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Inside the Mind of a Startup CEO: What does a startup CEO really do?

By on Nov 22, 2014 in Management | 0 comments

In many companies, there is a vast difference between what the CEO should be doing and what they are doing. Startup CEOs in particular should focus on just a few key things and then inspire others to handle the rest. It’s important for a startup CEO to keep their focus on the big picture and the critical elements that will keep the startup in business. So what are these critical elements? According to venture capitalist Fred Wilson of avc.com, startups CEOs should only be responsible for three things: Set the overall vision and strategy of the company and communicate it to stakeholders. Recruit, hire, and retain the very best talent for the company. Make sure there is always enough cash in the bank. This list is a really good start to understanding what a CEO should be doing. However, I think we can expand a bit on these three items to get a fuller picture of what a CEO really does....

The Joys and Tears of Entrepreneurship

By on Nov 16, 2014 in Management | 0 comments

When you own your own business, you can be on the top of the world one day, and stressed to the max the next. When you put yourself on the line to create something new, you will hit points of both utter elation and unimaginable frustration. Throughout my career as an entrepreneur and executive coach, I’ve seen successes and failures time and again across multiple industries. I know first-hand that running your own business can be one of the most rewarding experiences you ever have, but it can also be devastating. You should prepare yourself by knowing the possible downsides and learning what you can do to minimize them. But first, let’s talk about the upside—the reasons we take these fantastic leaps of faith in the first place. The Joys As an entrepreneur, starting your own business allows you to get behind the wheel and take charge. The decisions are all yours; you are the one making...

Inspired Workplaces Need Inspired Cultures

By on Nov 12, 2014 in Management | 0 comments

Recently, I’ve read several articles that address the creation of inspired workplaces. This piece from Andre Eikmeier, cofounder of Vinomofo (an online wine retailer out of Australia) makes some good suggestions that include flexible rules for employees (without going overboard) and a great physical space to foster collaboration and reinvigorate employees. Eikmeier also points out that it is crucial to involve everyone in the future direction of the company. I unequivocally agree. If you establish a corporate culture where employees at all levels are encouraged to participate in the organization’s success, then that culture will truly become an integral part of the organization and survive any particular manager. But how does a team become invested in the company’s future? What are the most important elements needed to shift an uninspired culture in the right direction? In my...

Strategic Alliances: Managing a win-win partnership

By on Nov 4, 2014 in Management | 0 comments

The first step to a successful strategic alliance is choosing a good match for partnering, but even the best match can be quickly undermined by poor management. With any collaboration, it’s key to clearly set expectations and agree on critical aspects of the relationship from the beginning including timeframes, deliverables, and ongoing measurements. I recently posted on the what, why, and how of strategic alliances and now I want to share a list of considerations and the critical steps to setting the stage for a win-win partnership. When you bring two organizations, businesses, or teams together with individual and cooperative goals, you will inevitably hit a roadblock. Perhaps employment changes will throw a wrench in the plan: what if the partner manager on the other side is laid off? Or a key person on your team chooses to leave for a different firm? What will you do if your...

Strategic Alliances: The what, why, and how of growth through partnership

By on Oct 25, 2014 in Management | 0 comments

Are you one of those firms that hear about strategic alliances and automatically think “not for us”? Maybe you’ve heard some of the bad press on strategic alliances that failed, or perhaps it just seems a bit daunting to get started. The truth is that many strategic alliances are and have been extremely successful — and it doesn’t have to be a huge undertaking. You can partner on a variety of levels and for specific purposes that limit the amount of risk. When compared to mergers and acquisitions, a strategic alliance is a simpler and more effective way to penetrate a new market, create a new product, grow your brand, or manufacture at a lower cost. Rather than go it alone and grow a new business organically, strategic alliances can get you there faster and cheaper. Let’s look at some popular examples. Have you ever noticed that Barnes & Noble usually has...

Goodies Speed Shop closes it’s doors one last time

By on Oct 30, 2013 in Goodies Speed Shop | 0 comments

Two years ago I purchased Goodies Speed Shop in San Jose. At the time it was losing money, however we had a good plan to increase the revenue and shift the margin to a better mix of parts and service.  We moved Goodies  from Lincoln Ave where it had been for fifty years to Club Auto Sport in north San Jose. After a bumpy start revenues grew and the business neared profitability. Unfortunately we were never able to get the right mix of parts sales and service sales and the margins were eroded from Internet competitors. After 51 years in San Jose, Goodies Speed Shop is no more. Since the devastatingly slow summer, we just couldn’t keep the margins high enough to cover the overhead. On Friday, October 25th 2013 Goodies Speed Shop stopped doing business at Club Auto Sport – Silicon Valley in north San Jose and closed its doors one last time. Empty Shop Empty...

Goodies Speed Shop Race Car – 2006 Mustang GT

By on Oct 19, 2013 in Auto Racing, Goodies Speed Shop, Motorsports | 0 comments

Goodies Speed Shop has just completed testing the Mustang GT Track/Race car. The car was based on a 2006 Ford Mustang GT with a 4.6L V8 that had been driven approximately 49,000 miles. The following modifications were made to get this car ready for the track: Custom 6 point roll cage DJ safety 5 point harnesses Corbeau seats(2) For Racing Suspension Ford Racing ABS module (GT500S/R) Ford Racing 3.73 Rear Gears Ford Racing Cold Air Intake Miller GT500S lightened wiring harness Moroso Radiator Catch Can VIS fiberglass hood Jongbloed racing wheels 18×10.5 Maximum Motorsports Camber/Caster plates Stop-tech ST40 front brakes Steeda Underdrive pulley kit, Steeda end link (bump steer kit) Steeda ball joints Steeda front Splitter Hotchkis Adjustable Sway bars Hotchkis Strut tower brace Hotchkis under body front frame brace Hotchkis Panhard rod Hotchkis rear lower control arms Pace Setter Long...

Goodies Speed Shop to Anchor Club Auto Sport Phase II

By on Dec 18, 2011 in Goodies Speed Shop, Motorsports | 0 comments

Groundbreaking occurred this week on the new building at Club Auto Sport which is being fast-tracked to enable Goodies to open in its new location in March 2012. The new Goodies will include a well-designed retail store featuring a wide variety of speed and performance parts and accessories — in addition to its signature service center, and a fabrication area for the custom parts we sell. If you’ve toured Club Auto Sport or attended an event held at the club, you probably think you’ve seen it all. The spectacular 10,000 sq. ft. clubhouse and lounge with its polished black granite floor and 20-foot floor-to-ceiling window walls. The vibrant business community. The beautifully lit drive aisles. And the hundreds of public, private and member events attracting thousands of guests annually. And lots of beautiful cars! Goodies will take approximately the front five business condos totaling...