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Dr. Wiglaf's Top 6 List

A lighter look at the best ideas.... for 2014

Team building and leadership have some roots in Machiavelli.

November 2014 Top 6

If they are not following, you are not leading. At some point, team members must either be on-board with the plan, accepting of the plan, or off the team if you are to remain as a leader. If they don’t believe your facts and see your vision, they won’t follow. Help them see. While facts […]

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“Look at market fluctuations as your friend rather than your enemy; profit from folly rather than participate in it.” -Warren Buffett

October 2014 Top 6

The research shows that the best pricing decisions usually engage sales, marketing, and finance. Are your different functions talking to each other? If not, then they’re just talking to themselves. Each of your teams—sales, marketing, operations, finance — can give you an expert view of a piece of the picture, but someone in the firm […]

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I was asked at Riot Fest Chicago what I did and chose “Economics” as my answer for the moment. He continued: “Micro or Macro”. I said “I price stuff”. “What kind of stuff?” he inquired. “Stuff, like that shirt you’re wearing, the music fest tickets, or the carny rides.” He replied, “Oh, you do grunge economics. Punk, grunge economics.”

September 2014 Top 6

Pricing is about a lot more than just covering your margins. It’s also more complex than simply crunching some numbers and attempting to maximize profit. There are many factors at work, and it requires knowing your market, your competitors, and your customers. As the saying goes, there are exceptions to every rule—even when a rule […]

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“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” –Sun Tzu, The Art of War

August 2014 Top 6

In every competition you face, you will have advantages over your competitors, and you will have disadvantages. If that isn’t the case, it really isn’t much of a competition. Every market is different, and presents different competitive challenges. Surviving a competitive market requires predicting what your competition will do, knowing what your customers value, and […]

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“Do not do what someone else could do as well as you. Do not say, do not write what someone else could say, could write as well as you. Care for nothing in yourself but what you feel exists nowhere else. And, out of yourself create, impatiently or patiently, the most irreplaceable of beings.” -Andre Gide (1869-1951)

July 2014 Top 6

Innovation is king. It’s essential to differentiate your brand from your competitors’, and necessary to avoid being commoditized. That said, remember that however unique your offering is, there is always an alternative to fill that customer need. Customer engagement is a critical means of maintaining loyalty over time. Firms must strive to engage customers on […]

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June 2014 Top 6

Consistently profitable decision-making isn’t based on luck. It isn’t based on being or having the smartest person on your team, either. It’s about having a solid and rigorously vetted strategy that fits your firm’s needs and goals, and, critically, communicating that to all members of your team that handle that process. You have to not […]

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“The brain is wider than the sky.” -Emily Dickinson

May 2014 Top 6

Psychological pricing is effective. Even the most cautious brains take mental shortcuts to drive efficient decision-making. That said, the Internet allows a large number of careful consumers to compare notes, so be aware of customer scrutiny when you drastically change your pricing or bundling system. You can accumulate as much knowledge and brain-power as you’d […]

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“Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.” -Steve Jobs

March 2014 Top 6

Understanding the psychology of your customers and what drives them to purchase (or not to purchase) is increasingly important. You can’t drive people to you if you don’t understand what drives them. It isn’t just knowing what your customer needs—it’s knowing how you can be the BEST at meeting those needs. Great firms are leaders […]

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