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The First and Foremost Task of Entrepreneurial Leadership

Your resaon is the glue for BIGG SuccessWe saw an interesting article over at the Forbes site on why companies need a Chief Reason Officer. We disagree.

But we may be wrong.

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We’re wrong if you run your business like an Undercover Boss.

  • If you can’t see past the ivory tower
  • If you don’t know what’s going on in your employee’s lives
  • If they don’t even recognize you

Then you need a Chief Reason Officer.

We’re wrong if your primary focus is your next quarterly report.

  • If you, knowingly or unknowingly, sacrifice the long-term for the short run
  • If you place cost-cutting ahead of innovation
  • If you put profit over people

Then you need a Chief Reason Officer.

We’re wrong if you can’t see people.

  • If you only see markets, niches, customers, accounts or contacts
  • If you can’t see people in pain, people who want a better life, people who need help

Then you need a Chief Reason Officer.

  • If you only see employees, staff, personnel, associates, team members, human resources, human capital or human assets
  • If you can’t see people with families and friends, people with a life outside of work, people with cares, concerns and stress that may or may not be related to their work, people trying to make the most of their lives, people with emotions, people just like you

Then you need a Chief Reason Officer.

We’re wrong if you’ve buried your head in the sand.

  • If you’re too old to pay attention
  • If you’re too close to retirement to take any risk
  • If you choose to ignore the rapid changes taking place today and refuse to adapt accordingly

Then you need a Chief Reason Officer.

Your first and foremost task as an entrepreneurial leader

“Your Reason” is the first and foremost task of entrepreneurial leadership.

“Your Reason” is the glue that holds everything together.

Crafting the Reason for your firm’s existence, sharing it with your people, keeping it constantly in front of everybody inside and outside your organization, and making it the foundation for all of your business decisions is the primary focus of successful entrepreneurial leaders.

  • Your company’s culture flows out of that Reason.

    It attracts people to your firm and keeps them there, all because your Reason clearly tells them the difference you will make together.

  • Your best people – the people you want – sign on to a Reason and the culture that stems from it.

    That’s it! They must understand your Reason so they can do their best work, make the best judgments, and so you can accomplish what you set out to do.

So whose job is it to keep the Reason front and center?

YOURS! As an entrepreneurial leader who wants to be a BIGG success, you know this is far too important to delegate to someone else.

And yet, if you do it right – every single one of your people will see themselves as Reason Officers.

Customer Service shouldn’t only happen at the desk beneath the sign. Keeping your Reason at the forefront is too BIGG a job for just one person.

Make it everybody’s job for your BIGG success!

What do you think? Should companies have a Chief Reason Officer?

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00844-011013.mp3

Image in this post from stock.xchng

What Henry Ford Knew That Many CEOs Have Forgotten

Henry FordWe all know a lot about Henry Ford. But the two of us didn’t know much about Herbert Casson until recently. Now we have a growing fascination.

Casson began his career as a minister and ended it as an author. He was a Methodist turned socialist turned capitalist. He was one of the people featured in the book, 50 Key Figures in Management.

A capitalist with a better way to get rich

It was what he said about Henry Ford that caught our attention. Here are a few excerpts, written as a contemporary of Ford’s:

“Judging by results, Henry Ford is the most successful manufacturer in the world. He pays the highest wages. He makes the highest profits. He sells the cheapest goods.

Henry Ford is a complete answer to the silly Marxian theory that a capitalist can only make money by robbing his employees or the public.

Henry Ford robs nobody. He is not an exploiter of the proletariat.

He is a multi-millionaire, and every penny of his money is clean.

His enormous profits are only a part of what he saves the public; and he pays his workers far more than they could make if they were on their own.

Henry Ford is a capitalist, and he shows all capitalists a better way of getting rich.

Scoffing at Ford

After telling the story of Ford’s fascinating journey from farmer to entrepreneur, Casson continued:

“We may scoff at him if we like—if we are foolish enough; but it seems to me that he is the one who has the joke on the rest of us.

Henry Ford knows how. He has solved his business problems. He has shown us the one right way to handle men and produce goods and make profits without making enemies.

It would be better for all of us if we STUDIED Ford more and scoffed at him less. The more I find out about him the more I am impressed with his ability and his sense.

What the world needs is more Henry Fords; that is the truth, whether we like it or not.

If we had 1,000 Fords, we would have high wages, high profits, low prices and no labor troubles. We would have peace and prosperity.”

Ford and his employees

He goes on to discuss how Ford treated his employees:

Take, for instance, Ford’s methods as an EMPLOYER. In this respect he is most peculiar. He has followed a most unusual course, and he has made a great success of it.

The fact is, that Henry Ford seems to regard himself as a LABOR LEADER rather than an employer.

He gives his men MORE than they ask.

He gives them better working conditions than they had ever thought of.

He watches over them and protects them.

He has made his men the best-paid and most contented workers the world has ever seen.

He was one of the few leaders to hire convicts and people with disabilities. He treated all of his employees like people. Casson concludes:

“He has stopped the war between the workers and the management. He has established peace and goodwill.

He has shown every other employer what can be done.”

Entrepreneurial CEOs today can learn a lot from Ford. You can have it all. It just takes some ingenuity which begins with a mutual trust between you and your people. To paraphrase Ford, your people might become good customers, too…if you treat them well.

