Posts tagged "strategy"

Just What Is Plan Canvas, Strategy Execution Management, And What Does Napoleon Hill Have To Do With It?

February 6th, 2019 Posted by Blog Post, Uncategorized 0 thoughts on “Just What Is Plan Canvas, Strategy Execution Management, And What Does Napoleon Hill Have To Do With It?”

We are often asked to explain what Plan Canvas is. Quite simply, it is software and consulting as a service to help you develop and execute plans for your business or non-profit.

Develop a plan, execute to the plan. Why should you care? Because doing so doubles your chance of succeeding beyond startup. Because doing so makes it more likely that you will outpace peers and competitors by at least 30%. Because success matters.

So What Is It?

The software stands alone as something to which you can subscribe and use. If consulting services are desired, they come with the software. As such, it is a great tool for the individual user but in the hands of a consultant it can be really powerful.

We recently developed a powerpoint presentation to pitch Plan Canvas to consulting and coaching firms to consider adding it to their toolkit. It does a very good job of explaining Plan Canvas in simple terms. Portions are provided here for your convenience.

What Is The 3rd Mind?

The Plan Canvas Vision And Mission

Tell Me About Plan Canvas

What Is Strategy-to-Execution Management?

What Is Plan Canvas’ Approach To SEM?

What Types Of Plans Can You Build And Track In Plan Canvas?

What Are Some Major Features/Functions Of Plan Canvas?

How Can I Manage Project Portfolios In Plan Canvas?

How Do I Hold Myself And Others Accountable Through Plan Canvas?

How Does Plan Canvas Relate to Think and Grow Rich?

What Are Plan Canvas’ Services?

Who Is Plan Canvas For?

We Hope This Helps

We hope this helps. If you’d like to schedule a demo of Plan Canvas, please contact us through our contacts page by clicking here.

We look forward to serving you.

Airing Our Dirty Laundry – The Absence of a Good Go-to-Market Strategy

June 4th, 2018 Posted by Blog Post, Uncategorized 0 thoughts on “Airing Our Dirty Laundry – The Absence of a Good Go-to-Market Strategy”

We began the month of May asking a question – what’s holding you back?

If you follow us closely, you may have noticed a few things:

  1. We did not post blogs on a regular basis.
  2. We did not produce new Business is ART podcasts on a regular basis.
  3. We temporarily shut down the Plan Canvas website.

Why? What was holding us back? The answer may surprise you.

We actually weren’t holding back

In actuality, we were holding nothing back, despite outside appearances. So what has been going on?

We’ve been working hard to address a few particular areas of concern, which we will share with you here.

This may leave some of you wondering why we would air our “dirty laundry,” but it is really very simple. Our mission is to improve others’ business and personal outcomes. If others can learn from our mistakes and apply what we learn, we are happy to share.

What have we learned about our go-to-market strategy?

Basically, what we learned was how ill-prepared we were to go-to-market. The Plan Canvas software product was ready, but our go-to-market strategy was not.

As a boot-strapped startup, we put all of our efforts in developing and validating a quality product. These are necessary steps, especially validation. And it is not abnormal for a startup to have no or limited budget to do everything it needs to do – and the same was true for us.

It is not that we ignored sales and marketing. We did a few things, like committing to a social media content marketing campaign. But we consciously put aside a lot of the things we knew we would at some point need to do from a sales and marketing perspective – out of budgetary necessity.

There isn’t anything inherently wrong with that. But what we miscalculated was how much work there would be to do in order to get to an intelligent go-to-market strategy.

What have we been doing?

Before telling you what we’ve been up to, we want to emphasize that it’s never done. Like everything else in business, your sales and marketing strategy is an ever-involving thing.

That said, here is what we have been doing:

  1. Conducted a product “positioning” exercise.
  2. Modified our messaging.
  3. Made a greater distinction between our 3 product lines – Plan Canvas for Individual, Plan Canvas for SMB, and Plan Canvas for Enterprise.
  4. Published a white paper on improving strategy execution.
  5. Documented several Plan Canvas case studies.
  6. Attended entrepreneurial boot camps and participated in pitch competitions.
  7. Modified the plancanvas.net website.
  8. Modified the business model.
  9. Overhauled the Plan Canvas software user interface.
  10. Planned “Launch 2.0” – effectively, a “do-over” from our initial launch in September of 2017.

