Episode #214 with Verne Harnish CEO of Gazelles

Summary:

In Episode #214 Ari welcome Vern Harnish - founder of EO, CEO of Gazelles, and author of Scaling Up. Vern’s a strategic planning expert who helps companies to scale up successfully. Listen in as Ari and Vern discuss delegation, hyper-focus, and how ‘scale-ups’ are going to replace ‘start-ups’ as drivers of business.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 16:28 – Welcoming Vern to the show
  • 16:50 – CEO of Gazelles - a firm that helps growing firms to scale up
  • 18:20 – “Nailing strategy can cover a lot of execution flaws”
  • 19:20 – “I would define ‘scaling’ as growing at 20% to 100% per year”
  • 20:00 – “We look at 4 scale areas: talent, strategy, execution and practice
  • 20:40 – Communication and execution are the main challenges
  • 22:20 – “What’s the biggest problem people face when they can’t scale?”
  • 22:40 – CEOs should spend 4 of 5 days on market-facing activities
  • 23:30 – Talented people often struggle to delegate. People can’t let go.
  • 24:30 – “We’re big on gamifying companies”
  • 24:50 – Currently working on 4 books
  • 25:30 – “We want to create the Techstars for scale-ups”
  • 26:25 – “Most people’s creativity increases hugely as they age”
  • 27:05 – “I think we’ll see a move from start-ups to scale-ups”
  • 29:00 – “Become the absolute expert in your niche - you need to hyper-specialise”
  • 29:45 – Scaling-up doesn’t have to be about reaching more people - you can focus more tightly and become the absolute master in your field
  • 31:52– Top 3 Tips to be More Effective:
    • The most leverage comes from people...write down the 25 people that you absolutely need to get on board with your project and start working that list
    • Find the tone or two words that you need to own in the mind of the market
    • Read Eli Goldratt’s book The Goal
  • Visit com for free personal plans and strategic planning help

Key Points:

  1. Hyper-focus. Find a niche you can absolutely dominate, and own it. Scaling doesn’t have to mean going broader.
  2. Work on your company, not in your company. Learn to delegate, automate, and outsource so that you can focus on strategy and expansion.
  3. Your biggest leverage point is people. Write down the people you need behind you, and work on that list.

Resources Mentioned:

  • Pop Slate 2 - An iPhone case that turns the back of your phone into a 2nd screen
  • Nadi - An outfit that corrects your form in real time during exercise
  • No More Voice Mail - An app to keep your voice mail box empty
  • Card Form - Build a blog from Trello
  • Dieterest - Text-based diet coach

 

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