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  • Revised, Evolving Model for Organizational Value Creation

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 12/03/2021 Published in American Printer “For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something,”……………Steve Jobs INTRODUCTION: Millions of current and potential employees, in all quarters, at all levels - are seeking better career options. Without trained personnel, you don’t have a company. Without motivated personnel, who feel a “sense of community and personal responsibility” toward who they work with and serve, you don’t have much of a company. Over Thanksgiving, one of our treasured clients experienced a culture-impacting event. (At this moment in time, they are “booked” through early 2022 – with current customers’ work.) They’re working close to 24/7 but had given employees Thanksgiving Day off – to be with family and friends. (It was also obvious that many employees needed time -- to rest.) Unplanned, a modest group of employees decided privately that they were coming in to work on Thanksgiving Day….to get caught-up, and possibly slightly ahead of their current schedule. When the President (second generation ownership) learned what was afoot, he immediately turned and said to his family, “We’re having our Thanksgiving Day Meal …at the Plant , with multiple shifts, with our people…..” And they did. The resulting effect on company morale… has been dramatically positive… …for everyone. It’s my observation that it’s particularly tough to come behind a successful father, who was founder and President, and develop your own identity of mutual respect, with your key community – and constituents. That Thanksgiving Day rare event… is an example of how you do it. The company is Panaprint, in Macon, Georgia. The President is Rette Collins. Changing Scenes: Last evening, I received a late evening call from a fast-growth West Coast client, whose Business Development and Education Director, whom my client has known for over two decades, had just given his notice, as he’s working on his MBA from a local university, and wants to start his own company. Replacing him might be viewed as an opportunity, except – he’s multi-talented, experienced, trusted, and is an unusually effective “right-arm” to my client’s General Manager, and much of the Sales Team. Loss of key personnel is not always about pay. Sometimes…perhaps more often – recently – personnel’s disgruntlement involves other, unspoken, key organizational issues – that you don’t know about. That Business Development and Education Director and I just finished a 40+ minute informal Exit Interview. Having worked with him on projects over much of the last year, my opinion is that he might not be leaving – if – his senior management knew. A COO recently remarked, “I need to spend more personal time with new employees we hire, as soon as they go to work here. They’re generally not used to the pace of work in our plant…..and just don’t come back from lunch….!” That’s an issue larger (and not so large) customers are starting to check – upfront, recognizing how cross-training and personnel turnover ultimately affects -- your performance for them. SUMMARY: How to, “Tap into learning about what needs to change, to improve a company’s future, to improve employee retention, and reduce the loss of key personnel…?” Probably through results of a well-designed, anonymous Employee Survey (and we’re NOT talking about an Internet-based Employee Survey, where the Administrator knows who said what..!) There are other means to learn what needs to change…and how to develop trust with key and front-line employees…for improved employee retention…..all of which require frequent, personal time….a precious commodity… that many senior managers don’t have much of these days. “There are two types of people who will tell you that you can not make a difference in this world: those who are afraid to try, and those who are afraid you will succeed.”…………..Ray Goforth

  • Supplier Capabilities – Unknown… But Needed

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 11/19/2021 Published in American Printer “Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone”……Pablo Picasso INTRODUCTION: “Prosperity”…. is not by chance. We are currently delivering Customer Survey results to an organization – that really needed a boost. From a highly credible source, their senior management had heard about our rare capabilities ….“to uncover the unknown”. In the first 45 days after our initial discussions, they’ve received, “identified by current customer” : Over 20 offers of a Referral. Well over 200 requests for additional Products and Services – Not Currently Purchased. 9 Requests for Storage & Fulfillment. 13 Requests to discuss a 2-3 Year Agreement (saving all parties significant costs, freeing-up time, and generating significant additional revenues). 11 Requests to discuss “Consolidation of Suppliers”. Survey returns are not yet completed – we have techniques and strategies for elevating responses…… I’m expecting another 50% of responses. Their talented V. P. of Sales has committed to participate personally in every customer response follow-up. SUMMARY: Many of you may be covered-up… with weeks of backlog customer work. But not everyone. When we arrive in the 1st Quarter of 2022, with the Holiday Season over, and those outrageous shipping and storage charges from the West Coast become inescapable, our general economy at that point – appears to be facing a dreadfully dark shadow. "I believe our commercial banks generally point us in the direction our economy is going. This week, our big commercial banks… took a turn, which may be temporary.... before a year-end rally….and maybe not." So why did so many customer requests occur in response to our client’s Customer Survey? Those customers didn’t know our client’s extensive capabilities. (They each only knew what they had been buying.) What’s your plan…? “We become what we think about , most of the time, and that’s the strangest secret.”………………….Earl Nightingale