So what’s next?

Again, this is a never-ending process, and there is a lot more to come. But for the immediate future, we will begin a weekly theme around each of the specific customer types we identified through the aforementioned positioning exercise.

They are as follows:

  • Individual Interested in Self-Improvement – No matter what your title or station in life, you can benefit from a personal self-improvement plan.
  • Freelancer/Independent – You want to earn money doing what you love, on your terms, with the flexibility to do what you want, when you want. There’s just one problem. Reality.
  • Startup Entrepreneur – You have dreams of starting your own business but need to validate if your product or business idea is viable.
  • Small to Midsize Business (SMB) – You enjoy being your own boss, but want to do better, creating a lasting business model with an engaging and enduring company culture.
  • Regional and Franchise Managers with Multiple Locations – You need to spend less time managing individual stores while spending more time managing the area.
  • Operations Manager – You need to better manage change, attract and retain talent, optimize costs, maximize output and grow.
  • Church and Non-Profits – You have all of the same challenges of a for-profit business with one main difference – in addition to fee-based products and services, your mission may be dependent on grants and donations.
  • Midsized-to-Large Enterprise – You need improved outcomes of strategy execution.

We are also working on a group subscription and white label offering. It’s an on-going journey and we hope you join us.

If not, we hope you at least learn from us.

The (Mythical) Steps to Successful Strategy Execution

April 24th, 2018 Posted by Blog Post, Strategy Execution 0 thoughts on “The (Mythical) Steps to Successful Strategy Execution”

As a Strategy Execution Management (SEM) software and consulting business, the very topic of strategy execution is naturally near and dear to our hearts.

The big question that always hangs in the mist is “How do I get better strategy execution results?”

An article at Entrepreneur entitled “4 Steps to Successful Execution of a Strategy” lists the following keys to success:

  1. Set clear priorities
  2. Collect and analyze data
  3. Keep a rhythm to meetings
  4. Evaluate a strategy

No question. These are smart things to do. In fact we would add a few more such as, but not limited to:

  1. Paint the picture – vision, mission, purpose, goals
  2. Remain flexible

But they aren’t linear steps

We often use the acronym ART (articulate, revise, track). Plan Canvas is based on the ART method defined in the book Business is ART. All of the above “steps” fit neatly into this method as follows:

A – Paint the picture, set clear priorities, keep a rhythm to meetings, evaluate the strategy

R – Remain flexible, evaluate the strategy, set clear priorities, keep a rhythm to meetings

T – Collect and analyze data, keep a rhythm to meetings

But when we say “steps” we imply linear action – one foot in front of the other. In reality, it just doesn’t work that way. Note that some of the items occur in more than one category. For example, “evaluate the strategy” is both in the “A” and the “R” category.

Business (and life) is like a chessboard in which even the pieces you haven’t purposefully moved are, none-the-less, constantly in motion. There is no linear approach to managing such a chessboard – which may be one reason strategy execution success rates are so low…

Too often we apply linear thinking to non-linear realities.

However, the answer is not to ignore linear thinking because that just adds chaos to the non-linear reality. Our suggestion is to use linear thinking as a guideline, but remain flexible enough to shift priorities and change direction as needed – completing each “step” as it make sense to do so.

There are a couple of keys to this

There are a couple of keys to making sure you can do this. First, you have to be able to see the whole chessboard, all of the moving pieces, all of the places they could move, all at once. This is one of the critical reasons for painting the picture. But simply painting it isn’t enough. It has to be constantly on display for stakeholders to see and for you, yourself, to constantly study and refer back to.

In our opinion, the most critical key is to have a company culture that understands the painted picture, is on board with it, and is open to change/flexibility.

An article at Inc. entitled “The Truth About Strategy Execution” provides an excellent example as follows:

“At Salesforce.com, for example, every employee, including managers and senior executives, is required to share his or her goals and the weekly progress toward them with the entire company. Everyone’s performance is out in the limelight, no one can hide. The company’s success is well known, and Salesforce also consistently ranks as one of the most desirable places to work. Employees feel that the company’s unique culture pushes them to deliver their best work. Operational excellence is a boon to employee satisfaction and happiness.”

