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Sirens, Scylla, & Charybdis: Why Your Strategy Needs an Experienced Captain & Crew

In Greek mythology, ship captains had to safely pass the Sirens “whose sweet singing” lured sailors to their doom; Scylla, a devouring six-headed monster (the rock) on one side of a narrow passageway; and Charybdis, a swirling, un-navigable whirlpool (the hard place) on the other. Not much different than the challenges of leading a major […]

Strategy During the COVID-19 Crisis

A few weeks ago we were all concerned. Now it’s real. The COVID-19 crisis has raised the level of uncertainty in our world to new heights and put most plans for 2020 on indefinite pause. Instead, health, safety and business continuity are at the forefront. To deal with the new reality with all its uncertainty, […]

Winning the Talent Acquisition Race with Strategy and Speed

Earlier this month I had the opportunity to sit with business leaders at a First Business breakfast seminar and hear both an overview of the current talent acquisition situation in Wisconsin and an informative panel discussion of key questions. According to many sources, talent acquisition is the number one issue facing businesses in Wisconsin. I […]

Solve the Loneliness Problem to Win the Millennial Talent Race?

Yes. Solve the loneliness problem to win the talent acquisition race with Millennials. A new article by Korn Ferry points out an astonishing 75% of Millennials and Gen Z workers feel lonely and isolated at work. But the flip side of this problem is an opportunity for businesses to adjust their Talent Experience (TEx) to provide an […]

Firefighting, Strategic Focus & The Brain – How to Overcome Distractions

It’s a common problem after developing a strategy. Execution begins with great zeal but in a short period of time, the higher priority strategic efforts begin to take a back seat to less important but more urgent daily matters. Firefighting is a similar problem. “Distractions” keep you from the important things you really want to […]

The Talent Acquisition Race Is Heating Up. Are You Competitive?

It turns out there’s good and bad news in this one statement: unemployment is very low. The good news is that with the lowest unemployment rate in 50 years, more Americans are working than ever before. The bad news is that talent to staff and grow a business is very scarce and is a top […]

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Success (or Failure) Without Strategy? There’s No Such Thing. Here’s Why.

(Look for this graphic for articles in our Strategy & The Brain series.)   But They Say The Don’t Have A Strategy… I’ve heard many speakers say it. They’re very successful and when they’re asked about their strategy to achieve it, they pause and say “we didn’t really have a strategy”. But of course then […]

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Small Businesses to Focus on Customer Diversification, Innovation, Brand Perceptions

Each year, First Business in Madison conducts an economic survey of clients and others in four regions: Greater Madison, Southeast Wisconsin, Northeast Wisconsin and the Kansas City Metro area. The majority are small businesses in manufacturing, professional services and retail. In 2020, these small businesses intend to focus on diversifying their customer base, creating an […]

19_08_12 Strat for nonprofits

Strategy for Nonprofits

We are very excited to announce our first Strategy for Nonprofits workshop occurring Tuesday, August 20, 2019 in Madison, WI. Our objective for the day is that every organization represented walks out at the end of the day with a strategy that helps them achieve their goals. For more information or to schedule a workshop […]

19_06_27 top problems

The Case for Strategy Capabilities (Part 3)

(In Part One of the series The Case for Strategy Capabilities, we noted that strategy is arguably the most critical leadership capability in business, yet it is the most underdeveloped. In Part Two we discussed how a narrow view of the exclusivity of strategy capabilities leads to the number one issue with strategy: lack of alignment. Here in Part […]

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