Sunday, December 31, 2006

Welcome 2007

Happy New Year! "The year of the BIG payday!" -ski

Small Business

"The business of America is business." -Calvin Coolidge The smaller, the better. How so? Leadership. Not the kind that we find on so many blogs, that confuse management with leadership. I was taught (or assume that I was taught, it might just be the internalization of repeated exposure) that we manage things, and lead people. Makes sense. Few businesses run by managers will find themselves on the purple curve of unending growth. It takes leadership. Use cases. A use case describes a sequence of actions that provide something of measurable value to an actor. Actors. An actor is a person, organization, or external system that plays a role in one or more interactions with your system. In my spare time, I have tried to introduce Use Cases into Constraints Management circles. Those in the world of computer software development (especially those using object-oriented methodologies) understand the power of these simple stick men. Lets pick on Suzie. The HR Director that I introduced in Purple Curve Effect. She did so well with Todd's help, that head-hunters started recruiting her! Which led her to an epiphany that her skills were valuable enough to consider a career change. Leadership For me, before Suzie jumps ship, I would suggest some thinking exercises with Use Cases. Who is her customer today? Draw a simple stick figure. What is that person's title or function? Is it an internal or external person? I go on to put myself in that stick person's shoes... how does the world look from their vantage point? What is their mission or goal? What pressures are they under to perform? Leadership is about thinking outside the box. Outside YOUR box, and thinking about the box your customer is in, and what challenges they must overcome to be successful. Then, the leader will jump into the box with the customer, and help them fight their way to success (read profit!). The true leader will recruit others in their organization to jump in along side, to take hold with, and together everyone achieves more (TEAM). All the while lining up these actions with their own corporate mission statement! So much easier to do in a small business. And yet, perhaps more difficult. Another dichotomy, for another post on another day. However, there are large businesses that understand and appreciate the "out of the box" leader. Does your employer? Are you even such an individual? How is your new year going to be different from the old year? Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah P.S. See these Use Cases applied at the Purple Curve Workshop in Canton, Ohio. tag:

Best Places to Work

It is that time of year, again... Folks like Computerworld are publishing their lists of best places to work in IT. Other such lists cannot be far behind. Here is my challenge for those of us basically self-employed: tell the world why. Why your entrepreneurial effort beats even the best of the best in jobs. But tell us on your blog. I do not allow comments on by blog for a lot of reasons, including the spam issue. But more importantly, I would rather see you reply (to most any of my posts) on your blog, in order to see the internalization that takes place as you express yourself in your natural habitat. Simply link your reply to this post. Consider adding the tag "best places to work" for technorati and the Z-lister debate. {grin} Allow me to offer a couple thoughts of my own to start the process: Why self-employment is Thee Best Place to Work
  • I get to keep 100% of the profits
  • I get to work as late as necessary
  • I can sleep in (rarely, but the option is there, and that makes my place, one of the best places to work!)
  • I select my team mates based on their ability to produce results (not on seniority or other stupid rules that actually reduce the likelihood of producing results)
  • With today's technology, I may choose great places to live and therefore work (like my beloved Hilton Head Island or Ft. Lauderdale)
  • I get to use an Apple Mac Mini (the ultimate computer; finally a computer worthy of retiring my NeXTstation!)
  • I can ignore the phone when known bozos call
Obviously not all inclusive, but a hint at some of the reasons that make my business one of the "best places to work". Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah P.S. Do send me a link to your post and I will acknowledge your contribution. In fact, the best contribution received by 12noon on January 7, 2007 will receive a copy of my book, Purple Curve Effect. Email your links to: to qualify. tag:

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Making Money

Adrian Slywotzky's The Art of Profitability Here comes a bold statement, but I have no trouble making it... and as Zig Ziglar says, its gonna be profound: "If you do not own The Art of Profitability then you are not serious about making money. Real money" Well, okay, first you buy it, then you have to read it. Over and over. Until "light breaks over marble head." Then you get to my workshop to see it applied "up close & personal". I would suggest that the better car dealers and motorcycle dealers have read it. At least someone in authority did for my last two major purchases. Anyone that knows me, knows that I love America and make every attempt to "buy American" every chance I get. Like my new V-Rod by Harley-Davidson. The dealer sold me on gap insurance. Their own policy. Where they make the profit. As good as the Harley brand is, the minute one rides a new bike off the showroom floor, its value (at least in the eyes of the insurance industry) drops significantly. Well, Adrian discusses this profit model. Among 20-something other models. And in one of the chapters, the main character talks of taking his wife to Hilton Head Island for a few days. Besides preaching Americanism (I would hope my colleagues around the globe are preaching the benefits of their homeland), I love to talk about my beloved Hilton Head Island. We first visited the island in 1983. It took until January 4, 1997 for me to relocate to this island paradise. It is a great place to vacation. It is an even better place to live. But I digress... If you are serious about making money in 2007, you need to attend the Purple Curve Workshop. Together, we will create a game plan for your success. Still not sure? Call me. Let's discuss your personal situation. I have been electrifying students for years! And producing results. Make 2007 your year of "the BIG payday!" Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah P.S. I have been helping folks make money for years. tag:

