How Kissing Frogs Can Drive Change and Increase Business

Recently, I reported on insights and advice from Jason Jennings and his national bestseller Think Big and Act Small.

In his most recent book, The Reinventors, he talks about how extraordinary companies pursue radical, continuous change and then grow their business.

He reports on various successful strategies that drove companies like Starbucks, Apollo Tyres, Arrow Electronics and Smithfield Foods.

In this insightful book, Jennings covers nine strategies for radical, continuous change. My favorite is “Kiss A Lot of Frogs” or what he calls placing smaller business bets. His Frogs’ action plan:

  1. Let go of the fairytale – – remind yourself you have to kiss a lot of frogs to find the prince.
  2. Build a culture in which every worker understands and believes that every little piece of innovation or reinvention is going to add to the company’s ability to compete and grow long-term.
  3. Make as many small bets as your financial resources allow, with enough time available to analyze and learn from each one. A culture change gets built by constantly making small bets.
  4. An added benefit of small bets is that the incremental revenue often drops straight to the bottom line. The revenue generated by Starbucks’ many small bets (free Wi-Fi, mobile payments, Perfect Oatmeal, etc.) was greater than the company’s total profits in 2010.
  5. Learn in loops by constantly changing, tweaking, improving, and improvising the small bets you make. Make your small bets SMART bets: Specific, Measurable, Accountable, Resourced and Timed.
  6. Don’t allow skunking – – the spraying of negativity will ruin your small bets.
  7. Give good feedback – – instruction that is relevant, helpful, and timely in small doses enough to swallow – instead of waiting until it’s too late to affect the outcomes or offering vague encouragement/pep talks that just frustrate the recipient. Get some feedback on the value of your feedback.
  8. Admit and learn from the mistakes you make. Mistakes are okay; the cover-up isn’t.

Okay now put this in the context of what you’re doing in terms of communicating and connecting with your customers.

Think about – – do you have social and mainstream strategies, have you optimized your content, are you communicating through the most powerful channels and how are you measuring your strategies?

So, Jennings Frogs’ strategy can be just as relevant for your communications as well as your business culture.

Kevin Donnellon

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