Skills Versus Traits - Clint Burt

Skills Versus Traits: You Can’t Teach Tall

What do I mean by Skills versus Traits? Nineteen Seventies Matinee Stars Clint Eastwood and Burt Reynolds (for you kids out there they were the George Cloney (too old?), Brand Pitt (still too old?), Ryan Gosling (Still too old?), Sunny Pawar (what? 8 years old too young?)) early in their careers were sitting in a Hollywood Studio waiting room to find out if they got the part. In walks the casting director and he says to Burt Reynolds, "You didn't get the part because you can't act. " He then turned to Clint and said, "You didn't get the part either because your Adam's Apple is too big." As the casting director left the room, Reynolds laughed hysterically to which Eastwood said, "What's so funny?" Burt Reynolds replied, "I can learn to act!" Acting is a Skill. Adam's apples are a Trait. Skills Versus Traits. You can learn a skill. You can't learn or unlearn a trait. You can teach someone to make a free throw in basketball. You can't teach a 5'1" basketball player to be 6 feet tall. Those are physical traits. Very visible and easilay identified. Personality traits are just as difficult to change and yet not quite as visible. All of us...

Startup Business Plan

Get Investors to Read Your Startup Business Plan

How do you get investors to read your startup business plan? Well short of walking into their offices and holding a gun on them, there's no guaranteed way to get them to read a business plan. There are however several ways to get them to not read your startup business plan and they include: Send it to investors who don't invest in your space - You're a pre-revenue media entertainment startup located in Washington DC seeking seed funding and you send the plan to a later-stage investor that doesn't focus in media and entertainment. Wrong Stage. Wrong Geography. Wrong Investor. Blind Unsolicited - Send in an unsolicited blind plan. Why waste a stamp. If you're sending in a blind, unsolicited business plan to an investor, save yourself a stamp. Just put it in an envelope, address the envelope and place it in your recycle bin. Maybe you should shred it first so no one else will find out how stupid you are. Technology - Make it all about the tech. Tell them every thing about the inner workings of your technology and ignore why anyone would want it. Use lots and lots of big words - Forget graphics, bullets and a narrative....

Glen Hellman Intentional Leadership Workshop DC

March 14, Intentional Leadership Workshop DC

Join me for an Intentional Leadership Workshop in DC on March 14th. This is an exclusive opportunity to laugh and learn how to improve your career while learning about the neuroscience of creating a high performance culture for your team. Intentional Leadership Workshop DC Intentionality: Leading An Intentional Culture Day: Tuesday Date: March 14, 2017 Time: 6:30pm - 9:00pm Location: MakeOffices at K Street Address: 1015 15th St NW #600, Washington, DC 20005 As leaders we get the culture we tolerate. What are the steps to create an intentional culture of high performance? The basis of leadership and influencing others depends on understanding that humans make logical decisions illogically. What are the hidden forces that overcome competence, intelligence, and character when choosing our leaders? Learn about the real decision maker of the human mind and the neuroscience behind how to model the behavior to influence others and create loyal, motivated followers. If you run a business, this is a can't miss opportunity. There's no charge for the event and seating is limited. Sign up now on eventbrite.  Seats are reserved on a first come first serve basis. About the Facilitator of Intentional Leadership Workshop DC Glen Hellman is the founder of Driven Forward, an organization that helps companies with leadership development,...

Fire Bad Customers

Fire Bad Customers

Fire Bad Customers? Are you crazy? It's hard enough to get customers, why the hell would you fire them? We all know this, not all customers are created equal so fire your bad ones. I recently worked with two CEO's who were complaining about their customers. In one instance the CEO was asked to submit a proposal to an existing customer and who was applying pricing pressure. When I asked him why this customer was so important to him, he said they represented about 40 percent of his company's gross revenue. Upon further digging I found out that the 40% revenue customer only produced 2% of his profit. It became clear, that: 1) winning this barely profitable customer at a discount might be losing and, 2) that there needed to be a methodology to evaluate the value of a customer. I'm a student of the human mind and how we often we make bad decisions. I know that if we go with our gut, we are just as likely to be wrong as we are to be right.  Study's show that even the best statisticians make poor statistical judgments when they're pulling answers out of their butts. If CEOs formalize an evaluation process, if they're intentional about...

Bad Spam, Bad Marketing

Talk about bad marketing! Usually, Mr Cranky just ignores his spam mail. Occasionally, I lie to draw a lesson from them so I've decided to improve the following spam mail and send it to the spammer so that old Mak Saini...

DCs Mr Cranky

Why Do They Call Me DC’s Mr Cranky?

DC's Mr Cranky? Tonight, for the umpteenth time I was introduced as DC's Mr Cranky. Tonight, folks continuously asked, "Why Mr Cranky?" I obviously wasn't amongst my base. They didn't know me. So I thought today, I'd explain to the world...

ThinkTank Peer Advisory Group

Join New ThinkTank Peer Advisory Group

Why a Peer Advisory Group? It's lonely at the top.  Have you noticed? If you run a business where do you go to let down your guard? Where can you go to be vulnerable? Where can you share your deepest concerns? Who helps you be a better leader? Share them with you Partners? What if they are the issue? Share them with your spouse or spouse equivalent? Maybe...

Peter Paul and Mary - Mr Cranky Startups

Mr Cranky Startups – Where Have All The Founders Gone?

Mr Cranky Startups. It's a love hate relationship that reminds me of a song: Where have all the founders gone, Long time passing, Where have all the founders gone, Long time ago, When will they ever learn? At least I think that's how the Peter, Paul and Mary song went. Mr Cranky Startups Rant Lately, I've been wondering about the weakness in DC Tech startups. It seems to me that the rate of startup founders dipping their toes in the DCTech pond has slowed considerably. Yet before I am added to the list of purveyors of Fake News which is just another name for the Local DC Tech press, like DCInno, let me admit that this is kind of a trumpish statement, since I'm short of actual data and base my observation on feelings. Startups growth rates were up rapidly around 2008 and peaked around 2012. Today there is a lack of new startups and more importantly a lack of new quality startups (see The Startup Turd to Gold Ratio). Worse still, there are very few great startups like Hurdlr (who? you say. My point exactly) are operating in secret. In fact most great companies spend more time developing product and customers instead of wasting limited resources courting the local tech...