Friday, December 29, 2006

Sun Microsystems Sales Force

Sun Microsystems Remakes Its Sale Force Wall Street Journal article By Christopher Lawton Interesting... maybe my remarks to some folks at Sun back in December 2005 made a difference? I suggested that they may want to review the landmark book, To Catch a Mouse Make a Noise Like a Cheese by Lewis Kornfeld. I was trying to buy one of their servers, during a promotion that they were running for the Sun Ultra 20. They were giving them away, if you bought the service contract for three years. As I recall, they required a credit card that had an expiration date at least three years into the future, then they would bill you monthly. Great idea. As had become the case however, poor implementation. During the 1990s Sun hardware and the Sybase RDBMS was my preferred platform. Although I had pushed NeXT to implement NeXTstep (called OpenSTEP on non-NeXT hardware as I recall) on the HP PA-RISC platform... but I digress. Sun also had a lousy video with poor sound qualities to promote the Ultra 20. I recommended that my contact look at Steve Job's (then) recent iPod video from apple dot com to learn how video promotions should be done by Fortune 1000 organizations. I am not interested in helping a publicly traded company, but if I were, I would say focus on the sales function. But too little, maybe too late for Sun. The article quotes one customer of 10 years (not me) as saying "Sun had become a fairly complex organization." Too bad. Wonder if I shared my classic "everyone is in sales" speech? Oh well. I hope they make it. The products are exceptional. Tell you what, if anyone in sales at Sun Microsystems attends the upcoming Purple Curve Workshop on January 19th, I will give them an extra copy of my book for Jonathan Schwartz. Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah tag:

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Starbucks and blogging

Reflecting on Starbucks As some of you know, I wrote about two companies in Purple Curve Effect that offered a great customer experience. Even encouraged readers to visit any of their stores and observe what (and how) they did what they did, differently than most retailers. Well, one of them was bought, and the bigger fish has all but destroyed the experience. Too bad. I now look for ways to NOT go in one of their locations. However, Starbucks is still a class act. In fact, the Starbucks is even more rewarding today, as my better half can now find drinks that she enjoys. Five years ago, that was not the case. So, if you have not visited a Starbucks lately, give them another shot. Make mine a decaf, grande Frappuccino® ... Blogging But the reason for this post, was in part a result of the "what I learned" exercise from yesterday. While surfing the other posts to Ben's query, I ran across a blogger known as starbucker. And his post on Starbucks. I actually heard about starbucker through the LivingLeadership blog post on what she learned this year. I said all that, to say, starbucker talks about a goal of Starbucks to serve everyone in three minutes or less. And the fact that they have yet to meet that goal. Again, a good post. However, having the goal is the right thing to do. As long as they never loose sight of the importance of true customer service. I would rather this goal exist, and never be achieved, than to drop it in favor of simply striving for "better customer service". It is the dichotomy that helps create the great experience! Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah tag:

Eleventh Tenet

Eleventh Tee on Scarlet, Ohio State University How much golf is enough? I had a client retire, and after three months of golfing "at will", said that he had played enough. I like what Dr. Robert Schuller said, "I played golf until it threaten my religion!" Purple Curve Effect Tenet #11: "Only by fixing cashflow can most businesses survive long enough to find and fix the true weakest link." What are you doing that threatens your cashflow? Near the start of my computer consulting days (circa 1980's), I computerized a lot of manual accounting systems, using the great software from Open Systems Accounting Software (OSAS). It just worked. And the source code was included (hence the term 'open'). One client had the best approach to cash management that I have seen in 20+ years of working with small privately held firms: The Cash Inventory Ledger As in, "cash" as an inventory item. As in, "how much cash do we have today?" Why did it increase? Or, why did it decrease from the day before? Now, you see why I love the Open Source movement. We had to make a lot of modifications and write a lot of new code, to properly computerize this component of the old manual system. The gentleman had been through a bankruptcy a number of years prior, and learned the hard way that "cash is king". He realized after the fact, that if he had only tracked his cashflow better, he could have survived. The cash factor is twice as important to the startup. Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah tag:

