDonald is a Business Consultant at L6S Business Consulting Inc (www.L6SBC.ca). L6S offers services in management consulting, Controller and CFO contracting, and lean management with either project work or teaching/mentoring of staff. Kevin has his CMA accounting designation along with a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Kevin is active in the community by volunteering for the South Edmonton Business Association, the Fringe Festival, Goodwill Industries of Alberta and donates blood at the Canadian Blood Services.

 

 

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_selling

ERP – Who needs it anyway?

Below, please find a blog posting from a referral partner of L6S Business Consulting, Josh Szakal of Black River Technologies.

You might remember the days when you first started your company. It was an exciting time for you as a new business owner as you were about to embark on a journey full of new opportunities. You probably even remember issuing your first invoice, which was likely generated from an accounting system (like QuickBooks or Simply Accounting) you purchased from your local office supply store. That system has served you well over the years, as it was inexpensive to buy, easy to use, and offered the basic functionality that was able to get your business off the ground.

Now that your business has matured, you might be noticing some of the limitations of QuickBooks (or whatever entry level software you are using), such as inflexible processes, data accessibility issues, inadequate security, and primitive reporting. You might even be trying to offset some of those limitations by utilizing spreadsheets to handle some of your advanced transaction processing, and then circling back to your accounting package to input a summarized entry.

As reported by TechValidate, a marketing content automation tool which uses satisfied customers’ data to create content, the following are the Top 5 Limitations of QuickBooks:

  1. Over-Reliance on Spreadsheets to Support Financial Processes and Reporting
  2. Excess Manual Data Entry and Re-Entry
  3. Limited Access to Reports and Information to Drive Decision-Making
  4. Difficulty in Adapting to New Business Requirements
  5. Inadequate Controls Around Financial Processes

If you are experiencing even one of the above limitations, it’s probably time for you to start thinking about upgrading to an ERP system.

So what is an ERP system?

ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning, and is generally a business process management software that allows an organization to use a system of integrated applications to administer the business and automate back office functions.
The early editions of ERP software made their appearance in the early 80’s, and were for the most part, due to cost, only appealing to larger companies. But as ERP packages started to evolve through the 90’s, it made increasingly more sense for organizations in the mid-market, and even companies at the top end of the small business market, to implement a solution that allowed them to streamline their business operations. Today, there are an abundance of ERP systems on the market with varying costs and functionality. To identify which system is right for you requires a lot of due diligence, and many organizations opt to outsource this work as it can be a fairly time consuming task.

How do I know I need ERP software?

The first step in undertaking an ERP software search is to make sure you can see the signs that it’s time to make the move. In addition to identifying that you are experiencing one of the top 5 limitations listed above, you may also find that it’s taking longer for you to provide a certain level of service to your customers, you are noticing the need to be able to access your data outside of the office, and collaboration amongst your team is becoming increasingly more difficult and/or time consuming.

These are the tell-tale signs that it’s time for your organization to invest in a software package that is going to help foster your growth, not hinder it. You may not realize it now, but your entry level software may actually be costing you money. To help you understand the consequences of ‘standing pat’, we’ve put together a whitepaper called ‘Life After QuickBooks.’ It discusses many of the topics outlined above, as well as how to understand the new wave of financial management software. Interested in reading more? Click here to download the whitepaper.

Book Review: The Remedy

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The Remedy

There are few business concepts which are applicable across any company in any industry. From solopreneurs to multi-national conglomerates, the principles of Lean Management are a tool to improve the culture of a company.

I recently got the chance to read “The Remedy” by Pascal Dennis, which is a real life story about how lean was applied across a large car manufacturer.

Lean is predominantly known to be a process to decrease waste within manufacturing processes. Through the travels of Tom and his sensei Andy, stories are told on how Lean Management is applied within non-manufacturing settings.  The reader is taken through a journey where common obstacles of dealing with a company that is heavily placed into silos, non-communitive, and insular culture are dealt with. You get the opportunity to see how Lean Management can be applied in the non-manufacturing departments of Human Resources, Marketing, Product Development, and Accounting.