Source: Tips on Leadership or the Life Stories of Twenty Five Leaders

This book was written by Casson in 1929 and republished in 2003. We found it riveting so we highly recommend it to you.

Image in this post from sciencecontrol.com

Entrepreneurial Leadership Does Not Happen in the Executive Suite

executive suiteWe were excited about the CBS show, Undercover Boss. This was a learning opportunity from the CEOs of major companies.

But it hasn’t lived up to our expectations. It’s too formulaic. It really comes off as a publicity stunt to us.

However, it made us think about why entrepreneurial leaders should not operate covertly. So, in this BIGG Success Show podcast, we discuss:

  • the small business advantage in engaging employees
  • how one small business CEO leads “in the open”
  • why you can’t lead from the executive suite
  • why the “know – like – trust” continuum doesn’t just apply to customers
  • 3 steps to create employee loyalty

How do you create loyalty?

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00670-021011.mp3

(Image in today’s post by svilen001)

A Crucial Part of Your Personal Brand

business_cardBigg success is life on your own terms. We’ve said that the reason for the redundancy – “your own” – in our definition of bigg success is to explicitly show that you are the entrepreneur of a very important enterprise – your life.

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If life on your own terms means building your own personal brand, there’s a very important principle to keep in mind:

You’re the entrepreneur, the CEO, and the brand manager!

With their careers, some people fall short in reaching their potential because they just sell a service. They exchange their time and knowledge for money.

As bigg goal-getters, we don’t want to just sell a service. We want to create our own brands.

But we don’t want to just create a personal brand, we want to build our lives on our own terms.

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Would you like more tips and tools to live your life on your own terms?
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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One crucial key to building our personal brands is consistency. There are at least three areas where this holds true:

Promotion

One of the things the biggest brands do very well is convey a consistent brand image. Yet that’s one of the mistakes that we make most frequently in building our personal brands: we’re inconsistent in showing ourselves to the world.

You want to convey a consistent message across all the media you use – your resume, your cover letters, your e-mails, notes you send, social media you might use, clubs you join, and on and on. With these materials, you create the image of who you are.

You also want to keep in mind who you’re trying to relate to in order to create the best promotional materials for your brand. Promotion sets the expectations. What can I expect from you? That’s your brand promise.

Performance

You want to meet, or better yet exceed, the expectations you set. Believe it or not, it’s better to deliver at a consistently lower level than to perform poorly at times and superbly at others.

Kind of counterintuitive, isn’t it?

However, think about your experiences as a customer. Aren’t you happier if your expectations are low but satisfied, than if your higher expectations aren’t met?

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georgeFor a very simple example, think about getting an e-mail from me today that is written well and has no typos. Tomorrow, I send you an e-mail that’s just full of typos. What would you think?

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marylynnI might think, “What’s going on with George today? Is he sick? Is he too busy? Is he just this careless sometimes?” It raises a lot of questions.

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At the start, strive to meet expectations all the time. Then find ways to gradually improve your performance so you exceed expectations regularly. That leads to bigg success!

Persona

Have you ever dealt with a person who is very chatty and friendly one day and may seem somewhat aloof at other times?

It’s okay to be moody; we just don’t need to share it with the world! We have to find a way to control our emotions so we present a consistent temperament.

Sweatin’ to an example

Think about Richard Simmons. He’s done pretty well for himself. He’s always dressed in the same kind of clothes, complete with the shortest of shorts. He’s wacky and upbeat. He’s always empathetic and dancing to the oldies!

You may not want to emulate Richard Simmons. We can understand. However, he has done an outstanding job of building his brand. You know what to expect and he consistently delivers.

All someone has to do is say Richard Simmons and you get a clear image in your mind of who he is and what he’s about.

That’s the lesson for all of us. Consistently – in your promotion, your performance and your persona – build your personal brand so you can live your life on your own terms. That’s bigg success!

What are you doing to build your personal brand?

You can share that with us by leaving a comment below, calling us at 888.455.BIGG or sending us an e-mail at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com.

Thanks so much for personally reading our post today. We brand that a good day!

Please join us next time when we share how recent bad luck and bad timing almost kept us from life on our own terms.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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(Image in today's post by blary54)

The Art of Delivering Value

delivery_car Today on The Bigg Success Show, we were privileged to visit with Benjamin Klein. Benjamin is the CEO for The Art of Charm, a highly successful coaching service. He is an expert in the psychology of sales, management and success. He has used that knowledge to create an upcoming program called Success Principles.

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marylynn
What is one of the most important success principles?

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benjamin_kleinThe most important success principle for me has always been to say what I mean and mean what I say. It’s very important to come from a position of honesty and integrity and to do things that not only create value for you, but also for those around you. You don’t go into it dependent on the outcome, whether it will be reciprocated or not. If the value is reciprocated, they are the type of person you want to work with. If the value is not reciprocated, you have saved yourself months of time dealing with someone you don’t want to work with. You give up a little bit upfront, but that just comes with honesty and integrity and knowing that you’re creating value for those around you.

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marylynnDo you have a value-offer model for some of our business owners who are listening today? Any suggestions for those people who have been offering something that isn’t working, that’s not getting them the leads they were hoping for?
Read more