Can your business withstand your unexpected death?

Establish a transition plan after talking to trusted advisers and considering options, and talk to family and key staff

Can your business withstand your unexpected death?Brian Tracy, the famous sales trainer, has a story he tells about the importance of great questions. Tracy was meeting with an insurance salesman who asked if he had enough life insurance. Since he didn’t want to deal with this man, Tracy assured him he did. As he was finishing the meeting, the salesman asked:…

Why Owen’s business was bound to fail

It’s generally a shortage of customers, not money, that leads to business failure

Why Owen’s business was bound to failOwen called me from Philadelphia, “Dave” he said, “my business isn’t working. What can I do? “ Owen really was telling the truth. His business wasn’t working. In fact, he had closed it down only months after opening, having spent hundreds of thousands of dollars, and a couple years of hard work setting it up.…

Playing to win in the business world

Make certain the odds are in your favour – think about what your business is or can be better at than your competition

Playing to win in the business world“Which silver car is it?” Tony Kibonge shouted as I tagged a car and he raced by. This race to the silver car was a rematch on another race I had won one cold morning in Stuart Lake, when we had raced through the water up to my chest and Tony’s neck. While I had…

Money can’t buy happiness, yet we keep chasing it

Will more money mean we sleep better at night, spend more time with friends and family, or contribute more to society?

Money can’t buy happiness, yet we keep chasing itThere’s a story told that about a financial planner who was on holidays in Mexico. He was walking along the beach when he came to a fisherman sitting on a wharf, his feet hanging off the edge as he played guitar. “Is that your boat?” the planner asked the fisherman. “It is,” he replied. They…

A summer business read that could change your life

How much more could you achieve in business and life if you just focused on doing fewer things?

A summer business read that could change your lifeI love to read. Ever since I was a young boy, learning to read in the arms of my parents, I have enjoyed the written word. I’m amazed at how the crafted phrase can capture my imagination and open my mind to worlds and ideas I’ve never explored or considered. I read for pleasure, entertainment…

Lack of leadership structure leads to frustration and failure

In some organizations, teams and businesses, there’s no established chain of leadership. That leads to confusion

Lack of leadership structure leads to frustration and failureI experienced something about leadership recently that I had known for a long time but suddenly understood differently. I’m the assistant coach of a sports team. Our team lost its first two games last weekend against teams it could have beaten. As coaches, we were frustrated because our players weren’t playing to their potential. The…

Business traumatic stress disorder is real and devastating

Business leaders are often under extraordinary stress and they need support and counselling

Business traumatic stress disorder is real and devastatingOver the years, I’ve worked with a number of business leaders who have had breakdowns from the stress of owning or running a business or organization. The symptoms they’ve exhibited are very similar to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, it’s very unlikely that a psychiatrist or psychologist would give them a diagnosis of PTSD. PTSD…

How mismanagement of B.C. forests is hurting Canada’s economy

Recent sawmill closures have exposed a raft of problems in the industry and government failure to ensure long-term productivity

How mismanagement of B.C. forests is hurting Canada’s economyRecent sawmill closures in British Columbia have brought to light the need for renewed focus on the mismanagement of B.C. forests over the past decades and what to do about it. That mismanagement is having a significant effect on the B.C. and Canadian economies. If you live in the B.C. interior, where more than 820…

Three things business leaders could learn from Donald Trump

Take some time off for pleasure, don't hesitate when you need to fire someone and above all, play to win

Three things business leaders could learn from Donald TrumpFew politicians in recent history have polarized people the way Donald Trump has. Chances are you either love him or hate him. But whatever you think of him, there’s probably something you could learn from the American president. So what’s Trump doing that most business leaders could learn from? Let’s start with the obvious and…

Doing little things right in business leads to something bigger

Sometimes leaders get so caught up in the struggles of their enterprises that they don’t realize the impact they’re having

Doing little things right in business leads to something biggerWe were going 64 km/h in a 50 zone on our way to bury Larry when we got pulled over. When the police officer asked the reason why we were going so fast, we told him we were on our way to Larry’s funeral. As he marched back to his car with my wife’s licence…

Why measuring is important for businesses of all kinds

Measuring shows our progress, provides targets for employees, gives us something to celebrate and helps us form strategies

Why measuring is important for businesses of all kindsI’m getting slower, there’s no doubt about it. I have been keeping track of my cycling times for the same routes for over five years and each year my times are slower. Since I turned 50, five seasons ago, my climbing is slower by a minute or two for the same hills, and my times…

Four things business owners owe their employees

A safe environment, fair pay, leadership and consideration for employees’ futures should always be at the forefront

Four things business owners owe their employeesI recently heard of a leader within an organization who was treating his assistant much like a slave. Not only was the leader verbally demeaning to the assistant, he would often bring his dog to work and expect his assistant clean up the mess his dog left in the building. Working in a non-unionized environment,…

Non-profit and charity executive directors too often isolated

What does a properly functioning board of directors look like and how can its members pull their weight?

Non-profit and charity executive directors too often isolatedIf you’ve ever sat on the board of a non-profit or charity, sports organization or even a company, you’ve probably noticed that most meetings are boring. Usually one person, the president, runs the meeting using Robert’s Rules of Order. After minimal discussion, the board votes on agenda items, provided a quorum has shown up. Without…

Poor customer service suggests Telus is doomed

After wasting hours of my life, I realized I was not the valued customer Telus continued to claim I was

Poor customer service suggests Telus is doomedOne of the first signs of a business headed for decline is poor customer service. When we fail to meet our customers’ expectations for our product or service, they generally start to leave us for other options. Business owners should always keep a close finger on the pulse of our customer service. For the three…

You’ll reap what you sow if you don’t bail on your business too early

As entrepreneurs we all heed our calls, we plant our seeds and hope they germinate. But we need to stay patient

You’ll reap what you sow if you don’t bail on your business too earlyI was driving through the Prairies last week and as I saw farm after farm for sale, my mind drifted to what it would be like to be a farmer. I imagined the rhythm of the seasons, the sense of accomplishment of seeing crops grow before my eyes and the reaping of abundance from seeds…
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