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Archive for July, 2016

Entrepreneurs: How NOT to Close a Company

Thursday, July 14th, 2016
http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2014/11/17/baverman/18965353/

Move Loot’s co-founders

Last month Zach Ware, managing partner of VTF Capital and founder of Shift, talked about the right and wrong way to close a company.

“There is absolutely no reason for a company to shut down overnight. That’s a result of a selfish set of decisions a founder made.”

Obviously, the founders of Move Loot weren’t listening.

They not only shafted their people,

The mood at the all-hands meeting was tense, and employees asked management to give them the heads up if things were going badly. They were told that the cuts were the move they needed, the person said of the meeting. “Three weeks later is when the hammer dropped on everyone else,” they said.

They shafted their customers

Customers have accused Move Loot on Twitter of taking their money and failing to deliver items. Other sellers remain frustrated that the marketplace closed with no warning, leaving them in a lurch when trying to move out. The phone number that it had given out on Twitter for customer support now has a voicemail saying that phone support is no longer available.

As for their investors, I have no sympathy for them. Who gives four kids, with little-to-none business, let alone operational, experience combined, $22 million dollars with no built in accountability?

Founders owe it to all their stakeholders to be responsible.

If you recall, the three most successful startups in the world, Apple, Google and Facebook, all brought in seasoned management talent in order to give the founders time to gather experience and learn.

Contrary to Silicon Valley’s attitude, running a company takes skill; it isn’t learned from a book, but from experience, as opposed to throwing it at the wall to see what sticks.

Or in Valley lingo, ‘move fast and break things’.

But, as some ex employees point out,

 “At some point you realize how expensive it is if you break things every day. There has to be a little discipline.”

Of course, that would involve not only taking responsibility, but acting responsibly, too.

I heard a great line on a Bones rerun.

There’s a major difference between an entrepreneur and a con artist: an entrepreneur believes in the dreams he’s selling.

But then, so do pathological liars.

Image credit: Move Loot (via USA Today)

Should Electric Cars Make Noise?

Wednesday, July 13th, 2016

Matt posted a hair-raising lesson on LinkedIn about electric cars, distraction and gratitude. He wanted to share it here, also.

matthew weeksThis is a gratitude post. No fancy photos and no clever links. Just a shout-out to the universe for allowing me to be around and complain.
I have friends with cancer. I have relatives with dementia, heart disease, mood disorders, I have people in my life with serious injuries to recover from, life disasters, and more. So I don’t have much to complain about that rises to the level of those “legit” complaints.

Today I got a kind of a wake-up call at lunch. I was hit by a car.

While walking. I was coming back from lunch, crossing the street with the light, in the crosswalk. And for some reason my phone was in my pocket— an unusual thing when I’m taking a break or walk during the day. So I had all my wits about me and was presumably paying attention. I was in my suit (I wear suits at client sites, which are typically hospital systems, clinic systems or other large healthcare organizations), and was walking leisurely, not too fast. It was a warm day and who wants to sweat in a nice suit, right?

A gentleman was in an electric car. First alert—people, electric cars make no noise. So you have no warning in your blind spot as a pedestrian or bike rider. A cute little BMW i3 I think. Kind of like one of those tiny smart cars. Same shape, flat short hood. He was on his phone texting or otherwise looking at the screen. His light was red. Mine- green with the white “walk” sign just starting to count down. He swung around and zipped right into the crosswalk to make his right turn… into me. He never saw me until I was on his hood. I was two steps off the curb. I never thought to look again over my left shoulder. I had the light. There were about four or five others ten feet in front of me in the crosswalk, and if he had come 10 seconds earlier he would have hit that bunch of people, including an elderly woman and someone with a dog on a leash. The dog would have been roadkill for sure. I don’t want to think about the slow-moving elderly woman.

Why do I write this? To say “I’m grateful to be alive and grateful to have all of you in my life.” And also to say that my complaints don’t add up to a hill of beans compared to the others with real issues including the big C, and all the rest. Working lately in healthcare has given me great new perspective about how precious good health is. We take it for granted. We think we are immune from the statistics.

As a society, we live careless lives, are overweight, out of shape, putting toxins in our bodies. We think we are unaccountable for the way we treat our bodies. We think we are invincible, or we are just lazy about it. We walk around with our noses in cell phones indoors and out. We don’t notice our surroundings, much less appreciate them. Things like a gorgeous sunset. We’re too busy flipping posts in Facebook and Instagram and SnapChat and Pinterest and email. Liking a post. Making a post. Reading drivel. Is this drivel? Perhaps.

