(Time to read this Blog is about 2.5 minutes)

Before we get to the main topic, here are a few things to get you thinking:

  1. My Quote of the week:

“The world doesn’t need one more mediocre anything. Every market is over-served and under-differentiated. 

Don’t bother starting a new business or opening a new location if you’re not going to be so good, so compelling in your value delivery and your marketing…and so excellent at execution that you’ll actually put at least 2 of your existing competitors out of business.” 

 …Donald Cooper.

  1. Quick Biz Tip: The April / May issue of Fortune magazine might be the most important magazine you read all year.  It’s their annual ‘100 Best Companies To Work For’  They summarize what each of these top 100 companies does to be a great place to work. 

Don’t just read this report…study it.  Make a list of ideas that could make your business a more attractive and engaging place to work.  What benefits, perks, career opportunities or culture shifts could transform the employment experience that you deliver?   

  1. The high cost of health care in America.   In the USA, health care consumes 18% of GDP.  In other rich countries, the share of GDP for health care is much lower at around 10%.  This suggests that about $1.6 trillion is being wasted in the US system.  Something is very wrong, and nobody has the guts to fix it!

But, here’s the question for all of us in business.  What are the key ratios in your business that tell you how you’re doing against industry benchmarks?  Is it gross margin, inventory turns, employee turnover, sales per employee, cost of customer acquisition? 

Make a list of the key ratios that will give you a better feel for what needs looking at in your business and then commit to the action required to become a world-class performer.


Now, to this week’s important topic:


What ‘Spring Cleaning’ needs to be done in your business or department…or your life?

It’s Spring here in the Northern Hemisphere and there’s a long-standing cultural tradition of ‘Spring Cleaning’.  So, this week I’m asking you to list at least 3 things that need ‘cleaning up’ in your business or department in the next 3 months.  Below is a list of possibilities for your consideration:

  • Toxic employees.
  • Inventory / SKU mgt.
  • A physical facility.
  • Machinery & equipment.                              
  • Systems & processes.
  • Accounts receivable.
  • Our website.
  • New employee ‘on-boarding’.
  • Ongoing training and mentoring.
  • Weekly or monthly financial reporting.
  • Overhead costs that can be renegotiated, reduced or eliminated.
  • Falling margins that need improvement.
  • Your own ability and willingness to delegate.
  • Succession & exit planning.                     

For each item you commit to ‘clean up’ in the next 3 months’, create an ‘Action Plan’ stating specifically what will be done, by whom, by when, at what cost, with what result or outcome, measured how.  Involve your Team in identifying the list of things most in need of ‘cleaning up’ and also in creating the ‘Action Plan’.  Remember, your staff knows stuff and they hate it when you don’t ask. 

Note: This project requires a high degree of self-awareness and personal courage…but the results will be most rewarding.  

‘Bonus Assignment’:  While you’re at it, list at least 3 things you need to ‘clean up’ in your ‘non-business’ life.  Below is a list of possibilities to get your creative juices flowing:

  • The garage.
  • My closet.
  • My health.
  • My diet.
  • ‘Substance’ use or abuse.
  • My work-life family priorities.
  • Financial planning.                             
  • My relationship with:   
    a) _______________________.
    b) _______________________.

For each item you commit to ‘clean up’ in the next 3 months’, create an ‘Action Plan’ stating specifically what you’ll do, by when.

So, what’s on your ‘Spring Cleaning list…and when will you start?


That’s it for this week…

Stay safe…live brilliantly!       

Donald Cooper 


Donald Cooper speaks and coaches internationally on management, marketing, and profitability.  He can be reached by email at donald@donaldcooper.com in Toronto, Canada.

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