  • A Silent...But Significant....'Passing of the Guard'

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 11/05/2021 Published in American Printer “Try not to become a person of success, but rather a person of value.”………………..Albert Einstein INTRODUCTION: In 1998, the Accrediting Council for Collegiate Graphic Communications (a.k.a. ACCGC) was formed by its founding fathers and is an IRS recognized non-profit 501(c)(3) publicly supported organization. Eighteen college and university programs have been accredited, including most recently, Shanghai Publishing and Printing College, Shanghai, China. According to a Board resolution being presented on November 5th, Dr. Ervin A Dennis has served as Managing Director of ACCGC for over 20 years. He took this position after he and a well-respected, committed group of graphic communications academics - had developed a profound set of “15 Accreditation Standards”. November 5th will be Dr. Erv Dennis’ last official day - at the ACCGC Annual Board Meeting. I’ve personally served three-three year terms on the ACCGC Board. There are few unforgettable, sustaining surprises in life. Serving on ACCGC’s Board provided me with far more than I ever expected, including an opportunity to develop a Database Curriculum for the University of Houston, that’s now a required course for their Digital Media Department, College of Technology (and that’s now being seriously considered by Cal Poly). There is 19 Board of Directors. Several positions are required to be filled by industry practitioners. SUMMARY: Dr. Erv Dennis has, through his leadership and personal conduct, influenced our academic institutions, the integrity of their curriculum development, and their visions to pursue relevant, educational excellence. Each accredited school has an Advisory Committee, usually comprised of regional senior company representatives, who are there to influence curriculum, budgets and resources, internships, and recruitment. There are upcoming industry practitioner Director positions, whose terms of service are concluding - over the next year or two. Collectively, these opportunities – you and your organization - deserve to pursue. “The ones who are crazy enough to think they can change the world… are the ones who do.”…………..Anonymous

  • Look Over Here.... Not Over There....!

