The Irrelevancy of Fresh Pupperoni

Tweet Bentley and Buddy Beagle adore Pupperoni and dog bacon strips. Not too long ago, I noticed the bags were different. They enabled me to tear off the top, but then reseal them with a locking mechanism such as you’d find on the cold cuts you buy in the supermarket. It never occurred to me to keep the dog treats “fresh.” The dogs loved them equally when they became somewhat harder in composition, I’m assuming (neither dog would sit for …


Customer ROI

Tweet The Peninsula Hotel in New York is one of my favorite hotels. I arrived late yesterday, because of a delayed train, and when the limo deposited me in front of the hotel an assistant manager said, “Welcome back, Dr. Weiss. May I escort you to your room?” I casually asked on the elevator if I was upgraded by American Express. “Oh, we double upgraded you,” she said, “to your favorite suite.” The Peninsula is expensive, but I can walk …


Directing Traffic

Tweet Restaurants here in Bali hire people to direct traffic in and out of their parking lots, because the street traffic is so heavy that drivers otherwise wouldn’t be able to make the turns. They have lighted rods and whistles. The church we attended, in order to accommodate the maximum amount of worshippers in its lot, has attendants who parked the cars in a great, solid mass. But after services, they adroitly directed people out with a minimum of waiting. …


The Free Ride

Tweet Big headlines today about car service Uber raising around $18 billion, surpassing all start-ups except Facebook. Uber is a brilliant idea, but what happens from here? Obviously, there will be competitive entries from others, offering cheaper rates or particular vehicles. Perhaps cab companies will embrace the technology and use their massive fleets to out-hustle Uber. Perhaps, instead of an app, a competitor will offer something you can carry on your key chain to summon a vehicle. But here’s another …


SOLD!

Tweet I passed a property today that had been for sale for some time, and saw the prominent SOLD notice pasted over the “for sale” sign. I wondered for an instant why the realtor would take the time and expense to maintain a “sold” sign, then quickly realized it was great advertising. Just as quickly, I wondered why consultants don’t post SOLD on past business. What would that look like? Well try this:   • Who is a leader in …



Brilliant Marketing

Tweet At the Four Season here in Palm Beach they take clients seriously. Later this year I’m conducting my fifth Thought Leadership Conference here. The sales manager investigated my background, and one of our daily amenities reflects my love of (and former) cars, spun sugar created by the chef. Any wonders why I love it here?



Lessons on Thought Leadership

Tweet We’re going into the second day of my annual Thought Leadership Conference in Florida. Margaret Wheatley is our guest tomorrow, following Marshall Goldsmith and David Maister in prior years. Next year, Dan Pink has already committed. Some lessons from the first day: • You’re not a thought leader until others proclaim you as such. • You can take the position that there’s “nothing new under the sun” and be cynical, or you can adapt ideas for key, changing variables …


Stop Listening to Customers and Have Them Listen to You

Tweet Henry Ford said, famously, that if he had asked customers what they most wanted in transportation they would have replied, “Faster horses.” Steve Jobs’s biography demonstrates that he virtually never asked customers for any feedback, but simply focused on providing exciting products, accepting the occasional dud. Akio Morita invented the Walkman in a complete vacuum of customer demand for such a device. So why, then, do we still hear of organizations being “customer focused” or “customer driven” or incessantly …