Sustainable Business

Navigating your Family Business from Conflict to Accomplishment

When working with family members in business with one another, something reveals itself over and over – the ties that bind also serve as stress points for potential unraveling.  With expertise in group and family dynamics, conflict management, and behavioral science, I am often asked to provide consultation and coaching to Trilogy clients with family-owned businesses who recognize that “things could be better” from both business and personal perspectives.  Does your family experience any of these issues causing conflict and misunderstanding? Decisions about the future direction of the business. Differences in leadership styles, practices, and core business values. Permitting undesirable and potentially destructive workplace behaviors to (erroneously) maintain harmony. Differences in performance and time commitment. Compensation of those actively vs. passively involved in the business. Fairness, equity and expectations around […]

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It’s Time for a Plan!

Companies large and small often deliberate on the need and/or depth for a strategic plan or roadmap. Is there really any reason not to have a formal plan documenting where you are; where you want to go; and how you will get there? At Trilogy Partners, we guide business owners through the strategic planning process, allowing the organizational leadership to get out of the day-to-day and look at the business from “the clouds” or using the cliché, “working on the business, not in the business.” There is an essential difference between tactics, operational effectiveness, and strategy and we have seen first-hand how strategic planning improves overall organizational performance. In the past, strategic plans were onerous to develop and often sat on a shelf; dusted off only when the plan was […]

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Fix the Toaster

At Trilogy Partners, we often have to ask, do you want to fix the toaster or keep scraping the burnt part off the toast? It seems like a simple question but hear me out. How seamlessly does your organization really operate? Can you cite examples of non-productive behavior caused by the way you’re doing business now? Where are people in your organization falling further behind serving customers, making shipments, or completing their work because process improvements were not put in place? I am prompting you to go much deeper in your thinking process than whether or not you have an up-to-date organizational chart. You and your top team need to examine if your organization is really coalescing around the best ways to get things done. Do you need to fix […]

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A Business Case for Courage

Business growth is directed through strategy.  This should not be news. Most business leaders have varying levels of implementation around strategy, but most agree that something has to be done with forethought and purpose.  But what really fuels this? At Trilogy Partners, we believe that COURAGE leads to passion that inspires growth. In August 2015, Forbes published an article (A Measure of Courage) highlighting the American Courage Index.  The article outlined business-related questions geared towards courage, as well as those questions that spoke to the social, moral and emotional aspects of courage.  Not surprisingly perhaps, the results showed that business owners are more courageous than the rest of the US population.  And further, emotional courage increases with age.  Conceptually, these outcomes make sense and jive with many of our personal […]

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Visionary and Integrator: The Most Valuable Relationship in an Organization

In October, Hal and I had the opportunity to speak about our Visionary/Integrator (V/I) relationship on VoiceAmerica’s radio program “Operationally Speaking” with Sergiu Simmel.  It was a chance to explain our unique roles at Trilogy Partners as well as showcase the benefits of having a Visionary and Integrator within a company. The terms Visionary and Integrator are used in the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS®) and are also explained in Gino Wickman and Mark C. Winters’ book Rocket Fuel.  Visionaries, generally business owners like Hal, are creative, big thinking, idea generators while Integrators like me are analytical, process oriented and drivers of the day-to-day operations.  Integrators are responsible for implementing the ideas of the Visionary. A valuable aspect of this relationship is its complimentary yin-yang dynamic.  To put it simply, Visionaries […]

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Seize the Moment: Recognizing how Initiative can Grow your Organization

“Initiative is doing the right thing without being told.” – Victor Hugo Who in your organization has the requisite initiative associated with high performance?  Do any of your employees and colleagues seem to lack initiative? If either of these questions resonate at some level, it may be time to identify and develop leaders that can create the organization you envision.  Often, tension is associated with ensuring that we have the right people, on the right projects, at the right time.  Failure to properly attend to one or more of these variables can render even the most well-intentioned effort a money loser, morale crusher, or worse, a death knell for the organization. When you have high performing, motivated employees engaged in meaningful, transformational projects, those who are holding the company back […]

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Ownership Transition – Key Things to Consider

All of our clients own businesses, and a recent Washington Post article claimed that sales of small businesses hit a record high in 2016.  From time to time, business owners get to a point in their lives when they want to map out an effective exit strategy for at least two reasons: 1) they would like to enjoy themselves while they’re still in good health; and, 2) they want to ensure their company’s legacy for the sake of their employees (and customers). Trilogy Partners is currently working with a number of clients to transition business ownership either to internal hands (remaining owners, employees and/or relatives) or external hands (other companies or entrepreneurs).  In both instances, the owner is usually interested in maximizing the sales price, while also ensuring that the […]

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The Real Secret to Success for Business Owners

Our experience has shown that the three most common areas that business owners need to address to fulfill their vision and ensure success for their company are: Fundamental Business Disciplines Human Behavioral Dynamics Change We have found that many business owners do not focus on all three areas which can lead to inefficiencies, culture issues, and stagnation within the business.  Understanding and directing efforts in these areas make for a more robust, holistic organization that can better adapt to challenges. Let’s take a look at each. Fundamental Business Disciplines reflect the objective side of business such as winning new customers, manufacturing products, creating processes, etc. and can be expressed in the following categories: Growth: Strategy, Sales/Marketing and Organizational Sustainability: People, Financial and Processes Human Behavioral Dynamics are the emotional and subjective aspects […]

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The Key to Sustainable Business Success

There’s a popular saying in the business world: “hire slowly and fire quickly.” It seems that very few organizations follow that sage advice. Most people are hired for their experience. Yet, most people are fired for their behavior. Given this fact, I often wonder why organizations hire quickly and fire slowly. It takes a ton of effort and money to recruit candidates, select who you think are the best ones, put them through expensive training, put up with their bad behavior, write them up ad infinitum, then fire them after a heck of a lot of damage has been done. After years of repeating the same mistakes, why haven’t employers figured out how to implement an effective recruitment, selection, management and development processes? I believe that I have found the […]

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