Monday Mornings with Madison

Yearly Archives:

Facing Trials and Blazing Trails in 2020

No one relishes trouble. No one wants problems. When misfortune strikes, no one thinks “Yay, I’m so glad this is happening to me.” Hard times are endured, not revered. Even long after it has passed, we seldom look back on tough times and think “that’s the best thing that ever happened to me”, but maybe we should. It is in times of adversity that people grow and develop most. Perhaps those who are serious about 2020 being a year of great growth and improvement should roll out the red carpet for trials and tribulations. Continue reading

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Taking Stock: What Kind of Person Do You Want to Be in 2020?

Mahatma Ghandi once said “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” With a new year and decade approaching, it is not only a good time to write resolutions, make plans and set goals, it’s also a particularly propitious time to look within. Think about not only what you want to achieve, but also what type of individual you need to be – professionally and personally – to get there. No one can do this kind of internal self-assessment for you, but here are some thoughts to get you started. Continue reading

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Business in the Coming Age of Collaboration

Business leaders in most developed nations embrace speed, agility, creativity and fierce competitiveness as essential components for success in business today. That is because, for the last 30 years, that approach was highly effective, generating amazing results and returns. However, that “crash and clash” approach to business innovation is expected to become less and less effective over the next 30 years. Why is that? And, what approach will business leaders need to take to be effective in the fast-approaching post-digital world?

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It’s a Wrap: What To Do Before The Start of 2020

There are 22 days left in 2019. As companies look to wrap up the last quarter of 2019 and usher in 2020 and the start of a new decade, planning should be well under way. No matter what kind of business or what industry, every company should take time to strategize and chart a course… at least for the immediate future. So what exactly should department managers, division execs and top leadership focus on to prepare for a smooth and strong 2020? Here are six things to consider and a dozen things to do. Continue reading

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Slugs vs. Caterpillars: How to Spot Good Ideas that can Turn into Great Ideas

It behooves every organization to improve its ability to elicit, sort and spot the good ideas… the kind of ideas that can transform into great ideas with the proper space and support. While it may sound easy to do, evaluating ideas is a process that requires careful handling as there are several common pitfalls. However, there are three approaches a company can take to become better at spotting the ideas with the greatest potential. Continue reading

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Improving the Quadruple Bottom Line

As year-end nears and 2020 approaches, business managers, leaders and owners are actively planning the long-term direction and goals of their businesses. However, that kind of master planning should focus on more than just improving the financial “Bottom Line”. Leaders should consider how to grow their Quadruple Bottom Line. What is the QBL and how is it different — better — than just the traditional financial Bottom Line used to measure business performance? Continue reading

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Are Trademarks and Patents Worth It?

Most businesses never bother to trademark their name, logo, slogan, tag line or any other aspect of their business identity. And, many companies that create a new product, process or software never bother to patent their invention. Even companies that have successfully been in business for decades make no effort to protect any aspect of their business’ unique characteristics. As brands become increasingly important to business and global competition scales up, is it wise to do business without even the most minimal intellectual property protection? The simple answer is…. Continue reading

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An End to the Great Logo Debate

Should a logo include a graphic of the product or service it represents? Entrepreneurs, marketers and graphic designers have debated this issue for ages. As company leaders have become increasingly aware of the power of brand — and begun to infuse it into every aspect of business — differing points of view have emerged regarding how a company logo should look. But, this is not a matter of opinion. Finally, research has tackled the question about product or service placement in logos. Here’s the right answer. Continue reading

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Writing Tips to Help Struggling Business Writers

Many people in business struggle to write well. They know what they want to say, but somehow it just does not come out right when they try to communicate their thoughts in writing. But, one need not be a novelist or poet to write messages that are clear and easily understood by the reader. It helps to follow a few simple strategies to ensure any memo, email, or article makes sense and connects with the target audience. Here are some tips that can help struggling writers to improve their written communications. Continue reading

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The Problem with Groupthink in Business, Part 2

Groupthink is a plague that stifles creativity to the point where companies become stagnant and stop being innovative. Management experts warn leaders to avoid it as much as possible. So, how does a company stop Groupthink from permeating employee interaction and killing the company’s creativity? Continue reading

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