If you want a reality check go work at a healthcare company or volunteer at a hospital or clinic system. That’s where the people with legit complaints are. And they can’t just “solve” them.

Funny thing about this accident. 40-some odd years ago I ended up on the hood of a very nice woman in Palo Alto. I was riding my bike and had headphones on (not unlike many bike riders-especially commuters- today). She did not see me and as she exited a driveway without looking both ways, I ended up on the hood. I thought for sure she would pause and look both ways. Bad bet. She was distracted and was looking elsewhere. In a hurry. Luckily I was a bit more agile than I am today, and a lot more durable, and kind of bounced off and slid to the other side of the car, like a stunt man in a cop movie. She was more terrorized than I was. I was probably too young and stupid to understand what had almost happened.

Fast forward to today. Not as young, not as durable (probably only a bit less stupid) I looked to my left just in time to see this little car with the driver just looking up with a terrorized expression and no time to slam on the brakes in time. I was able to jump up and get just enough elevation to put my butt on the hood and break the force of the impact with my arm on the upper part of the hood.

The good news is that these cars are made of thin aluminum and it crushes like tinfoil on impact. So I left two nice big dents on the hood, kind of bounced off and ended up staggering away. I think my wallet took the blow instead of my hip or rear end. Thank you VISA and MasterCard. “Priceless” padding. :) I was in one of those adrenaline induced states where I was more worried about falling on the pavement and ripping my suit. My coffee was gone. No way to save that. I looked at the coffee spot on the concrete and had this terrible vision of what if that was blood. The mind does weird things.

After gathering myself and determining I was a) still alive and b) in one piece and c) okay enough to be mad but shocked enough to be happy to be in one piece, I was asked for my insurance information…. apparently mister wonderful was going to try to make a claim. There were about three people left around us, asking if we should call 911 and at that point someone made the point that they saw him run the red, looking at his phone and that he hit me in the x-walk. I declined to give my info and allowed as how I was walking back INTO a healthcare clinic and that he should be happy that I was not more banged-up and asking for treatment. I just wanted to get back to normalcy. Probably still in shock.

He took off, I came back to the office and sat down to assess how lucky my life is, to be able to complain about distracted drivers. And to be walking around to talk about it. And to warn my friends and family about electric cars at intersections… you can’t hear or see them coming when they zip around corners.

On a bike I guess I would have been more vigilant, but as a pedestrian I had this kind of invincible feeling of being protected walking with the light and the “Walk” sign inside the crosswalk. That’s not so. Be vigilant. And thank you Sensei Mirko and Senpais David and Jessica and friends for the recent agility work in jumping and spinning this week that probably got my body primed to jump up and turn around to break the impact. Not Kevin Durant elevation but just enough to get up over the bumper and onto the hood with my rear end and upper body. Note to self— practice jumping more. And look both ways twice at busy intersections.

My daughter is learning how to drive this year. I am her teacher. This is a great example of what distracted driving can do. I am not 100% guilt free in that department. I’m taking the pledge to stay off of phones 100% while driving except for bluetooth and headsets in one ear. Just too much at stake and just so many times to dodge the bullet. And maybe the Universe was sending me a reminder message today.

And to my friends with legit concerns… prayers to you that you come out of your battles and win the war. We’re only here the better part of 100 years give or take. It’s not fair what’s happening to you.

And now I’m leaving the office and driving out to watch the sunset. :)
No Instagram post. Just taking it in and enjoying it. I’ve posted my share of pretty sunsets. This one is just to look at. I encourage you to do the same, to honor our friends and family that have bigger problems than the rest of us. We can all enjoy the same sunset in sync from wherever we are. No Instagram/snapchat needed. We are the lucky ones. ‪#‎gratitude

Ducks in a Row: the Stupidity of Stereotyping

Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

https://www.flickr.com/photos/kaibara/4195647026/

Stereotyping is stupid.

It’s stupid because you can’t generalize out the traits of a few to an entire group.

And the larger the group, the stupider the results of stereotyping.

However, the lure of lumping together a large, demographic group for selling purposes is catnip to marketers and also the media.

The problem was well illustrated over the last few years in the depiction of Generation Y — those worthless, entitled Millennials.

80 million of them.

That thinking will go a long way to screwing up your efforts to sell to, hire and manage them.

So think about it.

Don’t you find it a bit ridiculous that 80 million people all think and act identically?

People who come from totally different backgrounds.