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

What I learned

What did I learn this year? A lot! Although the project officially ended Sunday, Ben is still accepting posts this week. And that is why I offer this post. One of those, "wish that I had thought of it" kinda projects... allow me to share just one profound moment from 2006. Eli Goldratt is brilliant. Ok, I already knew that. His P&Q example is brilliant. Yep, I knew that too. Here is the drop shot for all the money: "If your client does not understand the P&Q example and its ramifications, you cannot help them. Period. End of discussion. No amount of wishing will change the outcome." A little history is in order. I know the P&Q exercise is profound. Not just good, or great, or even brilliant. It is profound. So, when I had Eli on the phone a number of years ago, I asked permission to include the example in my then, upcoming book, Purple Curve Effect. I have used the P&Q to test understanding. You must allow the participant to work the example out, long-hand for themselves to truly determine their effectiveness. If they refuse to work it out, simply comment (quietly to yourself) "next" and thank them for their time. Then run away! Far away. And yes, my book is worth the $19.95USD price just for the P&Q example. Or the H. William Dettmer Foreword. Or the Index that Thayer Bennett created. Oh yea, I had a number of profound thoughts you might want to check out. Better yet, do what ever is required to get one of the fifty (50) seats in my workshop on Friday, January 19, 2007 in Canton, Ohio. I am giving a copy of the book to each attendee. Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah tag:

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Tenth Tenet

Tenth Tee at Harbour Town on Hilton Head Island, SC Ever wonder why professional golfers have caddies? SKI's Tenth Tenet: "Two heads are better than one" Common sense, right? I talk about the power of a SME (subject matter expert) and Constraints Management Jonah teaming up to turbocharge results. But it is more than just good horse sense... The great golfers know when to ignore their caddy. I often wonder if I too, made my book to easy to discount. In Purple Curve Effect, we talk about Eli Goldratt and his world wide best seller, The Goal. The fact that once read, a lot of otherwise smart people put the book down, and go about their business. It is too good. Well, my book is not too good. But it is the best guide I know for accomplishing one's dreams, regardless the mission. And I have read a lot of books. Some great ones. Like Jim Collins' Good to Great (actually, I have it on CD-ROM and my iPod, not in book form). And some not so great... but regardless, I can usually find at least one nugget to justify the purchase. But I digress... Having trouble making this tenth tenet seem profound? Better buy my book! Or attend the workshop next month. They will even improve your golf game! Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Updated Agenda for Workshop

Ron McDaniel and Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey present: Complete Agenda, Bios and Registration online {here}

Ninth Tenet and Boyd's OODA Loop

Smaller is Better Our ninth tenet from Purple Curve Effect is about planning in smaller batches, to allow one the flexibility to jump onto the purple curve of unending growth: "Plan your work in small units of time. It will allow you the flexibility to jump onto the purple curve." As H. William Dettmer suggests in Strategic Navigation, "speed alone" is not the key to Boyd's OODA loop. Yes, you must cycle through the Observe-Orient-Act-Decide process faster than your competitor, however, by implicitly knowing your plan, and the incremental transitions to the next step, one gains significant advantage. In Chapter Ten, where this tenet was birthed, I was talking about TOCreview magazine. The plan called for the creation of the full-color magazine in just 90 days. The project plan had a fairly large number of moving parts, but each aspect was broken down into small enough chunks to allow processing. And the constant last minute adjustments that always surface in any project. By looking at the components (and yet knowing the look & feel of the finished product), I was able to elevate any sub-task as necessary to keep the whole project on time. Some of you may know that it actually took 95 days. Eli Goldratt suggested that I use Critial Chain Project Management next time. Good insight. One of the keys of CCPM is buffer management. As i did not allow for any buffers, we ran over five days. Live and learn. And that is the message (one of many!) in Purple Curve Effect. Live and Learn! How are you going to have a dream come true, if you do not have a dream? Already have a dream? Maybe not as big as Bono's? Or Cindi's? So what. Start where you are. If you have not already done so, buy my book... it is that good (and important!). Then jump into action. A generic game plan is included in book, at no extra charge! I even show you how to adapt it to your mission. Still having trouble? Write me. Together, we can change the world! Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah P.S. I have added a PDF of Chapter 10 from Purple Curve Effect. (c)Copyright 2006, Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey. All rights reserved.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Wake up call

