CEO Blog

Delegate to Scale a Business

CEO Blog

A friend suggested I write an article on delegation. It took me a couple of weeks before I figured out who to delegate the task to and I decided to do it myself. There have been many articles written on delegation. In writing this, I am thinking what can I add to what has already been said?

The Power of While

CEO Blog

Today I got a light work out in before my work out at the gym. I shovelled snow for 20 minutes. This is a perfect example of the Power of While. What can you do while you are doing something else. In this case, I could get the drive shovelled and get a bit of exercise.

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Air Conditioner Shortage.and Time to Think.

CEO Blog

I am keenly aware of the weather. I garden (not as much as I should though - my garden at the office got away from me). I also do walking meeting and on days when I have no walking meetings, I usually walk outside. Danby Appliances has a window and portable air conditioning business.

10 Things Successful People Always Do

CEO Blog

I rarely use someone's articles in their entirety but in this case, I thought it was good. The original was written by a friend of mine - Nate Collier. My comments are in bold Italics. 1) Planning their Lives, Working their Plan. Ordinary folks with a plan will go further than a genius without a plan. Most folks go the same distance in life, too often much of it is in circles! I am fairly good at planning although, I admit, I was better in the past. Good reminder to get back to it.

Want some grub?

CEO Blog

I am just back from China. Some business, some sightseeing/vacation. I am writing this on the flight (of course cannot post until I hit live internet). I find long flights are excellent times to think and reflect. China has come a long way. It is smoggy but not as bad as it was.

How to set New Years Resolutions

CEO Blog

This is a time of year that I reflect on the past and plan the future. I am in the office today but have a surprisingly low number of meetings, calls and emails so I am getting a lot done. It makes me realize how busy I usually am. Some ideas I use when setting resolutions: 1 - Most resolutions are broken. Not because of a lack of desire but because of a lack of action planning.

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Making Choices

CEO Blog

I tell people "I only do what I want to do". Mostly this is true. Sometimes though I find myself doing things because I want to be polite where I might really want to be doing something different. I have heard it said "you are the (weighted) average of the people you spend time with". perhaps that is why some people look like their dogs?) The choice to use this guest post is also a choice for time management. Why write something that someone else has already said well.

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Leaders are Readers

CEO Blog

I have always known reading was good and audiobooks are great. I have also known TV can often cut into reading time. It can be so much of a temptation that I do not even own a TV. A recent article in Entrepreneur magazine underscored how important reading is.

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Secrets for Successful Start up CEOs

CEO Blog

A start up CEO needs a different skill set than a growth CEO or a steady state CEO. In most respects it is a harder role. Recently I was asked for advice. I have found it very difficult to know what to advise - all start ups are different. And by nature - entrepreneurship is uncertain and there is no one right answer. Some rules and secrets on how to deal with things: 1 - You have no money. What if the office needs vacuuming? You vacuum it. What if you do not have a vacuum at the office?

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Steam: Hack your Consciousness

CEO Blog

I often use books or audio books to inspire me to get into flow. To be creative. My most recent audiobook was Stream: Hack your Consciousness by John Klymshyn and Issac Naor. I know Klymshyn from the time I lived in NY.

John Fredrick Wood Eulogy

CEO Blog

On Christmas day, I lost a great friend and mentor - John Wood. It has taken me a few days to write this - I just did not know what to say. Although I knew it was going to happen soon, it just hit me hard. John Wood was only 78 years old. A few years ago he had a lung transplant and since then had struggled with health issues. I first met John when I was early in business. I had perhaps 20 employees and he had 800. He was the "big" business in Guelph and I was an upstart.

When

CEO Blog

I have problems saying no. Not that I have problems pronouncing it - it is just I often say yes when I really should say no. The only thing I really have is my time and often saying yes takes that time. It makes someone else's priority my priority.

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Xavier Charles Estill Austen

CEO Blog

I am once again a proud grandfather. Mother Laura and baby are both doing well and healthy. Xavier Austen. 5 lbs 15 oz, 19.5 inches, born 19 November 2014 at 1:46 pm. He arrived about a month early. He already is trying to be punctual - a skill that will serve him well in life.

Actionable Gamification

CEO Blog

I have a new favourite book - Actionable Gamification - Beyond Points, Badges, Leaderboards and Reviews by Yu-Kai Chou. It may be of interest mostly to me because I am in the process of implementing some of this in a business. I have been interested in gamification for a while. In 2008, I was granted a patent on it. According to Chou. Gamification is the craft of deriving all the fun and engaging elements found in games and applying them to real-world or productive activities.

27 books in 3 days

CEO Blog

I recently did a no internet or phone for 3 days Christmas with 2 of my grandkids. The result - I got 27 books read. Some summaries: Bring out the Best in Every Employee by Dan Brown and Bill Hawkins. Good book - good studies on what works and what people want.

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In Praise of Brevity

CEO Blog

I wrote this a while ago - repubilishing now. “I I have made this letter longer than usual, only because I have not had time to make it shorter” by Blaise Pascal (1623-62). We are inundated with information.

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My Commencement Speech - The Secret to Happiness

CEO Blog

Today I am receiving an Honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of Guelph. I public speak all the time but this speech was difficult to prepare. No Powerpoints and no Q and A (doing Q and A is one of my strong points). I never write out my speeches (but I do always prepare for them) but this one I thought I would write: Today I am going to share the secret of happiness but first you will have to listen to a commencement speech about success. So what is your definition of success?

Random thoughts and a free business idea.

CEO Blog

Sears Canada is closing for good. This will leave 74 malls without and anchor tenant (this does not include the 8 Home Stores and 49 Hometown Stores). These are large retail spaces and it is unlikely there is another retailer big enough to take most of them.

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Growing Ice Cream

CEO Blog

From an email exchange with a friend on what makes successful entrepreneurs: listen - filter - learn - lead Not blind obedience. Work ethic - time management - energy - passion. And the appropriate mix of dreams and reality, focus and trying different things. Statistical experimentation.

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The lucky vs the happened to them

CEO Blog

I notice a pattern. Successful people say they are lucky, Unsuccessful people have things happen to them. What I have learned is you need to choose the former. I meet people who tell me about all the great things they did and how they did it all on their own.

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Tabatha Ann

CEO Blog

My daughter, Laura had a daughter yesterday. Mom and newborn are doing well. The only reason Tabatha is crying is because someone put that silly hat on her. + I do not do politics but the current state of affairs makes it hard not to comment.

Seven Disciplines of a Leader

CEO Blog

I am once again back to posting book reviews. The way the holidays fell, there was lots of "reading" time. I read Seven Disciplines of a Leader - How to Help Your People, Team, and Organization Achieve Maximum Effectiveness by Jeff Wolf.

The simple 42 steps to making a sale

CEO Blog

Many companies know who their target customers are. In many cases their targets are limited. For example - at Danby Appliance , we might target appliance stores. There are only so many of them. So the key is persistence.

COO 141

The Happiness Equation

CEO Blog

I just finished reading - T he Happiness Equation; Want Nothing+Do Anything=Have Everything by Neil Pasricha. It is a great book. I like that the book started saying something like take what parts you like and it is ok to not agree with everything because I do not agree with everything.

Closed Loop - How to make a Quality Product

CEO Blog

I am coaching a newer company on how to produce high quality products. I figured it was easier to write this blog entry where it might have use to other people than just send it in an email to them. One lesson I learned years ago by going through ISO9000 certification is closed loop. Every failure needs to be analyzed and the root cause solved. Simply fixing the problem for one customer is not enough. There at 4 main sources of feedback that can be used for the closed loop.

Growing @ the Speed of Change

CEO Blog

I suffer from great blogger guilt. I have not posted for quite a while. Not that I have not been doing anything but. I read a great book by Jim Clemmer - a famous local motivational speaker. The book is " Growing @ the Speed of Change ". Clemmer is a prolific author on leadership and motivation.

Growing @ the Speed of Change

CEO Blog

I suffer from great blogger guilt. I have not posted for quite a while. Not that I have not been doing anything but. I read a great book by Jim Clemmer - a famous local motivational speaker. The book is " Growing @ the Speed of Change ". Clemmer is a prolific author on leadership and motivation.

What To Do When Its Your Turn (and it's always your turn)

CEO Blog

That is a title of one of Seth Godin's books. Seth and I go way back - he was an early blogger as was I. We communicated a bit in those early days before he became famous. I also met him a couple of times at YPO events. And we traded some email over a business venture he was coaching.

