helping you master customer insight leadership

Do you know which rules to break or laws to follow?

Own photoSome authors and industry experts have real staying power.

Despite how much change happens in that industry, they manage to adapt and stay relevant to their readers/customers.

Such an accolade can surely be made about Don Peppers & Martha Rogers. In that way they live their own message.

I first came across Peppers & Roger’s writing back just before the new millennium.

Their classic “The 1to1 Future“, popularised the term One to One Marketing and helped the revolution in Database Marketing & Analytics. Previously I’ve also made reference to their most comprehensive work, “Managing Customer Relationships“, which should be required reading as a textbook on CRM (which is as relevant as ever even if an unfashionable name). (more…)

18 Minutes a day to revolutionise your Year

18 MinutesTalking with Customer Insight Leaders whilst coaching, training and consulting, I find many if not most struggle with prioritization & time management. Perhaps this is not all that surprising given both the greater demand for insight in many businesses and the breadth of this leadership role.

From chatting to some of you, it sounds like it may also be a reason why you struggle to protect time for leadership development (one of your intended priorities for 2015).

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Building a great Platform for your message

3D-Platform-Cover-For-Product-PageHope you’ve had a relaxing Easter holiday and been enjoying the improved Spring weather (at least here in Wales). During this welcome break, I’ve finished reading a very helpful book on use of social media, “Platform” by Michael Hyatt.

I first came across Michael online, as a prolific blogger and social media voice on intentional leadership. The wider advice he shares on his own blog is worth mentioning here, for the leadership focus of this blog.

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Is your heart aroused at work?

The Heart ArousedThis may sounds like a strange, perhaps slightly dodgy title for this site. Don’t worry, despite the recent focus on Fifty Shades of Grey & another type of arousing fiction, this is actually a book sharing what poetry can teach us about how to survive the workplace.

It’s subtitle is much clearer – “Poetry and the Preservation of the Soul at Work“.

Before that too threatens to put you off reading further, let me explain why I think this is relevant to all readers.

This is not a theoretical book or one for poetry buffs. Rather, through the metaphors & stories used in a number of classic poems/epics, the author explores struggles to which we can all relate. These include finding your own voice in work, the struggle to be authentic, coping with power, retaining creativity and how to maintain motivation when it all feels like dust. (more…)

How to play to your strengths this year

StrengthsFinder-2.0This book is more of a resource toolkit than a narrative read, but it is one that I’ve found useful for my own development & when coaching clients.

It’s a book for which you’ll want your own copy, not just because you want to make notes & complete the cover with your top 5 strengths, but also because each book has a unique code for you to use to complete an online ‘strengths finder’  test.

That test is grounded in the Positive Psychology movement and in fact this pocket-sized book is dedicated to the ‘father of strengths psychology’ Dr Donald Clifton. The first 30 pages of the book explains the benefits of focussing on your strengths rather than your weaknesses. I have seen this in true with many coaching clients. Too many leaders in business are encouraged to flagellate themselves about perceived weaknesses or have to focus on developing areas where they don’t have natural strengths.

This can be self-defeating for two reasons: first, it often fails – you are asking the person to ‘swim upstream’ against their natural personality which is rarely sustainable; second, that it means people assume they have to be like others in the organisation & so often neglect playing to their natural strengths where they could really excel. (more…)

How to be intentionally Happier, a book to help

Happier

The sub-title of this book is “Can you learn to be happy?” and this question is explored through a series of short chapters summarising the most popular course at Harvard today.

This might seem a strange topic for this blog, but my coaching work with customer insight leaders has taught me the power of Positive Psychology. It is also a short (168 pages) book, fun and very accessible; so a good compliment to some of the weightier tomes that I’ve reviewed here. (more…)

How to better measure your Marketing Payback

Marketing PaybackBack in 2005, when this was published, I was in the right job at the right time, so as to get a free copy. However, having since read and valued this important work, I would now happily of bought copies for myself and my team.

Professor Robert Shaw is one of the early gurus of applying analytics to marketing. In this text he steps the reader through how to both make your marketing profitable and prove that ROI to the rest of your business (especially Finance).

In fact this usefully comprehensive and practical guide is equally relevant to a Marketing, Finance of Customer Insight audience. However, in my experience, Customer Insight (or Database Marketing) are best placed to bridge the gap between these two disciplines. (more…)