The Critical Importance of Principles in Business

One of the most important things any business leader can do for their business longevity, is to establish the principles by which they and their business will operate.

These principles form the foundation on which trust and relationships are built with all of the stakeholders of the business; shareholders, employees, customers, and suppliers.

Berkshire Hathaway is an example of a highly successful business from pretty much all perspectives. They are a solid company with decades of successful and profitable operations.

In 1983, Warren Buffett established 13 principles that defined how Berkshire Hathaway was to operate. He first published these in what he called Berkshire’s “An Owner’s Manual.” These 13 ideologies are still valid today at Berkshire and followed closely in all the business that they conduct.

Many of these are directly applicable to any business. We can all benefit from reviewing them and perhaps implementing them in our own businesses!

Berkshire’s “An Owners Manual”

I have highlighted seven of the thirteen principles below:

The Idea Book

My book review this week is The Idea Book by Fredrik Haren.

Haren has written this book in a format designed to generate ideas. There 60 creativity inspiring sections followed by an activity designed to tap into your creativity. The book has an additional 150 blank pages dispersed strategically throughout the book to be used to record your creative ideas. I have used this book for personal inspiration. I have also used some of the exercises in a team format to get brainstorming sessions kicked off and to get teams thinking outside of their proverbial boxes.

My takeaway from this book is that every person and every team needs some creative thinking exercises from time to time to restart and renew their creative thinking mechanisms. Taking the thinking exercises from this book are a great way to do this!

 

Note that I have previously reviewed the following books in 2018:

  1. Tim O’Reilly’s Whats the Future and Why Its Up to Us
  2. Steven Pressfield’s The War of Art
  3. Timothy Ferriss’ Tribe of Mentors
  4. Richard P. Feynman’s Surely You’re Joking Mr. Feynman!
  5. Bernadette Jiwa’s Hunch
  6. Scott Galloway’s The Four
  7. William Mougayar’s The Business Blockchain

 


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Hunch

Turn Your Everyday Insights Into The Next Big Thing

The book review for this week is Hunch by Bernadette Jiwa.

Jiwa explains her thoughts and research behind; ideas, intuition, deep thought, rationality, questions, genius, and many other concepts commonly associated with breakthrough ideas.

In today’s distracted and plugged-in world where we can Google answers for anything, we are at risk of losing our ability for innovative thought. Jiwa does a great job of outlining techniques for reengaging our creativity and intuition and generating the next big thing by leveraging our everyday insights.

My takeaway from this book is Jiwa’s definition of a hunch.

Nothing Great Was Ever Built on Minimums!

I recently attended a conference in Anaheim, CA and one of the presenters, Earl McClellan, made a statement to the effect of “Nothing great is built on minimums!”

It took a minute or two for that to sink in . . .

My mind raced through business cases, famous start-ups, and concepts like Minimal Viable Products (MVPs from Eric Ries). There are so many examples of great movements and uber-successful businesses starting from precarious, humble, and minimalistic origins. So how could this statement be true?

However, after a few minutes of thought, I concluded that I agree with the statement and this is why!

How To Be Amazing And Make The Sale

Customer first service mantras have been around so long that we are sick of hearing about them . . . until we personally go through a new dismal customer service experience and are reminded how important the customer experience really is!

The truth is that business leaders must not only build a customer centric culture in their organization but they must constantly maintain this culture. It only takes one bad experience to tarnish a company’s reputation which can take years to rebuild!

My Honda Experience