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 10/15/2021 Published in American Printer “The greatest problem in communication is the illusion that it has been accomplished” ……………. George Bernard Shaw INTRODUCTION: We learn to avoid the truth….and how to avoid what needs attention. How well I remember the owner saying, “Now is not a good time for a Customer Survey for us.”…….His rationale?......”We wouldn’t get good results…high evaluations… and good comments from our customers.” Then there was an owner… and… association executive – neither of whom wanted to address “Succession Planning” – a truly creeping “death-threat”… to our great industry. The owner felt he had a few more years before he’d be forced to discuss those issues – he liked being president and coming to his office. And the association executive had learned that the way to keep his job …was to avoid unpleasant subjects and keep the social calendar for members and their spouses -- active. Then there was the “Sales Manager” who liked to hire “retread Sales Reps”, release them after about a year, but keep their accounts – either as “House Accounts” – or for himself…and his CSR (someone needs to service them). He also “qualified” all prospects, who called in. That pattern kept sales costs down, kept his income and schedule full, and kept his Sales Reps catering to him… for “new Leads”. If he awarded a Lead, he leaned toward giving it to a struggling new Rep, who seemed to have great trouble following up, and not giving the Lead to their top performer, who followed up on everything, and whose customers loved her. I heard that an itinerant consultant recently stopped in, without an invitation. In the course of discussions, he asked the owner how many “Neglected Customers” they might have. That consultant went on to remark about “Inside Sales Reps” renewing neglected customers, and that census data indicated that this region was significantly ahead of the U.S. average - in new business start-ups. Then he mentioned that their local library’s Databases could show, in detail - what new businesses were starting up, by industry. This was all new to the owner – and truthfully, he was skeptical, preferring to believe that the consultant was just looking for more work. Neither his Reps nor his Sales Manager had ever mentioned using Databases at the local library. (That’s where you went to check out a book, rather than buy it, wasn’t it?) And… his local association had never mentioned or offered a training session re. Databases...for uncovering targeted new prospects…! For too many owners, local Recruitment Service Bureaus were not generating anyone worth interviewing, who could pass a drug test, or worth hiring, especially as a Sales Rep Trainee. Yet, The Wall Street Journal was running what seemed like a “marathon series” on almost unlimited opportunities - for successfully hiring people to work – often remotely. (Over 4.3 million people quit their jobs in August, The WSJ recently reported.) This owner had not started reading, Remote, Inc. (by Robert C. Pozen and Alexandra Samuel) – a core “must-read” – for finding – and retaining - today’s talented employees – who don’t live next door. “Internal Sample Libraries” at a recent client were reported - all but empty…Reps had gotten out of the habit of asking for Samples. Requests over the last year from prospects and Customers went embarrassingly – unfilled. (Just didn’t seem as important as it once was.) SUMMARY: Developing organizational integrity requires many skills and qualities, including accountability…collaboration….and continuous improvement - from the entire Team. In today’s environment, we gain nothing but contempt, and lost talent – avoiding the issues…….while looking busy. This Pandemic has allowed folks time to ask themselves, “Where are we going, what are we trying to accomplish, why should I stay here….?” Does every employee have assignments of what they should be improving? Are their suggestions and questions….encouraged? Every Employee Survey we ever administered…uncovered major surprises… to senior management…who when reflecting on results…said it was true. What we avoid, or happens in the darkness of night, eventually sees the light of day. “Happiness lies not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort…”…Franklin D. Roosevelt, The New Deal, Speeches That Made History

  • Performance Bonds…. Performance Bonds…….? ………We Don’t Need Performance Bonds....!

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 10/01/2021 Published in American Printer “….by their actions… and inactions…they demonstrated lack of due diligence…”….Gen. Jim Mattis, Call Sign Chaos, p. 167. INTRODUCTION: My client…. was buying a sophisticated, multiple 7-figure Press, from a foreign manufacturer. His high-priced attorneys missed it. He, the President, the Buyer… missed it. I wasn’t offered a chance to review the Contract. (My client had never experienced my reviewing a Contract…especially re. equipment for which I had no engineering experience….my focus would be elsewhere….) Key question to ask, when the stakes are high – that are too seldom asked? “What are the worst things… that can happen…..?” In a previous life, my boss gave me a project to make happen, that subsequently increased in value… every year.  My “reduced-risk” lifesaver… for dealing with unknown architects and contractors…in Mississippi…about 500 miles away…? Get a “Performance Bond"… from the contractor, that protected my company (the Buyer)…against multiple potential forms of non-performance….that might and could happen. Back to the current major Press purchase, a significant loan from a domestic bank was required, with progress payments to the European Manufacturer. The loan was time specific, and not dependent on delivery...and operational performance from the foreign manufacturer. “What are the worst things that can happen…?” The European Press manufacturer was late on delivery…by well over six months…Their Press was another over six months late… becoming operational…and never…. reached performance specifications that were originally requested… and agreed to……! The cumulative damage to the Buyer… including to customers….was real…accumulating monthly…and inescapable…. SUMMARY: In my several Pressroom Workshops with Ray Prince, he tutored me on what should be required from a Press Manufacturer, or a previous Press owner…And… as I remember….he acknowledged that he had not observed a required Performance Bond… from the manufacturer…or seller…to protect the Buyer. I wince when I read descriptions of used Presses for sale…when I read how “newest and best”…. Performance Innovations… are proclaimed by Manufacturers…and sellers. Isn’t it time to protect the Buyers…up-front….against late deliveries….under-performance…and non-performance….? Withholding a “Progress Payment”…may not come close to covering incurred, unexpected costs, lost revenues, and disruptions – to your business relationships with important customers. Performance Bonds…are a real option to protect Buyers…and not just for Press purchases….! “…we needed to focus on removing the vulnerability, not whining about the problem…..”…………Gen. Jim Mattis, Call Sign Chaos, p.157.

