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RAO - Recession as Opportunity with Tom Peters

Yes, it’s RAO not ROA. Instead of Return on Assets, Tom Peters wants us to think about Recession as Opportunity. We really should.

Tom spent several decades and three recessions studying some of the top companies across all industries to find out what works and what doesn’t during recessionary times. Companies such as Nucor, Dana, Rubbermaid, Ryder, Unilever, Union Pacific Railroad, Lincoln Electric, Scandinavian Airlines, Hewlett Packard, General Electric, 3M and Sun Microsystems were all part of his research. Think you can learn something from these companies? We think you can.

Lucky for us, Tom outlined six critical strategies for recessionary times. "Smart Moves for Tough Times" is what he likes to call it. We call it "necessary and very relevant" for everyone to see and then implement. It really does make sense that we should now be focusing on world-class quality, customer service, and speed and he emphasizes that this focus can only be achieved through attitude, trust, and action.

Strategy number one is to redouble employee involvement and continuous improvement activities. The absolute sharing of all information with everybody during these times is essential because they have already heard the rumors. He further explains that this is crucial to cost saving measures because the sharing of information will help companies find where the "slop" is and cut it.

Tom’s second strategy is that "Pain starts at the top and moves to the bottom." He believes that this is the pinnacle to trust during a recessionary time and that all the efforts a company has made with their employees around trust and attitude can be destroyed in a very short period of time because of "perception." We are all very aware of this concept with the recent news stories about golden parachute bonuses etc.

"Partners in Peace, Partners at War" is what Tom likes to call his third strategy. Bring the outsiders in and share the news, information and pain with your suppliers and vendors. A recession is the time to work with your partners and vendors instead of making them the enemy.

"Quality NOW" - This is the "Golden Moment" to really get serious about world-class quality. Tom stresses this very passionately and with good cause. The PQC (Poor Quality Costs) is up to 25% gross revenues in manufacturing sectors and up to 40% of gross revenues in service sectors. During a recession, could you afford 25% or 40% of your gross revenues disappearing due to poor quality?

Speed up your competing-in-time programs and reduce the amount of time it takes to develop and deliver new products and improvements. In his fifth strategy, Tom believes that this is the time to take a competitive edge and be the first amongst your competitors to launch a new product.

Tom’s sixth and final strategy concludes with an extremely passionate conversation about not cutting the budgets in advertising, employee training, and information technology. Tom reiterates that this is the most common mistake that companies make during recessionary times and backs up his theory with real life examples of companies that DIDN’T do this and reaped the benefits.

The video recaps the first four steps that everyone should take today to start thinking in RAO. This program is essential to any company operating today. We feel so strongly that you should see this and share it with everyone in your organization that we are offering this program on our online LMS system for a one-day, unlimited amount of views for only $99.00. If you prefer the DVD, you can purchase it for $395.00.

Even though Tom created this program for the last national recession, we believe that if you are serious about surviving this recession, then you should use this program as your starting point.

If you are interested in some recent blogs from Tom himself on the recession, you can look here:

This week’s bingo number: O71

Someone MUST be getting close!

Posted under What’s New, Tom Peters by Stewart on Feb 26, 2009 | Comments: 0 | Post a comment»

Articles - New Sale - More Bingo

We are in week three of the Bingo game and I hope to hear some people calling "BINGO" soon! In the meantime, I came across an article on linked-in that inspired me to pull together a short list of articles aimed at the importance of human resources and training during a recession. If you have seen any others that should be added to the list, please let me know.

Managing HR in a Recession: Part I

Five Steps to Thrive in a Recession

Control HR Performance in a Recession to Make It through the Crisis

Managing HR During a Recession

10 Key Tips for Recession Proofing your HR Department

In other exciting news - we are starting a new recession busting idea. From now until the end of March (and we’re just testing this out, so if you like it we’ll continue with it in some fashion) we are discounting our online streaming option. Full length videos will be $149 for one day of unlimited views and meetings openers will be $79 for one day of unlimited views.

