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Business Operations Archives -

12 Oct


What Can Rap Teach You About Business & Marketing?

October 12, 2015 | By |

I can often be found listening to music when I work.
What do I listen to you say?
The music that inspires me most are artists that speak about doing something, putting in work, creating change, figuring something out. This is what I listen to.

That sounds fantastic, what artists and what type of music is that?
I mainly listen to rap and rock/metal.

Some of my favorite artists and groups are Rage Against the Machine, Drake, Hatebreed, El-P, Sage Francis, the A$AP Mob, Rick Ross and many others. But the common theme to much of their music is to get out and make something happen, work hard for it and stand for what you believe in.

I am in no way condoning the violence or hate that may be getting explicitly promoted in some of this music, but the underlying message is powerful.

What Rappers and many other artists can teach us about business and marketing is to:

  • Stand for something on and focus.
  • Work hard and get good at it.
  • Don’t let anyone get in your way.
  • Bring on the Bravado! Strut your stuff and be confident in your work.
  • Re-up. Do it over and over again, while making it bigger and better.

“Put in Work.”
“Why Stand on a silent platform? Fight the war, F@*K the norm.”
“Hustle Hard.”
“Started from the bottom now we here.”
“Every day I’m hustlin’.”
“Defeatist, you and I will never be the same!”

08 Oct


The Most Effective Digital Strategy

October 8, 2015 | By |

You’ve likely heard marketers talk about the difference between Digital Strategy vs. Digital Marketing Tactics, but a Good Digital Strategy goes much deeper than just knowing the difference.

Digital Strategy is the guidance needed to create a plan of digital marketing tactics across a number of channels that meet the goals set by an organization. This could be generating leads, new customers, more revenue, etc.

The tactics are simply an execution on a digital channel. Posting to Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter, Optimizing a website for the search engines, running paid search or shopping ads and others are all familiar digital marketing tactics.

It is amazing how many business owners and marketers still confuse the two.

That is the easy part.
Creating an effective digital strategy is reliant on gaining deeper insight into a company, who and what it is, why it is, it’s motivations, it’s culture, the goals, etc.
Many companies do not know the answers to these questions and need guidance on how to work through getting to these answers.

This is where it becomes critical for a business owner, executive or marketer to be receptive and open-minded.
It may be necessary to constructively criticize what a stakeholder thinks the business’ vision, identity, goals, customers, etc. are. In many cases assumptions will be made and less than optimal research & communication will take place to acquire this information.

For an in-house team this can be difficult, because in many organizations the norm (everyday team) is viewed as less credible or to be questioned. In-house teams are considered to do as they are told. This becomes a massive problem in creating a successful digital strategy.

Maybe the team really isn’t that strategic and that is OK.

One of the smartest things a company can do is to bring in a 3rd party who is a well respected and seasoned Digital Strategist. They are totally objective and work on creating a sound strategy that is in the best interest of the business. They speak the truth because there is no fear of tarnishing a manager / employee relationship or losing a job.
You can still use your in-house team to work on this, but having that outside specialist will aid in driving more honest and productive feedback from your team.

02 Oct


UPDATE: Another Take on Uber in St. Louis

October 2, 2015 | By |

I recently wrote a post (Uber vs Taxi in St. Louis) on how I didn’t think that St. Louis needed Uber for ride services and while I still stand behind that statement, I will add to it by saying that St. Louis getting the Uber service will benefit the city immensely in other ways.

After thinking about the possibilities Uber had for other services that required logistics with good penetration and density such as delivery services (technically they are delivering people now), I did some research and found that Uber has been working on this.

They currently have UberRUSH in NYC for delivering small parcels, they also have UberCARGO in Hong Kong for delivering large items and in Chicago they have UberEATS for food delivery.

Having this network in place with such an efficient platform, other companies will soon utilize Uber for their logistics as well. This has already been approached and attempted by companies like Amazon, Starbucks and Apple.

So while I still think the Taxi issue in St. Louis could have been solved with a better technology implementation and a change in leadership, I now am very excited about the fact that Uber is here in St. Louis!