  • Comfortable…..Confused……or Focused… and In-Gear…!

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 09/03/2021 Published in American Printer “For if any are hearers of the word and not doers, they are like those who look at themselves in a mirror, for they look at themselves and, on going away, immediately forget what they were like. But those who look into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and persevere, being not hearers who forget but doers who act – they will be blessed in their doing.”……..Book of James, Chapter 1 INTRODUCTION: I recently uncovered that members of a special Peer Group were not following through on what we’d discussed, and shared. Really, there were several items not followed through on. But one participant, who’s also his modest company’s Technology and Production Manager (Director), called and asked questions re. our recommended “Post-Plant Tour Customer Survey” (e.g., How to implement..? Why implement..? Was it really effective in uncovering additional opportunities – at an important prospect..?) Unknown to me at the beginning of his questions, he had a major prospect scheduled to visit – next day. He subsequently handed off the Post-Plant Tour Survey to his prospect – at the end of the Tour. Here are parts of the personal letter – he received back, in his pre-stamped and pre-addressed return envelope (along with the Survey – and its evaluations): “Good morning Ken, …Attached is your Survey….’wanted to thank you for being so generous with your time…we really appreciated the tour. It looks like you have a great operation and you’re certainly very knowledgeable and a leader in the industry – so thank you for your insights. Your Survey asked me to compare you to other printers that I had toured and it just so happens that I’ve toured one other and that’s Prisma –  in Phoenix. They have a huge operation and are very impressive – so compared to them I graded you “The Same” in almost everything. They didn’t send me a post-Survey though so you’ve got them on the follow-up for sure, as well as some other things I noted….. Hopefully (name of company) can find some business to send your way. I really appreciate (name of Plant Tour & Survey sponsor)’s openness to work with us.….. Managing Partner” SUMMARY: Several observations: The Plant Tour’s facilitator, clearly a “Production-Plant Manager”, is an excellent communicator. The Plant Tour, and particularly the Post-Tour Survey, successfully differentiated the Tour sponsor – against a competitor 50X+ their size. Opportunities to include experienced, talented Production Managers with target customers’ and prospects’ communications……are almost unlimited. This is not a tough business to grow…if we’ll get out of our “false comfort zones” – and work with a Mission – to develop our Team. “Wise leadership requires collaboration; otherwise it will lead to failure.”…………Gen. Jim Mattis, Call Sign Chaos, p.210.

  • Effective Virtual Customer Communications… Are Critical….!

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 08/20/2021 Published in American Printer “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion it has taken place.”……………………….George Bernard Shaw INTRODUCTION: Virtual Communications with customers ….may be the critical success link… for your organization….and its future. Sales Reps and CSR’s…remote… or in the office….are dropping out. Paralyzing turnover of experienced personnel in these key communications positions… is decimating the organization’s future prospects. Recruitment of hirable replacements challenges the toughest managers…who have not yet learned to promote the support, recognition, and ongoing Training these key positions (should) receive. Too often, senior management makes sure they stay….. “above the action.” In the last month, we’ve received multiple complaints and requests for assistance re. “perceived communications ineffectiveness of their customer contact personnel”….representing many different positions in an organization. A few suggestions…that can lead to changes in your Team atmosphere, and accomplishments: Work as a Team to identify problems, share experiences, make changes, identify what can be improved — and your desired outcomes. Have daily and weekly “Check-ups”. Be flexible…! Recognize “wins” – that do not have to be orders….so that others on your Team don’t miss the signals in similar customer conversations. Share with each other how to make better use of your time. Customer relationships, of any quality and depth, require time, depth, patience, and persistence (Dick Gorelick called this “Industrial Courtship”.) Work to develop specific metrics…that lead to success. For example: I’ll call 5 of my neglected customers — each week, and also send supportive emails, hand-written notes, and announcements. I’ll work to obtain one Referral every two weeks, that I follow up within one week. I’ll ask at least two different customers each week, “Why do you buy from us, and what would you like to see us improve?” (I’ll be sure to share what I hear, good or bad – at our Weekly Team Reviews.) A great resource: Remote, Inc., by Robert C. Pozen and Alexandra Samuel. (Note: The authors recommend reading Remote, Inc. – as a Team.) SUMMARY: Identify “your elephant in the room”…… and attack it..! Call the association you trust most and ask for their best independent Educator or Trainer – in Communications. You cannot afford to allow conditions you are observing and experiencing…to continue. To do nothing….is totally unacceptable. “The only safe thing is to take a chance. Play safe and you are dead. Taking risks is the essence of good work, and the difference between safe and bold can only be defined by yourself since no one else knows what you are hoping when you embark on anything.”……….Mike Nichols