The reader is introduced to many of the basic concepts and terminology of Lean Management (for example the 8 types of waste) in the style where Tom, the plant manager of the shining star of Taylor Motors, is taken from his current role to lead the development and launch of a new car, originally known as the Defiant.

If you want to learn more about Lean Management, this would be an ‘average’ book to pick up. The Japanese terminology is used throughout the book which can make things confusing at time. There are great animations throughout the book, but at times, too many. It gave the feeling that you were reading a Pictionary book at times.

I personally don’t see this book as being a good starting point if you are a novice to Lean Management. Lean is best learnt within a manufacturing setting since the subject matter can be visibly seen. The author previously wrote “Andy & Me” which details the journey of transforming a manufacturing plant towards being Lean. This book would be a good starting point.

Do you have any books about Lean and Lean Management that you recommend?

Have an awesome week.

Kevin

Kevin MacDonald is a Business Consultant at L6S Business Consulting Inc (www.L6SBC.ca). L6S offers services in management consulting, Controller and CFO contracting, and lean management with either project work or teaching/mentoring of staff. Kevin has his CMA accounting designation along with a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Kevin is active in the community by volunteering for the South Edmonton Business Association, the Fringe Festival, Goodwill Industries of Alberta and donates blood at the Canadian Blood Services.

United, Airlines, Airports, Viral

Volunteering at United

The newest corporate public relations blunder now belongs to United Continental Airlines (United). I am sure that Pepsi is very happy to pass the hat onto another corporate citizen.

What Happened

It is ‘commonly known’, in some circles, that airlines will oversell their flights to ensure that they are full at time of departure. United follows the same practice. This practice came to a head for a flight from Chicago to Louisville on April 10th. United staff asked for 4 people to voluntarily give up their seats to accommodate the airline. 3 people volunteered while the 4th person was violently removed from their seat. From a memo off the desk of the CEO of United, Oscar Munoz, the person was ‘re-accommodated’.

Airlines commonly overbook their flights, for multiple reasons. According to the US Department of Transportation, in 2016, less than 1 in 10,000 were involuntarily bumped from the major US airlines. In 2016, this happened to United passengers at a rate of 0.43 per 10,000. It happened on American Airlines at a rate of 0.64 and at Southwest Airlines to 0.99 persons per 10,000.

Why Did It Happen

Overbooking happens for a number of reasons. None, however, can explain the events that occurred.

Resource Allocation: A flight leaving from Louisville had 4 members of its flight crew in Chicago. This is a reason why 4 seats were required. Did United not have any flight crews in Louisville that they could have used? Are their flight crews centrally located in certain locations or based off flight schedule and needs? Overall, did the schedule of the flight crews have then in the correct place?

Leadership: The CEO of United, Oscar Munoz, sent out a memo to staff after the event blaming the passenger for actions which is not seen in any of the footage that was captured. The CEO mention in the memo that the passenger was violent and belligerent. A properly written memo could have helped the situation but instead, gas was poured on the fire. If an employee of mine treats a customer that way, I would take ownership of the situation right away. It can be assumed that staff were not properly trained. That is a responsibility of the CEO. I understand that it was Chicago Airport Police that removed the person but United staff should have been trained on various methods to help get passengers to volunterily give up their seat. I have seen it happen effectively.

KPIs: United is a publicly traded company. Shareholders are constantly looking at the numbers to see how their investment is performing. Revenue per Available Seat and Passenger Miles Flown are key indicators on the health of an airline. Why does this create overbooking? If there is no passenger in the seat, the miles flown per passenger are negatively affected. When travelling, I have waited more than once for a fellow passenger to board the place. By overbooking, airlines are ensuring that there is a person in every seat.

Sensitivity: Consumers are rarely loyal to a certain airline. They will change airlines to save $5. If you don’t have any loyalty to an airline or are constantly purchasing the cheapest flight possible, you are increasing your chance of getting bumped out of your seat.

