The DGAS Principle

DGAS stand for Don’t Give a S*&! and it is a good principle to do business by if you are in the advisory business like me. It doesn’t mean you are malicious or mean or provide bad advice, it means you can’t worry about how people react to your advice or your insights. It means you give the advice that you think is right, and not worry about how people react to it, because you know it’s the right advice.

As a consultant and strategic advisor, here’s what DGAS means to me:

  • You don’t chase bad prospects or opportunities
  • You don’t worry about “lost” business (which is really business you never had)
  • Your happiness isn’t tied to whether or not you close business
  • You tell clients and prospects what you are thinking, not what they want to hear
  • You build relationships on your terms, not others
  • You follow your process, not that of others
  • You don’t worry about things you can’t control
  • You don’t put undo pressure on yourself to do too many things at once
  • You don’t overthink things
  • You do your best and go home

What does DGAS mean for you?

Technology is making us lose our sense of direction

I just got back from a trip to Boston and took three cab rides while I was there. In all three instances, the cab driver had no idea where I was going without an address and an explanation. And these were not obscure places….hotels in main locations, world-renowned innovation centres, main office buildings.

I remember the good old days when cab drivers knew the city in which they were driving and could find fast and creative routes to your destination. Now, they can’t find their own house without a GPS.

I love technology, but in this case it’s making us lose our sense of direction. We rely so much on GPS technology that it has lowered our standards for selecting drivers for our cabs. You no longer need to know anything about the city. You just need a car and a pulse.

This is just the first step in the driver-less car…..if people can no longer rely on knowledge and judgment to get us places, they why do we need them?

VW sold its soul to the capitalist devil

VW is an easy company to write about these days because of the emissions test “cheating” that took place. With most organizations in this situation, I would say that they will recover fairly quickly and within a year or two be back to where they were.

I don’t think this will be the case for VW. With this emissions cheating, VW has rocked its’ loyal customer base to the core. These customers love VW for its flower-bearing Beetles and its environment-sustaining engines. VW was supposed to be the earthy car company that made you feel good about buying driving. Like you were actually helping the environment while all other cars were hurting it.

That perception has been destroyed. It’s like a leader getting voted into office on a certain platform, and then reversing his or her position on controversial issues once elected. VW owners feel like they have been duped.

It’s not about fixing the cars….that part is easy. VW has destroyed any loyalty it had with customers. It succumbed to greed and capitalism, which it was supposed to be immune to.

People can forgive a PR mistake or a bad decision….those happen all the time. I’m not sure people can forgive a decision that goes completely against what an organization was supposed to stand for. Imagine UNICEF choosing to let children die or the YMCA discriminating based on race or colour. That would be unheard of.

But here you have a car company that built its’ reputation on sustainability and making our world a better place, lying about the emissions its’ cars give off so it could sell more cars. Does it get much worse than that?

Miller’s Monday Morning Message

Andrew MillerMiller’s Monday Morning Message
presented by ACM Consulting Inc.

Andrew Miller on operational excellence, strategy, life balance and everything in between

Toronto – September 22, 2014
Now that the vote for Scottish independence is over and the ‘No’ vote came on top 55% to 45%, we will see the true impact of this campaign. Even though the result was a decision to remain part of the United Kingdom, the fact that 45% of the people voted ‘Yes’ means that some changes will need to happen. The British government can’t simply ignore 2 million Scots, can they?
 
This is a case where a no might as good as a yes. The Scots may get some of what they wanted without going through separation. The point of the referendum was to advocate for more rights for the Scots. Even a ‘No’ result did that. The U.K. government has already said that constitutional changes will be coming.
 
Have you ever been in a situation where a no was as good as a yes?
 
It may have allowed you to build a stronger relationship, or show additional value, or realize that you weren’t as prepared as you needed to be, or got your message across to a larger group of people.
 
Sometimes a no is as good as a yes, especially when the implications and impact of a ‘Yes’ would be far too severe.
 
To request an interview or more information, please contact:
 
Andrew Miller
416-480-1336

Follow me on Twitter @AndrewMillerACM
© Andrew Miller. All rights reserved. 2014.

Miller’s Monday Morning Message

Andrew MillerMiller’s Monday Morning Message
presented by ACM Consulting Inc.

Andrew Miller on operational excellence, strategy, life balance and everything in between

Toronto – December 16, 2013
It’s the time of year when everyone starts to slow down and reflect on the year that’s been. We work less, we enjoy more, and we start to think about changes we want to make for the new year.
 
I’ve never been a big fan of New Year’s resolutions for two reasons. Firstly, they rarely stick. Secondly, and more importantly, why wait to make the change? There are still two weeks left in the year. Why wait to start that diet or set up that meeting with a new prospective customer?
 
Executives are still working. Companies are still running. Customers are still buying. New products and services are still being invented and enhanced. There is no reason to wait until 2014 to make the behaviour changes you want to make. There is no better way to start off the new year well than by finishing off this year strongly.
 
While everyone else is slowing down, you speed up. That might create the competitive advantage you need to make 2014 your best year ever.
 
And to help you start the year off right, sign up for my free Operational Excellence workshop on January 30. You will learn strategies you can apply right away to help improve the profitability and performance of your organization.
 
To request an interview or more information, please contact:
 
Andrew Miller
416-480-1336
 
Follow me on Twitter @AndrewMillerACM
© Andrew Miller. All rights reserved. 2013.

Miller’s Monday Morning Message

Andrew MillerMiller’s Monday Morning Message
presented by ACM Consulting Inc.

Andrew Miller on operational excellence, strategy, life balance and everything in between

Toronto – November 25, 2013
The Dow Jones stock market index pushed above 16,000 this week, just continuing to show how thriving the US economy is. The job market is improving and we see the number of company acquisitions and the number of initial public offerings going up. This is a good sign. What might be the best sign is that all of this is happening despite an ineffective government. The US government is spending its time with partisan bickering, finger pointing, and ineffective implementation of government strategies. This may actually be a blessing for organizations because it keeps the government focused elsewhere and allows the free market system to run its course. This may be a good model for governments to follow in the future….set up rules and regulations to ensure fair trade and competition. Enforce those rules, and then let organizations and the economy operate freely within them. That is smart government. Contrast that to what is happening in many of the other major economies around the world and the US is looking awfully good right now, despite the behaviour of its political leaders.
 
To request an interview or more information, please contact:
 
Andrew Miller
416-480-1336
 
Follow me on Twitter @AndrewMillerACM
© Andrew Miller. All rights reserved. 2013.

Rob Ford needs to make a change

I have purposely stayed away from all of the fray that is the Rod Ford debacle. It’s no use taking pot shots when everyone else is. But this issue is getting out of hand. Mayor Ford has now taken to ridiculing fellow councillors, getting in shouting matches with the public, and generally disrupting the business of the city. Can you believe Toronto taxpayers are paying for all of this?

Corporate CEOs are let go by their boards when they under-perform. Just like they are accountable for their boards, Mayor Ford is accountable to the taxpayers. He had made it very clear that the only people he feels accountable to are the voters. The voters are his board of directors. The only way he will step down or even take a leave of absence is if the board of directors tells him to.

So far, the board has not been vocal about him stepping down. By passively watching, we are enabling this behaviour and sending the wrong message. Unless of course, this is how we want to city politics to be run in this great city of Toronto.

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