Category Archives: Innovation
Napoleon said, “A leader is a dealer in hope.”
When it comes to change, that responsibility extends to creating the context of why and how the current reality should and could be different. Continue reading
The walls of The Loomis Agency are adorned with pictures of dogs. There are so many photos and references to our beloved canine companions that conspiracy theorists might wonder if the company is secretly reviving the Egyptian practice of animal … Continue reading
The lack of confidence in the institutions that define our collective culture is threatening the civility, economic prosperity, and standing of the United States as a world leader. Let’s start with the government. The President’s approval rating is underwater and … Continue reading
There’s a quote about leaders and followers that suggests “If you’re not the lead dog, the view never changes.” For many brands, that’s certainly true. We all understand there are a limited number of spots at the top and that in each category, there can only be one market leader. It’s also true that most brands will never even sniff the position at the front of their respective pack. But that doesn’t mean you have to resign yourself, or your brand to follower status. Whether you’re in second place, third place, or last place, by adopting a challenger brand mentality and embracing three distinct “states,” you can step out of your role of follower and start creating a whole new view. Continue reading
We taught mice and pigeons to do all sorts of interesting things during my graduate school class in behavioral psychology. The principle is simple: provide a stimulus and elicit a response. The stimulus-response cycle still plays an important role in animal training today. And, it is evident in virtually every routine action we take.
You don’t think about your response; you just make it. And at some point, it becomes automatic. On most days, those automatic responses are benign routines that allow you to effectively navigate.
Unfortunately, they can also become anchors that prevent you from making a change that will transform your business and your life.
The government we want is nimble, flexible, and responsive. The government we experience, in many cases, is slow, cumbersome, and totally unresponsive.
Let’s put this another way: We want our government to operate like our favorite business. We believe, in contrast, that our government is the poster child for lumbering bureaucratic inefficiency and employees who are out of touch with the realities of the marketplace.
Twenty plus years of working with private and public sector organizations has taught me that the truth is actually somewhere between the two extremes.
Jay Goltz writes a blog on small business and entrepreneurship for the New York Times. His March 10, 2014 posting was titled “10 Words Entrepreneurs Should Use With Caution.” In that piece, Goltz shared 10 words that he believes have … Continue reading
Every change is evaluated against the result AND the damage inflicted during its implementation. Ignore the people side of the change (feelings and perceptions), and it is only a matter of time before the desired results suffer, too.
The type of change needed in today’s successful organizations is continuous. It is generated from every level, and it requires engagement and commitment from those involved. You can mandate compliance. Commitment and engagement to make change work are volunteered when you focus on more than the end result. Continue reading
Delivering customer service – at least the way it is practiced in most companies – is easy. The customer asks you for something, and you give it to them.
Building a culture that is obsessed with serving customers is hard.
Carl Sewell’s family of auto dealerships is at or near the top for sales and service with the brands they represent for one simple reason: They are the best at sustaining a culture that serves customers. Continue reading
Culture change follows behavior and performance change not the other way around. If you buy into that premise, the behavior and performance you expect, enable, measure, reward, and hold people accountable for will become the habits that define the culture. The best organizations have clarity, alignment, and execution across each of these areas.
And that leads to the question of “how do you know a change is taking place?” Continue reading