Legality: Airlines are allowed to overbook their flights and they are also ALLOWED to remove someone from a plane. In the purchasing contracts of Canadian airlines, however, it does not state how a person could be removed from the plane. Based on this assumption, the acts which happened on United are allowed and legal.

Internet Reaction

As you can imagine, the reaction from the Internet, specifically Twitter, was very fast. Videos of the event were online hours after the event occurred. It is possible that videos were posted even before the plane departed Chicago.

Social Media, Reaction, United, Overbooked

Some reaction from Twitter in regards to the United flight.

Stock Market Reaction

Shareholders of United firstly saw the event in a positive light by bidding up the price of the stock. When reading the headlines, the focus was most probably on the fact that United was overbooking their flights. A great problem for business is to have too many customers. As I am writing this the day after the event, United’s stock price has already decreased by 4%.

Overbooking, United

United’s Stock increase after word of event spread

Operating in the airline industry is not an easy task. There is a high capital investment along with the fact that one of your largest costs, jet fuel and airport fees, are largely controlled by third parties. Overbooking of flights is not something that will stop in the near future. Airlines have lost their sensitivity to consumer demands and views…mostly because consumers have trained them to be that way.  Even after dragging a bleeding and paying customer off one of their planes, United is still flying today and will for some time.

Did you know that airlines commonly overbook their flights? If you were a CEO of airlines, would you look at stopping the overbooking of flights? How would you do it so your financials are not compromised?

Kevin

Kevin MacDonald is a Business Consultant at L6S Business Consulting (www.l6sbc.ca). L6S offers services in management consulting, Controller and CFO contracting, and lean management with either project work or teaching/mentoring of staff. Kevin has his CMA accounting designation along with a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Kevin is active in the community by volunteering for the South Edmonton Business Assocation, the Fringe Festival, Goodwill Industries of Alberta and donates blood at the Canadian Blood Services.

Marketing In a Weak Economy

This article was originally published on the BusinessLink’s website.

Small Business Week (Oct 16-22) is an exciting time for entrepreneurs with great events across Canada offering small business owners multiple opportunities to learn and connect. One of the many events that I attended was organized by Business Link named “Ignite Small Business Week YEG: Marketing in this Economy!?”

The highlight of the event was to hear Randy Brososky from the Group of Rogues speak about how companies should market themselves during a period of weaker economic growth. I have heard Randy speak before and I knew that he would bring great knowledge to business owners to help them grow their business.

SOLVE A PROBLEM

When you are looking to market your company and its offering, remember: “To a fish, the universe is water.” In terms of your company, you truthfully have to look at yourself from the viewpoint of your customer. What problem(s) are you solving? Are you making the purchasing process logical or emotional? Are you tying these items together to make it easier for your customer to choose you?

WHAT ARE YOU REALLY SELLING?

Rolls-Royce is well known for selling cars but they also make jet engines. They understand from the view point of their end customer- the more time that a jet can be in the air, the more money airlines make. With that in mind, Rolls-Royce does not ‘sell’ a jet engine; they sell time in the air. They repair their engines for free. The only time that Rolls-Royce charge for their engines is when that engine is flying in the air.

FIVE TIPS FOR MARKETING IN A SLOW ECONOMY

Here’s what marketing guru Randy Brososky shared at the event:

1. CUSTOMER CONNECTION: Stay in touch with your customer but don’t sell to them. By keeping that connection open, when the economy starts to swing upwards, your customer will remember you and go to you first.

2. SHIFT HAPPENS: People shift their spending habits as times change, but are you shifting along with them? 10 years ago, Tim Horton’s coffee could only be bought within their locations. With the shift to home brewing and Keurig cups, Tim Horton’s coffee can now be purchased in grocery stores (or in their locations) in grounded bean format or within Keurig cups.

3. SMART DISCOUNTS: Offer 2 for 1 deals but the deal is only activated after you have involved your customer. For your customer to get a 2 for 1 deal, have them bring a friend. You can also have your customers become brand ambassadors. Offer them discounts when they speak to their community about you.

