Discipline ?


We ventured into a well-known franchise a short time ago. The environment was unacceptable (if I was the franchise operator) – the employees running around completely undisciplined.

Yes, these are entry-level (minimum wage) positions….however if there is no training and/or management….than these folks will have a rocky path to future work.

This franchise has invested millions in their facilities….unfortunately it seems good training and good management was not included in the budget.

Perhaps finding  people with some sense of self-discipline is the challenge….and maybe management should spend more time walking around (MBWA).

Toyota – Honda

Better Choice

We have had several Toyotas….they are well made automobiles.

Our 2007 Camry is just fine….though it doesn’t have the electronics of the current models….it  serves our purpose well.

A recent article in Motor Trend (December 2017) compares the 2018 Honda Accord and Toyota Camry….both best sellers.

The conclusion of the report: ” Simply put, Toyota built a better Camry, but Honda built a better car.”

These brands have been iconic brands in the automobile industry. I would think that Toyota would work in the future to also build a better car. What differentiates brands is to be better and different….Honda did that in the 2018 model.

Water Heater


Buying water heaters isn’t difficult….there are several manufacturers in the industry. The problem is they don’t last. The life span is often less than ten years.

Unfortunately, it was time to replace our water heater….due to a poor connection between the copper pipes and steel inlets on the water heater. The leaks were caused by dissimilar metal corrosion….though the fittings were up to code in 2008.

We had found a good plumber and installed a Rudd water heater. With a good installation….this new water heater should last 12-15 years.

While the one installed in 2008 was acceptable….attention to detail (proper connections) should result in a better quality of product.

Common Sense


From the Air Force Times: 


Unfortunately what was reported in the article has happened before in all the military branches. Leadership is a privilege and a responsibility. For someone like this Lt.Col to misuse that position is a disgrace to the Air Force.

There are several lessons learned from this incident:

  • The group commander took appropriate action
  • There is a serious question why this person was even selected for command
  • There is the question of why this person was promoted to 0-5
  • Some where along the line….the common sense test was overlooked

The bottom line: Any business/organization has to find the right people (Jim Collins – get the right people on the right bus going in the same direction). Don’t settle for anything less.

Indestructible Shovel

DMOS Collective

An indestructible shovel?…. maybe the DMOS Collective is the right one. From Business Insider:


Certainly a $90 shovel is a niche market….though if one is in the Tetons or Alps….it might come in very handy.

The key point of any new business idea is to take that idea and expand on it….and to develop long term sustainability.


Follow Up

Basic Business

The sale is made….the product delivered. What’s the next step?


While there is always some apprehension about what could be said….following up is just as important as the sale. If something is not right….the problem can be easily corrected. If the customer is satisfied and pleased….than that is the possibility of a customer for life.

From a cost perspective alone….a satisfied customer costs much less than trying to get each new customer through the front door.

Follow-up is just good basic business management.


Growth Challenge

Most businesses/organizations need a growth component….i.e. doing things better/different and avoiding mediocrity.

One organization in its recent annual report indicated that an important number has remained stable for the past four years….and more importantly revenue is not at the level of prior years. A major cause for concern.

This organization had some extensive turnover in leadership a few years earlier. While bringing new leadership onboard….it is also important to retain good leadership. People in a growing organization also want stability.


Earned (and lost)

The 11.28.17 post referred to an organizations reputation….that was earned through customer feedback.

Belks (a major Southeastern department store) had a recent promotion that resulted in considerable negative feedback. As in many cases….Belks protected itself with disclaimers. 

The problem – the promotion confused the customer. Many businesses have not learned an important lesson….don’t put unnecessary stipulations on the buying process.

Reputations are earned….yet they can be easily lost. We guarded our family businesses reputation. After all, our business name was our name. Unfortunately, Belks is no longer a family business.

News Roundup

November 2017

+ Where are they now from Nov. 2012 –

+ Simon Sinek Leadership:   https://leaderchat.org/2017/10/27/simon-sineks-5-steps-for-mastering-the-infinite-game-of-leadership/

+ Customer: https://www.inc.com/tommy-mello/when-a-customer-was-angry-i-showed-up-at-his-door-1-hour-later-with-flowers-heres-why.html

+ Infographics: http://www.visualcapitalist.com/

+ Forbes: North Carolina best for business (11.30.17)

+ Wells Fargo questionable activities:   https://www.pymnts.com/bank-regulation/2017/wells-fargo-could-face-occ-enforcement-action/