Roy's Blog: September 2011

September 19, 2011

What is the silver bullet for great leaders?

If ever there were a silver bullet for the leader of an organization to focus on, it’s how to be different; how to carve out a unique and relevant place in an over crowded marketplace.

It’s not only a life saver, it’s THE critical driver of success.

This is what the competitive herd looks like.

— flogging products is the main tactic employed by herd members.

— advertising claims and messages are pushed at people to the point that it is annoying.

— everyone copies everyone else in the herd.

— traditional media is used to blast out one’s message; conversations are still not pervasive enough.

— product features are incrementally changed to match a competitor; delivering memorable experiences is a major void.

— mass marketing methods are used to try and sell; addressing the individual is largely absent.

What an opportunity for an organization to break out from the herd and differentiate themselves by the value they create for people.

Leaders need to spend more time asking their people…

“How can we be different?”

“How can we be more relevant to our customers in a unique way?”

“Why do we copy others?”

“Why are best of breed and best in class even in our vernacular?”

“Why do we have to rely on price discounting to sell our stuff?”

If leaders don’t ask the right questions they will never get the answers they need to create a remarkable organization.

The silver bullet is about differences. Go create them. Now.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 9.19.11 at 09:15 am by Roy Osing
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September 15, 2011

This is what happens when the numbers drive strategy

The Strategic Game Plan Creation process  involves answering 3 basic questions.

1. HOW BIG do you want to be?

2. WHO do you want to SERVE?

3. HOW will you compete and WIN?

The HOW BIG question starts the process.

The numbers

Your growth goals determine the character and risk level of your strategy. A plan to grow revenue at 10% per year will look different than if you wanted to grow at 25%.

The latter could require, for example, more resources, new target markets and customer segments and an acquisition to get the 25%.

The traditional approach to planning is to first develop the strategy and then determine the financial impacts — the numbers are set at the END of the planning process.

This has always been a problem. Typically the growth produced by the strategy is unacceptable by leadership, so the assumptions are tinkered with to produce new numbers rather than adjusting the strategy.

This is a problem — you can’t change the numbers without changing the strategy.

The boldness of your strategy is governed by your growth goals.

Get your thinking straight on HOW BIG; then create your strategy to achieve them.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 9.15.11 at 09:00 am by Roy Osing
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September 12, 2011

Your strategic game plan provides the fuel for your social media strategy

There is much activity in organizations these days on social media, and how to create a social media strategy .

Social media is important to consider, but should be “second in command”.

Social Media is a means to an end and should be driven by your overall business goals.

What’s your strategic game plan?

What’s the competitive claim that will separate you from your competition and that declare your uniqueness in the marketplace?

Which customer groups do you intend to serve?

Social media planning needs to follow the answers to these questions which provide the context to provide direction and meaning.


The question is not “How do I get into social media?” but rather “What is the appropriate role of social media to satisfy my strategic game plan?”

Determine your destiny, THEN create a meaningful role for social media:
- the content that your targeted customers are interested in
- the look, feel and functionality of your web site including a blog
- the appropriate social media tools to use to engage with people and drive traffic to your web site.

Social media gives you the capability to connect and have a conversation with people.

When you “open your mouth to speak” to them, what will you say?

THAT is the role of your strategic game plan.

Make it “first in command”.

Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 9.12.11 at 10:00 am by Roy Osing
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September 8, 2011

What if people went in the opposite direction?

Distinctive. Unique. Remarkable. DiFFERENT. All words to describe successful organizations that know how to thrive and survive over the long term.

The challenge, of course, is to figure out how to get there.

One possibility is based on a contrarian attitude. Do the opposite to what the faceless competitive herd is doing.

Break from the trend. Get out of the box.

If the herd is doing it one way, do the opposite. If they are going north, go south.

Do opposite

In the past, rock bands NEVER allowed concert fans to record their music during a live performance. The Grateful Dead did exactly the opposite and enabled their fans to do it.

Organizations generally treat their collections function as a one-way collect the balance due task. What if you treated it as a credit management function where employees are empowered to manage credit risk and work with the customer to develop a payment plan that was a win-win for both the company and the customer?

The herd cuts prices thinking that it is the only way to remain competitive. What if you held prices at current levels (or even increased them), refused to discount and added value?

You would BE DiFFERENT. You would get noticed. You would standout from the Herd.

Go against the Herd. Practice opposition and get noticed.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 9.8.11 at 10:00 am by Roy Osing
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