Good Artists Copy. Great Artists Steal.

Good Artists Copy. Great Artists Steal.

Featured, Improvement
The phrase used as our headline is an old adage. It is not meant as encouragement to plagiarize. Rather it is an acknowledgement that no artistic achievement is totally original but inspired by those achievements that came before. Business is no different. While business people chase innovation, it comes to doing what someone else has done better than they did. Sam Walton owned a franchised five and dime store. When the company that he franchised from wouldn't let him operate the way he wanted, he dropped the franchise and rebranded as Wal-Mart. His vision of Wal-Mart wasn't original. He was actually inspired by what K-Mart was doing. Using K-Mart's model as a starting point, he continually updated his model. He copied K-Mart but then moved forward to do better than…
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Make Yourself Obsolete

Make Yourself Obsolete

Featured, Improvement
Most businesses focus on making themselves indispensable. A better tactic is to go in the opposite direction. Try continually making yourself obsolete. There are many businesses who are first to market but fail to adapt to changing conditions. When was the last time you ran a search on Altavista? Why haven't you used them? If you even remember them, you'll know they were made obsolete by Google. Think of yourself in Alravista's place. Which is better: be made obsolete by Google or develop your own service that makes your old one obsolete? No matter what business you are in, eventually you will be obsolete. It can be because of a superior offering from a competitor, as in Altavista's case or it can be a shift in an entire industry (think…
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Why Join A Coaching Advisory Group?

Why Join A Coaching Advisory Group?

Featured, Improvement
The Modern Observer Group hosts Coaching Advisory Groups for executives and entrepreneurs. These groups have weekly calls and meet in person on a monthly basis. What do participants get from a Coaching Advisory Group? Aside from the benefits of a coach to assist you as needed when you are a member of a coaching advisory group you get the following benefits. You learn from peers which, has long been proven very effective.You receive candid and constructive feedback from peers who are in stable, profitable, seasoned businesses.You benefit from fellow peers experiences.You network with business to business peers by sharing advice, information, recommendations and referrals.You obtain immediate and objective feedback from business to business peers at every meeting.You participate in effectively and efficiently run confidential CEO Mastermind Forums facilitated by multiple highly…
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Your MBA Isn’t Worth What You Think It Is

Your MBA Isn’t Worth What You Think It Is

Evaluate, Featured, Improvement, Leadership
The exalted MBA degree is suffering a downturn. Fewer people are entering MBA programs. There is a good reason for that. The MBA is not worth the time and money. How many great companies were built by people with MBAs? You'll be hard pressed to find one. How many companies were run by people with MBAs when they collapsed? That number is a lot larger. The financial instruments that caused the great recession were created by MBAs. Why is this? What you don't learn in an MBA program is how t run a company. You also don't learn how to manage people. What you are taught is business theory. When you get5 out of the classroom, that theory isn't worth much. Academics have had to admit a few hard truths…
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What Is Talent Optimization?

What Is Talent Optimization?

Featured, Improvement
The Modern Observer Group is a certified partner of The Predictive Index. Together the companies provide services to aid companies with Talent Optimization. What is Talent Optimization? If you haven’t heard of it before, a simple glance at Predictive Index’s website or any of its social media posts from the last few months will do the trick. Even the team here at Predictive Success is guilty of promoting it like crazy. That’s because we’re firm believers in the methodology and logic that accompanies the term. But what exactly does “Talent Optimization” mean? And why should you care? The purpose of this post is to de-mystify some of the confusion around what those words really mean and how talent optimization can help you take your business venture to the next level.…
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Learning The Wrong Lesson

Learning The Wrong Lesson

Featured, Improvement
It's no secret that success is easier the more you know. It's important that we keep learning, both to build new skills and to improve the ones we have. On top of that advances in science, technology and business keep things changing. The importance of keeping up with information has never been more critical. However, when learning new information, it is also important to take away the correct lesson. For example, take the fact that 85% of stock is owned by millionaires. This can lead you to one of two conclusions. The first is that the stock market is only applicable to millionaires. The second is that owning stock is how millionaires make their money. The first lesson would tell someone who is not a millionaire to ignore the stock…
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Don’t Let Your Perfectionism Get in Your Way

Don’t Let Your Perfectionism Get in Your Way

Featured, Improvement
Perfectionism can push you to deliver excellent work, but it can also increase your anxiety and lower your productivity. To keep perfectionism from getting in your way, learn when it’s time to let go and move on. One way to do this is creating a checklist of a task’s essentials. If you’re working on a client pitch, for example, make sure the presentation addresses the client’s major concerns and details why the client should hire your company. Your inner perfectionist might fret over the font choice and every semicolon — but once your checklist is complete, take a breath and slowly back away. Another tactic is to ask a trusted colleague to help you get perspective. Do you need someone to tell you when your first draft is good enough?…
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Don’t Let Your Expertise Narrow Your Perspective

Don’t Let Your Expertise Narrow Your Perspective

Featured, Improvement
Having expertise in your field is a positive, but sometimes it leads to overconfidence. You might start to believe your usual methods are the best, or the only, way to get things done — which means you miss out on new ideas, fail to anticipate trends, and narrow your perspective. There is an old saying, "When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail." To avoid falling into this expertise trap, commit to constant learning and growth. Check your ego by seeking out fresh ideas and revisiting your assumptions about how a project should be carried out. Surround yourself with people who don’t look and think like you. Encourage younger employees to share the topics they’re excited about and point out key insights you may be missing.…
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All Customers Are Not Alike

All Customers Are Not Alike

Featured, Improvement, Planning
Your company may sell one product or offer a variety. Either way, the odds are that you have different types of customers purchasing from you. Knowing who they are is very important because they are not all the same. Which means you can't sell the same or service the same. Different customers require different plans and processes. Where an older customer may require a phone call, a millennial may prefer a text or Facebook message. Your strategy for attracting and retaining customers has to be personalized. The more you know about your customers, the better you can meet their needs. Here are some tips for differentiaing clients. Talk to them. Get to know your customers as people. This will allow you to learn how to serve them best. Find out…
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Make Time To Focus On Each Employee’s Professional Growth

Make Time To Focus On Each Employee’s Professional Growth

Featured, Improvement, Leadership
Managers are supposed to help their teams develop professionally — and great managers tailor their development efforts to each person. Doing so helps you understand the nuances of how people are growing week by week and month by month. At the end of each week, take 15 minutes to write down recent steps you’ve taken to support team members. Note what patterns you’re seeing for each employee, opportunities for future growth, and feedback you’d like to give. As you gain insight into someone’s progress, find a few minutes to pull the person aside to discuss it. You don’t have to wait for their formal review; engaging with people on an ongoing basis shows that you know what success looks like for them and are working to help them achieve it.…
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