We put it this way. There is no separation between employee engagement and strategy execution. Strategy must address employee engagement and without employee engagement, strategy execution is much more difficult if not impossible.

That’s why we say the “steps” are mythical

The steps included in this post are important and necessary. But they aren’t linear. Further, in and of themselves, the steps are not a guarantee of success. The true key is as stated above.

That’s why Plan Canvas is different from other tools available. With it you first paint the picture. But unlike classic planning tools, that’s just the beginning. Next and continuously thereafter, you manage the plan.

That plan goes well beyond sales and financials, additionally focusing on company cultural and employee engagement concerns such as the employees themselves, the clients/customers, corporate social responsibility, and operational excellence.

In other words, with Plan Canvas you focus on the entire chessboard, all of its moving pieces, all of the places they can move, all of the time.

Contact us to schedule a demonstration.

Business Planning is Over My Head – Or is It?

March 31st, 2017 Posted by Business is ART, Business Plan, Entrepreneur 0 thoughts on “Business Planning is Over My Head – Or is It?”
This post was provided by guest blogger, Lindsey Evans, of 16th Floor Media. Find Lindsey on Facebook @16thFloor
Lindsey

Lindsey Evans – 16th Floor Media

When Jon told me that he was creating a business planning software, I have to admit I was skeptical. I’ve tried business planning before and it’s over my head.

I work in creative services and the mention of math in any form tends to turn me away. However, I agreed to try the Beta test version of Plan Canvas, the business planning tool based on Jon’s book, Business is ART. I am extremely glad that I did.

It all becomes clear with planning

I have been a solopreneur for a year and a half since I left my salary position. My goal for about 6 months was to hire an additional worker to take away my day-to-day workload and focus on the larger tasks. In the limited amount of time I’ve been able to dedicate to Plan Canvas in the last 2 months, it became apparent my hiring decision couldn’t wait.
Once I saw the numbers in black and white it jumped right out at me, ” What are you waiting for?”
I can proudly say I have added to my team! Not only is my workload lessened, but my client base has expanded!

Do it

I would recommend Plan Canvas to any business owner who thinks they “don’t need to formally plan anything.” Jon has thought two steps ahead with this software.
The beta test team is currently working with over 35 businesses and entrepreneurs across all types of industries! Start-ups and existing businesses, first-time business owners and seasoned pros – all part of the beta test!

Without hundreds of templates, it works for any type of business

Exactly what types of industries and professionals are currently using Plan Canvas?

Take a look!

  • eMail Marketing Consultant
  • Web Design
  • Architecture
  • Executive Coaching
  • Software / Consulting
  • Graphic Design Consultant
  • Graphic Design Consultant
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Property Management Consulting
  • Restoration
  • Startup Coach
  • Non-Profit Exec Director
  • Leadership Consulting
  • Web Design
  • Business Consultant
  • Craft Beer
  • Insurance Agent
  • Video Marketing
  • Painter (exterior/interior)
  • Chiropractor
  • Graphic Design
  • Entrepreneur – Restaurant Owner
  • CPA
  • Coffee Shop Owner
  • Retail Buyer
  • Baker
  • Blogger
  • College Professor
  • Chamber of Commerce
  • Startup entrepreneur / former banker
  • Mergers & Acquisitions Advisor
  • Baked Goods & Specialty Candy
  • University Entrepreneur Club Leader
  • Computer Services

If it works for me, it will work for anyone. Go to the Plan Canvas Facebook page to keep up with how the beta is going and more.

 

Do Have Actionable Plans – Don’t Waste Your Time with Plans

March 16th, 2017 Posted by Business is ART 0 thoughts on “Do Have Actionable Plans – Don’t Waste Your Time with Plans”

Slide1I really wanted to simply call this “Don’t Waste Your Time with Plans” but was afraid you’d get the wrong idea.

I don’t mean “Don’t develop plans.” I mean, if you are going to develop and manage plans, do it in a productive manner.

