Monday, January 30, 2006

How loyal are your customers

Many businesses are out looking for new business, expending considerable energy and resources, it's just part of business life. However, many businesses make the mistake of not capturing the hearts and minds of their existing clients.

Loyalty programs consist of membership cards, points, coupons, and items to purchase with your points that are dull and take a zillion points to capture. Do these programs work? With limited success. In my opinion this is the lazy person's loyalty program.

For a truly effective loyalty program, the kind that build's incredible undeniable loyalty and amazing word-of-mouth advertising the corporation must committ to a serious culture of customer loyalty. Every touch point must exude customer loyalty. There are many ways to accomplish this goal and it does take effort. First, consider the customer experience in particular. Do you really know what your clients think of you and your business? Have you asked them with more conviction than a comment card? Getting inside the head of your typical client profile is a start. Then you should start to combine all the information you collect into a psychological profile of sorts that will provide insight into client logic and emotional response.

Loyalty programs that consider these important factors are much more likely to drive unwavering customer loyalty and eventually a group of customers that will act as your very own sales team.

Friday, January 27, 2006


Make innovation part of your everyday thinking. Insist on at least half an hour of blue-sky thinking from all of your people, every day.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Performance, strategy and people.

2006 is going to be incredible for fusedlogic, we're growing and very busy. That being said we want to be careful of making sure that the growth is controlled and anticipated. The importance of a strong and credible growth strategy is key. Keeping it up to date and on track is also key. The need for business owners to look into the future and anticipate what might happen to their business can be tough, this usually requires research, analyzation of the facts, trends and the pulse of the business community, political climate and world events.

Fusedlogic knows that in an ever increasingly competitive world, every inch and ounce you can squeeze out of your business performance score card is critical. That's why we've invested heavily into performance architecture and assisting clients to do just that.

I believe that on a clear day you can only see (6) months down the road. Today's world is just too unpredictable to bet any further into the future. That means that most company's have a strategy that is outdated almost as soon as it's printed. And why then do many company structures rely so heavily on outdated data to direct their operations? Ineffective reporting mechanisms typically is the answer. Decisions are required much faster than available outdated data can support and (really who wants to work on assumptions anyway?) the performance of a company suffers as a result.

I see this especially in the SME market where resources are always tight and people are less able to consider long term strategy, they're unaware of the cost effective solutions that can allow them to identify and measure performance.

Many executives have been focusing on how to manage their available data better, while wanting to get more accurate numbers sooner...HOW? Digital dashboards are not the simple answer. Working with a technology company that has a bloated over priced piece of technology isn't necessarily the key to performance success.

Not only should they consider the numbers but what about dynamics that involve the people behind the scenes? The staff actually charged with execution of the strategies in place? What if they're off on their performance, how would someone measure that daily and provide assistance where needed? Human resources need to be reallocated based on underlying skill set's the kinds of skills that you only know about from knowing the person themselves. Org charts rarely represent the true power within a corporations decision making capabilities and processes. Digital dashboards are rarely super effective in this role, take a look at yours and see if there is anyway to improve this aspect. The answer is of course if you're willing to pay for it.

There are however more cost effective solutions available and since this is my blog I can be shameless and plug our own solution. IT WORKS! For all sizes of organization and it's a two stage approach that many other companies DO NOT have. Strategic diagnostics - find out what's wrong, prioritize the issues along with providing corresponding solutions and then determine what to measure and measure it all the while identifying the source of the pain.

Don't be afraid to break out of the norm and consider strategy MORE than once a year and remember to look at the people factor. Demand more of your performance architecture, better answers sooner and start measuring different things if nothing else to provide a new perspective.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

$1000.00 solution

Fusedlogic is in a great position, we're able to offer new clients the $1000.00 solution. We're agreeing to solve any business related problem the business owner has and all they have to pay is $1000.00 +taxes of course.

There are some simple restrictions but mostly just to weed out the goofballs. The other exciting thing for the client is that IF we fail, we're going to refund 100% of the money back to them. They can't lose.

This is a way for me to allow the really interesting small businesses to be able to play ball with us and to get a leg up with large value attached. Sometimes all it takes is that one really rare idea to kick the business into over drive. That's something we're really good at.

I've also decided to do this because I want to grow our own company and this is a way for me to be aggressive in the marketplace. Besides if the business can't afford a $1000.00 bucks than there's likely more than one solution required to fix it.

This is going to be a whole lot of fun projects I can tell already. Stay tuned as I'll discuss some of them here in the coming weeks.

Oh and watch for the new site at the launch date is getting closer...just around the corner in fact.

Friday, January 13, 2006


There are variables to acheiving success that all too often get in the way a perfectly good opportunity.

Politics must be the number one offender in this regard. The thirst for power has been a human trait forever. As experienced business owners you'll come to recognize this element in deals you are trying to close when a mid-level proponent of your deal trys to "run it up the flap pole," as it were. Failure of top executives to recognize the value of your deal can be damaging to one's career and so politics and risk assessment enter into the picture and in many cases can kill the deal.

