Berkonomics

Selling your business? Find the emotional buyer

Berkonomics

This is one of my favorite insights, since I lived this one in a positive exit from my computer business. Types of business buyers expanded. Most people will tell you that there are two kinds of eventual buyers for your business: financial and strategic.

Why not share your liquidity success with those who got you there?

Berkonomics

So, you are close to selling your company, and counting the profits a bit early. Well, that’s human nature. Here’s a thought for you to recall later when and if the event happens. Remember those who got you there.

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Special edition: Building semi pro audio video studio

Berkonomics

Like to make professional videos for a small cost? Postings to on-line sites? Dave takes you through the process, shows the results, and gives you the costs. There’s lots more information you will find as you experiment and may need when selecting and learning the tools Dave lists.

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Does your company culture encourage employee curiosity?

Berkonomics

It’s more common than you think. Some of the world’s best companies to work for are those that encourage employees to spend time following their own paths of curiosity toward development of new products or services.

The dangerous game: Hiring from a competitor

Berkonomics

Sometimes it is the first thought you or your managers have when in need of skilled talent, especially for sales or product development. It is not hard to find and observe the best employees of a good competitor at work, skillfully moving the competitor forward in a visible way.

Can your employees recruit from a customer or supplier?

Berkonomics

The recruitment traps. It has happened to all of us who have been leaders in business long enough. One of your employees is approached by an employee of a customer or of a supplier, stating that “It sure would be great to work in your company.”

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Take advantage of the good times to build stakeholder loyalty.

Berkonomics

Loyalty is a hard-earned commodity. There are several times when stakeholder loyalty is tested to the limit. For employees, a late or missed payroll is the ultimate test of corporate loyalty, divorced even from an employee’s ability to make do without a paycheck.

Are you a consensus leader or dictator?

Berkonomics

It’s a good bet that you’ve been exposed to articles, courses and lectures about various styles of management, and how each is appropriate for some companies and for some levels of organization and at various times. When should the dictator in you emerge?

How to undermine or reinforce your corporate culture

Berkonomics

Ever had a manager who hung those motivational posters around the office, spoke of “pushing together,” or “you’re empowered to give great service” – and then acted at least once in complete disregard of those statements? You don’t want to be caught even once.

Let’s talk about your banking relationship

Berkonomics

The warning is real. You’ve heard the old one – that a banker always seems willing to offer a loan when you don’t need it. For small businesses, there is such truth in that statement that you can trust the story to be based as fact from experience. Exceptions and good reasons to work on them.

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How do you handle your cash reserves?

Berkonomics

Here comes some advice for all of us to use in business or in our personal lives. But to understand it, we need to delve into the short-and long-term sources and uses of cash. Good cash strategies to remember.

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Why recurring revenues increase your company’s value

Berkonomics

The massive shift in revenue models in recent years. Have you noticed how many web apps and content have turned into subscription services during the last several years? Call it the Netflix effect.

Data collection is about to get much more dangerous

Berkonomics

On January First, 2020, California will enact the toughest data protection laws ever, far outpacing Europe’s General Data Protection Act (GDPR.) Called the California Consumer Privacy Ace (CCPA), few of us are even aware of this and need to know.

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What is the real goal for our management and company?

Berkonomics

Often, we joke together as managers of companies or of people that our goal is “world domination” or “to crush the competition.” But no matter how stated, the primary goal of an enterprise is to make money. The three measures of progress. How do you measure progress toward such an undefined goal?

Over-promoting employees. Recalling the Peter Principle

Berkonomics

Remember the Peter Principle? Funny how good messages come back in new forms after years of languishing out in the ether. Dr. Laurence J.

Annual reviews or constant feedback?

Berkonomics

Here comes a controversial subject. How often do you take the time to rate your direct reports? Is it worth the time and effort when measured from the perspective of the company and of the employee? In terms of time, this can be expensive and disruptive to you and your direct reports.

Insurance is always too expensive – until it’s needed.

Berkonomics

I expect that you have a story about how insurance saved you lots of money in your past. As usual, I have a story to make your hair stand on end. But first: here’s a fact.

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Gamify those otherwise dull work assignments

Berkonomics

Most of us are driven by the competitive spirit, the desire or need to win. It reinforces self-worth, provides closure at the end of a good effort, and energizes us during the effort to achieve. Being driven to achieve results.