You can do better…like by a lot

One of the reasons I think so many business owners and leaders don’t have business plans is that someone gave them some bad advice, or set a bad example, somewhere along the way…and now they just can’t see the value – even though the data supports the notion that business plans increase your odds of success – like by a lot.

But one sure way to waste your time with a plan is to fail to do the foundational work that becomes a litmus test for everything you do going forward.

Build a foundation

Before you spend any time developing a plan, first build the foundation for your business. What’s the foundation consist of? Simple. 3 key ingredients, including:

  1. Your Vision Statement. This is how you see things, ideally, out in to the future. See Amazon’s vision statement for a good example.
  2. Your Mission Statement. This states in simple terms what you do. A sentence. Two at most. What you do.
  3. Your Purpose Statement. This is why you do what you do. The emotional hook that gets you and your stakeholders excited.

Many people struggle with defining these three statements. At first, it sounds easy. But then you realize it really requires some deep, critical thinking and often requires a lot of inner reflection. It may also require a lot of discussion with your friends, family and advisors.

But a key to remember…these are yours. No one else’s. Don’t let anyone define them for you.

Frame It

Next, build the frame. The frame is made up of your long term goals and objectives. Goals support the vision, but in and of themselves are immeasurable. They are simply big lofty things you want to achieve.

Muhammad Ali famously declared “I am the greatest!”

That’s a perfect example of a goal. How do you know you are the greatest? Through measurable objectives like: winning the title a number of times, holding the title a number of years, scoring a number of knock-outs by a certain round in each fight (on average).

You have to do the same for your business. Define the measurable objectives that support your big lofty goals.

Now Get Busy

Once you have laid the foundation and the frame, you are ready to get down to some serious business planning and you are far less likely to waste your time.

One last bit of advice – make your plans actionable. That means, define actual initiatives and action steps you will take to tackle your plan. Track and update things as you go. Plan to manage, but manage the plan.

Don’t stop game planning when the game begins

I hate it when people say they only need to develop a plan once, then they get the loan or start the business and throw the plan away. That is a way to ensure you do not maximize the benefits of planning.

Think of it this way. A football coach walks in to a game with a game plan. With the first snap of the ball, the coaching staff makes adjustments to the game plan, and continues to do so throughout the game, until the last second ticks off the clock.

We wouldn’t think of coaching a game any other way. So why do we think it’s a good idea to start a business with a plan, then toss it aside on opening day – or ever?

As with sports, keep adjusting the plan until the day you shut the doors for good.

Stay in touch

Never miss a podcast, blog post or newsletter by signing up here. I don’t spam and try very hard to bring you informative and entertaining content as well as useful tools to increase your odds of success.

Lies and Untruths About Starting a Business

February 14th, 2017 Posted by Business is ART, Entrepreneur 0 thoughts on “Lies and Untruths About Starting a Business”
Starting business

Lance White (l) of FRW Studios Uses Plan Canvas

When you tell someone you’re starting a business, they’ll likely have an opinion. It doesn’t matter if they’re an entrepreneur or a sanitation worker. They’ll say something like “Oh really? Well did you know that….”

And then they’ll proceed to give you advice on the business you haven’t even started yet. Sometimes, the things you hear about starting a business are true. Things like “90% of business fail” or “80% of small businesses in the US consist of one person”.

On the other hand, there’s a fair amount of crap “fluff”.

Here are some of the lies and half-truths you’ll hear about starting a business.

You Need a Lot of Money

The old saying goes “it takes money to make money”, and it’s true, you’ll have to buy and spend to get a business going. But, perhaps, not as much as you might think.

To start many a business in the digital age, you don’t need huge investments or deep pockets, especially if you’re selling a service or an electronic product. The key is breaking your business idea down to its simplest form. Start there and you can probably get things moving without breaking the bank.

You Only Have to Do Things You Love

Many people start their own business because they want to do something they actually care about. That’s a great reason to start a business. But don’t think that you will only have to do the things you enjoy doing.

As an entrepreneur, you have to do everything initially. That will likely include things you don’t enjoy doing. The hope is that after building up some success, you’ll one day be able to focus on the areas you’re most passionate about.

Until then, you’ll be wearing a lot of hats.