This is your wake up call... Unlike the windfall from GG to Bud Fox in the Wall Street movie, there are legal methods for earning eight hundred thousand dollars. There are a number of people that have accomplished such amazing results in very short time frames. "If the dream is big enough, the facts don't count." Consider bringing your dream to the Purple Curve Workshop on Friday, January 19th. See if we cannot impart some practical wisdom, mixed with olde fashion encouragement, to help you design a system for making money... or getting out of debt... or changing the world. Seating is limited. Register today. Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah (c)Copyright 2006, Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey

More World Peace

A year ago... Give or take a few days, I shared the World Peace Passport with readers. So what? What have you done with this worthy effort? If you are like me, nothing. As the year closes around us, this is a mission that deserves more of my attention. I will contact them anew today, and simply ask, "what can I do to help?" Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah (c)Copyright 2006, Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey

Friday, December 15, 2006

Nothing proves like time

John Bray "gets it" He claims that online booking will exceed traditional booking in 2007 I concur. Back in October 2000, I created an Open Source based module to help tip this movement... in fact, at an industry conference and workshop, my company, LLC had a vendor booth to promote our wares... complete with a press release crafted in part by Thayer Bennett. What happened at the conference? Nothing. We did not sign up one vacation rental company. Why? The complete answer would fill a textbook... the short answer: most attendees were too busy putting out fires to see the future bearing down on their industry. They are not alone. We all do it. Yes, even the SKI man. I did not get RSS feeds for the longest time (90 days, which is a life time in our connected and web oriented world). And for all my preaching, very few of my colleagues use RSS on a daily basis. FYI: my home page is bloglines dot com. But I digress... The good news, the client we developed the RMS2WEB app for went on to sell the business a few years later for many millions of dollars. Yes, they were already a leader. Da. But the millions in real dollars that I helped book (in real time) played a part in the valuation. One of the principals made a great observation in 2000, when I mentioned my frustration at the lack of interest in my solution. He said basically, sorry about your luck, but that is good news for me. In less than a year of implementing my product, 80% of his business was being booked via the web. Oh well. As the late Colonel Hannibal Smith (George Peppard) said: "I just love it when a plan comes together!" Colour me right. Again. It will not be the last time. Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah (c)Copyright 2006, Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah

Monday, December 11, 2006

Sears and more

Patriotic Business A friend emailed me a note about Sears and its policy concerning military reservist employees. Amazing. I hope to see you all at Sears this Christmas season. Sales 101 Another friend started a discussion about marketing, and during an exchange of posts, he proved once again, why he is one of the most successful and respected business professionals in the Constraints Management world: he asked for the order! What are you doing to move your business forward? Purple Curve Workshop Well, fear not! If you can get to Canton, Ohio on Friday, January 19th, you too can pick up some valuable pointers in Constraints Management, Sales, and Marketing. In fact, seating is limited, so act quickly! I have a surprise (as always!) up my sleeve: the Keynote is by Ron McDaniel. He has helped companies stand out and create a buzz for years. He just published his book, Buzzoodle Buzz Marketing, which shows small and medium businesses how to create buzz, get more referrals and grow their organization in as little as 5 minutes per day. Buy your copy today! Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Eighth Tenet

Purple Curve Effect Eighth Tenet: Every business has real problems requiring real solutions. When I wrote this over two years ago, it made sense. Today, even more. I was on a gig where everything seemed to be going well... no real fires to fight, at least not on a daily basis. As time elapsed, a number of cracks in the mortar appeared. Every business has a weakest link. What is the expression, "still water runs deep?" In recent posts, I have been talking about the importance of the dream. The mission. Doubt that YOUR business has problems, great. Set a mission to grow or increase in market share (or whatever), then use the Purple Curve book to make that happen. Challenges will arise. The good news: the answers are in the book! {grin} I try to re-read the book just about every month (as time permits). As Bill Dettmer said, "it is a fast read". Why? There are some great truths that need revisited. Like "testing". The up-coming workshop on applying the "Purple Curve" to your life and/or business is for anyone and everyone. Unlike the Jonah3+3™ course, this workshop is affordable! It will clear the air concerning Goldratt's TOC, Dettmer's CMM, and Boyd's OODA Loop. We will define both internal and external constraints, and how to deal with them effectively. If you need to make significant progress, you need to buy the book. The PDF is just two bucks. Then, be at the workshop on Friday, January 19, 2007 in Canton, Ohio at the Kent State Stark Conference Center. As my friend and fellow author Todd Canedy says about the Purple Curve, "It may just be the 'kick in the pants' you are not getting!" Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah

