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A leader’s mindset

A small business owner I know is fed up. He’s busy, stressed and feeling the relentless pressure of being the manager-leader-CEO-strategist-operations guy. His 80-100 hours each week are taking their toll in year two of this business. I’m happy to be a shoulder to cry on, but if you’re opening up then you can expect […]

Talking heads

Someone asked me the other day who to look for online; who are the voices they could tap into outside of the usual channels? Here’s a dozen go-to folks @John Battelle – the web’s favourite professor-turned-entrepreneur. He penned one of the original books on Google and his Search Blog is just as worthy of your […]

Culture can kill

Culture is surely the most nebulous of business concepts. It’s nigh on impossible to quantify accurately and just as difficult to effect. Its perception often looks very different from the reality within. Steve Jobs’ autobiography pretty much confirms everything we already thought about the much-heralded Apple leader: he was bloody minded, rude, spoilt, obnoxious, argumentative, […]

Penny Power

Ecademy founder on leadership

I went to a very mediocre business event recently that sold itself as, “A fast-paced, cutting-edge day, tailored to the needs of SMEs.” It was more like a school leaver’s guide to the Internet, at least, that was, until the final talk of the day. They’d clearly saved the best until last as Penny Power […]

Own the work

The first email I read in the day is Chris Brogan’s and it’s usually before breakfast. He’s very revealing in a business sense and within that honesty you’ll often find gems of practical advice. His advice can be a little left field as he expounds about far more than just marketing per se by getting […]

Leadership troubles

I came across an old post by Fred Wilson (via Ben Parr) who was saying that a CEO had three roles: 1) sets the overall vision and strategy of the company and communicates it to all stakeholders; 2) recruits, hires, and retains the very best talent for the company; 3) makes sure there is always […]

Agenda setting

Seth wrote recently about ceding one’s responsibility via other people’s agendas. He said ‘Setting an agenda is often as important as checking the boxes,’ and I completely agree. Setting an agenda for a meeting gives you the initial power. Obviously, it allows you to frame the context of the discussions. You might not win every […]

Kindle Fire

Kindle thoughts

Amazon has shown itself as the first true competitor to Apple in the tablet war. The launch of the Kindle Fire this week is an audacious move to out-price the iPad with a dumbed-down system costing just $199. Tablets are a future cornerstone for the world’s data consumption. As ever, Jobs lifted the curtain on […]

Growth isn’t always what is says on the tin

The shock non-Murdoch news this week is that inflation appears to have fallen. The CPI rate is down from 4.5% to 4.2%. Most analysts would say the culprits are retailers (especially in electronics) thanks to their prevalent early summer sales, but it helps Mervyn King and his posse keep interest rates where they are, which […]

Is your marketing director for the toilet

The Internet has only really been around for the masses since Microsoft brought us Windows 95 and the ever-present Internet Explorer. But over 15 years on, digital and digital marketing still remains a bolt on for many businesses that should really know better. I’m always amazed when strong marketers tell me their marketing director (not […]

Mental boxes

Chris Brogan is a business hero of mine. He’s built his own escape velocity in every sense. His blog is great a platform showing a balance of marketing, business, new media and raw advice. This has got him to AdAge’s marketing list at #3 (behind King Seth and the much-overrated Copyblogger). He shares ideas and […]

Characteristics of a manager

Close your eyes for a minute. Forget where you work and who’s around you on the organisational chart (and completely ignore what you saw on The Apprentice last week). Now, imagine you’ve a blank sheet of paper and you’re picking a management team. Above, below or alongside you – it doesn’t matter – just an […]

For Prime Minister read Project Manager

When the pressure really builds I think of how difficult leadership must be for the Prime Minister. Surely our everyday business ‘issues’ are nothing compared to the table of responsibility inside number 10. That’s why I’m doubly struck by Tony Blair writing in his autobiography and mentioning in his PR interviews that he changed dramatically […]

Confidence is catchy

I love meeting confident people. I don’t mean business networking arrogance; I’m talking about those who’ve really done something special. They stand that bit straighter, their heads that bit higher, with brighter eyes, and more alive faces. Athletes have that confident look. So do military folks. I recently met an ex-Marine commando who’d successfully led […]