So here are some ways that I've found that may assist you in a turbulent political environment.

  • Understand the political dynamics as part of your research.
  • Realize that the org chart rarely presents an accurate picture of power within.
  • Talk to a lower positioned employee(s) if possible about inner-office dynamics.
  • Understand the corporate culture.
  • Be direct in asking questions behind closed doors once rapport is well established.
  • Always be aware of who wins and who can lose on the deal, which job is in jepoardy if you succeed.
  • Does the organization have the will to spend the budget and the will to follow through, have they completed past projects or experienced failures.
  • Remember that power can corrupt and you don't want to be a pawn in an internal power play, be careful with who you align with.
  • Do your homework, on the person, the team and the company.
  • Understand what your business associate on the client side is going through and aid them in telling a compelling story to top executives. Even top executives need assistance here with their board of directors and shareholders.

Be observant of the little details as they can become big details quickly. Keep your witts about you and remember there are hidden agendas, identify them if possible and act accordingly.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Erosion of Talent

The company my wife used to work for not only lost her talents almost 2 years ago but has been losing top talent consistently on an on-going basis. Unfortunately, this company (insurance) has little clue as to the reasons and true cost of the exodus from their ranks.

Most savvy business people recognize the financial cost attached to training new people, in this case, the company has done little to address the real issues affecting their staff. Oh sure, they're generous in many ways, bonuses, Christmas parties, staff motivational training and even cost covering with things like personal counseling for staff and their families. (a great idea)

So why are they failing so brilliantly at staff retention? Work environment and culture - the real underlying culture that exists. Many businesses put on a good show to the outside world in terms of staff treatment and this company is doing a lot right but it hasn't been enough because they've failed to pinpoint the central issues. Every business has those underlying personality conflicts, unwritten rules, secret or internal power struggles that go on, invisible barriers for certain staff on the fast track to nowhere.

Executives in this company have tried to in their own way show they care for their staff, in fact, I know the managing partner to be quite a deep feeling man. Still, they leave.

Solution: Diagnostics - Owners/executives should drill into the true feelings of your staff by inviting staff one at a time to participate in a blind 360 evaluation of strictly the corporate culture, office environment, leave no stone unturned with respect to personality conflicts and most importantly involve the spouse in this 360. They have a unique perspective on how the staff member feels about their work, hearing the work stories every day. Bottomline provide a method for communication about what is really bothering them without retribution and commit to addressing these issues head on, in more than just a global email or memo. If the staff do not see commitment at this stage they'll drop out of participation in the future and you're done for.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


It's the difference between doing $100,000.00 and $1,000,000.00. Many business people have a limited and in some cases an unfortunate perception of the marketplace and because of that it impedes their ability to truly capitalize on serious opportunity.

Ask someone like my grandfather what he did for a living and you'd usually get straight forward response. "I drive a garbage truck." However, after taking a serious look at the actual results of his work, he in his day maybe not as much but today these folks like to call themselves Waste Management Engineers. Perception can make a huge difference on how you attract and who you attract to your business. Many people may call us business or management consultants, the title on my card states "Chief Evolution Officer."

I believe that our clients in order to be more successful must EVOLVE. Some call it a type of emotional personal growth, or change and I think that's fair but I like to quantify the big picture as evolution. Peering deep within to analyze why we perform at business the way we do, leveraging and adding to the intrinsic strengths found and unleashing amazing hidden potential. This change in self-perception can happen with the CEO or the whole organization. They might drive a truck that hauls garbage away but what they're really doing is assisting with the environment through recycling, providing the reworked building blocks for new products.

My grandfather when he was alive used to be a Waste Management Engineer, although when I was a kid he just used to tell me he drove a garabage truck. I never really new what that meant to the world at the time but its the unsung people like my grandfather who keep this world turning. I guess you'd call that my perception on the subject.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Website Development...

This topic comes from the fact that we're currently in a re-development process with our site and are working with a company who specializes in not only web development but business application development and even more specifically Content Management Systems.

Mediashaker has developed a very cool, highly useful CMS and I've seen my fair share of lousy offerings in this space. This will be the first time Fusedlogic employs such a program to keep our content fresh and up to date by ourselves. When planning the redesign I found it really valuable to consider not only what Fusedlogic's needs were today but phase 2 and even 3. Planning ahead can really save time, effort and resources at the upgrade time. Mediashaker has been instrumental in keeping the project on track and really maintaining the spirit of what our site is designed to do. Which is educate and generate interest in our "Performance Architecture" program or the Fusedlogic Command Centre as you'll come to know it soon. We're very excited about this new product direction and we know that once our clients fully appreciate its power they'll be really excited as well.

The website will be a crucial link in the communication of the Command Centre's capabilities and in fact will be an access point for clients as well.

Stay tuned, development is going well and we're close to a launch date....