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Sunday, May 31, 2009

 

Erika Andersen: Being Strategic - Blog Business Success Radio

Listen to Wayne Hurlbert on Blog Talk Radio



Founding partner of Proteus International, executive coach and author of the groundbreaking book Being Strategic: Plan for Success; Out-Think Your Competitors; Stay Ahead of Change, Erika Andersen , shares secrets for making choices that move you forward toward your goals, in both business and in life. She provides simple models, real world examples and self directed activities that boost your ability to think strategically. The ideas discussed are used successfully by leaders, executives and successful companies of all sizes and industries.

Erika Andersen is my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Tuesday, June 2, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Founding partner of Proteus International, executive coach and author of the groundbreaking book Being Strategic: Plan for Success; Out-Think Your Competitors; Stay Ahead of Change, Erika Andersen , shares secrets for making choices that move you forward toward your goals, in both business and in life. You will learn:

* What strategy really means for an organization and its goals

* How strategy differs from tactics and how to tell them apart

* How anyone can learn to think strategically at all times

* How strategic thinking can avoid problems and loss of company direction




Erika Andersen (photo left) has, since 1980, developed a reputation for creating learning and change processes and programs uniquely tailored to her clients’ challenges, goals, and culture. She and her colleagues at Proteus International offer practical methods and skills for individuals, teams, and companies to clarify and then achieve their hoped-for-future.

Much of her recent work has focused on organizational visioning and strategy, executive coaching, and management and leadership development. In these capacities she has served as consultant and advisor to the CEOs and top executives of a number of corporations, including MTV Networks, Regeneration Technologies, Inc., the French Culinary Institute, Rainbow Media Holdings, Union Square Hospitality Group, Lifetime Television, and Comcast Corporation.

She has been invited to share her insights about managing people and creating successful businesses by speaking before a number of organizations, including corporations, non-profit groups and national associations. Her models, ideas and learning guides have been translated into Spanish, Portuguese, Turkish, German and French, and she has been quoted in a variety of national publications, including Glamour, Fortune and Training magazines.

Erika Andersen blogs at The Simplest Thing That Works.

My book review of Being Strategic: Plan for Success; Out-Think Your Competitors; Stay Ahead of Change by Erika Andersen.

My book review of Growing Great Employees: Turning Ordinary People into Extraordinary Performers by Erika Andersen.

Listen live on Tuesday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with Founding partner of Proteus International, executive coach and author of the groundbreaking book Being Strategic: Plan for Success; Out-Think Your Competitors; Stay Ahead of Change, Erika Andersen , as she shares secrets for making choices that move you forward toward your goals, in both business and in life. She provides simple models, real world examples and self directed activities that boost your ability to think strategically. The ideas discussed are used successfully by leaders, executives and successful companies of all sizes and industries on Blog Business Success Radio.

BlogTalkRadio.com

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Saturday, May 30, 2009

 

Being Strategic by Erika Andersen - Book review



Being Strategic

Plan for Success; Out-Think Your Competitors; Stay Ahead of Change


By: Erika Andersen


Published: May 2009
Format: Hardcover, 288pp
ISBN-13: 9780312553982
Publisher: St. Martin's Press






"Being strategic means consistently making those core directional choices that will best move you toward your hoped-for future", writes Founding partner of Proteus International and executive coach Erika Andersen, in her groundbreaking book Being Strategic: Plan for Success; Out-Think Your Competitors; Stay Ahead of Change. The author opens up the discussion of what strategy really means, and how to use strategic thinking and action, to achieve organizational and personal goals.

Erika Andersen takes both a theoretical and practical approach to strategy and strategic thinking. She takes the concept out of the realm of the esoteric and brings strategy into the area of organizational planning. Unlike some books in the field of strategic thinking, which often take a very narrow and specialized view of strategy, the author takes a more holistic approach. Erika Andersen removes the mystique and obscurity that often surrounds organizational strategy. She demonstrates that strategy is an inclusive process that can be learned like any other management concept.



Erika Andersen (photo left) recognizes the importance of strategic thinking, as crucial to an organization's competitiveness. By addressing the goals of the organization with clarity and vision, the needed resources can be put into place to achieve them. At the same time, the often unanswered questions of unknown impediments to the goal, can be properly addressed before they can derail the strategy. Erika Andersen considers strategic thinking to be a core part of the organization and part of the standard operating procedure. The ability to select the proper strategy, based on the overall goals and vision, will propel the organization closer to the target.

For me, the power of the book is its powerful combination of theory, real world examples, and practical hands on applications. The idea that strategy is not inborn into the few, but a learned skill for the many, is a powerful one. Erika Anderson places strategy at the heart of achieving the organization's goals. For too long, strategy has existed almost outside of the organizational mainstream and took on a purely esoteric mantle. As such, strategy moved away from being a force for reaching an over arching vision. Other discussions of strategy reduced the concept almost to the level of tactics. Erika Andersen opened the discussion far beyond either of those two false boundaries.

I highly recommend the indispensable book Being Strategic: Plan for Success; Out-Think Your Competitors; Stay Ahead of Change by Erika Andersen, to anyone seeking to develop strategic thinking as a way of life and of achieving business goals. The book teaches the theory of strategic thinking and provides the skills to put them into practice. While the prime metaphor in the book is castle building, the book will indeed lay the foundation, and add the bricks, walls, and towers to strengthen any organization.

