Greetings from Mark:

Leading a successful business may look easy from the outside but just ask a business owner if they’d agree with that! Here are some tips and ideas on leading more confidently and making your operation run more smoothly.

Effective Meeting Facilitation

Communication is a vital competence to building an effective organization.  Being able to articulate our thoughts and ideas in a way that connects with our audience is a challenge that requires clarity and authenticity.  Now put a group of people in a room (physical or virtual) who need to discuss an issue, brainstorm ideas or solve problems and who bring their own communication preferences to receiving information and responding – and you’ve got an immensely more complex situation to navigate. I share some of my meeting facilitation tips in my article – Do I Really Want to Attend That Meeting?  Insights for Successful Facilitation.

Hiring for Fit

With employee retention issues and a labor force in transition, don’t overlook organizational culture considerations in your hiring and promotion decisions. Here are some tips to making a great hire and avoiding some huge pitfalls down the road.  Read my article – Hiring for Fit…to What? Strategic Interviewing and Organizational Culture.

Employee Engagement

Have you thought about the Introverts in your organization?  Maybe you’re one yourself!  How do you engage them in your organization’s goals and successes?  See if this article resonates with you.

Introverts in a Start Up

Management and Authenticity

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.”  – Beverly Sills

In TAB, we believe in applying fundamental business practices to growing and leading our businesses.  Fads come and go – remember Management by Objective, Business Re-engineering and Quality Circles?  Each of these had their moments in the consciousness of the business world and then morphed into other things or faded away completely.  Understanding and implementing fundamentals are the engines for our organizations.  Where we need to be flexible and creative are in serving customers, taking advantage of new marketing channels and adopting new technologies.  But beyond all that, we as business owners, need to be true to ourselves and why we went into business.  This gives us the foundation to authentically lead our organizations into the future.  There are no shortcuts here – and plenty of homework to deal with – in order to arrive where we intended to go.

Exit Strategies

It you’re looking to sell your business, you need a plan for getting out, whether your time-frame is “soon” or 5 years from now.  I recall a statistic that it can typically take 18 months to sell a business.  If that’s the case, you have time to get that plan in place so you’re ready to sell when the buyers are ready to buy.

Exit plans and succession plans are both topics we discuss at our TAB meetings.  Find out what others are learning and doing.  Give me a call at 763-551-4777 to discuss.


“I have never seen a monument erected to a pessimist.” – Paul Harvey

In spite of all the continuing bad economic news we keep getting bombarded with by our news media, I’m comforted by the input I get from small business owners who aren’t being dragged down into despair.  They are actively taking control of those things they are able to and are pursuing the many opportunities that still exist out there.

If we focus our minds on the negative, that’s what we’ll get – more negative.  To jump start your mind and spirit, turn your thoughts to what’s possible and keep going forward.  A smart friend recently reminded me of a phrase from Biblical folklore that says, “This too shall pass.”  It doesn’t say, “This bad stuff has settled in and is going to be around forever.”


If you haven’t taken a look at your own branding lately, now would be a good time.  Please consider the messages you want to send into the marketplace about your business.  How do you want to communicate them?  How do you want your customers to experience your company’s offerings?  What are you currently doing and what do you need to do differently, if anything, to be relevant to your customers?

We get at these issues and whole lot more in our TAB group meetings.  Call me to learn more at 763-551-4777.


“Never be afraid to try something new.  Remember that a lone amateur built the ark.  A large group of professionals built the Titanic.” – Dave Barry

Given our recent trying economic times, the rewards are there for those who take chances and persevere while others are paralyzed with fear.  One person’s insurmountable obstacle is another person’s intriguing opportunity.  It’s all in how you frame the situation in your mind.   Besides, the experts don’t always know the answer either – can you say, “Wall Street?”

If you’d like to learn more about your thinking and behavioral styles or your management or leadership effectiveness, contact me at 763-551-4777 as I have tools to measure these. We can create a plan to capitalize on your strengths and shore up weaknesses in areas such as taking risks, making decisions, dealing with conflict, and influencing others, to name a few. See my Individual Services page for more information.


“Beware the half-truth. You may have gotten hold of the wrong half.” – Anonymous

There is so much information (and misinformation and disinformation) floating around that it’s hard to know what’s the truth and what isn’t. It’s easy though to just accept the what we see and hear at face value in that overwhelming volume of data and info we deal with every day. A better path is to test what you run across and evaluate the underlying assumptions before committing to a course of action. That way you have a better chance of grabbing onto the right half of the truth instead of the wrong half.

Now is a great time to learn The Whole Truth about TAB .  Contact me at 763-551-4777 to get started.