An Advisory Board Can Help Your Business

If you’re like me – a small business owner with minimal staff – no doubt there are times when you wish you had someone to bounce an idea off of or help you through a difficult decision.  If this is the case, you could benefit by forming an advisory board.

Momentum: A Leader’s Best Friend

I'll not forget the spring of 2002, which is when the effects of 9/11 finally hit my painting firm, T. L. Hart, Inc.  Like most other companies the world had been a good place to do business in; Michigan had been booming during the 90's along with the rest of the country.

Vision for Lansing Unfolding

Listening to Robert L. Trezise, Jr., President and CEO of LEAP (Lansing Economic Area Partnership) two times in one month makes me think that former Mayor David Hollister’s vision of Lansing as a world class city is coming to pass.  Consider the facts:

Lansing area ranked best in the nation for job growth in three major sectors
Lansing region’s GDP is 2nd best in the State of Michigan
Area population is growing
Greater Lansing named one of three in Michigan with growing housing market
Lansing is home to a number of major insurance companies and three state-of-the-art GM plants

I could go on (read all the good news at www.

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Why I Like Capitalism

I was a bum in the late 60's.  I barely made it out of high school, and I flunked out of college at least three times before I finally buckled down and got an Associate's degree.  Though I hated to paint and was anti-business at the time, I ended up taking  painting job in 1974 with a view to making more money.

I Believe in Miracles

Unlike some taking to the streets lately, I like banks.  I like the idea of depositing my paycheck and having the assurance that the money is there when I need it.  I like using my debit card, even if there are sometimes fees attached.

But some things banks do make no sense.

The Power of (Constructive) Criticism

          I've done a considerable amount of writing in the past, and one thing I learned early on was the practice of submitting my article to others for critique. Humbling at times and often uncomfortable, my writing skills became  better over time as a result.

The Law of Adaption

It wasn't long ago that my son, John - who happens to be in corporate finance - challenged my business model.  At the time, I wasn't so sure that I knew what a business model was, let alone what ours was.  Over a period of years, however, I have learned that whatever your business model is, it must of necessity fit the market you are in.

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Restoring Vision

     Ancient text informs us that "without vision the people perish;" it is during challenging times like these that vision is tested and often lost.  

     My mentor for twenty years and author of "Awakening the Giant," the late Jim Russell, used to say that vision is the definition of a long-term goal.

What Matters Most

It wasn't long ago that I enjoyed lunch with a long-time customer and friend.  He was undergoing cancer treatment at the time, and was doing quite well.  He told me one thing that had come of his illness was a realization of the importance of faith and family.

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Be an Overcomer

     Years ago I heard something that has stuck with me ever since.  The man I was listening to said, in no uncertain terms, "it's either overcome, or be overcome."  In other words, you have two options in life:  you either win or you lose; there is no 'tie game.

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