Read the essential Being Strategic: Plan for Success; Out-Think Your Competitors; Stay Ahead of Change by Erika Andersen, and never be left floundering for ideas to reach your most important personal, business, or organizational goals again. Let strategy become a way of living and acting successfully.

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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

 

Scott McKain: Collapse Of Distinction - Blog Business Success Radio

Listen to Wayne Hurlbert on Blog Talk Radio



Vice-Chairman of Obsidian Enterprises, Principal of Value Added Institute and author of the brilliant and business saving book Collapse of Distinction: Stand out and move up while your competition fails, Scott McKain, describes how customer experience around the globe has taken on a sameness. He points out how this lack of distinction has resulted in lower customer satisfaction and loyalty. He offers ideas for creating distinctiveness that will create more loyal customers and to help your business stand out from the crowd.

Scott McKain is my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Thursday, May 28, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Vice-Chairman of Obsidian Enterprises, Principal of Value Added Institute and author of the brilliant and business saving book Collapse of Distinction: Stand out and move up while your competition fails, Scott McKain, describes how customer experience around the globe has taken on a sameness. You will learn:

* Why companies tend over time to blend together without differentiation

* The key components to achieving true distinction in any industry

* Why customer experience is more important than watching the competition

* How to create distinction and stand out in the marketplace



Scott McKain (photo left) iss Vice Chairman of a public company, #1 bestselling business author and Hall of Fame professional speaker. He gives him a unique insight into today's business trends combined with the ability to communicate his wisdom in a compelling manner.

He is Vice Chairman of Obsidian Enterprises, a dynamic holding company with interests in widely varied businesses: from a finance company to butyl rubber reclamation, from manufacturing trailers to leasing celebrity coaches, from cosmetic surgery to publishing magazines. He is also the Co-founder and Principal of The Value Added Institute, a think-tank that explores the role of the customer experience in creating lifelong client loyalty. The work of the VAI has been featured in many national publications, particularly in the financial services industry.

Capturing the ideas that helped form one of America's "fastest growing companies" (according to a nationally respected business publication), Scott McKain has authored two bestselling business books. The first, ALL Business is Show Business reached the #1 spot on Amazon.coms list of business bestsellers and has been released in several languages worldwide.

Scott McKain's latest book is Collapse of Distinction: Stand out and move up while your competition fails

Scott’s book, the #1 bestseller What Customers REALLY Want, is a groundbreaking look at the Six Major Disconnections between Customers and Organizations” that has made a significant impact in the manner in which the companies that use Scott's strategies and insights approach their customer and prospect base.

Scott McKain blogs at Scott McKain Viewpoint.

My book review of Collapse of Distinction: Stand out and move up while your competition fails by Scott McKain.

Listen live on Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with Vice-Chairman of Obsidian Enterprises, Principal of Value Added Institute and author of the brilliant and business saving book Collapse of Distinction: Stand out and move up while your competition fails, Scott McKain, as he describes how customer experience around the globe has taken on a sameness. He points out how this lack of distinction has resulted in lower customer satisfaction and loyalty. He offers ideas for creating distinctiveness that will create more loyal customers and to help your business stand out from the crowd on Blog Business Success Radio.

BlogTalkRadio.com

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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

 

Collapse Of Distinction by Scott McKain - Book review



Collapse of Distinction

Stand out and move up while your competition fails


By: Scott McKain

Published: March 31, 2009
ISBN: 1595551859
ISBN-13: 9781595551856
Format: Hardcover, 272 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson, Inc.






"Being different, standing out, getting noticed in a sea of sameness is vital to an organization's sustained growth and profitability". writes best selling author Scott McKain in his brilliant and business saving book Collapse of Distinction: Stand out and move up while your competition fails. The author takes the familiar concepts of differentiation and customer service to an entirely new level that create the power of being truly distinctive in the marketplace.

Scott McKain applies the fundamental, yet absolutely crucial, business lessons learned from success and failure of business in his hometown in rural Indiana. He added to those truths through his years of experience in consulting to major corporations. The lessons he gleaned from companies large and small were simple yet powerful. Businesses, over time, tend to become less distinctive, and follow strategies that stress incremental change based on the actions of their competitors. Instead, the author says the focus should be on creating a distinctive and unique experience for the customer. By creating and enhancing that distinction, what the competitors choose to do is not important.



Scott McKain (photo left) understands that companies of all sizes and industries not only tend to focus on the activities of their competitors, but also fail to recognize the challenge of new competitors. The new competition will not be presenting the usual incremental change, but revolutionary new products and services. The disastrous approach for an unsuccessful business is attempting that same failed incremental approach to meeting the new competitor. Unless a business, facing a new challenge, reaffirms its distinction, the familiar business will be taken for granted and die from customer neglect. Taken together, this triumvirate of problems cause the the undifferentiated business to descend to the death spiral of competing only on price.

For me, the power of the book is Scott McKain's strong metaphor of how a small town diner failed to meet the challenge posed by mega-corporation McDonalds. On the other hand, the lessons provided by another small restaurant, in the same town demonstrate the importance of creating a unique customer experience. The author's own family grocery store applied the same principles of distinctiveness when competing successfully with a national grocery chain store. Scott McKain takes the concept of differentiation to a higher level, in the form of distinctiveness, and why it's crucial for business survival and prosperity. His analysis of the decline of distinctive business, and also its potential for revival, is important for any business owner or manager.

