2011

In the CEO Afterlife

Business Proverbs and BS | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

When I searched online for content on business proverb lies and mistruths I was amazed by the digital library's breadth and depth. The myths apply to business in general, as well as specific industries, start-ups and the new

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Homeless, Not Helpless: Entrepreneurship in Unlikely Places | In the.

In the CEO Afterlife

I've never thought of the homeless as innovative or entrepreneurial. I suspect few do. Some might say these lost souls don't have an enterprising bone in their bodies; if they did, they wouldn't be homeless. I understand why

Trending Sources

Is Social Media an Excuse for Brand Positioning Laziness? | In the.

In the CEO Afterlife

I retired from the CEO's office in 1994 and from strategy and marketing consulting in 2008. Other than a casual Facebook page with a couple of dozen friends, I knew little of social media until I discovered Twitter in February

Crisis Management: The Ultimate Test of a Leader | In the CEO.

In the CEO Afterlife

The sudden, unexpected and potentially catastrophic event that threatens a business is a CEO's greatest challenge. Ever since the Tylenol tampering recall of 30 years ago, the performances of companies in crisis have come

A Manifesto’s Unbridled Power

In the CEO Afterlife

Manifestos ignite people into action. The best manifestos are so emotionally charged that their catalytic influence can endure for centuries. The Ten Commandments and the Declaration of Independence are good examples.

Turnarounds and the Big Play | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

I've been in business a long time. If you don't believe me, just look at my profile picture - that was taken a couple of years ago, (okay, maybe I'm being a bit generous on that timeline). My point is this: I've had my share of

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The Essence of Strategy (Part 2) | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

The Essence of Strategy (Part 2). by John  October 30, 2011  Human Resources, Leadership, Marketing, Strategy  4 Comments. Last week's blog post bemoaned the lack of strategic discipline in today's world of business. I posed three

The ?M? Word: A Company's Most Underrated Intangible | In the CEO.

In the CEO Afterlife

The dictionary describes momentum as a strength or force that keeps growing. Gamblers in the rush of a hot-streak believe in the force. Sports teams with momentum go on inexplicable winning streaks while opponents can't

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The Hard-Knock Valuation of Brand Equity Growth | In the CEO.

In the CEO Afterlife

There's not a Brand Manager that doesn't want to build brand equity. Marketers, who work for the likes of P&G or Unilever, periodically check brand awareness and brand attributes to measure progress. For example, if 35% of

The Perfect Brand Slogan | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

The Perfect Brand Slogan. by John  May 23, 2011  Branding, Marketing  3 Comments. Most folks in the branding game will judge a proposed slogan or tag line by a defined set of objectives. In my day, I started with strategy. If a slogan did not

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The Genius behind Toblerone | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Here's a rather fascinating little anecdote about a very famous global brand, Toblerone. Known for its distinctive packaging, triangular shape and honey-nougat-almond chocolate recipe, Toblerone has been around for over a

My Best Blogs of 2011

In the CEO Afterlife

I began blogging about leadership, strategy, marketing and life last February. Frankly, I wasn’t sure whether I could maintain the pace of one blog per week. But as the year closes, I realize that I’ve posted 54 blogs. My fascination isn’t my productivity; rather, it is the source of the idea.

The Paradox of Two Guitar Companies

In the CEO Afterlife

They are global, they are successful and they have become the quintessential icons of pop music.

Gretzky, Gates, Zuckerberg: Can they see the Unseen? | In the CEO.

In the CEO Afterlife

It takes a knack to see the unseen. Some call it a sense, a gift from God bestowed upon the chosen few. We've witnessed this sense in our greatest athletes. Wayne Gretzky had a knack of skating where he knew the puck

Why HR and the CEO should be joined at the Hip | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

The day the Jacobs Suchard (now part of Kraft Foods) Board of Directors promoted me to the C-Suite, they strongly suggested I align myself with the CFO. The advice proved excellent, and for the rest of my days in the corner

Lateral Mind Games

In the CEO Afterlife

I was cleaning out some files the other day and came across a brain twister. I suspect the puzzle came from the Edward de Bono lateral thinking seminar I attended some 30 years ago.

Clout as Strategy and Why Companies Won't Admit It | In the CEO.

In the CEO Afterlife

What is the definition of strategy? Elementary question, you say. Here is the elementary answer. Strategy is a plan of action designed to achieve a defined goal. There are all sorts of strategies in today's business  at the top is

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Is this the Flag from Riches to Rags? | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

I'm a Canadian on assignment in California. Last Thursday I had the pleasure of joining a group of 12 for American Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a much bigger deal down here than it is above the 49th parallel. The days

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What Ever Happened to the Pepsi Generation? | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

The concept of a Pepsi advertising campaign designed to capture America's youth had its roots in the 1960's. But it wasn't until the 1980's that The Choice of a New Generation struck 14-24 year olds like a social tsunami

This Bud's Not for Me | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Recently I bought a case of Budweiser with the new can design. Because I had a few of the old cans in the refrigerator I conducted a side-by-side comparison through the eye of a marketer. The comparison raised a couple of

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The CEO as Chief Brand Custodian | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Never in the history of marketing has there been so much talk about branding. The conversation in the 2011 branding world is well beyond product and service brand discussion by marketers and ad agencies. Branding has

Beauty Marketers: Best in Class | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

A couple of years ago, Advertising Age published an impressive 20-page tribute to L'Oreal, entitled 100 Years of Celebrating Beauty. The piece described a passionate marketing company who has believed in the power of

What Makes ABSOLUT, Absolute? | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

ABSOLUT Vodka's advertising campaign is one of the most successful and longest running consumer products campaigns in the history of advertising. The original concept, created by Art Director Geoff Hayes in a bathtub

A Boomer's Advice to Marketers: Go Ahead, Make My Day | In the.