  • Untapped Opportunities… Neglected…..for…. Continuous Improvement

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 08/06/2021 Published in American Printer “My Direct Reports have a ‘Review’ with me… every Friday…they’re each expected to bring at least one suggestion for improving our productivity and workflow…every week…..We’ve been doing this since I was promoted…..and…. we’re seeing our profitability slowly improve….every month….(not too complicated…just requires relentless follow-through…)”………Rob Narron, The Print Source, Wichita, KS INTRODUCTION: This past week I listened to a consulting team from Heidelberg deliver a webinar, titled, “Industry 4.0 – Profit Matters”. The webinar I’m told was produced for Great Lakes Graphics Assoc., and sponsored locally by PICA (Printing Industry of the Carolinas). This webinar represents another example of how associations can share resources — for better contributions — members. The content was solid, relevant, and well-presented. (As a personal observation, the content was a well-developed “repurposing” of Continuous Improvement”, with multiple everyday mfg. plant examples – which made the program so relevant for their audience.) As the Program rolled forward, I found myself asking two questions: Will anyone follow up on this webinar’s content and put its profound principles into practice…? (Principles that Ray Prince and I used in our Pressroom Workshop series – over 5 years – generating additional multiple-six figures/yr. — for attendees.) Will the Heidelberg team also present principles — For continuously improving your revenue margins – By identifying preferred, target customer markets –– through targeted new account development – including — how to “identify” and “find” those target prospects — through “disciplined analysis” – and use of Databases – as is being taught at the U. of Houston’s Digital Media School….? SUMMARY: There’s so much more to developing a company – so that it can stand the challenges of changing times……that too often today look like “Quote & Hope”. Our great industry once supported a Program known as EDP – Executive Development Program – where young executives were educated on “Improved Print Company Management Principles”. I ask our various Associations, “What are you doing, what are you planning and developing – for sustaining our industry’s future…..? Where’s the leadership for developing renewed organizations…customers…and profitability….?” Seems Suppliers also have a huge stake in those questions… “Peter Drucker, the business guru, criticized business executives for devoting too much time to planning, rather than understanding the nature of the corporation itself. As he put it, ‘Culture eats strategy for lunch’.”….General Jim Mattis, Call Sign Chaos, p.179.

  • How Might An Advisor Stay With A Client… Long Term…? …Don’t Discuss Difficult Issues....

