Tag Archives: business ownership

Good Customers Can Be Bad

When can good customers be bad? What could be wrong with a customer who buys a lot, pays promptly, and never has a service problem? They might be buying too much. No matter how strong or comfortable a sales relationship is, … Continue reading

Posted in Customer Relations, Entrepreneurship, Exit Planning, Marketing and Sales, Sales, Selling a business, Strategy and Planning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

What is Your CEO Job Description?

On occasion, a business owner client will ask me if I have a CEO job description. I’m sure such exist in large corporations, but for an owner-managed company it’s a bit vague. The simple (and usual) answer is that the … Continue reading

Posted in Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Managing Employees, Strategy and Planning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

2 Responses to What is Your CEO Job Description?

  1. Bob Kroon says:

    Hi John,

    Good post. In practice, I see CEO’s concerns focused on these, in no particular order: 1) Something finance (cash flow, fund raising, collections, etc), 2) Watching the “secret sauce” (could be following the CTO, watching key activities in a service business, product development), 3) Building the team (hiring a key person, replacing people, adding to the team), 4) Reaching out to customers, 5) Some issue or event which is a drain on the business (legal matter, facilities, misbehaving employee), 6) An opportunity (acquiring a big new customer, a competitor, a technology).

    Small wonder VC investors value teams more than individual entrepreneurs. The mental bandwidth required to lead alone is tough.

  2. Joe Zente says:

    Great Article, John…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The Immortal Business Goes on Forever

Do you run an immortal business? I hope so. If you answered “no,” or even hesitated to be sure of your response, then you don’t think of your business as immortal. So when do you plan to shut it down? Most … Continue reading

Posted in Entrepreneurship, Exit Planning, Managing Employees, Selling a business, Strategy and Planning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

2 Responses to The Immortal Business Goes on Forever

  1. David Basri says:

    In my head the answer to the question was an immediate “No”, because no business is immortal. That, however, is a completely separate question from, “Do you want your business to continue after you are gone or out of it”? Taking action to perpetuate a business may or may not succeed, but all entrepreneurs are used to that risk.

    There is no question that in most cases long term planning greatly increases the chance that a business will continue after the owner is gone. Then again, do not be afraid to jump if dump opportunistic luck comes along and someone offers a big chunk of money.

  2. Dane A. Shrallow says:

    I concur with your post. I’ve been involved in corporate practice, and the M&A field, for over 4 decades. One thing that is readily observable is that few businesses last forever. The vast majority have a finite life. Competition, evolving business models and disruptive technologies tend to take a toll. Want to own a retail store today? The primary focus of a business owner should be on how to preserve accumulated wealth for future generations. That could mean planning to keep the business in the family, at least for the next generation. But often the wiser choice is to realize your investment when the business’ future looks the brightest and capitalize on what you’ve built. In other words, sell when the business asset when its at its highest value, rather than at your scheduled retirement date. A lot can happen between now and then.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Employee Peer Review: The Internal Market

There are various approaches to employee peer review. Comprehensive multi-level feedback, top-down and bottom-up comparisons, and even the lightening fast Stoplight 360 I wrote about here a few years ago. In many instances, however, the most powerful rating system is … Continue reading

Posted in Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Managing Employees, Strategy and Planning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Selling Your Business: Money isn’t Everything

When I was a kid my mother said “Money isn’t everything” in response to every envious glance at another kid’s stuff. As I became successful enough to afford things for my children, I reversed the meaning. “Money isn’t everything” became … Continue reading

Posted in Entrepreneurship, Exit Planning, Selling a business, Strategy and Planning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *