CONCERN ABOUT OUR FOOD SOURCES has increasingly been a critical issue of the 21st century.

We know that enormous agricultural enterprises can be highly efficient, but tend to eliminate healthy diversity in what we eat.  And we worry about the environmental cost of transporting our food all over the globe.

I was fascinated, then, to talk with Michele Ostrander, the owner and CEO of RevoGrow.  It’s a company dedicated to connecting restaurants, stores and consumers with local growers.

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THERE MIGHT BE A  GREAT REASON why you feel like your business is just grinding away week after week, but not making progress on what’s most important.

Often it’s because you’re not tracking that important stuff.

Sure, you’re on top of revenue and expenses, inventory and backlog.  But rarely is that the PURPOSE of your business.  What is?

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ANY BUSINESS OWNER has a very interesting dance – to be immersed in the details while staying aligned with their bigger mission and goals.  Honestly, this is one of the powerful ways that my clients use my coaching: To ensure that we stay connected with the big picture.

Otherwise, they tend to never get away from the unending onslaught of details and day-to-day issues.

So how do you stay on top of this?  Actually, it’s pretty practical: Read the rest of this entry »

THINGS DON’T GO SMOOTHLY all the time.

 

Yes, you’re on a powerful mission.  But danger happens:

  • Regulations change
  • New competitors arise
  • A key employee leaves

So how do you navigate when things turn dark and threatening?

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T

he mission of your business is part of an amazing story.

That story starts with a cast of characters who encounter what seems to be an insurmountable barrier.  The tension mounts and the music swells.

Coming in to save the day is … your company!  The hero of the story, with your amazing product, an awesome culture, and a message which change these people’s lives.

It’s absolutely thrilling.

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THERE ARE TIMES when it’s good to step back outside my business.

A great example is the discussion I had with someone this week, where we were talking about the larger picture around our country.

Despite all the anxiety this last year has produced, I find that we still have an amazing and unique form of government.  It’s not perfect by any means, but I have deep respect for something which has lasted well over 200 years.

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PROGRESS COMES FROM BEING CLEAR. But of course it’s real easy to say that, right?

The problem is that it’s real easy to let the urgent overtake the important.  Constantly.

Here’s a simple example.  It seems like in between my meetings today, that I’ve been beating my email inbox back.  Right now it has 29 messages in it, but every time a new one comes in I have to pay attention.

Just in case it’s something urgent.

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WITH THE RIGHT ATTITUDE, building solid technical skills is much easier.

This is the philosophy of Canidium, a rapidly growing consulting business which focuses on sales and service performance improvement via strategic guidance and systems integration and support for their clients..

It’s a pretty technical set of services, but I was intrigued by the notion that this company puts people first: Both its customers and its employees. Read the rest of this entry »

TO BE HONEST, I’m not a huge fan of industry conferences.  I’ve done a lot of them over the years, and often they give me negligible value.

There’s some that are different.

For instance, last year I went to the Small Giants Summit in Denver, and it was inspiring and intensely valuable.

What was different?

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THE PARLOUR is a Colorado chain of salons stretching between Fort Collins, Boulder and Denver.

Led by Gene Cahill, it was started in Fort Collins in 1998 to fill a perceived gap in excellent, personal salon services.

That’s what you’ll see from the outside. Read the rest of this entry »

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