You Have to Jump All In Immediately

Quitting your job, selling all your stuff, and devoting all time and attention to your startup might sound poetic, but it’s not always realistic. Your best option might be to start your business as a side project, allowing you to figure out potential problems while growing organically.

You’re Not Qualified

You will face people who doubt that you can run a business. This is something you’ll likely experience in your own head as well. And for these moments, it’s best to remember that famous Steve Jobs quote:

“Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you.”

You don’t need to be a genius or have master class skills. You simply need an idea, a vision, and the commitment to see it through. Steve Jobs created one of the most influential computer companies ever, and he was neither a programmer nor an engineer.

You Have to Work All Day, Every Day

Burnout is a very serious thing among entrepreneurs. That’s because they have this idea that the second they stop, their business will stop and fall apart. While it’s true you’ll likely work some unconventional hours, and you’ll probably pull more than the typical 40-45 hour workweek, you’re still human.

You need breaks and social interaction and fun.

Step away for a moment. Take a day off if necessary. Your business will still be there when you get back.

You Don’t Need a Formal Business Plan

Because the modern business and technological landscape changes so quickly, some people have gotten this idea that business plans are a relic of the past. This is false.

Research has shown that a formal business plan can as much as double your odds of success, particularly for startups

It doesn’t need to be the size of an encyclopedia. It won’t have every piece of your business explained in detail. And it will likely change in the near future.

But creating a written plan is a huge benefit to any business.

Need help on how to create a business plan? Start with my free 1-page strategic plan outline here. For a more in-depth walkthrough of planning a business strategy and measuring success, sign up for my Odds Makers Class.

Odds Makers is a step by step video course that will guide you through all of the stages of creating a vision and workable plan for your business.

Start Now!

A Real Live Case Study

FRW Studios, a creative design firm, is starting its business with formal planning, using Plan Canvas beta version 1.0, the business planning software based on the Business is ART book. The photo appearing at the beginning of this post was taken by Julie White of FRW. It shows FRW’s Lance White and me actually working on FRW’s plans, using Plan Canvas on February 13, 2017.

“Having used his strategy/business plans in the past, we know how important it is to start our studio off on the right foot.”

~ Julie and Lance White

Why Business Plans Suck

December 15th, 2016 Posted by Business is ART, Business Plan 0 thoughts on “Why Business Plans Suck”

Trick QuestionIf you have read more than a couple of posts at the Business is ART Blog, or read my book, you know that I am a strong believer in planning for your business – and saying it usually results in eye rolls from even the otherwise smartest business owners and organizational leaders I know, with good reason.

Business Planning Sucks

Creating formal business plans and strategies for your business, whether large or small – and I am talking one owner, no employees small – takes some time and effort. How much time depends on who is doing it and what process or tools they use. Which leads me to this point…

Business Planning Tools Suck

If I hear one more question from “business planning experts” like, “Have you ever seen the Jargonsian Wheel of Six Block Charterism Planning Alive Tool?” I just might scream.

Do you know why most of these tools suck?

Because they are developed by consultants and academics (the experts) who believe the path to solid planning practices is not just paved in gold, but paved with really complex gold pavers that must be laid out very precisely in order to function properly – and, by the way, only said experts are able to lay said gold pavers.

So the vast majority of business owners and leaders don’t formally plan because it’s too complex, leading them to falsely conclude they don’t need to do it.

But the Benefits are Real

In our BNI Chapter meeting this week, I did a simple demonstration. Everyone in the room received $1.30. One side of the room called “heads” and the other called “tails.” The side that lost the coin toss had to put their $1.30 in to a collection jar.

The point – 50% of new businesses don’t make it.

Next, the losing side was asked if they did any kind of formal business planning whatsoever. Of the few that did, they got one more coin toss. Those who won the toss could take their $1.30 back out of the jar.

The point – startups have a 50% better shot at succeeding when they have formal plans.

Finally, of everyone left holding $1.30 on both sides of the room, I asked again who did any kind of formal planning. A small percentage of that remaining population raised their hands. They got to keep the full $1.30. The others had to put 30 cents in to the jar.

The point – of those businesses that make it past startup, those that have formal plans do, on average, 30% better than the others.

Trick Question

At last, I asked, “Which is greater – Zero, 1 dollar or $1.30?”

