Category: Strategy

How to Transition from Small Business Owner to CEO

  • All entrepreneurs get lost in the details of the business, but that approach is not scalable.
  • Having a CEO performing CEO duties is crucial to the health of the company.
  • By focusing on the big picture, entrepreneurs can more effectively identify what they want to accomplish and how to go about it.

All entrepreneurs have probably heard the well-worn advice “Work on your business, not in it.” It sounds like just another corporate cliché, but it’s a necessary caution because any entrepreneur is in danger of getting sucked into nitty-gritty employee work instead of assuming the big-picture CEO role. Take it from me. 

There was a time when my inbox overflowed with questions and a steady stream of people visited my office looking for help. I had trained my people to come to me when they had problems because I feared what would happen if I wasn’t involved in every detail of the business.

For entrepreneurs, it’s easy to get stuck trying to fill every role at once: The company may need its founder to manage day-to-day tasks in the early phases of its development, but there comes a point when that founder needs to be more of a captain and less of a sailor. Studies increasingly show that companies where founders assume and continue to play the CEO role perform more innovatively and profitably over time.

Their transition into full-time leadership requires trusting the employees they’ve hired to execute defined duties that contribute to the long-term health of the company. These are people with skills and expertise who know the expectations of their roles and how to go about getting their jobs done.

When a leader instead operates by simply giving his or her team all the answers – what I call leadership through expertise – it’s often about


Quality Assurance in Tech Startup Investing

I founded a quality assurance company in 2008 and, since then, we`ve worked on the number of projects with different levels of investment funding. Not only did these projects require multi-stage management, but product owners and investors also needed to maintain comprehensive control over progress.

Today`s competitive market leaves no options but to utilize the latest digital technologies to gain the edge over the competition. In attempts to reduce costs and accelerate product delivery, IT companies undertake a variety of initiatives. But often, instead of anticipated success, these initiatives bump into schedule, budget and development hurdles, turn into troubled projects and fail. 

Although Project Management Institute (PMI) reported a 20% decrease in project failure rates, the amount of money lost is still staggering. The report estimates nearly $97 million to be wasted for every $1 billion invested in the product.

Data from CIO estimates a 50% project failure in the IT industry. The Harvey Nash/KPMG CIO Survey found that weak ownership is one of the main reasons why 46% of IT projects never go live. This means the team lacks involvement from the executive level, while the process itself lacks sufficient control and support. However, the experience of our team says these issues aren`t the prior reason for failure. Unqualified ownership leads to poor monitoring of the development life cycle evident in 90% of the projects we`ve worked on. 

Why does project performance control matter?

Project performance control is a key aspect of successfully launching and growing a startup. Why? Because it works both ways.

  • As a product owner or investor, you`re on the safe side. 75% of IT teams anticipate project failure at the very beginning, according to Geneca research. What the survey says is that the issues of IT projects are usually hidden below the surface right


How Small Businesses Can Take Advantage of Big Data

You can do it. Even though you operate a small business, you can take advantage of the power of big data analytics.

Big data technology is quickly transforming every field and industry. Resultantly, even business leaders who are generally slow to adopt new technology are curious about how they can use big data technology.

Businesses of all sizes – even small ones – want in on big data analytics, and the reason is apparent. It’s because companies that leverage big data analytics tools enjoy 15% more sales than companies that fail to do so, according to the Georgia Small Business Development Center (SBDC).

Even though the economy is expanding at a rate of less than 3% each year, entrepreneurs who operate companies that range from small-to-midsized businesses (SMBs) to large corporations are capturing vital market share by leveraging big data analysis.

The small business case for big data

51% of small business owners believe that big data analysis is a must, but only 45% of them perform data analyses, according to a report published by the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE). Furthermore, 73% of small business owners express that finding new customers is a top priority, while 63% rank retaining existing customers as a top issue.

Data analyses can help small business owners meet their goals. Nevertheless, many business owners believe that they don’t have time to track analytics. However, it only takes a few moments of studying to learn how to use data to gain a competitive advantage.

Furthermore, you probably already have more than enough information to start a big data initiative without even realizing it. For instance, you can source information for data analysis from many places, including:

  • Email marketing reports
  • Sales Receipts
  • Social media analytics
  • Website analytics

This information, as well as data from


How to Get Customers to Post Positive Online Reviews

  • The best way to get your customers to post positive online reviews about your company is to require your employees to ask for them. 

An online review is when a company allows customers to post user-generated reviews of their products and customer service right on the company’s web page, or in some cases the company’s social media pages, such as Facebook. There are dedicated review sites like the popular Yelp and Angie’s List, who are not affiliated with a specific company and invite posters to evaluate their purchases and experiences with a wide variety of businesses. Those sites help potential customers decide which companies to hire aren’t the only benefit your business will reap once your employees start asking for them. Those same employees are going to step up their service.

Require employees to ask for online reviews of your services

Consider this story about a cable technician who arrived an hour and a half late to the home of a customer to hook up a couple of new, wide-screen TVs. The tech did not call the homeowner with a heads-up about his schedule, and when he finally arrived, he acted like he was doing the man a favor. He was unfriendly and barely spoke to the man. He didn’t have all of the tools he needed for the job. And his work was so unacceptable that the customer actually called the cable company to request that a different tech be sent to his home to finish the job.

Fast-forward two years and the homeowner had moved to a different house. Again, he had two big TVs to hook up, so he called the cable company. And the very same tech showed up; on-time, with a smile on his face. This time he was friendly, talkative and efficient. He


How Fast Can E-Commerce Delivery Get?

Consumers stand to win as the major retail platforms continue to battle it out for market share. What are they winning? More convenience through faster product delivery – and every retailer has their own game plan.

Amazon Prime has driven major improvement in shipping logistics and fulfillment – and now it seems that all the major retailers are trying their shot. Changes in delivery times have started changing rapidly over the past year and look set to continue to improve in 2020.

Target, Walmart and now even other retailers like Best Buy are starting to roll out faster delivery on customer orders. Increased customer demand for faster delivery has led to different tech companies popping up to meet the need.

But as delivery times get shorter and shorter what can we realistically expect the future of fulfillment to look like?

Consumers used to think two-day shipping was fast

It wasn’t even that long ago that Amazon shocked the retail and e-commerce world with its two-day shipping announcement for Amazon Prime Members. That was a huge surprise to consumers who had grown accustomed to receiving their orders in three to five days – or even seven to ten days.

Product delivery and logistics had not really made many big strides forward prior to the announcement. Amazon was able to reduce shipping time by investing in its supply chains and technology. The big question was how would other traditional retailers be able to compete with such fast shipping?

Now it seems almost comical to think that two-day shipping was so fast. Amazon took advantage of a customer convenience factor that no other retailer had really leveraged because they were too concerned about their bottom lines.

Now platforms like Target and Walmart have seen the success of Amazon’s fulfillment strategy and have