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 03/05/2021 Published in American Printer “I liked the selected articles you send us so much… that I ordered my own daily copy of The Wall Street Journal”……Greg Moquin, President, Moquin Press INTRODUCTION: Sometimes…. I get lucky…. I’ve just gotten off the phone from Moquin Press’ Business Development Manager….who had no experience in printing before about a year ago, and has just informed me that…….. “After our Sessions with you…we were willing to start with ‘One Business Development Education Session a Month’…after not having any……after a month or two, the Team wanted to go to ‘Two Sessions a Month’….and… recently… we went to ‘Weekly Sessions’…and we still can’t cover all that’s needing to be covered …..our recently hired, inexperienced Reps are exceeding what anyone thought they could accomplish…this quickly….and Production keeps running more smoothly…” When Greg Moquin and I negotiated a Program for developing their “Inside Business Development Team’s Performance”….. the central issue was never cost of the Program, in my opinion. (He told me what he was willing to pay, and we generally… went forward from there.) Most of the participants I’d not met, nor would I meet before delivering the Program…via Zoom…four — two-hour Sessions a week…with homework assignments…for five weeks. Key issues were…Content…..Relentless additional business….Culture….New, previously unknown and untapped resources…..and…Improving everything that can and needs to be improved ….including “Leads”……“Getting Appointments”…. “Direct mail mailings”….Development of actionable, written SOP’s for guiding new Reps…and… Significant collaboration between their Business Development Team — and their knowledgeable… experienced – and wise…. General Manager. SUMMARY: For 35 years, Moquin Press has been driven by a president…and his wife – whose fierce work ethic and desire to improve what their company name stood for – have grown their company. Greg worries – that his personal hours are not what they once were — 30 or even 20 years ago. However…he acknowledges — that his desire… and ongoing insistence… for improving what they do, in every area of their company – is no less. I don’t believe I ever experienced him backing away…. from any question I asked. “If you don’t think you can afford ongoing Education & Training for your organization (and especially your Business Development Team) – you probably don’t realize – you’re already paying for it….”……………Allie Hutchison, Sr., Hutchison-Allgood Printing Co.

  • Does Everyone Know The Boss’ Priorities….?

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 02/05/2021 Published in American Printer “My favorite things in life don’t cost any money…. It’s really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time.”……..Steve Jobs INTRODUCTION: My morning appointment – for hot chocolate from Starbucks – with Scott, was 8:00. On “Lombardi Time”…I was 5 minutes early, and Scott was waiting for me, hot chocolate in hand……..As we walked through the lobby to his office, a familiar voice was heard to shout-out – loud enough to make sure Scott heard her, “Got another Referral… This Morning…!”(It wasn’t yet 8:00…) In his office, his “4’ X 6’ White Board” – on the wall next to his desk – in wording big enough to be read from 10’ away spoke volumes….to anyone…and everyone… who came into his office: What I saw, as I remember… included (but not limited to): Number of Referrals in the last 90 days… No. of 1st orders over $3,000…from Referrals (a significant number was recorded) No. of — 2nd orders from Referrals…in last 90 days. No. of “Periodic Business Reviews”… scheduled…last month…this month…next month. (Note: Multiple PBR’s were scheduled…including one that Friday.) Revenues this year vs. previous year, same period: (“Up 137%”.) No. of Proposals developed and delivered… in last 30 days…. No. of Late Deliveries…. in last 30 days…… Number of “Department Performance Reviews”… scheduled for next 30 days… SUMMARY: Subsequent discussion with this Client’s Sr. V.P. of Sales & Marketing… included that… personnel… from every department… seemed to find an excuse to come into his office…to get a quick glance at that Chart….to see how the company was doing – in the midst of the most dramatic pandemic in the last 100 years. (That White Board Chart….stayed updated…) When a series of Projects had developed that required everyone – from top to bottom…to come in and work long hours…even on Sunday….it happened….ownership to the company’s performance…was already owned…by everyone…. My experience is that it takes courage to put your personal responsibilities and public objectives on a White Board – and keep it up-to-date – for everyone… to know…and… have the opportunity…to care. Does your organization have “Strategic Performance Issues” — that are known…frequently updated….and owned….by everyone….? “Culture eats strategy….for breakfast…” Peter Drucker, Writer, Professor, Consultant

