Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Update of Web Site - Change is Good!

The web site has a few changes as you can see. More information will be coming in the near future. Judy

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Is Your Business Prepared for an Emergency Earthquake Disaster?

As a business owner it is important to have the business and the employees ready. It might be time for a review of the organization and its preparedness for emergencies of all types. A disaster can make or break a business.

Simple items done long before an event happens can make the difference between surviving or not. The recent terrible earthquake in Haiti shows how hundreds of years can go by before the “big one” can strike. The other side of the story is how devastating it can be. Only the pictures can really show the horrendous impact it can have on individual’s lives and businesses.

Being prepared is the best that can be done hoping that would ease the situation if it happened. Here are several excellent sites that have Common Sense Preparedness:

• LA Fire Department

The government is recommending 3 days of food/water etc. While that is good in reality it would be good to think longer than that. Each business needs to assess its situation.

Past meeting physical needs of the employees a business needs to think of its records, business accounts and supply chain. All of these items will be potentially disrupted as well. Each department needs to review its processes and how they would be impacted by a disaster.

Here is a great business resource:

Emergency Management Guide for Business & Industry

“Being Prepared” is the best way to handle an emergency disaster for the business!


Monday, January 04, 2010

“Go West Young Man and Woman” -- Opps I Mean Go East to the Land of Gold, Gems and Trees

“Go West” was a saying that reflected the West was the “Land of Opportunity”. Is West still the best direction today? This is confusing economic times and it is hard to know what to do. Which direction really leads to success especially after a financial failure?

Remember the ancient story of the newlyweds, who made a serious mistake and had to leave their paradise home. They faced several options. The question was which direction was the best - North, South, East or West. They received some interesting advice from their parent – go East. Now, if you are giving advice to your recently married children, who had made some serious mistakes, wouldn’t you want them to have a good land waiting for them?

This young couple was encouraged by their parent to follow the economic river going to the land “East”. This great economic river was easy to follow to a land of …no not of “milk and honey”. The economic river lead to a land with gold, gems and trees. It not only was a location for making great money (gold), which was called “good” by the parent. It, also, contained the ability to store wealth for the future (gems). Then to add spice to life it offered expanded opportunities, which made it a pleasant (trees to make spices, incenses and perfumes). That is what I call giving the kids good advice to make a new start in the right direction.

Confused about the economy today? Then maybe it is time to look “East” for a new start following the economic river to the “the New Opportunities” for the next decade. The result of following that river offers success. Remember there should be good money (gold), the ability to store wealth (gems) and it needs to make life happy (trees) in that direction. If your economic river is not taking you there then you are going the wrong direction and as the GPS in my vehicle says “As soon as possible make a U turn”!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

New Year Business Resolutions Opps I Mean Strategic Planning

The year 2010 promises to offer many new opportunities. While many are making their New Year's "Resoluations", it would be good to work on this year Strategtic Plan. Good questions would be:
  • Are the Strategic Goals still viable in this next year's market place?
  • Is the SWOT still current or does it need updated?
  • Is the Action Plan for this year adequate?
  • How can the Return on Equity (ROE) improve?
  • Are there new products/services that need added?
  • What products/services need dropped?
  • Does the business have a competitive advantage?
  • Can the business improve its Sustainability goal?
  • Does the business have enough cash reserves?

Reviewing the direction of the business is important. It might be a good time to take a deep breath and spend some time working on the Strategic Plan.

Enjoy your planning and Happy New Year!


Friday, September 25, 2009

Business in Retrench Mode Strategy

Businesses move into a Retrench Mode Strategy for a variety of reasons such as:
  1. The Economy makes a shift.
  2. The Local market makes a shift.
  3. A new competitor enters the market.
  4. A competitor makes a significant shift in the market.
  5. The supply chain makes a shift.
  6. The customer changes buying patterns.
  7. The owner(s) has a shift in their personal life.

At these times the business will need to address the issue and establish new goals and objectives.

If your business is facing any of these issues be prepared to move to a "Retrench Mode Strategy" at least for a while.


Wednesday, August 05, 2009

A Business Question - Is there a Return on Sustainability? Or simply put – “Is there Profitability in Sustainability?”

The business world is caught up in an economic crisis. The responsibility of maintaining a secure “bottom line” is important. The question that arises for business is – “Is there a Return on Sustainability?” Or simply put – “Is there Profitability in Sustainability?”

I attended an evening lecture on this subject in late July 2009 at City University of Seattle. The author/business consultant, Kevin Wilhelm, discussed his recently published book, “Return on Sustainability, How Business (Companies) Can Increase Profitability & address Climate Change in an Uncertain Economy”. The lecture was riveting.

A little about Kevin Wilhelm, he has become an expert in business and climate change. He holds an MBA from the University of Denver, two Graduate Certificates in Sustainable Business and Entrepreneurship from Bainbridge Graduate Institute. His consulting business, Sustainability Business Consulting, has served Fortune 500 multinationals to start-ups. He is Chair of the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce Sustainability Committee. Plus he assisted City University of Seattle in putting their MBA in Sustainability program together. His knowledge base is broad and deep.

The lecture mirrored portions of his book. This makes it easy for you to have the opportunity of learning from him. Let me share why I believe his book is worth the investment of time and money. The book is easy to read. It is factual and to the point. Business concepts, terms and principles are included in the book. The wealth of research is excellent. This makes the book a resource as well. The book is broke down into bite size chapters segmented into three sections not counting the Final Thoughts and reference material.

What I liked was how quickly Wilhelm moves into the “Meat” of the profitability issues of Return on Sustainability (ROS) in Section 1 - Addressing Climate Change and Business Benefits. This includes such topics as:

· Current Charts and Climate Change Information
· Carbon Foot Printing
· Buy-in and Business Language on the subject of Sustainability
· Reveals “How” the ROS process includes Financial, Brand, Sustainability and Ease of Implementation.
· Return on Sustainability (ROS) Score Card.
· Using Activity-Based Costing (ABC).
· Carbon Metrics Ratios – Return on Carbon, Debt-to-Carbon, Carbon-to-Equity (C/E), Emissions per Employee, Carbon-to-Price (C/P).

Section 2 covers Policy Issues; Section 3 includes a range of issues from Energy, Finance, Insurance, Supply Chain Management, Marketing to Green Consumers and Corporate Social Responsibility Reporting. Finally his has a Final Thoughts and excellent Appendixes.

Having taught Budgeting, Finance and Strategic Planning I would put this book as a must purchase for every business!

You can purchase the book in the Empress’s Sustainability Store on the upper right hand column.
  1. Click on Empress's Sustainability Store (if it shows you will need to refresh the page until the store appears)
  2. Use the drop down menu in Search and select Books
  3. Type in the search "Kevin Wilhelm Return on Sustainability". You will find the book is available in both Kindle and Paperback.

If you are interested in a business consultation, contact me.

Enjoy! Judy

P.S. I do write a blog on Sustainability

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