4. BEAT THE FEAR: Ask your customer what is holding them back from purchasing from you. Hyundai accepted vehicle returns if their customers lost their job during the recession of 2008. They gained market share and saw positive sales growth while other car manufacturers were going bankrupt.

5 NEW VALUE OFFERING: Look at how you can make your customer feel like the centre of the universe. Can you offer a lower cost item to your customer but still solve their problem and fulfill the same emotional desire? Can you sell what you are offering in a different fashion?

Even with a slower economy, companies still do want to increase their top line. At the very least, you can set yourself up for success during the upcoming growth phase by staying in touch with your customer, talking about the value you create, and tapping into your customers’ emotion.

Have an awesome and productive week.

Kevin

Kevin MacDonald is a Business Consultant at L6S Business Consulting Inc (www.L6SBC.ca). L6S offers services in management consulting, Controller and CFO contracting, and lean management with either project work or teaching/mentoring of staff. Kevin has his CMA accounting designation along with a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Kevin is active in the community by volunteering for the South Edmonton Business Association, the Fringe Festival, and Goodwill Industries of Alberta and donates blood at the Canadian Blood Services.

For help with your business, contact Kevin at kevin@L6SBC.ca or 780-868-1867. You can also follow Kevin on Twitter at @L6SBC or Facebook.com/L6SBC

 

Lose-Lose Relationship

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Everyone in Canada pretty much knows about the latest saga which is currently happening between our federal postal service, Canada Post, and its unionized postal delivery workers. At the time of writing this, the union was holding back from any labour disruptions…for at least a day.

The first labour disruption will involve the union workers not working any overtime hours in Alberta and the North West Territories. This arrangement will slowly roll out across the country. Per a radio interview that I heard, that amounts to just over one hour per week per postal delivery worker. Not a large disruption but it also makes you wonder why they have to work that much overtime over the whole system. That would be the subject for another few blogs since it is a pretty big topic.

I was talking to the postal delivery worker who is in charge of my community postal box last week. To say the least, she is not impressed since she does not know what is going on. As of Friday afternoon, the union had told her that they would be calling all workers Sunday night in regards to their work arrangement for Monday.

In talking to her, she said something that got me thinking. ‘This is a lose-lose situation. We are going to lose income while Canada Post is going to lose clients and revenue”. Currently, Canada Post delivers the last 5 kilometers of a packages’ travels for 66% of online transactions. Online retailers will need to look for alternatives or allow revenue to go to other retailers.

As in the case of many government policies, a labour disruption at Canada Post can be a disruptive event which will cause business to change their operations for long term sustainability.

Would a labour disruption at a postal service affect your company? How would you deal with it?

Have an awesome and productive week.

Kevin

Update as of September 6, 2016: Canada Post and the postal workers have come to a 2 year tentative agreement. Traditionally, they develop a 4 year agreement but the major issues were not fully dealt with. Hopefully, over the next 4 years, Canada Post and its union will be talking about solving their differences.

Update as of September 26, 2016: To my understanding, the vote still hasn’t been called by the union to see if the membership accepts the deal.

Kevin MacDonald is a Business Consultant at L6S Business Consulting Inc (www.L6SBC.ca). L6S offers services in management consulting, Controller and CFO contracting, and lean management with either project work or teaching/mentoring of staff. Kevin has his CMA accounting designation along with a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Kevin is active in the community by volunteering for different groups and donates platelets at the Canadian Blood Services clinic on a bi-weekly basis.

Kevin is hosting a workshop series known as Entrepreneurial Community Edmonton. The workshops cover different areas of business, including finance, human resources, and collections. You can find more information at http://www.l6sbc.ca/ecyeg.html

For help with your business, contact Kevin at kevin@L6SBC.ca or 780-868-1867. You can also follow Kevin on Twitter at @L6SBC or Facebook.com/L6SBC

Why Lean: Safety

Reasons for Lean: Safety

Lean management is a great way to get a better handle of your operations. As someone that helps companies put their processes on a diet to make them more manageable, I have heard just about any and all reasons why a company wants to implement lean.