I highly recommend the must read business survival guide Collapse of Distinction: Stand out and move up while your competition fails by Scott McKain, to any business person seeking to rise above the competition through focus on the customer, rather than being a weak copy of the competition. The author challenges the reader to ignore what the competition does, and be the best at creating distinction in your own business. As a result, a company of any size can compete successfully in any industry.

Read the important and insightful book Collapse of Distinction: Stand out and move up while your competition fails by Scott McKain, and become truly distinctive in your industry. Through true differentiation in the marketplace, and by developing and practicing a truly unique customer service experience, any company can achieve success.

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Monday, May 25, 2009

 

Ed Schein: Helping: How To Offer, Give, And Receive Help - Blog Business Success Radio

BlogTalkRadio.com



Sloan Fellows Professor of Management Emeritus at MIT and author of the seminal, yet highly practical book Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help, Edgar H. Schein, discusses the concept of helping from both the helper and the recipient viewpoint. By using a sociological, psychological, and economics approach to the concept of helping, Ed Schein is able to describe the complexity of helping, He shares ideas for offering, giving and receiving help that deepen business and personal relationships. His ideas are equally valuable in a personal or business setting.

Ed Schein is my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Tuesday, May 26, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Sloan Fellows Professor of Management Emeritus at MIT and author of the seminal, yet highly practical book Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help, Edgar H. Schein, discusses the concept of helping from both the helper and the recipient viewpoint. You will learn:

* Why the concept of giving and receiving help is so complex

* How societal and status roles affect the helping dynamic

* How helping operates in a business setting

* How to improve your helping roles and your acceptance of help



Edgar Schein (photo left) was educated at the University of Chicago, at Stanford University where he received a Masters Degree in Psychology in 1949, and at Harvard University where he received his Ph.D. in social psychology in 1952. He was Chief of the Social Psychology Section of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research while serving in the U.S. Army as Captain from 1952 to 1956. He joined MIT's Sloan School of Management in 1956 and was made a Professor of Organizational Psychology and Management in 1964.

At the present he is Sloan Fellows Professor of Management Emeritus and continues at the Sloan School part time as a Senior Lecturer. He is also the Founding Editor of "Reflections" the Journal of the Society for Organizational Learning devoted to connecting academics, consultants, and practitioners around the issues of knowledge creation, dissemination and utilization.

Schein has been a prolific researcher, writer, teacher and consultant. Besides his numerous articles in professional journals he has authored fourteen books including Organizational Psychology (3d edit., 1980), Career Dynamics (1978), Organizational Culture and Leadership (1985, 1992, 2004), and Process Consultation Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 (1969, 1987, 1988), Process Consultation Revisited (1999), and The Corporate Culture Survival Guide (1999).

Wd Schein wrote a cultural analysis of the Singapore Economic Development Board entitled Strategic Pragmatism (MIT Press, 1997) and has published an extended case analysis of the rise and fall of Digital Equipment Corporation entitled DEC is Dead; Long Live DEC: The lasting legacy of Digital Equipment Corporation (Berrett-Kohler, 2003). He was Co-editor with the late Richard Beckhard of the Addison Wesley Series on Organization Development which has published over 30 titles since its inception in 1969.

His consultation focuses on organizational culture, organization development, process consultation, and career dynamics, and among his past and current clients are major corporations both in the U.S. and overseas such as Digital Equipment Corporation, Ciba-Geigy, Apple, Citibank, General Foods, Procter & Gamble, ICI, Saab Combitech, Steinbergs, Alcoa, Motorola, Hewlett-Packard, Exxon, Shell, AMOCO, British Petroleum, Con Edison, the Economic Development Board of Singapore, and the International Atomic Energy Agency (on the subject of "safety culture").

Ed Schein currently serves on the Advisory Board of the Institute for Nuclear Power Operations, and the Boards of Massachusetts Audubon Society and the Boston Lyric Opera.

Ed Schein has received many honors and awards for his writing, most recently the Lifetime Achievement Award in Workplace Learning and Performance of the American Society of Training Directors, Feb, 3, 2000, the Everett Cherington Hughes Award for Career Scholarship from the Careers Division of the Academy of Management, Aug. 8, 2000, and the Marion Gislason Award for Leadership in Executive Development from the Boston University School of Management Executive Development Roundtable, Dec. 11, 2002.

He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and the Academy of Management. Prof. Schein is married, has three children, and seven grandchildren. He and his wife Mary live in Cambridge, Mass.

My book review of Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help by Edgar H. Schein.

Listen live on Tuesday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with Sloan Fellows Professor of Management Emeritus at MIT and author of the seminal, yet highly practical book Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help, Edgar H. Schein, as he discusses the concept of helping from both the helper and the recipient viewpoint. By using a sociological, psychological, and economics approach to the concept of helping, Ed Schein is able to describe the complexity of helping, He shares ideas for offering, giving and receiving help that deepen business and personal relationships. His ideas are equally valuable in a personal or business setting on Blog Business Success Radio.

