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Is your business hitting an inflection point? | Issue #176

Why it’s vital to plan for the inflection points of growth

Let me ask you this. Do you feel stuck? Like all the fun’s gone out of work? Is profitability dropping? Have your staff got lazy and stopped washing up their mugs? All of these are tell-tale signs. Ignore them at your peril.  

You’ve hit an inflection point – something that happens to all businesses as they grow. You may feel completely alone but many of the clients we coach are stuck in the same position. They call us for help, some in desperation.  I’ve had CEOs in tears on the phone, telling me they can’t carry on much longer for the sake of their mental and physical health. Only last week I talked to a potential client who was at their wit’s end. They needed to change everything before the business killed them. This is exhausting and debilitating stuff.

Knowledge is power. If you know what to expect, you can plan for these scenarios before they happen. Because one thing’s certain. They will happen.

How to Deliver Outstanding Customer Service with Jeff Toister

What do your customers say about you? What sort of customer experience do you deliver? Today’s guest, Jeff Toister, has quite literally written the book (well, four books) on service culture, and he’s here to discuss his latest book – The Service Culture Handbook. 

Jeff has trained over 1 million people in customer service. He has the number one training course on LinkedIn Learning, and he makes a living from being a public speaker and author on this very topic. 

So just how do you guarantee customer experience? What can you do to set your business apart from the competition? 

Don’t miss this fantastic conversation, and listen to the very end where Jeff shares a fantastic exercise for leaders to try – something they can do today to make a difference to the customer service in their organisation.

The Simply Smart Business Show

Gemma Went’s Simply Smart Business Show brings you the latest thoughts, tips and tricks to improve your business results online.

We need to let go of the bell curve

Most human activities as well as many disciplines — from physics and biology to linguistics, finance, and computer science — follow a Pareto distribution instead of a “normal” Gaussian curve. In Pareto distributions, a small change in one variable is associated with a large change in another, because it reflects variables multiplied with each other rather than added to each other, as in the normal distribution. This is also referred to as a “power law.” This isn’t an obscure intellectual point, but instead carries serious practical consequences. Because of this error, our approach to most problems is, at best, suboptimal. What does this mean for business leaders?

Bridging the gap between a company’s strategy and operating model

How well is your company’s operating model keeping up with its evolving strategy? Under pressure to respond more quickly to rapidly changing competitive circumstances, executives today are more likely to adopt a rolling strategic plan that they update as needed instead of the three-to-five-year plan that was once standard.

How to Use the “Rule of 3 and 10” for Business Growth

Hiroshi Mikitani, CEO of Rakuten, an electronic commerce and internet company based in Tokyo, established what he dubbed the rule of 3 and 10 to guide his company through periods of extreme growth.

Subscribed by Tien Tzuo

Today’s consumers prefer the advantages of access over the hassles of ownership. It’s not just internet services like Netflix and Spotify; even industrial firms like GE and Caterpillar are reinventing themselves as solutions providers. Whether you sell software, clothes, insurance, or industrial machines, you need to master the transition to the subscription model. Adapting to the subscription economy takes more than just deciding to sell subscriptions instead of products. You’ll have to reinvent your company from the inside out — from your accounting to your entire IT architecture. No matter how large or small your company, Subscribed gives you a practical, step-by-step framework to rebuild your business around a customer-centric, recurring revenue model.

Scaling Up simplified by Shannon Teague

Did you know more than 50% of businesses fail in the first 3-5 years? And the ones that stay in the game are barely surviving! Only a handful of companies thrive in the marketplace; do you want to know why? Building a successful business is a difficult job; entrepreneurs put in everything to come out victorious. However, a few businesses scale up effortlessly because they practice a series of steps that makes them more proficient, productive, and profitable. You are in luck because you could now be among those incredible organizations. In this book, you will uncover the roadmap that will lead to your financial salvation; it is tested multiple times, and the results are astounding.

News from the farm

CEO Bootcamp with Verne Harnish and Dominic Monkhouse

We’ve joined forces with Verne Harnish, author of Scaling Up, to bring you the first Scaling Up CEO Bootcamp in Europe.

A reinvigorating 4-day Bootcamp where you and nine other CEOs and their #2’s will spend small group and one-on-one time with Verne addressing your specific opportunities and challenges – in a setting that promotes deep thinking and relaxation.

Register today to join Verne and Dominic from Monday 12th, September – Thursday 15th, September at Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa, near Bath (UK).

Register Here


Be clear with your team about the type of meeting you’re running

Have you ever sat in a meeting and wished you weren’t there? Some people take a more strategic-oriented view, and some others are detail-oriented. A tool we often use with clients is Working Genius, from Patrick Lencioni. It’s a great tool to know who in your team likes to spend their time developing a vision and who gets satisfaction from making a detailed plan. These two people are unlikely to coexist in the same meeting happily. So if you’re going to have a meeting, then be clear: is this a planning or a strategic meeting? Don’t bring strategic people to a planning meeting, and don’t bring planning people to a strategy meeting.

Upcoming events

Warren Buffett’s Protégé – 22nd February (2:22pm – 5:22pm ET)

This article ( details how Tracy Britt Cool got her start at her family’s farm stand. The Harvard Business School graduate became a master of building businesses at Berkshire Hathaway, the Pampered Chef and now her investment firm Kanbrick. Please join us for this global event – 8 leading-edge biz/thought leaders including Tracy for Leading@Scale!

Like Minds Nudge Ideas Festival, Exeter (UK) – 25th March

After 19 months of online-only, the Nudge Ideas Festival is back, in-person at the stunning Winslade Manor at Winslade Park, just outside Exeter. It will be an intimate event designed around engagement and collaboration. Places are limited to 100 (plus our speakers), so don’t miss out! 

If you’re interested to attend, click below and pre-register on their event page.

Monkhouse & Company Scaling Up Workshop – New Forest – 23rd June

The workshop is your first step in the process of identifying and addressing the real challenges confronting your business. You will receive practical guidance in the essential skills that underpin manageable and sustained growth. Join five other business leaders on a half-day session with Dominic Monkhouse, away from the uproar of the everyday commercial world and look at your business afresh – to recognise your strengths, your weaknesses and your opportunities.

Quote of the week

“Everything breaks at multiples of 3 and powers of 10.”

Hiroshi Mikitani, CEO of Rakuten

Dominic Monkhouse

Dominic offers business coaching and management development, strategy planning and organisational change, using tried and tested methods to launch your organisation onto an unparalleled growth trajectory. His programme is a function of his broad experience, his deep expertise and a proven process used by over 2,700 firms worldwide.

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