25 Sep


Telling It Like It Is

September 25, 2015 | By |

“It is what it is.”

I have literally been in countless situations where if someone would just tell it like it is, say the truth, be real, everything would be so much easier.
Whether it is in a business meeting, your relationships or self reflection, the truth shall set you free.

This comes easy for me and my personality matches the bluntness & transparency of my conversations, but I realize this is not easy for many people and when being very direct & honest comes from someone who is not comfortable with such a delivery it can seem awkward.

In my experience though, being open and straight forward with information is more efficient, more effective and builds immense trust.
I personally feel it’s all good if someone thinks I’m weird or awkward, but if they trust me when I present them with information or a solution, that is powerful!

Individuals who are amazing with people could do this so well and meld “brutal honesty” with savvy charisma that generates a receptive and understanding recipient. Again, in my experience I’ve seen those types of individuals use their skills to manipulate & mystify information more than deliver truths and that is unfortunate. Hopefully my experience is so limited that it is anomalous. Unfortunately it is likely not an anomaly as evidenced by virtually every political reporter on major networks and CEOs all over the world.

I’ll keep pushing to have everyone just Tell It Like It Is, because “it is what it is”. 😉

18 Sep


Uber Vs Taxi in St. Louis

September 18, 2015 | By |

Uber has been trying to break into the St. Louis marketing for a while now and have been unsuccessful to this point.
There is a vote tomorrow on whether or not they will be allowed in.

There have been many heated debates over why St. Louis is not allowing Uber to enter our market.
I want to give my opinion on this here and it likely won’t be popular with many of you.

Uber isn’t needed in St. Louis.
It’s not that I don’t think Uber is “cool”, has ease of access through technology and helps individuals generate extra income.
But what I am saying is that St. Louis doesn’t need more paid drivers.

St. Louis has a clean, robust and affordable public transit system and compared to other cities very light public foot traffic throughout the city. This is a very different picture from NYC, LA or Chicago where people crowd the streets and the city footprints are very large. It is hard to get a cab and takes for ever to get from place to place no matter what mode of transportation you decide to take.
I have never once had an issue getting a cab in St. Louis when I needed one.
They are affordable and accessible.

What bringing Uber into St. Louis will do is dilute the use of cabs to the point where the existing cab drivers cannot be sustained and they will lose their jobs. The driving services will be spread across many individuals who will put a couple hundred extra dollars in their pocket each month, but will have totally displaced a number of professional drivers.

Simply put the demand is not here in St. Louis in business terms. It will be cool to use for a while, but will have a larger negative impact overall.

Why can we not implement the efficient technology into our existing cab infrastructure?
Why fight so hard for Uber? Is it really that great?

15 Sep


I’m Looking to Invest in a Crowdfunded Idea

September 15, 2015 | By |


What I am looking for: Someone who has an idea that they are extremely passionate about and has the potential to be funded on a site like Kickstarter or Indiegogo.

What I can offer: I have a background in successfully building small businesses, designing & manufacturing products, marketing products and services online and generating revenue. I have the capital and knowledge to put your idea in front of a ton of people in a way that will clearly communicate why your idea is so awesome and get them to donate and fund your idea. Then I can lend my experience in sourcing and manufacturing to help produce the product and bring it to market, fulfilling your “funders” orders and growing the product outside of the crowdfunded platform.

Please serious ideas only! I want to work with people who are passionate about an idea / product and desperately want to see it come to life.

You can contact me here:
Or message me, tweet me, etc.

10 Sep


The Future of Work – Freedom and Flexibility in the Workplace

September 10, 2015 | By |

The work we do today is very different from the way work was done 50 years ago.
Why would we continue to build structure in organizations around systems that do not apply to the type of work that we do now?

We can bring flexibility and freedom to the modern day workplace that will allow all of us to successfully build and create on our own terms. In return we will generate a greater return in what we produce. Better creative, better analysis, better production, better everything.

I will be putting out videos on topics that address the opportunities available to us in the workplace, what we need to understand and where we need to go in terms of organizational transformation.

This is the Future of Work!