60th Birthday List

20 Wishes for my 60th Birthday

I remember as a kid whenever my birthday rolled around family members would ask, “What do you want for your birthday?” I always had a long list. This past week I turned 60. No one asked what I wanted for my birthday. I believe they were all too busy commiserating me for surviving into the sixth decade. Hence I have put together my own birthday list. Twenty wishes, in fact. I would be happy to Read more about 20 Wishes for my 60th Birthday[…]

Microtrends Squared

Book Review: Microtrends Squared

“Microtrends Squared” by Mark Penn One of the toughest jobs for the small business owner is to look forward and try to determine what the future looks like. What are the trends that will impact my business, my customers, and my industry? Ten years ago, futurist Mark Penn wrote his first book, “Microtrends”, that highlighted dozens of counterintuitive trends that were just beginning to have an impact on all aspects of our lives. Many of Read more about Book Review: Microtrends Squared[…]

Should You Fire Your Cheerleader

Should You Fire Your Cheerleader?

It depends. A year ago I wrote an article about Terrorists. You may recall that according to the Welch Grid, a terrorist employee gives you above average job performance and below average employee behavior. The question then was whether they should be fired. The easy answer was “of course”. The reality is it’s typically a very tough decision and even more difficult to execute. The decision on a “cheerleader” is more interesting. The “cheerleader” employee Read more about Should You Fire Your Cheerleader?[…]

Thanks Mom!

Mother’s Day was this month and I can’t help but think of my mom, Dorothy Fulton. She lived a glorious 92 years before passing away last spring. Besides all of her amazing maternal qualities, it has occurred to me lately that she also knew a thing or two about small business. Maybe her entrepreneurial mindset came from being the daughter of a small town family doctor in Upper Michigan who delivered every baby in town. Read more about Thanks Mom![…]


Book Review: When

“When” written by Daniel Pink I’ve been really lucky my whole life. It just seems that I have always been in the right place at the right time. Great timing? Luck? Best-selling author Daniel Pink’s latest book “When”  looks at the “science” of timing. Pink pulls together an enormous amount of research from psychology, biology, neuroscience, and economics to help the reader understand how to make the best use of timing. Here are just a Read more about Book Review: When[…]

Embrace Your Enemies

Embrace Your Enemies

“Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?” President Abe Lincoln said this in response to an elderly lady who had chastised him for not calling Southerners, who he had referred to as fellow human beings who were in error, irreconcilable enemies who must be destroyed. I have always been highly competitive. Growing up playing a variety of sports, I loved to win. Starting with little league baseball all the way Read more about Embrace Your Enemies[…]

leadership and self deception book review

Book Review: Leadership and Self-Deception

“Leadership and Self-Deception” written by The Arbinger Institute This month I re-read one of my favorite books on leadership, “Leadership and Self-Deception”. It’s been 15 years since I first read this book, and I was quickly reminded why I enjoyed it so much the first time. I am still finding my way into and out of those “boxes”. Hundreds of management books have been written in the past decade prescribing ways to increase organizational and Read more about Book Review: Leadership and Self-Deception[…]

small business coaching questions

My Favorite Business Coaching Questions (2/2)

In last month’s Small Business Matters blog post, I shared five of my my favorite small business coaching questions. I hope that you put those questions to work with your team and found them useful. This month, I share five more effective coaching questions and look forward to your feedback. 6. What are you pretending not to know? Sometimes, in making an important decision it is convenient to overlook or ignore that which we know Read more about My Favorite Business Coaching Questions (2/2)[…]

business coaching questions

My Favorite Business Coaching Questions (1/2)

I have wanted to be a coach ever since I was 16 years old. In high school, I wasn’t talented enough to play varsity sports, so I decided to do the next best thing… coach. I volunteered to coach little league basketball and baseball. It was a ball! Not long after that I thought maybe that I wanted to start a career as an athletic coach. My school, Tulane University, had a teacher/coach degree program. Read more about My Favorite Business Coaching Questions (1/2)[…]

"Necessary Endings" Book Review

Book Review: Necessary Endings

“Necessary Endings”, written by Dr. Henry Cloud How hard is it to end something in your life? A home project? A personal relationship? A business? I always find it much easier to start things in my life than ending them. Starting new things often require minimal thought, come with some amount of anticipation, and will often eventually take the place of old things. Ending things in life is much harder. The decision to stop doing Read more about Book Review: Necessary Endings[…]