Not to mention totally different states; what are the chances of people from California/Maine/Texas/Florida raising their kids so identically that they would think alike?

All 80 million, if you listen to the media.

Jessica Kriegel provides great insight and an in-depth look at the stupidity in her new book, Unfairly Labeled: How Your Workplace Can Benefit from Ditching Generational Stereotypes.

The more you look at generational stereotypes the stupider they become.

The more you buy into them the more money it costs you and your company.

Flickr image credit: Umberto Salvagnin

Golden Oldies: Password Help

Monday, July 11th, 2016

It’s amazing to me, but looking back over a decade of writing I find posts that still impress me, with information that is as useful now as when it was written. Golden Oldies is a collection of what I consider some of the best posts during that time.

Why is it that even smart, tech-savvy people like Mark Zuckerberg use, and reuse, dumb passwords.

His password? “dadada.” (…) How did the attackers get in? It looks as if Zuck made a basic security mistake: He reused passwords [Twitter and Pinterest].

Zuck could have avoided being hacked if he just read my blog.  Read other Golden Oldies here.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/paulorear/7190315846/I have to say, this article about people’s frustration with passwords made me laugh—probably not the desired reaction.

I sent it to a friend and he said he related and asked why I didn’t.

When I told him I had a simple way to handle passwords he was incredulous and demanded I explain.

I did and his response was that I should share it here, because it would make people’s lives easier.

Who am I to argue? In the interests of making your life easier here are my so-called “secrets.”

The first thing to recognize is that all sites requiring passwords are not created equal, so I divide them into three categories.

  1. Serious security for sites where being hacked has serious implications, such as your bank.
  2. Moderate security for sites where hacking means being hijacked and can cause hurt your reputation and cause embarrassment, such as social networking sites.
  3. Light security for all those informational and even subscription sites, such as NY Times where being hacked has no repercussions.

I use the same password for all the sites in the third category.

The second category depends partly on the site’s requirements, but I have a simple formula.

Let’s say it requires upper and lower case, a number, a symbol and is 11-14 characters long. “Zeusis#1god” has 11 characters and is easy to remember. Plus, you can also write it down as a word sentence and who’s going to know it’s a password?

For category one I mix up more numbers and symbols, for example, “I’m@659Park#27” has 14 characters.

No, that is not my address, but you can use a real address if it helps, just choose one that has no apparent connection to your current life, but is easy to remember; for example, your Aunt Lizzie’s home when you were a child (assuming she doesn’t live there now).

In the article people complain about the security questions, such as your first kiss, etc.

I don’t remember any stuff like that, but who says you need to? You can put any response you want as long as the question will trigger your memory.

So the answer to ‘my first love’ becomes Oreos or NY Nut Fudge. It’s not like they check your answers.

They can ask anything they want and you can interpret it any way you want. Passwords do not require honesty.

What about writing them down?

I have my Ameritrade account number and password written down, but not all together. The account number is in two pieces in two unconnected places. Same with the password.

And if you do keep a list and someone breaks into your home passwords will be the least of your worries.

I hope this helps you as much as it helped my friend.

Here’s a quick update to make passwords even easier to remember.

Use the site name in your password.

Twitter, for example. Password: Birds*tweet@6am.

Easy to remember, fairly hard to crack.

Flickr image credit: Paul O’Rear

If the Shoe Fits: A Useful Personal Assistance Startup

Friday, July 8th, 2016

A Friday series exploring Startups and the people who make them go. Read all If the Shoe Fits posts here

Watching all the startups that eliminate so many of the day-to-day chores of living.

They supposedly free people up to do amazing stuff.

Uh-huh.

However, one startup, Guiding Hands, does more than handle mundane chores; it actually mitigates dangers and difficulties for peripheral non-users.

Thanks to Conan and TBS for introducing Guiding Hands to the world.

(And a hat tip to my friend Tom for sending it to me.)

Entrepreneurs: Chatbots

Thursday, July 7th, 2016

https://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisyarzab/4543027041/

I’m not a fan of a lot of AI, especially chatbots.

Most have speech patterns similar to human speech, lousy diction and rapid speech, which leaves most people with poor hearing our in the cold

And I find them relatively dumb.

Most of us have had run-ins with unhelpful customer service chatbots; the ones that are unable to respond to any but the most mundane quarries — which is why I usually just start by saying ‘representative’ until I get to a human.

I have no understanding why it is better to talk to your TV, rather than use the remote.