Someone replied, “Is this a trick question?”

No. It is not a trick question at all. The only trick is to have the where-with-all to do the things that increase your odds of getting $1.30 as opposed to anything less.

Enter Plan Canvas

And that is where Plan Canvas comes in. Plan Canvas is a business planning software based on my book Business is ART. It allows the user to quickly get organized and define plans, identify and track goals, objectives, initiatives and action items – in a very simplistic way.Plan Canvas

So simplistic you don’t need an expert to manage it for you. Just do it. If you can navigate Facebook you can navigate this tool.

Plan Canvas moves to beta test in early 2017 and I am actively seeking beta test users to join several others that have already signed up. It will cost nothing but a little of your time and you have everything to gain.

I Really Don’t Give a S&%!

So, have I seen the ‘Jargonsian Wheel of Six Block Charterism Planning Alive Tool’? Yes, and I really don’t give a S&%!

Contact me here if you don’t either.

You Gotta Love It – Your Business (Whatever “It” Is)

December 13th, 2016 Posted by Entrepreneur 0 thoughts on “You Gotta Love It – Your Business (Whatever “It” Is)”

restaurant businessOn last week’s episode of the Business is ART podcast on the TrueChat Network, my guest was Jeff Tsao of Fukuryu Ramen. Jeff has two restaurants – one in Melbourne, Australia and one in Columbus, Ohio. 2 businesses half-a-world apart.

One of my favorite things to say is “If you are going in to business for yourself, DON’T go in to the restaurant business!”

Let Me Explain

I should qualify that statement. What I mean to say is that I will never go in to the restaurant business – for a variety of reasons:

  • The hours are long and hard
  • When everyone else is enjoying time with their families, you are spending time away from yours
  • The employee pool tends to be more transient
  • The public is fickle
  • You have to be very detail oriented in terms of quality, food preparation, food storage and inventory control

If you have not worked in this industry before, unless you really don’t care about making money, you should not open a restaurant – at least not a single store private labeled restaurant. A franchise restaurant may be an entirely different story.

Otherwise, just because you enjoy working in the kitchen, consider yourself a foodie, and your family and friends love your cooking does not mean you can be successful running a restaurant. It is just not the same.

You Gotta Love It

If you are someone like Jeff, who literally grew up in the food industry and has culinary training, it’s a perfect fit. But even that is not enough. You have to really love it, and that is one of the main points Jeff made on the show:

Love what you do.

If you don’t love it, it makes no sense to open a business in it, whatever “it” is. For example, I hate painting. Walls, ceiling, exterior, trim – you name it – I hate painting it. Would it make sense for me to open a painting business?

Absolutely not.

Do Your Homework and Be Honest with Yourself

So if you are thinking of starting or buying a business, there is a lot of homework you have to do first. You have to be completely honest with yourself in your due diligence and in answering questions such as the following:

  • Can I tolerate the less sexy tasks that come with running a business like this?
  • How much of my time will be required and can I make that much time available?
  • Will my family be involved or kept at arms distance from the business?
  • Will I take on a partner(s) or fly solo?
  • Do I have the financial runway to get to the grand opening and beyond?

Be Flexible

But whatever you do, as Jeff and his family have learned over the years, be flexible. Change when necessary and lead change when you can. That doesn’t necessarily mean you change your vision, although it might. But you definitely need to change your strategy, plans and tactics because the world around you constantly changes.

Listen to the podcast in its entirety by clicking here. It’s absolutely free and you just might learn a thing or two.

Crowdfunding – Not Just for Financing Anymore

November 14th, 2016 Posted by Business Plan, Strategy 0 thoughts on “Crowdfunding – Not Just for Financing Anymore”

CrowdfundingYou have a business or product idea. You need money. What will you do? Traditional options are you take out a second mortgage, borrow from your family, wipe out your savings, or go get a business loan.

But an increasingly popular alternative option is crowdfunding. By now you should know what crowdfunding is. Crowdfunding is typically done via the internet through websites and services such as Kickstarter, GoFundMe and Indiegogo among a host of others. It involves many people (the crowd) giving small amounts of money (funding) to support your idea or need (campaign).