BlogTalkRadio.com

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Sunday, May 24, 2009

 

Helping: How To Offer, Give, And Receive Help by Edgar H. Schein - Book review



Helping

How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help


By: Edgar H. Schein

Published: February 2009
Format: Hardcover, 192 pages
ISBN 9781576758632
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.







"Helping is a complex phenomenon. There is helpful help and unhelpful help", writes Sloan Fellows Professor of Management Emeritus and Senior Lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management Edgar H. Schein in his seminal, yet highly practical book Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help. The author presents the sociological and cultural aspects of offering and receiving help that offers both wisdom and everyday applications of his ideas.

Edgar Schein understands the role that societal relations play in the helping process. The author also points out that not all offers of help are accepted. When help is offered and refused, the intended giver may not be meeting the real needs of the recipient. Simply offering a preferred solution may not be what is needed in that situation. As a result, neither party is happy, and both people leave the situation unhappy. Ed Schein emphasizes the crucial aspect of trust in a helping relationship. Without trust, the motivations of the giver and the recipient may be misunderstood, leading to a deterioration of the relationship.



Edgar Schein (photo left) recognizes that not every offer of help is between people of equal social status. The inequality may involve parents and children, or employers and employees. As a result, the reciprocity between the helper and the recipient may be very different from those of equal status. The author places great importance of societal roles in the book, including economic relationships involving exchanges of money for help. Ed Schein also points out the crucial aspect of asking the right questions of the intended recipient, to ensure that the help offered satisfies both the personal and societal needs of the recipient. In a business setting, the employee needs make the proper inquiry of what is expected, and what help is offered in return to achieve the desired goal.

For me, the power of the book is the author's understanding of the role society plays in helping others, and receiving reciprocity in return. The author also guides the reader through the many complexities of helping, including its many forms and types. Ed Schein demonstrates the how differences in status play a key role in how help is offered and how it is accepted. The book is packed with practical, and easy to apply examples of the helping process in action. The author provides valuable tips and techniques for asking what help is needed prior to offering the assistance, to avoid sending the wrong message. At the same time, the reader learns many ways to properly accept an offer of help, and how to offer the appropriate thanks and reciprocity in return.

I highly recommend the essential guidebook Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help by Edgar H. Schein, to anyone who seeks to improve their personal and business relationships, establish trust, and help others in ways that benefit everyone. For business people, this must read book provides the basis for better employee relations and stronger teamwork, through deeper understanding of the helping process.

Read the indispensable and very readable Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help by Edgar H. Schein, and improve your own offers of help in any private or business setting. Learn as well how to accept help with grace, and with proper thanks for the giver's generosity.

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Friday, May 22, 2009

 

The Black Hole War by Leonard Susskind - Book review


The Black Hole War

My Battle with Stephen Hawking to Make the World Safe for Quantum Mechanics


By Leonard Susskind

Published: July 7, 2008
Format: Hardcover, 480 pages
ISBN: 9780316016407
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company


"The Black Hole War was more than an argument between physicists. It was a war of ideas, or perhaps a war between fundamental principles. The principles of Quantum Mechanics and those of General Relativity always seemed to be fighting each other, and it was not sure that the two could coexist", writes Felix Bloch Professor of Physics at Standford University Leonard Susskind in his brilliant and seminal book The Black Hole War: My Battle with Stephen Hawking to Make the World Safe for Quantum Mechanics. The war began when physics legend Stephen Hawking appeared to prove that when the mysterious objects known as black holes disappear through evaporation, all information in the form of bits inside would disappear.

Leonard Susskind takes the reader on a cosmic journey to places as large as the Universe, and as small as the tiniest particles yet imagined. Along the way, the author describes the three decades long battle to save the most fundamental laws of physics. Stephen Hawking's assertion that information is destroyed, when a black hole disappears, violated the fundamental law of conservation of information that states that no information can be lost. It only changes its form. This seeming contradiction of the very foundation of physics started the author, and other superstars of physics, on a quest to save the laws of physics. The Black Hole War had begun, and in the end, it ignited a new scientific revolution.



Leonard Susskind (photo left) understood that black holes can eventually evaporate and disappear. He also recognized that much of the existing theory of black holes was incomplete. What was missing was the mathematical proof that black hole evaporation would not result in an information loss. The three decade long search for a solution called upon the powerful mathematics of string theory, advanced quantum mechanics, and the counter-intuitive concept of the holographic universe. Leonard Susskind describes how an array of the most brilliant minds in theoretical physics, employed these theories to prove and uphold the law of information conservation. The author describes the war of ideas and the intriguing people involved, in a fascinating manner that brings the theories to life.

Leonard Susskind makes clear that the Black Hole War was unlike the pseudo-scientific polemics, found in political debates over hot button issues, including Intelligent Design and Global Warming. Instead, the Black Hole War was a victory for the Scientific Method, open and honest peer review of ideas and discoveries, and added to the sum total of human knowledge. When Stephen Hawking presented his black hole paradox, that seemed to overturn all mathematical and empirical science, his purpose was not to win or lose. Instead, he inspired natural scientific curiosity in the theoretical physics community, to follow the evidence and mathematics wherever they might lead. The resulting in depth study of black holes, quantum mechanics, string theory, and the holographic universe, was pure science discovery in action.

