CBCnews

Recently in David Colman Category

David Colman: How not to run a company

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

By David Colman, a partner with TriOpus Group in Regina
(Listen to the original audio)

I thought it would be a great idea to tell you how not to run a company in two minutes. Getting nowhere with the column, in frustration, I flicked on the TV. Guess what came on - Question Period from Parliament. There was my column right in front of my eyes.

First of all, our country is like a company. All the citizens are both the customers and the shareholders, the government employees are the various administrative departments, the MPs are our proxy votes and the cabinet is the board of directors. Could I go as far as to say the Senators are the shareholders' auditors? Well, maybe not.

This Petri dish known as Parliament is definitely a fine example of how not to run a company. Representing each province and territory, here are 13 examples of poor management based on our beloved institution of Parliament:

Continue reading this post » (3 Archived Comments)

David Colman: Don't use that tone with me

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

Normally when I book hotels, I use the internet. The bad news about using the internet is it is not the 'personal touch' experience that we often crave. The good news is that it's not the 'personal touch' that we often receive!

Continue reading this post » (1 Archived Comment)

David Colman: You get what you pay for

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

I recently worked with an extremely keen group of people. It was a joy. I started off by asking them to imagine for the next few minutes that they owned their company and that they could do whatever they wanted to improve things. Well, they came up with some fabulous ideas to turn the place into an even better organization than it already was.

Once they had completed and prioritized their lists of ideas, I asked them what they were going to do with the information. It was as if a dark cloud had passed overhead. I began to hear things that I hear too often today from employees.

Continue reading this post » (5 Archived Comments)

David Colman: What business are you in?

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

One of the items that is always on the agenda when I meet with my partners is the question, "What business are we in?" You might think that after being in operation for the past 13years that might be a bit of a silly question. But is it?

One of the things that the question immediately forces us to do is analyze whether or not we are meeting and exceeding the needs of our customers, whether or not we continue to be viable, and lastly, are we enjoying ourselves.

Continue reading this post »  

David Colman: Values, mission statements, and wallpaper

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

Visit any company website, any corporate office, or any shop floor in North America and you are likely to be exposed to those organizations' values and mission statements along with a variety of motivational slogans. You know the stuff I mean: Through a motivated and dedicated workforce, wow our customers like they've never been wowed before, all the while provided an outstanding return for our shareholders.

As I visit clients' sites, I come across these posters all the time. I always take a moment to read them. Then, as part of the process of learning about the customer, I constantly compare what I see and hear on the ground to what I've read on their walls. You might be surprised at what I find. I'm sure you've seen a lot of the motivational posters that I have: one promoting teamwork with a rowing team slicing its way through the water; another, a soaring eagle telling you that you can reach new heights, and so on.

Continue reading this post » (2 Archived Comments)

David Colman: The importance of good follow-up

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

As a leader, do you follow up with your employees? Do you and your employees follow up with your customers?

Imagine for a moment, as a leader, you have worked with employees to improve their attitude, knowledge and skills in a certain area. All has gone well but for some reason you fail to follow up. You well know that the impact of failing to follow up can be devastating: targets may be missed, customers are upset, costs run over and you, as the leader, may initially be unaware of this. This is not good.

At the same time, you and your employees may not be following up with your customers, either after a sale or after concerns have been raised by your customers. This is even worse.

Continue reading this post »  

David Colman: Embrace the perspectives of your employees

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

I just read something in a book that stopped me in my tracks. It said, 'There is no such thing as logic. If there was, we would all think the same way. There are only perspectives'. I immediately discounted the notion, but it wouldn't leave me alone. The more I thought about it, the more sense it started to make.

Recently, while passing through Heathrow Airport, my attention was grabbed by several advertising posters for a major worldwide bank. The first poster showed people sunbathing on a cruise ship. The caption was simple - it was the word 'Pleasure'. Next to that poster was another that showed a picture of someone hanging from a mountain. Its caption was simple too - It was the word 'Pain'. Next was the cruise ship poster again, but this time it bore the word 'Pain' followed by the mountain climber poster and the word 'Pleasure'.

All of a sudden, the concept that there are only perspectives started to gain some credibility in my mind.

Continue reading this post » (3 Archived Comments)

David Colman: Employees are motivated by more than just money

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

There's been a lot of interest lately in the letter that Richard Branson sent to 4,800 cabin crew of Virgin Atlantic Airways. In essence he told employees that if they wanted more pay than they have been offered, they should probably go work somewhere else. Much of the reaction to his letter has been polarized - those heavily supportive and those equally opposed.

As leaders, regardless of where we stand on Richard Branson's comments, it is an issue that we all must face at one point or another. It raises the question of the importance of wages and benefits to the overall value of working for an organization.

Continue reading this post » (8 Archived Comments)

David Colman: Treating employees as customers

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

I was asked recently, ‘If you are a leadership consultant, why do you talk so much about customer care?' That’s not a bad question.

Often when I meet leaders in my sessions, I will ask them who they work for in their company. Most of the time, they will tell me they report to this director or that vice-president. And, in some ways, that is the right answer. They do have obligations to these people. But in many other ways, it is absolutely the wrong answer.

Continue reading this post »  

David Colman: The 5 issues facing today's leaders

Money Talks is a collection of daily columns from The Business Network, which airs weekday mornings on CBC Radio One at 5:45 a.m. ET (6:15 a.m. ET in N.L.).

I bruise easily, and when it comes to leadership, self-discovery has provided me with my most valuable bruises. Whenever I talk to groups about the nuances of leadership or how to become an effective leader, I emphasize that my failures are the things that I learned from the most. What we discover for ourselves, as opposed to what we are merely told, makes the biggest impression on us.

I have learned to consider these bruises the growing pains of my personal development. What have you learned through trial and error? How are you helping to assist others in their own self-discovery?

When asked what I have learned to be the most significant issues effecting leaders and leadership, there are five that stand out above all others:

Continue reading this post »