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Business Change Management

Business Change Management

Andrew Simon

Partner in Simon Associates Management Consultants
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Recent Posts

Why Organizations Should Encourage Employees to Recognize Mistakes and Learn From Them

On Nov 7, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: behavior change, business model innovation, business leadership

Every last one of us makes mistakes — that's a given. If you aren't making any mistakes, chances are you're not trying anything new, which is a mistake in itself. The famed UCLA basketball coach John "the Wizard of Westwood" Wooden said, "If you're not making mistakes, then you're not doing anything. I'm positive that a doer makes mistakes.”

Although they often feel like huge gaffes or missteps (especially when it’s you who’s made them), mistakes can lead to great ideas and innovation. But in reality, they are the stepping stones that propel us out of our comfort zone into the growing zone, where great lessons can be learned. After all, how can you tell if something works if you don't try it?

Contrary To Popular Belief, Mistakes Are Not Failures

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What This Successful Entrepreneur Has Learned In Business

On Oct 2, 2019 11:23:49 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Entrepreneurs, Blue Ocean Strategy, Start-ups

Starting a company: how do you do it?

Often I get asked, what is it like to start a company? Or, what do you have to do to become an entrepreneur? Or maybe, lessons learned for developing a company? Or something else about being a business builder. 

Thinking back, I can’t tell you how many startups I have tried that haven’t worked, or how many times I have been “On the Brink.” It is often easier to talk about your successes, not your failures. But I do have some tangible learning experiences from both successes and failures, and I think it is appropriate to provide you with a list of those so that hopefully, you don’t have to experience the same pain that I went through. Remember, it is a lot easier looking through that rearview mirror rather than facing the barriers in front of you.

A little background

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Thinking About Tomorrow?

On Sep 18, 2019 11:55:31 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Entrepreneurs, Blue Ocean Strategy, retirement

On September 12, 2019, The New York Times published a special section on “Retirement.” One article that really reverberated for me was titled: “My Work Life Is Over. What’s Next?” The author states, “Many retirees do not have a plan” for after retirement. For some with health issues, retirement is necessary, but what about those who are healthy? Are they worn out after doing the same thing year after year and are glad to stop, or does their retirement date just appear on their calendar? 

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Best Practices to Scale Your Business for Growth

On Jun 27, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, business growth strategies, business culture

Not that long ago, we had several clients which had grown to almost $10 million in annual revenues and were netting nice profits. One was selling an innovative travel pillow, and his business was being run mostly by family and friends. Another was in the event marketing business. His challenge was that most of his “product” was in human capital and talent, and there only seemed to be so much to go around.

Both were struggling with limits to growth without scalability. The pillow manufacturer could push more product, but without a better system in place, he was not able to expand into online markets or increase repeat sales. The event marketer could pitch more big accounts, but had trouble getting the talent to get those events completed.

What both of them needed was a new perspective. Growth without scalability was limiting their growth.

Scaling for Growth

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What Can Community Colleges Expect From the US Chamber of Commerce in Terms of Job Skill Creation?

On Apr 30, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Higher Education

To put this article into context, I recently attended a meeting of college presidents. One of the keynote speakers was the senior HR director of a large manufacturing company lamenting the fact that small liberal arts colleges are not necessarily training students for the workplace or providing them with the technical skills necessary for success after graduation.

Times have changed but colleges and universities have not

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Celebrating the Simon Initiative for Entrepreneurship

On Dec 21, 2018 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Andrea Simon, women in business, women entrepreneurs, The Simon Initiative, advisors for entrepreneurs


A day filled with excitement and insights as women gather to launch the Simon Initiative for Entrepreneurship.

It is not every day that you get a chance to do what you really want to do! Andi and I have been fortunate. We have been successful entrepreneurs who grew our businesses and are now sharing our experiences with others to help them do the same.

