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Small Business Growth

Disaster Recovery: Putting a Plan into Practice & Mitigating Risk

To fully actualize disaster recovery planning, entrepreneurs are encouraged to combine written protocols with possible real-world scenarios which attempt to replicate the chaotic situations caused by disasters, an approach which has proven to be extremely valuable from both human and hardware perspective.  Approximating the...

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Disaster Recovery: The How To and Prioritization Practices

Business Impact Analysis Central to every disaster recovery planning process is the performance of a Business Impact Analysis. The business impact analysis forces small business owners to consider their company from top to bottom and determine what needs to be recovered and how quickly....

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Disaster Recovery: What is it and Why Should Small Business Owners Pay Attention?

With another challenging winter now in the rearview mirror, small business owners are taking a look back to reflect on how well they survived the brutal snow storms, delayed flights, highway gridlock, and missed deadlines that plagued the national business landscape over the past...

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Evolution’s Growth Model Highlighted

In a recent Crain’s Cleveland Business article, Evolution’s investment strategy is described through one of our growth company success stories, Accurate Group (exited in December 2012). Our investment model is to specialize in providing the growth capital, management, infrastructure and other resources necessary to scale established,...

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Human Capital Series: “Outsourcing HR? Take a Balanced Approach”

When a small business grows beyond 20 employees, most founders find it increasingly difficult to be hands-on in a human resource capacity, for the simple reason that there are too many humans and too few resources. The final discussion in our human capital series...

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Human Capital Series: “What REALLY Motivates Your Employees?”

As promised, today’s discussion will be centered on “What REALLY Motivates Your Employees?” Does Wealth Buy Happiness? A recent CNBC article entitled “Who Says Wealth Doesn’t Buy Happiness?” cites research by Nobel-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman and Angus Deaton, who observe that added income brings...

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Human Capital Series: “Hiring Best Practices”

Continuing our Human Capital Discussion …. we will assume the small business owner has committed to being proactive in attracting additional staffing resources for those “missing” talents identified. The next step is to formalize the talent acquisition process, starting with asking the basic questions...

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Human Capital Series: “Capitalizing on Individual Strengths”

It’s been written and repeated for years that employees are the lifeblood of every organization, and that the quality and engagement of these individuals is the primary reason that a particular business succeeds or fails as a company. If true, the obvious question then...

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Unlocking Growth: Sales Force Management, Predictability & Metrics

Performance expectations and their rewards clearly set, now let’s discuss a critical aspect in creating predictability. Have portfolio review meetings with your sales reps regularly to discuss their clients, trends, bottlenecks, performance, etc… and then put a metric tracking and data collection tool in...

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Unlocking Growth: Sales Force Management, Performance Expectations & Rewards

Now that your sales force is well versed in selling to your value proposition (and it’s working!), let’s talk about performance expectations and rewards. Do your sales people provide a quarterly list of the dream accounts they would like to close? Is there a...

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Unlocking Growth: Sales Force Management, Sell to your Value Prop

As discussed in my last post, your sales force is mandated with managing your most valuable asset, your client relationships! In return, you, as the business owner, provide quality products and services. It is imperative that your sales force believe in and effectively communicate...

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Unlocking Growth: Sales Force Management

Last time we talked about unlocking the potential of your management team by executing a leadership style change.  This next phase for unlocking growth centers on the sales force.  I list some of the more common quotes preventing growth in businesses from the perspective...

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Owner’s Dilemma: “If Life is a Highway, Where’s My Exit?”

The final installment of our 4-Part Owner’s Dilemma series builds on the issues explored in the three earlier articles, while marching us towards the final inevitable question, “If life is a highway, where’s my exit?” Tom Cochran’s popular 1991 song, “Life is a Highway”...

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Owner’s Dilemma Series: “You Can Check Out Any Time You Like, But You Can Never Leave”

In 1977, the Eagles released their hit song and #1 single off their platinum album entitled, “Hotel California.”  Following decades of speculation regarding the supernatural subtext of this mellifluous rock ballad, in a recent interview with the Plain Dealer the band once again refuted...

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Owner’s Dilemma Series: “I’ve Got All the Risk – Where’s My Return?”

One of the most pervasive misconceptions about entrepreneurs is the belief that they actually ENJOY risk, as if they breathe some kind of mystical rarefied air that makes them impervious to volatility and doubt, and therefore fundamentally different from the rest of us.  Sorry...

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Owner’s Dilemma Series: “If I’m the Boss, Why Don’t I Feel in Control?”

For small business owners, the end of the year brings with it the dual mandate of  both reflecting on the accomplishments and lessons learned over the past 12 months, and the challenge of crafting a strategic plan for success in the year to come. ...

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Unlocking Growth: Management Series, Accountability

In the final blog of this series focused on management style, we will discuss accountability and its “measurable” benefits! Accountability I personally consider this the most over-used buzzword in business today, and the most under-utilized. Accountability should not conjure a vision of firing someone...

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Unlocking Growth: Management Series, Informal Vs. Formal Meetings

In the previous blog, we covered titles vs. responsibilities; today we will discuss the benefits of scheduling formal one-on-ones vs. irregular informal meetings. End the Informal Meeting Avoid the constant popping in and out of subordinate’s offices to check on project or task status...

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Unlocking Growth: Management Series, Titles vs. Responsibilities

In the previous blog, I ended by stating that one important way of building value in your business is by driving decision making down and erasing a culture of a “command and control” style of management. So how can you begin shifting to a...

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Unlocking Growth: Management Series

WARNING! IF YOU ARE NOT WILLING TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS, DO NOT READ THIS! I figured a disclaimer would save folks the time and effort of reading something that may create that uncomfortable “I need to skip lunch” feeling. Truth be known, my good...

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