Archive for the 'Management By Metrics' Category

Dinosaurs And Opportunities

Exponential Mindset Thinking takes balls – moneyballs… Watch this clip from the hit movie starring Brad Pitt.

Enough said. If you want to get a lot more done with a lot less time, money and effort, contact us and we’ll show you the EXPONENTIAL way to run your business that will have your competitors scrambling – literally.

This is a must watch movie (even though the book is much better) for anyone who wants to learn the principles of what I call Management By Metrics.  Billy Beane changed major league baseball by overcoming more than a century of tradition and the wrong approach to building a “winning” team.

I won’t give way the key distinction, only to say that your business, industry or profession might very well be in the same situation, in need of a discontinuous innovation that puts you in the leadership position.

Antimimeticisomorphism is definitely required, but without Management By Metrics, it’s all theory and no practice. Games are won on the field, in the real world – not in someone’s head.

Making things happen and STICKING to it until it plays itself out is the underlying message that without that level of conviction, belief and discipline, it’s just another incomplete experiment.

You don’t want to dabble – you want to COMMIT when you know it’s right.

Easier said than done, that’s why a great book was written and an enjoyable movie was made.

Business and intuition

We have all had them – premonitions, gut feelings, the sense that something will happen before it does, knowing something we shouldn’t well before it seems logical or sensing something happening to someone close to you that is physically far from us…

Gut feelings… a sixth sense… by whatever name, intuitions can be informative. Many swear by them.

But in the investment world, mysteriously-generated feelings more often than not lead investors to make wealth-destroying decisions. In the business arena, the same is true – very capable, smart, hard working people travel down the wrong path with often devastating consequences. Working harder and harder based on a hunch or “opinion”.

There is a better way…

Nate Silver, statistics guru extraordinaire, put a face on the value of data and — when astutely analyzed — its ability to guide decision-makers toward the most desirable outcome. His CNN blog was widely followed during the 2012 American presidential election, because his statistical models proved more accurate than anyone else’s.

A year earlier, the Hollywood hit, Moneyball (originally published as a book), introduced the world to a unique idea: A data-driven, decision-making model can successfully overcome a lack of financial resources… allowing a stats-geek baseball recruiter to beat out deep-pocketed rivals who continued to rely on subjective intuition and gut feel.

When you look back, the writing’s been on the wall for years.
But very few want to read it.

The availability of troves of data — and the computer power needed to process it — has increased substantially over the last decade.

Yet, to some, the Big Data trend is scary.

The National Security Administration (NSA) spooked the world when Edward Snowden revealed the agency’s collection of massive quantities of our personal data. (Scary!)

Target stores reportedly have the ability to predict when a woman is pregnant — based on her spending patterns — even before she knew she was! (Scarier!)

And Twitter has analyzed billions of data points to determine which days of the week, and months of the year, we’re more likely to be happy. (Odd!) Here’s a graphic showing the analysis:

Twitter - Happy Day Of Week

Twitter, Target, and the NSA aside, financial markets are chock-full of data and, therefore, the ultimate playground for investors with a bent toward quantitative analysis. They even have their own nickname – quants!

If you’ve read my blogs for any length of time, you know I ONLY make decisions when my metrics show I have an edge…

I call it Management By Metrics.

Even though I am a fan of the power of the human spirit and readily admit that running a business is a balance of art and science, I NEVER make any major business (or investment) decision based on a gut feel. I am risk averse – why take a risk when you can reduce or eliminate it with some very simple, basic math?

I realise my pure and applied science and engineering background has influenced me. I spent several years immersed in the scientific method, which involves making observations about the real world, forming hypotheses (educated guesses) as to why the observations are what they are, and designing experiments to determine whether or not the hypothesis holds true.

Surprisingly, very few people in business use this method. Anecdotally I think it’s the popular aversion to mathematics as much as it is mental laziness. I am not suggesting you need to learn multivariate statistics, but just the use of Excel and a few simple formulas can take the guesswork out of most business decisions.

As The Exponential Growth Strategist, I facilitate our Platinum Program where you can learn the skills to acquire what I call 20/20 Foresight – being able to predict the future or manifest the future you seek for yourself or your business. Founded on scientific principles, it is with reach of anyone with a basic understanding of math and a hand-held calculator.

The science is straight forward and simple – the repercussions for you and your business can be, well…. astounding.

Contact us if you want to get past your hunches and gut feeling decisions that are letting you down or keeping you up at night with worry.

One thing that is crystal clear and most “experts” agree – the volatility and uncertainty we are currently facing is NOT going away anytime soon and in fact many agree it will get a lot worse before it gets better. It is the ‘new’ way of the world, well documented and well understood. We are in a cycle that will continue to play itself out in very predictable ways – well predictable for those who know what I am talking about!

Give us a call and we’ll introduce you to very exciting and valuable concepts like this one, that will put you back in the driver’s seat of your business (and your life) so you can steer in the direction of your goals and dreams and get to your ultimate destination (achieve your ultimate outcome).