“What’s in it for me?” A motivational lesson

Berkonomics

Ever wonder why one of your employees, shareholders, managers, suppliers, or board members sometimes behaves in a way you might consider irrational? Putting yourself in their shoes. If you want to best describe the motivation behind the action, think “What’s in it for me”?

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How do you pay an early stage board?

Berkonomics

Give one percent equity to each outside board member vesting over four years of service. Many early stage CEOs and board members have asked for some guidance regarding pay and time commitments for board members. Here is my best advice, based upon many boards and many years.

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Can you defend your pricing niche against your competition?

Berkonomics

This week, we continue our series on marketing and positioning. There can be nothing more important in your business planning that selecting the proper pricing niche, making your story clear using that niche, and the defending your position against the competition.

Do people follow when you (think you) lead?

Berkonomics

Let’s get personal. Do you think you’re much better than a marginal leader? Well, here are a few tests for you to help come to an answer. And a few tips for you if you fall a bit short. Why do people follow their leader? Dictators are not great leaders in the long run.

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Why buy IT? Why buy MINE? Why buy NOW?

Berkonomics

What a powerful set of three questions. These are so succinct, so well defined, so precise that everyone in sales and everyone involved in marketing must be able to answer these three questions without pause, and convincingly.

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Faster is sometimes more valuable than better.

Berkonomics

And d oing both well usually wins the day. This is one of those arguable insights, where both sides win. Dell is a great example of emphasis upon fast, creating a customized computer in 48 hours or less, bringing in assemblies and components just-in-time to make the assembly line.

Are you the bottleneck in your organization?

Berkonomics

Close. At many board meetings, I can be counted upon to ask, “Where’s the bottleneck this month?” Senior management is usually prepared with an answer, and a good discussion of resource availability and application follows. Sometimes, the bottleneck is not so visible to the CEO.

Will tech kill your job?

Berkonomics

Close. Stop me if you’ve heard this story before. “My My job as a (newspaper publisher telephone installer, stockbroker, travel agent, retail store manager) is safe as this economy continues to grow.” Thought so. We are in a decade of creative destruction that will affect most everybody.

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Are your projections really realizable?

Berkonomics

Here’s one for the ages. How many times have you projected income and profits only to fall short, and make excuses to those depending upon you to perform? We know the answer of course. Lots of people do or will depend upon your leadership in driving growth, stability, and profitability.

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Are you thinking of the end game when managing your business?

Berkonomics

Ever think about growing your business with the plan to sell it someday, cashing in on your hard-earned work over the years? Or if you’re an employee with stock options, are you aware of the increases in value you can make with your efforts?

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Is your company or department as efficient as it should be?

Berkonomics

Close. There is more money lost in businesses today from inefficient processes than any other single area. Yet this is not a place where most managers feel comfortable deconstructing and rebuilding.

Any advice can be worthless, or worse.

Berkonomics

Close. Ever get bad advice? We all have in our past. Ever take that advice without question because the person giving it was an investor, a superior in rank, the chairperson of your board? I’ll bet you have at least one story of bad advice taken and being bitten as a result.

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Business risk: Bet the farm only when the crops are on fire.

Berkonomics

Close. How much risk you and your company are willing and able to tolerate over time? Most people believe that early stage companies should take risks aggressively because there is less to lose and much more to gain with each risky bet or decision.

Niche marketing works. Here’s how.

Berkonomics

Close. How many of us throw away marketing dollars because our paid efforts reach an audience that is much larger than the target or niche audience we need to reach?

I won’t serve on a board without D&O insurance!

Berkonomics

Close. I’ve been sued as a board member too many times over the past twenty-five years of board service. Five times. Does that shock you? It does me. Entrepreneurs blaming their board for failures of a fragile, early stage company.

How about your board members’ time commitments?

Berkonomics

Expect a board member to give a meeting a month, emails and phone calls between. Urgent issues require more of all. Board members are usually busy people, often running other companies or serving on multiple boards.

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You are watched, mostly when decisions are tough.

Berkonomics

we_are_wat we_are_watching_you. Close. If you have been in management or an entrepreneur long enough, you will have experienced the gray area of decision-making where ethics, the law, your needs and expediency all collide.

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