More Dreaming

apple mac mini #01.3 :: December 7, 2006 :: 07:55 EST i wrote about the new intel based apple iMacs back in february of this year, and encouraged everyone to buy one! well... i took my own advice! and bought one. actually, to talk about dreams coming true, lets talk about the first macintosh. i had started a computer club for kent state tusCampus in 1981 (as i recall) and we had an intro session when IBM released their first PC. then, in january or february of 1984, i put on a huge event to introduce the Apple Mac. the canton, ohio dealer brought one of the few macs in the state to the event... i even special ordered mcintosh apples for the event. but i digress... i saw the beauty of a simple graphical user interface, and decided that i had to have one. ordered it, and waited like a lot of other folks. while waiting, i had to figure out how to pay for it! i had a new dream, and i was determined to make it come true. and did. same with the mac mini. what dream are you dreaming? how are you going to have a dream come true, if you do not have one? how can one change the world without a dream? need help? ask. Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Living in the Moment

Living in the Moment Enjoying every second By Dr. Roger A Rhoades (c)2006 Foreword by Thayer Bennett Published by Throughput Press ISBN13: 978-0-9760692-4-9 Buy now Securely Link: {here} It is rare when I get excited about a book that is not strictly 'business'... this is an exception. One chapter talks about the imagination. I have always had a very active one! Some great olde fashion wisdom and common sense. Something I place a lot of value on... Check it out, it just may be the encouragement you need. Today. -ski

Sunday, December 03, 2006

The Dream

the goal. mission. purpose. i could write for days without end on the importance of making the dream one's focal point, and still not convey the power of this concept. ---- #01.1 :: December 3, 2007 :: 8:33am EST where to begin... with a recent example: my new Harley V-Rod. a number of years ago, my brother asked what i thought about the revolutionary new motorcycle (a radical departure for them, including their first water cooled engine) the 2002 V-Rod. i had not heard about it! sure enough, it was on the cover of magazines everywhere. looking most excellent. with engine design help from of all folks, the masters of air cooled "go fast" machines: Porsche! did i mention this was water-cooled? i test rode the wheels off this $17k wonder every chance i had... but had to settle (in the short term) for the Buell. used. but i kept dreaming. test riding them. studying the web site. reading articles about them. telling folks that some day i would own one. today, i do. dreams do come true... ---- #01.2 :: December 3, 2006 :: 13:13 EST how about a biz example? ok, TOCreview magazine. i have told this story from several vantage points over the years. what i did not mention, was when i made the decision to create this international biz leadership rag, i went and bought over one-hundred dollars worth of my favorite magazines... to study. to create a mental image of what success looked like... or in the words of Purple Curve Effect, "to find a working model and steal it!" using goldratt's TOC (theory of constraints), it took just 95 days (yes, DAYS) to create the magazine. as fine and professional as any magazine on any newsstand in any bookstore. because the dream of creating it on such a short timeline was bigger than all the reasons that it could not be done. i had the mental picture of the completed project in my mind's eye, before ever starting...

Saturday, December 02, 2006


JAD (Joint Application Development) Scott at Tyner Blain say "Design", but we did a whole project within the JAD while I was consulting at Lexis-Nexis... my boss actually had me doing RAD during the sessions. I created a great "change management" app that worked within the framework of their helpdesk app... using Tcl and Sybase and a GUI builder by Scopus. The good olde days... JADs are still the way to go for larger organizations. The key role: the project sponsor. Get a good one! Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah

Workshop Coming to Ohio

Jeff 'SKI' Kinsey, Jonah Purple Curve Workshop in Canton, Ohio Friday, January 19, 2007 Details online {here}

Friday, December 01, 2006

(RED) letter day

December 1, 2006 is the first World AIDS Day (RED) was created by Bono and Bobby Shriver, Chairman of DATA, to raise awareness and money for The Global Fund by teaming up with the world's most iconic brands to produce (PRODUCT) RED-branded products. A percentage of each (PRODUCT) RED product sold is given to The Global Fund. The money helps women and children with HIV/AIDS in Africa.