In the CEO Afterlife

This week I turn 65. I can't believe it. Half a century has passed since I was in high school; it feels like a decade ago. In my mind the images of the '60s are still vivid  the assassination of a President, a man walking on the

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Do Vulture Cultures still prevail in Business? | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Do Vulture Cultures still prevail in Business? by John  May 2, 2011  Human Resources, Leadership  1 Comment. Vulture Culture, Alan Parson's musical composition told the story of a person's struggle for money, fame and power. Take a

Does this Flag represent Riches to Rags?

In the CEO Afterlife

I’m a Canadian on assignment in California. Last Thursday I had the pleasure of joining a group of 12 for American Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a much bigger deal down here than it is above the 49 th parallel. The days around the holiday are the most travelled of the year.

The Paradox of Two Guitar Companies | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

They are global, they are successful and they have become the quintessential icons of pop music. Since the birth of rock 'n roll sixty years ago, the esteemed brands of Fender Musical Instruments and the Gibson Guitar

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Homeless, Not Helpless: Entrepreneurship in Unlikely Places

In the CEO Afterlife

I’ve never thought of the homeless as innovative or entrepreneurial. I suspect few do. Some might say these lost souls don’t have an enterprising bone in their bodies; if they did, they wouldn’t be homeless.

Distant Replay: My Mid-Life Crisis | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Back in February, I started blogging. My intent was to write about business, life and writing - 30 posts later, I've managed but one post on life (Lessons from 9-year Olds) and one on writing (Branding the Aspiring Novelist

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Market(ing) Meltdown: Don't Worry, Be Happy | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

I'm going to admit at the outset that I'm not a stock market expert. In fact, I pay little attention to the daily moves of the market or the individual stocks in my portfolio. For those of you still with me, here's my quick take on the

Is There a CEO Afterlife? | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Those of you who have followed my blog have an idea of how I'm spending my time as a retired CEO. I'm working  not for money, for fun. Beyond my recreational life (weapons of choice being a tennis racquet or a golf club

Old Brands. New Hands. Last Stands | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Old Brands. New Hands. Last Stands. by John  August 1, 2011  Branding, Marketing  0 Comments. I realize I've been around a long time whenever I reminisce about the brands I was associated with in my early career. A few are still leaders

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Old Brands. New Hands. Last Stands | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Old Brands. New Hands. Last Stands. by John  August 1, 2011  Branding, Marketing  0 Comments. I realize I've been around a long time whenever I reminisce about the brands I was associated with in my early career. A few are still leaders

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The Green Thing | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

by John  July 26, 2011  Life  0 Comments. This tale has been making the rounds on the internet. If I knew the creator's identity I would have given due credit as my guest blogger. Have a chuckle. In a line at the grocery store, a cashier told an

When to Take My Name off the Door ? by Guest Blogger Leo Burnett.

In the CEO Afterlife

John Bell  As 1967 came to a close, Leo Burnett was almost out the door of the agency he founded. But before he packed up his sketchpad, pencils, awards, tributes, and memoirs, he spoke to his employees for the last time

The Nuts and Bolts of the 1-Page Strategic Plan | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

by John  July 17, 2011  Leadership, Strategy  2 Comments. I am delighted that so many readers of the CEO Afterlife blog have asked for details of the content that goes into the 1-Page Strategic Plan. Start with deep strategic thought and the

Green Company, Red Products, Black Ink | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Green Company, Red Products, Black Ink. by John  July 10, 2011  Leadership, Strategy  0 Comments. There's unlikely a responsible CEO in America who hasn't at one time, said, You know what folks? Our business should be more

Should the Strategic Plan Rest in Peace? | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

At one time, business executives believed that strategic planning was the answer to all of their problems. The process that started in the 1950's evolved through various strategic analyses including SWOT (Strengths

The Tragic Fall from Specialist to Generalist: Starbucks, the Latest.

In the CEO Afterlife

Last week, legendary brand positioning expert Al Ries weighed in on Starbucks reported desire to move away from its powerful 'specialist' strategy. Al thinks the stock market is pressuring the company for more top-line growth

When to Give Up Your Pride | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

One of my favorite 'inspirational' books is The Art of Possibility by Rosamund and Benjamin Zander. Though I read it 10 years ago, one passage still stands out in my mind. Ben, the conductor of the Boston Philharmonic, had

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