For me, the power of the book is the intriguing storytelling element, as the author's involvement in a true scientific revolution takes place. Leonard Susskind presents very advanced scientific theories and laws in language that is understandable to the lay person. The narrative describes the important principles involved, and each of their roles in the War, while keeping the mathematical formulas to a minimum. At the same time, the author shares stories about the brilliant people involved and their share in solving the enormous mathematical and theoretical physics puzzle. Along the way, the reader learns cutting edge theoretical physics concepts including string theory and the holographic universe, as well as the nature of black holes.

I highly recommend the destined to become classic The Black Hole War: My Battle with Stephen Hawking to Make the World Safe for Quantum Mechanics by Leonard Susskind, to anyone seeking not only to learn the nature of black holes, but how a true scientific revolution can take place, that changes radically how scientists understand the universe.

Read the important book The Black Hole War: My Battle with Stephen Hawking to Make the World Safe for Quantum Mechanics by Leonard Susskind, and discover how the greatest minds in theoretical physics solved a mathematical puzzle that threatened to destroy the very foundation of science. In the end, fighting the Black Hole War saved the most basic laws of physics from extinction. The ensuing battles also revealed a new and more complete understanding of the how the universe works, on both the incomprehensibly gigantic, and the unimaginably small sub-atomic scales.

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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

 

Mark Levy: Accidental Genius - Blog Business Success Radio

Listen to Wayne Hurlbert on Blog Talk Radio



Unconventional marketer and branding expert, Founder of Levy Innovation, and author of the brilliant treatise on developing creativity Accidental Genius: Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing, Mark Levy , describes how everyone has a genius inside of them. All it needs is a little help to emerge and display itself. He shares ideas for generating many genius moments that lead to enormous breakthroughs in business and in life. Through the technique of private writing, learn how to unleash the genius within you over and over again.

Jill Griffin is my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Thursday, May 21, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Unconventional marketer, Founder of Levy Innovation, and author of the brilliant treatise on developing creativity Accidental Genius: Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing, Mark Levy , describes how everyone has a genius inside of them. All it needs is a little help to emerge & display itself. You will learn:

* How anyone can be creative and unleash the genius within

* Why creative thinking through private writing is so powerful

* Some practical applications of the creative thinking process

* How tapping into that accidental genius creates competitive advantage



Mark Levy (photo left) started his long affiliation with the book industry. He moved from retail to publishing, and from publishing to wholesaling.

Along the way, he was steadily promoted, and became a sales manager, a director of special projects, and helped his companies sell over one billion dollars worth of books. He was nominated three times for The Publishers Weekly Rep of the Year Award.

Why was Mark so successful at selling? One of his colleagues said it best (and she didn’t mean it as a compliment): “When you think a particular book is important, you’re messianic about it. You won’t stop.”

In 1997, Mark was having dinner with his friend David Pogue, author of Macs for Dummies, when David said it might be fun to work on a book together. Since Mark knew nothing about computers, they settled on writing a book about the only subject they had in common: magic. Both Mark and David were amateur magicians. They created Magic for Dummies, and Mark got the bug for book writing.

Mark’s next effort was solo: Accidental Genius: Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing. Lots of luminaries loved it: Tom Peters, Ray Bradbury, Al Ries, Jay Conrad Levinson, and Ace Greenberg. Mark did a publicity stunt for the book, which did wonders for its sales. To date, it’s been translated into six languages: Spanish, German, Korean, Chinese, Indonesian, and Japanese.

Mark started writing for magazines and newspapers (including The New York Times). One such gig led to his next co-authored book. He was interviewing NBC-TV magician Mac King for an article about Las Vegas magic. During a break, Mac reached into his desk drawer, pulled out a dozen stapled sheets, and handed them to Mark. Those sheets were the beginnings of what would eventually become, Tricks With Your Head –- a book in which the human head is the central prop in each trick. Readers learn how to safely stab a fork in their eye, suck a French Fry up their nose, and read a person’s mind with a drinking straw.

About this time, Mark started pursuing other business interests, particularly on the magic front. A New York City magician, Steve Cohen, met Mark, appreciated his business savvy, and hired him to do positioning work. The upshot of their association? Steve became “The Millionaires’ Magician,” began staring in his own off-Broadway show, Chamber Magic, and made Mark the show’s Creative Director. Mark began to see life outside the book industry.

Mark's latest book, How to Persuade People Who Don’t Want To Be Persuaded, was published by Wiley in June of 2004. He wrote it with legendary tradeshow pitchman, Joel Bauer. The book has been as high as #6 on BN.com and #71 on Amazon.

He has also contributed chapters to two other books:

The E-Code: 33 Internet Superstars Reveal 43 Ways to Make Money Online Almost Instantly – Using Only E-Mail!, by Joe Vitale and Jo Han Mok (Wiley, 2005)

Positively M.A.D.: Making a Difference in Your Organizations, Communities, & the World. Stories and Ideas From 50 of Today’s Leading Experts, Edited by Bill Treasurer (Berrett-Koehler, 2004)

Recently, Mark returned to school; this time, as an instructor. He now teaches "Writing for Businesses and Professionals" at Rutgers University.

He lives in Clinton, New Jersey with his lovely wife, Stella; his Shiba Inus, Jofu and Bea; his cats,Tiger and Jinx; and Betsy the parakeet.

My book review of Accidental Genius: Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing by Mark Levy.

