The one thing you dare not automate

The personal touch your clients appreciated when you were small can get lost in the chaos of growth. It eventually feels like tedious, recurring, mind-numbing work. That’s when someone like me suggests that you automate it. Just don’t automate the wrong things. Why automate? Automation outside of manufacturing environments is mostly about doing tedious things […]

Work Linear vs. Parallel

This week I traveled to Kyiv, Ukraine for meetings with a software team. The meetings went well and I will be on my way home by the time you read this, however I had some travel issues. It’s worth noting that all of the issues I encountered were either created or they were problems that […]

Starting A New Business: Part 5 – Infrastructure

photo credit: kevin dooley Infrastructure is one of those things you don’t necessarily think about as a new business owner. Thing is, strong infrastructure often turns out to be the competitive edge that no one (other than you) notices. Your clientele notices “stuff”: You’re always on top of things and that you rarely, if ever, […]

The Right Kind of Work

photo credit: m.a.x   Productivity is pretty important, but it had better apply to the right sort of work. Even if your employees are incredibly efficient at whatever they do, if their work no longer brings substantial value to the table, your business could evaporate. The failure to automate the work that can and should […]

Avoiding the hurt

photo credit: Kai Brinker Not long ago, we talked about reviewing the recent performance of your business and making adjustments based on what you find. We ended that conversation like this… Beyond the bumps, thereâ??s something missing here. Reacting after the fact. Assessment and adjustment after the bleeding starts. Evaluating whatâ??s going on because the […]

Automation *can be* personal

photo credit: JOE MARINARO Like I suspect you do, I get a number of automated emails asking how someone’s service was, or reminding me to deal with this or that before a deadline. Most of these are innocuous emails that were done with an honest effort to help, but because the process was left unfinished, […]

Changes and Clipboards

photo credit: iluvrhinestones While the world wrings its hands over the tax implications of LeBron James’ move to Miami, the rest of us didn’t even look up. We’re working hard to create (or advance the progress of) our next big thing. Meanwhile, the economy stumbles forward in some ways, races in others, and limps in […]

#amazonfail, Niemoller and your business

photo credit: Asti21 First they came for the chocolate bunnies, and I did nothing because I am not a chocolate bunny. Quite a weekend we’re having: Passover, Good Friday, Easter, the Masters and a few thousand Easter Egg hunts, to name a few. Oh, and I smoked a pork roast that turned out totally incredible. […]

What do a turkey and an iPhone have in common?

photo credit: Atilla1000 Plenty, if you’re thinking and paying attention to what other businesses are up to.  We had a Hutterite turkey last week, but in the process of digging around, I came across some innovative things that Butterball is doing to make life easier for their customers.  Things like text messages to remind you […]

Make your automation personal, not just automatic

photo credit: Zesmerelda After requesting a beta invitation to a web-based service, I received the activation email. *ONE* minute later, I got an email from the CEO asking how I liked the service.  Careful there, Sparky.  While I’d be the first to encourage such emails, you have to think about how – and particularly, when […]