20/20 Foresight

Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to look into a crystal ball and see what the future holds?

20-20 Foresight. Exponential Programs20/20 Foresight might not be THAT precise and accurate, but there are tools, tips and techniques you can use to determine trends and tendencies forecasters and analysts use on a daily basis to predict what’s coming.

Small businesses are notorious for being reactionary rather than proactively aware and ready to face the future. This is partially because owner-managers work IN their business much more than ON their business as well as because they simply are not aware that these tools exist.

Next Saturday, in Melbourne, we are holding a 1-day workshop that will introduce you to the concept of 20/20 Foresight that is synonymous with Exponential Mindset Thinking, leveraging the MasterMind Principle in an interesting and creative way.

There is nothing worse in business than being caught completely unprepared. This workshop will enable you to start developing forecasting and preemptive strategies that will enhance your view of the future to improve the decisions you make today.

Imagine having a copy of a exam, weeks before you have to sit the final?

How differently would you study?
How much less stress would you have?
How would you go about your lectures and study habits?
What would happen to your grades?
Would you enjoy the process more or less?

The same can be true for your business – but only if you know the tools, tips and techniques to acquire 20/20 Foresight…

So if you want 20/20 Foresight, contact us and we’ll help you create the future you want.*

*Oops… Did I forget to mention that once you have an idea of what the future holds, you can actually start to change it?!?!?! Oh well… No use getting into how to do that unless you attend.

Apple’s Cash Pooling

Cash Pooling, Apple Tax, Apple Tax PlanningAs you know, I am a huge fan(atic) of Apple‘s products – haven been for more than 20 years. Of course with great products and market-leading valuations means Apple gets a lot of news coverage. This week it’s about it’s overseas tax planning strategies and cash pooling.

Even though they are legitimate and legal, the popular press is all over it because of their recent declaration of a share buy back and establishing a dividend payment to shareholders.

Even though it makes for great headlines and sells newspapers and now online advertising, the reality is that these strategies are impossible if you can’t do what financial managers call Cash Pooling.

It’s quite sophisticated and all multi-billion corporations do it. Simply put, it’s knowing where your cash is so you can place and use it in the most effective place which usually involves tax considerations. As a business owner, it’s just another reminder that the practices of the “big boys” still applies to small business – especially those in high growth mode. Knowing where you cash is and having it where and when you need it can be the difference between growth and believe it or not – going bust.

Many high growth businesses (even profitable) ones run out of cash due to irregular cash flows and their timing. If you’re struggling with Excel spreadsheets to figure out where your cash is, you might want to consider an online cash management solution that goes well beyond your accounting and bookkeeping tasks.

Disclaimer: I am currently LONG on APPLE stock. I figure with $100 Billion in cash reserves, they have more than enough cash to deal with any competitors and technological challenges that will come up.

Squash Videos A Case Study Of Management By Metrics

If you don’t already know, I am a competitive squash player, now ranked in the ‘top 20′ in the world in the Men’s 45-49 age category. I learned to play squash less than 10 years ago, have only played competitively for the past 5 years and have competed in less than 10 tournaments in my entire playing career. The reason I tell you this is because it’s an ‘easy’ analogy to use to explain what I call Management By Metrics.

Management By Metrics

Management By Metrics is about tracking and monitoring the things that change in your business that influence your results.

The squash analogy is that at the recent 2009 World Masters Games, where I achieved my personal best world ranking of 18, I filmed all my matches, analysing them and statistically assessing the winners and unforced errors I committed. In the 2009 Australian Masters Games where I reached a National Ranking of 12, I was playing too ‘safe’ – not making errors, but not playing enough winning ‘kill shots’.

With that in mind, I spent the last couple of weeks making sure I improved my shots and guess what? The difference was astonishing – I went from a ‘Top 50′ world ranking last year to the ‘Top 20′… In all my matches, more than 25% of my points won were winners – in one match it was more than 50%, from less than 10% in the previous competition less than one month prior.

The business lesson of this squash analogy is that by KNOWING what METRICS you want to manage – your ultimate success will be easier and much faster than you ever imagined.

On my Mindset Of A Champion Blog, I publicly stated that my goal for the 2009 and 2010 World Masters Squash Championships were a top 32 and top 16 finish – I achieved a ranking of 18 in 2009 and now am aiming at a Top 10 for 2010 – well ahead of my own expectations.

Management By Metrics is what it’s all about – tracking and monitoring what’s working and what’s not. By so doing, you can determine your Next Best Step and optimise your Pathways To Profits much more quickly and easily.

Want to learn to become a champion of business? Click on the hyperlink to atten a 3-hour Boardroom Briefing session to learn how Management By Metrics can help you get more out of your business – by working less than you are right now so you too can get back to your favorite sport, pick up a new one, spend more leisure time with friends and family or whatever fuels your spirit.