• February 2011 | What if Your Top Competitor Slipped?

    February 2011 What if Your Top Competitor Slipped? Suppose for a minute you are a U.S.-based company that produces pet food or drywall or children’s toys. Tomorrow morning, you open the newspaper and you see a headline about one of your fiercest competitors linked to dangerous pet food, toxic drywall, or lead-paint used in children’s…

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  • A WikiLeaks World

    Covering your assets in a wikileaks world We’ve all heard about Julian Assange, the editor-in-chief at WikiLeaks. Not too long ago, he published classified government documents and exposed toxic waste in Africa, Scientology manuals, and even water-boarding procedures. Some want to see him as Time Magazine’s Person of the Year. Others want to see him…

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  • December 2010 | Your Company’s Achilles’ Heel

    December 2010 What is your company’s Achilles’ heel – and can you protect it? Shakespeare could not have written a play with more twists and turns than the real-life 2010 hostile takeover bid for Potash, one of the world’s largest suppliers of potash, a key fertilizer ingredient. Two companies — Australia’s BHP Billiton and Sinochem,…

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  • New Financial Statements

    The new look of financial statements – welcome to the future of accounting In the not too distant future, assets may not equal liabilities, up may become down, black will be white, and night becomes day… Or so it might seem. Get ready – the accounting world as we know it may be turned upside…

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  • The Value of Older Consumers

    Tipping sacred cows for fun and profit. The value of older consumers. It’s official. If you’re older than 46, MOST advertisers are ignoring you. Why? Because conventional wisdom says you are an old bat? Probably. Conventional wisdom (and the ever-wise media) says older consumers wear black socks with Bermuda shorts, hate change, and can’t use…

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  • Do Nothing?

    In the absence of information, do nothing? When information is plentiful, a conscious and deliberate decision to do nothing can be strategic. But what do you do when the future is uncertain and information is scarce? Lack of clarity is the “new normal.” Current market conditions have driven many companies to trade the uncertainty of…

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  • Complexity is…well…Complicated

    Complexity is….well….complicated The Invisible Gorilla psychology experiment (http://www.theinvisiblegorilla.com/gorilla_experiment.html) is interesting because it demonstrates the many ways our brains and our intuitions can deceive us… especially in complex situations. Even more interesting is the fact that approximately half the people watching this video don’t notice the gorilla. In business, this kind of complexity brings an illusion…

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  • What Motivates Us

    What Motivates Us The 4 P’s of marketing tell us that customers are motivated to purchase through Price, Product, Promotion, and Placement. What about the fifth “P”? People. Your people are a core marketing asset. They produce and deliver the product and service that ultimately motivates the customer. But what motivates your people to perform?…

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  • Flight Simulators for Business

    On February 12, 2009, a pilot flying near Buffalo, NY, pulled his plane into a steep climb, stalled and slammed into a private residence, killing the homeowner and all 49 passengers. Because there is no Federal requirement to use simulators that accurately represent how out of control planes behave, pilots receive little or no hands-on…

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  • Toyota and Managing a Crisis

    We recently read a great analysis of Toyota’s recall crisis in The Detroit Free Press. The article describes how growing pains caused by rapid expansion, strained engineering resources, and a centralized corporate structure put stress on Toyota’s admired corporate discipline – and created the the company’s first serious recall in more than 50 years of…

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