Listen live on Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with unconventional marketer and branding expert, Founder of Levy Innovation, and author of the brilliant treatise on developing creativity Accidental Genius: Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing, Mark Levy , as he describes how everyone has a genius inside of them. All it needs is a little help to emerge and display itself. He shares ideas for generating many genius moments that lead to enormous breakthroughs in business and in life. Through the technique of private writing, learn how to unleash the genius within you over and over again on Blog Business Success Radio.

BlogTalkRadio.com

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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

 

Accidental Genius by Mark Levy - Book review



Accidental Genius

Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing


By: Mark Levy

Published: 2000
Format: Paperback, 180 pages
ISBN: 9781576750834
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers




"Sometimes your best thoughts must be coaxed out, and played with, before they reach their fullest potential", writes innovative thinker Mark Levy in his brilliant treatise on developing creativity Accidental Genius: Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing. The author presents the powerful and highly productive technique of private writing, as the key to unlocking new and creative ideas for business.

Mark Levy understands that every person possesses the power of creativity. Indeed, he goes one step farther, and recognizes that everyone has a genius hiding within them. That moment of genius, complete with its revolutionary ideas, simply needs to be unleashed instead of hidden away. The author proposes private writing, known only to the writer, as the doorway into the subconscious mind where those powerful problem solving skills are found. The technique of free form writing, and several important refinements and variations for different problems, opens the door to those hidden solutions. Their discovery may be purely a result of an accidental pairing of words or concepts, but the result can be pure genius.



Mark Levy (photo left) knows instinctively that the value of modern business, from the smallest company to the largest corporations, rests in the ability of its people to form innovative solutions to problems. Those creative problem solving skills can be the difference between dominating an industry, and being simply just another company offering similar products and services. Creative thinking, and in this case the powerful and proven concept of private writing, will give a business an enormous competitive advantage. Through discovering those genius flashes of insight, almost any seemingly unsolvable problem can turn into a crucial business edge over the rest of the industry. Creativity is that powerful as a business tool.

For me, the power of the book was its recognition of the vital importance of the creative thinking process for business. Through the practical, and easy to use techniques of private writing, anyone in any organization can become an innovation center. Mark Levy not only shares the skills to start employing private writing methods, but he also provides many alternative processes to explore ideas even more deeply and completely. The ability to drill down into the subconscious for solutions, using the concepts in the book, can be life changing for a person. Knowing that fresh ideas can be generated by the average person is empowering for anyone.

I highly recommend the essential book on using private writing for business Accidental Genius: Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing by Mark Levy, to anyone who is craves original and innovative solutions to even the most difficult business problems. The problem solving methods provide for fun as well as challenge, and take the work out of tapping into that internal genius in everyone.

Read the extraordinary Accidental Genius: Revolutionize Your Thinking Through Private Writing by Mark Levy, and never be at a loss for game changing business ideas again. All you have to do is start private writing and let your genius within spring forth.

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Sunday, May 17, 2009

 

Thomas Clifford: Video Storytelling For Business - Blog Businss Success radio

BlogTalkRadio.com



Award winning documentary film maker and director Thomas Clifford of Bringing Brands To Life! describes how video can tell the story of your business effectively. Through the power and immediacy of video, people within an organization can tell their personal business story with real power and impact. Learn tips for preparing for a video interview and for achieving maximum success for your company and brand.

Thomas Clifford is my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Tuesday, May 19, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Corporate film maker Thomas Clifford, better known as "Director Tom", of Bringing Brands To Life!, shows how professionally made video bring brands to life. You will learn:

* Why video is so powerful for telling a company's story

* How to use the video in your marketing, branding and promotional activities

* How to choose a video film director to achieve the best results

* How to prepare the right way for a video interview



Thomas Clifford (photo left) uses video stories to solve business problems.

You could say he's the filmmaker that organizations trust to capture and communicate the essence of what they do.

For 25 years, non-profits and mid-to-large size companies commission Tom when losing market share, employees or if they're simply feeling frustrated because they can't "breathe life" into their story.

Tom loves it when an organization is looking for help to solve a problem and they haven't pre-determined their execution. Being open to possibilities is what creates "magic" in a successful film.

With people at the heart of my films, "breathing life" into your company's story feels natural and authentic. In the end, your video becomes memorable.

Tom helps organizations to:

--Share their remarkable story
--Increase revenue
--Recruit volunteers
--Generate new sales leads
--Inspire and empower employees
--Teach new ideas
--Share corporate culture and values
--Orientate new-hires
--Change perceptions
--Create virtual company tours
--Communicate internal & external messages

Listen live on Tuesday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with award winning documentary film maker and director Thomas Clifford of Bringing Brands To Life! as he describes how video can tell the story of your business effectively. Through the power and immediacy of video, people within an organization can tell their personal business story with real power and impact. Learn tips for preparing for a video interview and for achieving maximum success for your company and brand on Blog Business Success Radio.

BlogTalkRadio.com

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Saturday, May 16, 2009

 

Problem Solving 101 by Ken Watanabe - Book review



Problem Solving 101

A Simple Book for Smart People


By: Ken Watanabe

Published: March 5, 2009
ISBN: 9781591842422
Format: Hardcover, 111pp
Publisher: Portfolio




"Problem solving isn't a talent limited to a lucky few. It's actually a skill and a habit that you can learn." writes former McKinsey & Company management consultant and international bestselling author Ken Watanabe, in his deceptively simple yet ultimately powerful guide Problem Solving 101: A Simple Book for Smart People. The author provides the essential building blocks, for developing a problem solving way of thinking, and how they can be utilized to achieve solutions in any situation.

