The fuzzy logic of planned sales growth

Sales growth comes from some very specific sources (e.g., price increases, new customers or distributors, new products or markets, increased volumes from existing customers, better retention of base customers).

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The insidious nature of complexity

You simply can’t be great at everything. There are not enough hours in the day, and companies would come to a grinding halt if they managed entirely by this edict.

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To whose benefit?

There’s a Latin expression that will resonate with anyone who has struggled to implement change in an organization: “Cui bono?” Commonly attributed to the Latin orator Cicero, it means “To whose benefit?”

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The analytical side of management behavior

We tend to zero in on management behavior, as opposed to employee behavior, because we find that management behavior is critical to a well-run organization and, in turn, significantly influences employee behavior.

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The “X-Factor” paralysis

The X-Factor means problems that were initiated externally (i.e., outside the department) and were therefore difficult, if not impossible, to fix because local managers had no authority.

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“Cushman bait”

Employees are often initially worried that our watching them work is some kind of “Big Brother” intrusion and that the outcome won’t be beneficial to them.

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How to find opportunity in an organization

Before we work for a client we do what we call an “opportunity analysis,” which, as it sounds, is designed to help us figure out if there is any opportunity to improve and where it might be. It’s usually conducted over two to three weeks.

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Hockey-stick forecasts

The “hockey-stick forecast” is a fairly common concept for people who deal regularly with future plans of one type or another.

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