It’s difficult to keep pace with all the great business literature published these days. Here are some quotes from top thinkers to help you gain their most practical, actionable insights:
1. Tracking Metrics
Can you imagine watching a football game that didn’t have a scoreboard? Or playing a round of golf without tracking your strokes on a scorecard?
Of course not. Then why would you run a business that way?
It should come as no surprise that you’ve got to measure performance to achieve your goals. That’s the clear message of WGMGD: What gets measured gets done.
2. When Hiring, Think About What You Don’t Want
Sometimes, hiring the right personnel is about NOT choosing someone who will be bad for the company. Businesses focus so much on what they want, they don’t consider what they don’t want. Before the hiring process begins, you should absolutely list all the traits you would love to have in the ideal applicant. But then, think about the traits you absolutely don’t want.
3. Create a One-Page Strategic Plan
Many CEO’s think they have a strategy, but usually, all they have done is an exercise in financial goal setting. Goal setting is important, but setting numerical targets for growth is not a strategy. We all want to grow, but growth is not a strategy. We all want to improve quality, but quality improvement is not a strategy. We all want to be more efficient, but efficiency improvement is not a strategy. We all want to be better than our competitors, but beating our competitors is not a strategy either.
What is strategy then? Strategy is understanding how your industry is likely to play out and getting very clear on the key strategic moves you need to make to position your company for future success.
4. Whoever Tries The Most Things Wins
I’ve only learned for sure one thing in the last 50 years and that one thing is whoever tries the most things wins. It is not about thinking, it is about getting out there. It’s about trying, it’s about putting together a little prototype, it’s about grabbing someone in the hall by their sweater and pulling them aside and saying ‘I’ve been thinking about doing this with this system and can we just play around with it’. Get out there. Test it, try it, laugh at yourself, have fun with the whole thing but try something now.
5. Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder
Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Author of The Black Swan, Antifragile, Skin in the Game, and more.
People who build their strength using modern expensive gym machines can lift extremely large weights, show great numbers and develop impressive-looking muscles, but fail to lift a stone; they get completely hammered in a street fight by someone trained in more disorderly settings…Just like corporate executives are selected for their ability to put up with the boredom of meetings…when one takes them slightly outside their narrow focus…they fall apart, with the disconsolate face of a gym rat in front of a gangster hit man