Ken Watanabe had planned for the book to be used as a teaching tool, for the proposed transition of Japanese schools from rote learning, to teaching creating problem solving. As a result, the three insightful case studies presented in the text, involve students. While the examples might describe young people, the problem solving techniques are useful for people of all ages, and for all walks of life. The author understands that problem solving can be learned like any other skill. The powerful solution building tools presented in the book are easy to learn, and can be used successfully for a lifetime.



Ken Watanabe (photo left) illustrates his problem solving principles in three easy to follow case studies. Each narrative employs the basic building blocks in different ways to reach a solution to a seemingly difficult problem. Each lesson not only teaches methods of finding solutions, but also describes the importance of challenging your own thinking, and of developing a problem solving mindset.

To Ken Watanabe, forming the habit of practical problem solving, which involves changing previous modes of thought, inaction, or reckless activity, is equally important. Without changing the negative and self defeating habits of thinking that many people possess, creative thinking and problem solving are impossible. This twofold approach, of learning problem solving methods and unlearning unproductive habits, is crucial to success.

For me, the power of the book is how the problem solving tools are presented in easy to understand case studies. By placing each of the techniques in the context of three stories, Ken Watanabe shows the practical application of the ideas. At the same time, the author emphasizes the life long learning aspect of problem solving skills. Whether in a school, business, or any other aspect of one's life, obstacles will arise, that demand workable solutions. By giving us universal concepts for achieving results, they can become the automatic approach to problem solving for an entire lifetime.

U highly recommend the outlook altering book Problem Solving 101: A Simple Book for Smart People by Ken Watanabe, to anyone regardless of age or profession, who seeks to learn practical problem solving skills. Learning to create solutions, and why and how those solutions work, is a key component of the book.

Read the essential behavior changing book Problem Solving 101: A Simple Book for Smart People by Ken Watanabe, and leave your former unproductive thinking behind. In there place, learn the habit of approaching problems with a workable solution in mind. The skills learned from the book will serve you well for your entire life.

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Wednesday, May 13, 2009

 

Jill Griffin: Taming The Search-and-Switch Customer - Blog Business Success Radio

BlogTalkRadio.com



Griffin Group CEO and author of the eye opening and practical book Taming the Search-and-switch Customer: Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World, Jill Griffin discusses how adding and retaining customers in the internet age is harder than ever. She shares ideas for building long term customer loyalty. She describes why customers seek out new options and why they switch to them Jill Griffin tells how to stop that outflow of customers by building loyalty that adds new customers as well.

Jill Griffin is my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Thursday, May 14, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Griffin Group CEO and author of the eye opening and practical book Taming the Search-and-switch Customer: Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World, Jill Griffin discusses how adding and retaining customers in the internet age is harder than ever. You will Learn:

* What causes customers to switch to your competitors

* How to differentiate your company and brand from the competition

* How to build long term clients through forging deeper relationships

* How empowered employees and superior customer service build loyalty



Jill Griffin (photo left) is the only authority who has authored books in each of the “Big Three” customer-keeping competencies. Her books have been adopted as teaching texts by colleges and universities including the University of Texas McCombs School of Business and Northwestern University.

Jill is the author of the business best seller, Customer Loyalty: How to Earn It, How to Keep It, which was named to Harvard Business School’s Working Knowledge list and has been translated into six languages. (The US Postal Service selected Customer Loyalty as its book-of-choice to distribute to 23,000 small and mid-size businesses nationwide.)

Jill co-authored the trail-blazing book, Customer Winback: How to Recapture Lost Customers and Keep Them Loyal which earned Soundview Executive Book Summaries’ “30 Best Business Books” award.

Jill’s newest book, Taming the Search-and-switch Customer: Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World, is a ground-breaking book that addresses the relentless scrutiny unleashed by today’s Internet search engines and how to build and sustain customer loyalty in the age of near-perfect buyer information.

Jill serves as corporate director on numerous boards: public and private, for-profit and not-for-profit. She knows first-hand the importance of keeping customer-focused initiatives on every board’s radar screen.

My book review of Taming the Search-and-switch Customer: Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World by Jill Griffin.

Listen live on Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with Griffin Group CEO and author of the eye opening and practical book Taming the Search-and-switch Customer: Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World, Jill Griffin as she discusses how adding and retaining customers in the internet age is harder than ever. She shares ideas for building long term customer loyalty. She describes why customers seek out new options and why they switch to them Jill Griffin tells how to stop that outflow of customers by building loyalty that adds new customers as well on Blog Business Success Radio.

BlogTalkRadio.com

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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

 

Taming The Search-And-Switch Customer by Jill Griffin - Book review



Taming the Search-and-switch Customer

Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World


By: Jill Griffin

Published: March 23, 2009
ISBN: 9780470345047
Format: Hardcover, 256pp
Publisher: Jossey-Bass Inc Publishers



"'I Googled it.' Those words describe the game-changing customer behavior that is rewriting the rules for winning customer loyalty", writes customer loyalty expert Jill Griffin in her eye opening and practical book
Taming the Search-and-switch Customer: Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World
. The author pulls no punches when describing how and why customers defect to the competition, and shares ideas for building trust that keeps loyal customers for life.