Crowdfunding – Not Just for Financing Anymore

On the November 8, 2016 episode of the Business is ART podcast my guest was founder and President of Academy Games, Uwe Eickert, who discussed some of the successful crowdfunding campaigns Academy Games have launched, many going well beyond the targeted financial objectives.

Uwe (pronounced Oovah) said that one thing distinguishing Academy’s use of crowdfunding versus that of others is that while many, perhaps most, campaigns look at crowdfunding as a means of survival or the only way to actually birth the business, product or idea, Academy looks at it as a means to market it, spending thousands of dollars on pre-marketing publicity in advance of the campaign. The result he says is that Academy typically exceeds its target within minutes of launching the campaign and that the target is always well above the pre-marketing spend.

Every Business is a Marketing Firm

Uwe recommends reading Jamey Stegmaier’s A Crowdfunder’s Strategy Guide. Based on his recommendation I have purchased but not yet read the book, but can tell by the table of contents that I am going to like it, with titles such as:

  • You don’t have to launch today
  • I made these mistakes so you don’t have to
  • Make it about them
  • Build a better community
  • Don’t quit your day job…until you quit your day job

Uwe’s position on business is that no matter what our product or service, every successful business is a marketing company. Some are just better at it than others and crowdfunding is one tool you can add to your strategic and business plans if you haven’t already.

Get it Here

You can listen to the podcast, entitled “Send Gamers, Guns and Money” by clicking here.

You can build a better strategic and business plan by following the process I describe in my book Business is ART available now at Amazon by clicking here or by completing my online training based on Business is ART by clicking here.

Aligning Workspace and Business Strategy

October 28th, 2016 Posted by Inspiration 0 thoughts on “Aligning Workspace and Business Strategy”
TENFOLD

Rachel Friedman – Founder/CEO of TENFOLD

Does your business’ workspace align with your business strategy? Do you have one?

On the Business is ART podcast this week, my guest was Rachel Friedman, the founder and CEO of TENFOLD (tenfoldbrand.com). TENFOLD helps businesses tell their stories within the actual workspace, for instance utilizing wall space for graphics and digital displays that highlight company values, vision, mission and brand messaging.

Their clients have ranged from small businesses to giants, like ESPN and Cardinal Health, but the mission is the same – to help businesses and organizations educate, inform and inspire employees and visitors.

(click here for a portfolio of TENFOLD’s work)

The Painted Picture

In Cameron Herold’s book, Double Double, he discusses the “painted picture” as a 3-page document that provides a more detailed version of the vision statement. The painted picture looks forward 3 years in to the future. In my book, Business is ART, I recommend turning that painted picture document in to an actual form of art, such as a video, web site, visual art displayed on the walls, etc.

And that is exactly what TENFOLD enables businesses to do – physically display the painted picture.

More to It Than a Pretty Picture

There is much more to it than simply putting pictures with inspirational quotes up on the wall, including office and workspace design and configuration. But it all begins with formally identifying your business strategy and culture.

What is the advantage? There are many, including:

  • Assists in the creation and maintenance of company culture
  • Communicates clear and effective brand messaging
  • Serves as a constant reminder to employees they are part of something bigger than themselves
  • Encourages employees to “live the brand” (better enabling employees as advocates)
  • Educates potential clients, strategic partners and investors (better enabling them as advocates)

In short, whoever “they” are, when they can see it, they can get it. When they get it, they can get on-board with it. When they get on-board with it, you no longer have to go it alone. Without that strong sense of identity and direction, all of the pretty pictures in the world can’t help and you truly are on your own.

Back to the Start

This blog post starts with two simple questions, the first of which is, “Does your business’ workspace align with your business strategy?” If not, contact TENFOLD by clicking here.

The second question is, “Do you have one [a business strategy]?” If not, contact me or check out my online video training, teaching you how to develop your strategic and business plans, simply and quickly. Consider it your online business consultant for just $45. Click here to view.

Listen Up and Listen In

You can listen to all of the Business is ART episodes in their entirety on the TrueChat Network’s Business is ART page at http://truechat.org/bia/ or by downloading the TRUECHAT app. The episode featuring Rachel Friedman and TENFOLD is entitled “If the Walls Could Talk.”

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