Reasons I have heard go from their key supplier or customer is doing it, or they heard it is a great way to save money. Personally, I would consider those to be a weak reason for implementing lean. If the right reason and the right culture is in place, your company can avoid being on the bad side of a lean implementation statistic. I have heard from a number of sources that 80% of companies that implement lean revert back to their old habits after 5 years.

Few think safety when implementing lean. Safety of your employees can be a beneficiary of lean.

Re-work: If the amount of re-work you have to do decreases, it decreases the opportunity for a repetitive injury.

Hazards: With lean, and particularly the 5S exercise, you have a home for everything. When hoses are hung up or ladders are properly placed, it decreases the chance of someone tripping or having something fall on them.

Movement: When you are evaluating your processes during a lean project, there are some steps or movements that could potentially hurt someone. The review allows the evaluation and possible change of those steps so future injuries can be avoided.

What reasons can you think about why you should implement lean? I will blog about the reasons why I think a company should implement lean….and it is not about profit.

Have an awesome and productive week.

Kevin

Kevin MacDonald is a Business Consultant at L6S Business Consulting Inc (www.L6SBC.ca). L6S offers services in management consulting, Controller and CFO contracting, and lean management with either project work or teaching/mentoring of staff. Kevin has his CMA accounting designation along with a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Kevin is active in the community by volunteering for different groups and donates platelets at the Canadian Blood Services clinic on a bi-weekly basis.

Kevin is hosting a workshop series known as Entrepreneurial Community Edmonton. The workshops cover different areas of business, including finance, human resources, and collections. You can find more information at http://www.l6sbc.ca/ecyeg.html

For help with your business, contact Kevin at kevin@L6SBC.ca or 780-868-1867. You can also follow Kevin on Twitter at @L6SBC or Facebook.com/L6SBC

Book Review: Five Key Principles of Corporate Performance Management

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As many of you know, I am constantly in learning mode. I am looking to learn the different perspectives of various items to not only help me, but my clients.

Recently, I finished reading ‘Five Key Principles of Corporate Performance Management’ by Bob Paladino. Mr Paladino is a specialist in helping companies to set up Corporate Performance Management offices (CPM). The CPM is a mechanism which can be used to link your corporate strategy, process improvement, and operations.

The strategic side of the CPM deals with the handling of the strategy map and the balance scorecard. The strategy map, as the name implies, maps out your strategy from the perspective of key operational processes to the higher level executive strategy. The balance scorecard is comprised of a set of Key Performance Indicators (KPI) for each step of the strategy map. Based off the two strategy tools, operational improvement projects are identified to be worked on.

Mr. Paladino takes the reader through a number of case studies of actual work he has done as an employee or consultant. It is much appreciated to see how all of these tools (Strategy Map, Balance Scorecard, Lean, and Six Sigma) are used together to help improve a company.

The concepts delivered from the book are great but the book is hard to read. Not because it is too technical but some examples lack certain pieces of information which will help to put the pictures together. In other portions of the book, there are some concepts which are revisited a number of times which make it hard to read due to boredom.

If you are a lover of strategy or process improvement, there are better books out there for you. If you are interested to learn how the two can be placed together, this might be the only book for you to read.

What is your most favorite business book?

Have an awesome and productive week.

Kevin

Kevin MacDonald is a Business Consultant at L6S Business Consulting Inc (www.L6SBC.ca). L6S offers services in management consulting, Controller and CFO contracting, and lean management with either project work or teaching/mentoring of staff. Kevin has his CMA accounting designation along with a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma.

Kevin is active in the community by volunteering for different groups and donates platelets at the Canadian Blood Services clinic on a bi-weekly basis.

Kevin is hosting a workshop series known as Entrepreneurial Community Edmonton. The workshops cover different areas of business, including finance, human resources, and collections. You can find more information at http://www.l6sbc.ca/ecyeg.html

For help with your business, contact Kevin at kevin@L6SBC.ca or 780-868-1867. You can also follow Kevin on Twitter at @L6SBC or Facebook.com/L6SBC