  • Do You Recognize….Our Industry — Is Not A Zero-Sum Game…

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 01/29/2021 Published in American Printer “…Bill, thank you. The world is a better place, Jobs told Gates after the Microsoft exec agreed to make a $150 million investment in Apple.”……Cover of Time Magazine INTRODUCTION: Our great industry…and your customer markets…are NOT…. a zero-sum game. Steve Jobs and Bill Gates had to come to that personal understanding re. software and computers….and they did…..ahead of their industry….! Some of you read the story of how… 20 years ago… Bill Gates loaned Steve Jobs — $150 million – to save Apple – arguably… Microsoft’s top but desperate…struggling… competitor. (Banks wouldn’t touch Apple at the time. From and since that agreement, the valuations of those two companies – have “flipped”.) That step, initiated by Steve Jobs at a critical moment in the life of Apple, lead to a unique working relationship between the two organizations – that all of us…really the entire world….have benefited. My observation is that… most organizations… have capabilities – that not just their target customers and prospects – but also including…. nearby competitors – could sometimes use. On a recent Peer Group Conference Call (we manage 4 Peer Groups), testimonials were heard re.: Suppliers working hard to become single-source suppliers to target customers. Multiple (including major national) competitors…buying more frequently… from multiple reporting Peer Group members. How several Peer Group members… were reporting the best December and January – ever….partly from competitors’ purchases………! How several Peer Group Members… are regularly sending-out “Blast Emails”… to key executives — at competitors…re. their unusual capabilities – …even offering virtual educational sessions – to assist feeding their backlogs…! SUMMARY: Almost everyone…has something …knows something…I need to learn…and use…to improve our service… to those whom we serve….! Market conditions are driving winners…and include: Radically shortened delivery times. Suppliers…not wanting to force a valued customer… to find another supplier. Buyers not waiting… or putting off…supplies and service they need. Customers needs changing….. constantly….! Through faster-changing market conditions and commercial needs… Suppliers learning to trust… Competitors….they need. What would you do with an additional $10,000 to $50,000 of business – each month…? What if Steve Jobs had not called Bill Gates….? (Steve Jobs’ genius… showed… in so much that he touched….!) What competitor should you call…. that you haven’t…? “That (working relationship) has worked out very well,” says Gates…”In fact, every couple of years or so, there’s been something new that we’ve been able to do on their Mac… and it’s been a great business for us.”….What Happened When Microsoft Saved Apple

  • What… Do You Celebrate…….?

    By Sid Chadwick, Chadwick Consulting, Inc. – 01/22/2021 Published in American Printer “Culture… eats strategy… for breakfast”…………Peter Drucker, Consultant, Writer, Professor INTRODUCTION: What do you reward…..(…please… don’t tell me it’s straight commission……)…? When was the last time you wrote a special check, or bought a high-end dinner… for an employee… or a department — who truly…went the extra mile to make something important….something special… happen…? What do you really celebrate… it birthdays… and work anniversaries (yes, those are important)….and… is there space in those gatherings – for recognizing significant achievements…? (Don’t most significant achievements require support and contributions – from others…who knew what that one person, that one department – was struggling….to make happen….?) In a previous life, our Sales Department would make sure our Production brothers and sisters… knew…we cared…that they were critical to what was achieved… we cooked BIG spaghetti dinners (…we’re talking loaves of Italian garlic bread, big batches of pasta…great home-made sauce…and lots of red wine…all you could drink and eat…)…at my home…we hung balloons and signs from  department rafters…every time we hit a new revenue milestone (which was almost monthly…… you hit a lot of new revenue milestones… when you triple your revenues … in less than 4 years)…! SUMMARY: From my vantage point… opportunities for improved performance – have never been greater……. Competitors… are willing to buy and sell… to each other…because…they need to… Needed Talent…Great Creative Talent…is willing to contribute to your projects…on a part-time or limited basis….because it knows the value of learning something new…and often prefers that type of working relationship….. Technology…seems only limited by our ability…. how to use it…. Equipment dealers…and manufacturers…are willing to make deals…that fit your ability to make payments…. Customers…are starved… for inspiration…creative solutions… and support…..! If ever there were a time for senior management to make sure that everyone knows how much their extra efforts…. their creativity…their extra contributions count… it is NOW! “Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me….. Going to bed at night…. saying we’ve done something wonderful….that’s what matters to me.”……………..Steve Jobs

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