Jill Griffin recognizes the power of the internet, and search engine giant Google in particular, as leveling the playing field between companies large and small, and across wide geographic spaces. The ubiquitous search empowers customers to seek out better pricing, more personalized service, and greater benefits from a multitude of competitive options. The ease of search, and of switching to another business vendor, has turned the consumer into a hunter of the best deals, service, and features for every product and service. Jill Griffin demonstrates how to prevent defections of your customers to your competitors through building deeper trusting relationships and stronger brand loyalty.



Jill Griffin (photo left) understands how and why customers seek out alternatives. As a result, she provides powerful techniques to not only retain customers, but to build the brand, and to create customer evangelists. One of the primary concepts Jill Griffin proposes is differentiation from the pack. With seemingly unlimited consumer choice, the customer's decision making process is blurred by similarities between products and services on offer. A routine search on Google will often return a list of companies that differ little from one another in terms of price, product, or service. By creating a different company, with a distinct brand identity, a business can not only attract new business, but keep current customers from switching to generic looking competitors.

For me, the power of the book is its practical approach to solving the problem of lost customers. The solutions presented are based, to a large degree, on the solid foundation of superior customer service, empowered employees, and nurturing deep relationships. Simple yet crucial ideas including listening to customers and really hearing what they have to say, acknowledging problems when they happen, and delivering on promises are not new. In fact, they are long standing customer oriented concepts, that have a new found importance in an age of instant switching opportunities. With the observed decline in customer service over the years, a business that shows genuine concern for the needs of its clients, will stand out in the crowded marketplace.

I highly recommend the essential customer loyalty building guide
Taming the Search-and-switch Customer: Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World
by Jill Griffin, to any business person seeking to enhance their customer loyalty through building deeper relationships, a stronger brand, and differentiation from the industry competition.

Read the useful step by step concepts found in
Taming the Search-and-switch Customer: Earning Customer Loyalty in a Compulsion-to-compare World
by Jill Griffin, and never experience the pain and frustration of switching customers again. The only experiences your business will have, with customers who change vendors regularly, will be finding them added to your own loyal customer and client list.

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Monday, May 11, 2009

 

The Go-Giver by Bob Burg & John David Mann - Book review



The Go-Giver

A Little Story About A Powerful Business Idea


By: Bob Burg, John David Mann

Published: January 2, 2008
ISBN: 9781591842002
Format: Hardcover, 112pp
Publisher: Portfolio



Popular culture and mainstream management glorifies the hard driving go-getter, who never stops striving for success and the lure of huge financial rewards. In the inspirational and profound business fable
The Go-Giver: A Little Story About A Powerful Business Idea, co-authors Bob Burg and John David Mann present an entirely opposite worldview. The story follows the character Joe, a prototypical striving but unsuccessful go-getter, who meets the mysterious and successful Pindar who introduces Joe to the power and importance of becoming a go-giver.



Bob Burg (photo left) and John David Mann, through Pindar and other characters in the fable, present five laws that turn Joe's previous concept of success upside down. Based on wisdom as old as humanity itself, of giving and helping others, the story describes how each of the laws works. Even more importantly, the parable demonstrate why these important principles work more effectively than the more commonly employed sales and marketing techniques. Indeed, the laws presented in the book are not only a guide to more ethical and service oriented business, but they are also powerful concepts for living all aspects of a person's life.



Bob Burg and John David Mann (photo left) understand that people prefer to do business with those who they know, like, and trust. While this concept may seem simple on the surface, it's crucial to understanding the go-giver philosophy. To gain people's trust, you must give of yourself openly and with authenticity. By listening to others, and caring genuinely about their needs and aspirations, the go-giver is able to give more help. Instead of worrying about compromise and reciprocity, the go-giver is only thinking of sharing with as many people as possible. In the end, that generosity and kindness is returned many times over, very often in wonderful and unimagined ways.

For me, the power of the book is how the authors present a fable that is deceptively simple on the surface, but contains many layers of wisdom about living a successful life. Not only do the five laws lead to greater business success, but their power for building personal relationships that last for a lifetime, is a crucial message within the fable. As a person gives and shares with others, friendships are created and nurtured, leading to a more enriched and happier life.

For the laws to work, however, a person must be prepared to practice them in every area of life. For many people, application of the laws will not be of interest, as they prefer to continue on the dead end go-getter path. For those seeking true success and happiness, not only for themselves but for everyone whose lives they touch, the go-giver path leads in the right direction.

I highly recommend the life changing book The Go-Giver: A Little Story About A Powerful Business Idea by Bob Burg and John David Mann, to anyone who seeks to live a better and more giving life, whether in business or in their personal relationships. The five laws presented in the fable are both profound and rewarding, and are the crucial guides on the journey from a former life as a go-getter to a rich and successful life as a go-giver.

Read the wonderful book The Go-Giver: A Little Story About A Powerful Business Idea by Bob Burg and John David Mann, and you will never look at success and people in the so-called fast lane in the same way again. Follow and live the five laws, and feel your life change in exciting ways as you give and share yourself with others. Forget the dead ends of the mainstream mode of thought, and become a go-giver instead.

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