The first thing many of my friends and family do on a new iPhone is turn off Siri,

I know that many people love them, which is fine with me; whatever floats your boat.

That said, I learned about one that has more on its mind than ordering pizza.

An artificial-intelligence lawyer chatbot has successfully contested 160,000 parking tickets across London and New York for free, showing that chatbots can actually be useful.

That’s useful. And free.

Still more interesting is the fact that its creator is a 19 year old, with a history of using his skills creating tools for nonprofits, since he was 13.

I may be a digital dinosaur, but I’m not to old to learn and change.

Hopefully, this kind of usefulness is the future of bots.

And who knows. Perhaps by the time I need assistance the young developers will take into account the millions of hearing-challenged people who will be their biggest market, especially in healthcare and daily living.

Flickr image credit: Chris Yarzab

Improve Yourself: July Leadership Development Carnival

Wednesday, July 6th, 2016

leadership-carnival-5-300x134How time flies. Half the year is already gone and the rest will fly by even faster.

In the meantime, here’s the July Leadership Development Carnival to help you grow in Q3.

Art Petty of About Money Management and Leadership provided Reinventing the Organization and Leadership for a Digital Era. Art writes, “The emerging digital and technology-driven world demands that we rethink everything about how we manage, lead, structure and run our organizations. It also challenges us to rethink our own approach to leveling up in our career. In this article, I explore 7 key characteristics of organizations that will survive and thrive in this era.” Discover Art on Twitter at @artpetty.

Beth Beutler of H.O.P.E. Unlimited provided Com-MIT to Your Most Important Thing. Beth recaps, “Feeling overwhelmed? While you may feel like you have many important things to do, there should be one or two that stand out. Focus on those.” Find Beth on Twitter at @bethbeutler.

Chris Edmonds of the Purposeful Culture Group contributed Do What Great Bosses Do . Chris summarizes: “Great bosses inspire growth, ensure accountability, spur teamwork and more. What more does a great boss do?” Follow Chris on Twitter at @scedmonds.

Dan McCarthy of Great Leadership provided How to Manage Yourself so Your Boss Won’t Have To. Dan recaps, “Here’s a simple model that can be used to teach leaders how to “let go” and empower their employees to make their own decisions.” Locate Dan on Twitter at @greatleadership.

David Grossman of The Grossman Group shared  The Secret Respectfully Authentic Leaders Know. This post explores how respectful authenticity is about this constant process of being truthful – first with yourself and then with others.  To say the things that need to be said.  And to do it in a kind and respectful way.  Being authentic isn’t about saying whatever you think or feel. Discover David on Twitter at @thoughtpartner.

Jill Malleck of Epiphany at Work contributed How do you change when your leader changes?. Jill shares, “Many people find themselves – or put themselves – in a precarious position when their familiar leader leaves the company. Here are some tips to ensure you don’t get distracted from the importance of realigning with the new boss.” Find Jill on Twitter at @epiphanyatwork.

Jennifer Molina of the Institute for Corporate Productivity, Inc. (i4cp) provided Nearly 70%of Executive Teams Use Workforce Analytics. Jennifer shares, “Nearly 70% of executive teams use workforce analytics to make strategic business decisions. The Institute for Corporate Productivity and ROI Institute have released the results of a new research study, which looks at positive trends and the state of human capital analytics. The study features case studies on Google, LinkedIn, HSBC, and Intel.” Tweet i4cp at @i4cp.

Jesse Lyn Stoner of the Seapoint Center shared The 4 Decision Styles: When to Involve Others in Decisions. Jesse Lyn recaps, “Leaders are called to make countless decisions each day and must determine which to make on their own and when to involve others. Most people are guided by personal preference. Some are naturally decisive and others prefer dialogue. You actually have 4 choices, and being intentional about when to make decisions on your own and when to involve others can save you a lot of time and headaches.” Follow Jesse Lyn on Twitter at @JesseLynStoner.

Jim Taggart of Changing Winds contributed Effective Leaders Execute. Jim summarizes: “This is a story about a rural-born and raised country girl who though hard work and adversity rose to become one of Canada’s most respected CEOs. Her ability to connect with people yet also focus on achieving results sets her apart from many other corporate leaders. Meet Annette Verschueren.” Find Jim on Twitter at @72keys.

Joel Garfinkle of the Career Advancement Blog submitted 4 Ways to Develop Effective Working Relationships. Joel recaps: “Paul just got a new job in which he is overseeing a staff of twenty people. The culture of his new company encourages building of relationships, connecting and caring. Here are 4 ways that Paul can begin to immediately learn how to develop and build working relationships.” Discover Joel on Twitter at @JoelGarfinkle.