The videos that are available for online streaming are:

America 3
Customer Service to the Rescue
In Search of Excellence
In Search of Excellence - Disney Segment
It’s Showtime!
Leadership Alliance with Tom Peters
Life is good...and work can be too
Muppets - Let’s Have the Dam Break
Muppets - Sell Sell Sell
Muppets - The BIG Plan
Muppets - The Sky’s The Limit
Muppets - What’s This Meeting All About
Muppets - Win Win Win
Passion for Customers with Tom Peters
Sell! 25 Essentials on Selling with Tom Peters
Service Heroes
Service with Soul with Tom Peters
Six Steps to Greatness
Succeeding in a Changing World with John Kotter
Who Says We Can’t Do It? with Lance Armstrong

Please let me know if you have any great employee training or employee motivation ideas! We are trying to keep things as low cost as possible (or free) - so if you have a way, we’d love to hear it and pass it on. Plus - if we post your idea in our blog, you can have FREE overnight shipping on your next order.

This weeks BINGO number: B3

Posted under What’s New by Stewart on Feb 19, 2009 | Comments: 0 | Post a comment»

Employee motivation without breaking the budget

It’s the second week of our first Bingo Game and the response was AMAZING! Very exciting!

We apologize to anyone who had difficulty getting on our website last week. Our hosting site conducted an upgrade, which caused some technical problems.

We have had so many great comments from people about employee motivation! Here is a small list of ideas that people have suggested to motivate your employees without causing a budget crisis.

  • Encourage comments from external and internal customers. Post this praise for everyone to read and address problems immediately.
  • Remind staff how their work matters to customers and encourage positive interactions.
  • Call an employee into your office just to say thank you without discussing any other issue.
  • Write a thank you card or e-mail.
  • Post a bulletin board for employees to share news, hobbies, and recognition.
  • Reserve the best parking spot for an employee-of-the-month. Let staff decide how the spot is earned.
  • Add a note to an employee’s paycheck highlighting something great he/she did that week.
  • Join in and work with an employee who is under pressure. Ask how you can help and work side-by-side with them to complete the task.
  • Create a change of pace by giving employees a chance to work on exciting projects or learn new skills.
  • Help build skills with a training library filled with books, tapes, DVD’s and other resources that employees can check out.
  • Delegate worthy projects, not just menial tasks, to increase trust and pride with everyone
  • Create light-hearted awards that recognize something unique about each person such as, "Best Screen-Saver," or "Best Joke Teller," and present the awards at a staff meeting or lunch.
  • Ask an employee who is proficient in a certain area to train others or make a presentation at a staff meeting.

If you have any ideas about how to have more fun at work or how to motivate employees, please let us know! If you use any of these ideas, we would love to hear how they worked out. Have a great week and be sure to have fun!

This week’s Bingo Number: G53

Posted under What’s New, Training Ideas by Stewart on Feb 11, 2009 | Comments: 0 | Post a comment»

Bingo Game for Enterprise Media Customers and other FUN stuff

It’s the New Year and despite the outlook on the economy, we are determined to still have some FUN!

If you haven’t received an email from us about this, please let us know. Anybody can play our Bingo game and no purchase is necessary. Just let us know that you would like to participate and we’ll send you a Bingo card. Then, check out our blog on a weekly basis to obtain that week’s Bingo number. Keep track of your numbers and if you hit BINGO, you will receive a FREE Enterprise Media Training DVD!

Even if you don’t win BINGO, you still win. You can use your card to qualify for a discount of $50.00 off the purchase of any Enterprise Media Training DVD during or after the Bingo game.

So that is our FUN way of saving money and interacting with our customers. What are yours? We are looking for your ideas on how to have fun in the office, the sales floor, and with your customers. We will post up the best ideas on our blog as we receive them. If you see your idea posted, then you will receive FREE overnight shipping on your next order!

See! This is FUN! Please email us at, call us at 1-800-423-6021 or fax us at 617-354-1637 to get your Bingo card, share your ideas or just check-in.

This weeks BINGO number is: 42

Posted under What’s New by Stewart on Feb 05, 2009 | Comments: 0 | Post a comment» X

Fresh, delicious, crisp...

Yes, we do still include a popcorn package with each DVD purchase. It’s our way of saying "thank you" for being our customer!