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What To Do When Its Your Turn (and it's always your turn)

CEO Blog

That is a title of one of Seth Godin's books. Seth and I go way back - he was an early blogger as was I. We communicated a bit in those early days before he became famous. I also met him a couple of times at YPO events. And we traded some email over a business venture he was coaching.

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No Substitute for Time in - But Perfect Time in

CEO Blog

I love the early mornings. So many things I love to do in these hours. Cannot say I am a great fan of the darkness at 6 AM now though. One of my favourite thought leaders and authors, Malcolm Gladwell , studied what made people experts in their field.

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What will you do for Canada

CEO Blog

Happy post Canada Day. Danby has a couple of Canada Day things. Our Canadian Translator is cute. Would love to get that to go viral so please share it. And this video on why we should be grateful - Danby New Canadians. We are lucky. This blog post is inspired by one Randall Howard wrote here.

What will you do for Canada

CEO Blog

Happy post Canada Day. Danby has a couple of Canada Day things. Our Canadian Translator is cute. Would love to get that to go viral so please share it. And this video on why we should be grateful - Danby New Canadians. We are lucky. This blog post is inspired by one Randall Howard wrote here.

Habits

CEO Blog

My refugee sponsorship story has gone international with mentions on BBC and The Guardian. I did not do this project for fame or publicity. At first I resisted publicity but now welcome it. It helps leverage. It helps get things done. The downside is it generates a lot of volume.

Steps to Getting Your Steps

CEO Blog

Your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, your values become your destiny. Mahatma Ghandi To this - I say - possibly. Or is it the other way around mostly.

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Steps to Getting Your Steps

CEO Blog

Your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, your values become your destiny. Mahatma Ghandi To this - I say - possibly. Or is it the other way around mostly.

Review 130

The Beauty of Discomfort

CEO Blog

I recently read Amanda Lang's new book - The Beauty of Discomfort. Great book - simple messages. She told a number of stories of people who had suffered great adversity (like paralysis, blindness etc) and had still managed to become great successes in life. There is a section on Linda Hasenfratz who has build Linamar into the powerhouse that it is today. I enjoyed that section because it rightly pointed out the success Linda has had despite being a woman and the daughter of the founder.

Really Great Mentors

CEO Blog

I would like to be a really great mentor so was attracted to Stephen Kohn and Vincent O''Connell''s book: 9 Practices of really Great Mentors - How to Inspire and Motivate Anyone. The book is a self-actualizing and highly motivational read that portrays the many facets that mentors hold.

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The Power of 3

CEO Blog

There was a video that went viral on my Syrian project. 11,283,000 views so far. I did not know videos could get that many views. It spread on Facebook. One interest side effect - other videos that featured me and this project also got more views. Pervious videos increased by 200,000 views.

Power 130

The Power of 3

CEO Blog

There was a video that went viral on my Syrian project. 11,283,000 views so far. I did not know videos could get that many views. It spread on Facebook. One interest side effect - other videos that featured me and this project also got more views. Pervious videos increased by 200,000 views.

Power 130

The simple 42 steps to making a sale

CEO Blog

Many companies know who their target customers are. In many cases their targets are limited. For example - at Danby Appliance , we might target appliance stores. There are only so many of them. So the key is persistence.

COO 130

The Happiness Equation

CEO Blog

I just finished reading - T he Happiness Equation; Want Nothing+Do Anything=Have Everything by Neil Pasricha. It is a great book. I like that the book started saying something like take what parts you like and it is ok to not agree with everything because I do not agree with everything.

Trackimo - GPS Track anything

CEO Blog

We have been reviewing a new GPS tracker called Trackimo at DDE Media. In all honesty it’s a pretty good product. It is small (like a small post it note size). Fits in or attaches to anything. Then you can track it with your phone or computer. It is used to keep things safe.

Stop Selling and Start Leading

CEO Blog

My wife, Elizabeth, won (yes she came in first) in her age group in the Boston Marathon Monday. The day was miserable – cold and wet. Personally I think this gave the Canadians a small edge since training happened in the cold. Amazing feat. On average Elizabeth and I ran 13.1 miles Monday – no wonder I am still tired. Stop Selling and Start Leading by Kouzes, Posner and Calvert is my most recent read.

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