John Hunter shared Support Theatre. John summarizes, “Support theatre provides the appearance of supporting customers when in fact it is just treating customers poorly based on a management system that disrespects customers. It is a similar idea to security theatre. Find John on Twitter at @curiouscat_com.

Jon Mertz of Thin Difference contributed Career Chapters: The Next One. Jon shares, “No storyline is straight and narrow. Jon Mertz shares the chapters of his career story and why it’s important to exhibit patience and let a story develop.” Follow Jon on Twitter at @thindifference.

Julie Baron of The Thought Board shared CEO’s Share Best Advice Received. Julie writes, ” It’s not uncommon for leaders to say they made it to the top with the help of some great advice along the way. So we asked some of our friends with CEO titles, “What’s the best advice you have ever received?” Learn from leaders in marketing, HR technology, structural engineering, corporate catering, innovation consulting, entrepreneurial education, benefits administration, and construction.” Discover The Thought Board on Twitter at @commwrks.

Julie Winkle-Giulioni of Julie Winkle-Giulioni submitted Leadership Advice…for the Ages (ALL Ages).  Julie summarizes, “Despite the popular media’s focus on differences among the generations, recent research suggests that when it comes to workplace priorities and beliefs, we share far more similarities than differences. And this is good news for leaders who understand and can appeal to what all employees have in common.” Find Julie on Twitter at @julie_wg.

Karin Hurt of Let’s Grow Leaders contributed One Common Interviewing Mistake that will Cost You the Job. Karin recaps, “It’s important to show passion for the job you aspire to—not just the title or the perks. But don’t cross the line of sounding desperate.” Follow Karin on Twitter at @letsgrowleaders.

Lisa Kohn of Chatsworth Consulting Group submitted Why a Pink Flamingo is an Essential Leadership Tool. Lisa summarizes, “There are many essential leadership skills, and bringing a sense of lightness to the teams and organizations (and families) we lead is certainly one of them.” Find Lisa on Twitter at @thoughtfulldrs.

Marcella Bremer of Leadership and Change Magazine shared Christian Felber and the Economy for the Common Good. Marcella describes the post: “What is the role of a company in the universe? It is to serve the common good, says Christian Feller. His scorecard checks whether products are meaningful, sold ethically, produced in a sustainable way, and so on. How are you contributing to the common good? And your organization?” Locate Marcella on Twitter at @marcellabremer.

Miki Saxon of MAPping Company Success contributed Ducks in a Row: Millennials (and Everybody) Need Quiet. Miki writes, “Talent attraction and retention are critical to success. New research shows that it’s not necessarily fancy perks, a la Google, that attracts and keeps great talent, but something that costs far less and can be more creatively supplied.” Discover Miki on Twitter at @optionsanity.

Neal Burgis of Burgis Successful Solutions submitted Leaders Allowing Employees to Break Rules for Creativity. Neal recaps, “Leaders of creative and innovative businesses and organizations always have rules put in place. They know that employees will over-step these rules in order to generate great ideas, create and produce them for breakthrough results. By doing so, leaders have some control of their employees and the work they do.” Find Neal on Twitter at @exec_solutions.

Paul LaRue of The UPwards Leader contributed 5 Ways to be a Buffer in a Negative Culture. Paul summarizes, “A great leader showed how to create a positive culture in the midst of a negative one.” Follow Paul on Twitter at @paul_larue.

Paula Kiger of Perspicacity submitted 3 Work Lessons from Early Intervention. Paula shares, “Have you ever had to raise an issue with someone who reports to you? Although there is no way to eliminate the anxiety, which is part of the process anytime feedback is given, one key is to have clear lines of communication all of the time, not just at feedback time.” Discover Paula on Twitter at @biggreenpen.

Randy Conley of Leading With Trust shared 3 Ways To Be Everyone’s Favorite Manager. Randy writes, “Management is a tough gig and at times it can seem like you’re always playing the role of the bad guy. It doesn’t have to be that way, says Randy Conley, and in this article he shares three practical ways you can become everyone’s favorite manager.” Find Randy on Twitter at @randyconley.

Shelley Row of Shelley Row submitted Walk a Labyrinth to Learn Leadership Discipline. In this piece, Shelley shares observations and lessons about leadership that she gleaned while walking a labyrinth. Discover Shelley on Twitter at @shelleyrow.