After I sold my company, Andi and I decided to make a contribution to Washington University in St Louis, something which would have a long-term impact, a multiplier effect, by connecting people throughout the university and even into the surrounding communities.

While it started as just an idea, like other entrepreneurs we knew that if we worked hard enough on it, something exciting would emerge. The Simon Initiative for Entrepreneurship came out of a lot of good ideas from the talented people at Washington University.

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Finding Not One But Two Blue Oceans

On Dec 10, 2018 1:30:51 PM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, Blue Ocean Strategy, advisors for entrepreneurs

 

Believer in Blue Ocean Strategy®

Blue Ocean Strategy preaches that finding unmet needs is a critical element to continued organizational success. So, if you are a big believer in Blue Ocean Strategy, like I am, here are two companies that very successfully solve unmet needs.

The first is Warby Parker that provides extensive eyewear selection via the web. I am a user of their website, which lets me select exactly what I want in glasses at a reasonable price point. No longer do I have to settle for whatever my local eyeglass retailer has in stock.

I am also user of Harry’s, an online razor blade and grooming company. Great products that eliminate hassle. Best of all, I don’t have to suffer the inconvenience of shopping at a drug store or supermarket for razors.

The same guy co-founded both companies

Imagine my surprise when I picked up the November 2, 2018 Business Section of the NY Times and found out that the entrepreneur behind both businesses was the same person. Yes, Jeff Raider co-founded both Warby Parker and Harry’s. That’s pretty neat. And while I am not sure if Mr. Raider is a “card carrying” Blue Ocean Strategist, he certainly understands the underlying concept of a finding Blue Oceans.

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Entrepreneurs, Be Smart and Pick the Right People to Help You Grow

On Oct 16, 2018 10:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, business leadership, advisors for entrepreneurs


 

Being an entrepreneur is not for the faint-hearted!

It is not easy being an entrepreneur. Starting an entirely new type of business is never easy. If you are in a startup mode, you often must turn out a product or service, make the sales calls, run the books and at the same time ensure that you are following your business plan. Often you don’t have people in the organization to help you reflect on this plan; think about the business, and bounce ideas off.

Getting the right advice is not easy

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What Will It Take To Be An Entrepreneur By Desire?

On Oct 2, 2018 11:46:12 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Entrepreneurs, Start-ups

The New York Times had an article in the September 17, 2018 edition entitled: “Retire? These Graying ‘Encore Entrepreneurs’ Are Just Starting Up.” 

It’s a great article! It focuses on people who have been displaced and find themselves out of work after 50. Their job disappeared because their industry changed or some other factor(s) impacted their company. They are all over 50 but want to—or must—keep on working. 

As The Times notes: “Many entrepreneurs 50 and older said they have no choice but to look for new and creative ways to supplement their savings as they live longer.” These laid-off workers “describe feeling squeezed by rising rents and health care costs, and are facing uncertain job prospects and age discrimination, especially in industries where younger workers are less expensive and are often more fluent in digital and social media skills.” 

People who want to start their own business are far from alone 

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Content is Still King: How to Get Great Google® Results

On Aug 9, 2018 7:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Inbound Marketing, business growth strategies, content marketing, Google search, SAMC Inbound

Great digital marketing campaigns are based upon, among other things, great content. As you might know, the role of content in SEO power is evolving. No longer are keywords central to the way you write your copy. Rather, Google is now looking for how well you answer the question in someone’s search query.

Changes in SEO are forcing us to adapt how we write content

At SAMC, we try to tell our story to the right audience, regardless of how they come up with their search question. Whether they ask Alexa to find them a great business consulting firm or they type in "how to do a Blue Ocean Strategy," we need to be the first answer. This is getting even more challenging with Google’s SERPs (Search Engine Results Page) at the top of the first page of a search.

Furthermore, while great content will always be king, the delivery of that content has changed as well.

How to evaluate your online presence?

Let’s take a look at the SEO changes and how in response, you should look at your online presence with fresh eyes.

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