Susan Mazza of Random Acts of Leadership provided 3 Things Leaders Need to Know About Forgiveness. Susan explains, “Trust is a leader’s currency, and the willingness to forgive and the courage to responsibly ask for forgiveness sets the value of that currency. Said another way, without forgiveness trust is fragile.” Follow Susan on Twitter at @susanmazza.

Tanveer Naseer of Tanveer Naseer shared Understanding What Drives Us To Push Ahead. Tanveer asks, “How do we motivate our employees – and ourselves – when the focus is simply on getting today’s work done?” Find Tanveer on Twitter at @tanveernaseer.

Tom Magness of Leader Business contributed Break Out the Books…and Sharpen the Pencils! Tom summarizes, “This post highlights the importance of leaders in two critical skills – reading and writing.  Using inspiration from the CEO of the US Navy in his charge to his “troops” to raise the bar in these two areas, we look at the importance for doing both as professionals and as those committed to continuous learning.  As the blog reveals…this is ‘Leader Business’.” Follow Tom on Twitter at @leaderbusiness.

Wally Bock of Three Star Leadership submitted 4 Vital Truths of Team Culture. Wally recaps, “There’s lots of good advice on team culture. Here are four vital truths you can’t hear often enough.” Find Wally on Twitter at @wallybock.

Willy Steiner of Executive Coaching Concepts shared Authenticity in the Workplace: Why I’ve Gotta be Me. Willy writes, “There is a lot of discussion about staying true to your “authentic self”.  This post examines how that may not always be the very best strategy and that a better option is for a mix of sincerity and empathy.” Follow Willy on Twitter at @coachforexecs.

Ducks in a Row: Marc Benioff on How to Run a Company

Tuesday, July 5th, 2016

https://www.flickr.com/photos/techcrunch/15192444615/

By any measure Mark Benioff  runs a successful, highly profitable company.

Moreover, he runs one of the most socially responsible companies in the world.

This BI interview with Benioff captures in a short read how Salesforce is a perfect example of a founder who incorporated his values into his company.

His socially conscious approach began when he launched Salesforce as a startup;  long before it was profitable.

I view that as a critical part of my business. That’s why when I started Salesforce, on day 1, we put 1% of our equity, 1% of our product, and 1% of our time into Salesforce.org.

Where other CEOs talk, wring their hands and use media time to bemoan the problems, Benioff fixes them.

Gender pay disparity is a good example.

When he saw proof that women were being paid less he made changes to eliminate the disparity and did it without whining or handwringing.

Two women, one our head of HR and one who ran our women’s group said, “Hey, we’re paying women less than men at Salesforce.” I didn’t believe it at the time, when we actually looked at the information we were actually paying women $3 million less than we were paying men for the same amount of work, and so we made an adjustment to how we pay women.

When asked how other companies handle the issue he furnished not only the how, but also the why it doesn’t happen.

Every company has an HR system, every company knows their salaries, that’s obviously how they pay people, and all a CEO has to do is push a button and look at, “Do I pay women the same as men?” Most CEOs are afraid to push that button.

Furthermore, Benioff  sees an attitude from a few academics in the 1970s as responsible for much of today’s inequality, — in short, he doesn’t believe that that a company’s primary purpose is to maximize shareholder value.

I believe that for business, which is where I can speak, we have to shift from shareholder maximization to stakeholder maximization.

Salesforce has been ranked as one of the top innovative companies year after year for a very simple reason.

They can’t look to me for all the answers. I don’t have them, and that’s not our culture. They are coming to me with their ideas and their visions. It’s not my role to be the only visionary in town.

All in all, Marc Benioff is a superb role model, whether your company is large, small or just starting up.

Flickr image credit: TechCrunch

If the Shoe Fits: Happy Fourth of July Weekend

Friday, July 1st, 2016

A Friday series exploring Startups and the people who make them go. Read all If the Shoe Fits posts here.

5726760809_bf0bf0f558_mToday is Friday — but not just any Friday.

It is the Friday that falls before the Monday that is the Fourth of July — the biggest party weekend of the summer.

Even the most dedicated entrepreneurs take off the Fourth.

They may as well, since almost nobody else is working and those who are in their offices are mostly there for show.

Not me. I’ve been around too long to worry about appearances.

So for whatever’s sake, turn off your phone, get out of the office and spend time face-to-face with family and/or friends.

You’ll be at least twice as productive next week.

Have a safe, great Fourth and I’ll see you next Tuesday.

Image credit: HikingArtist

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