About Bob Schultek

Bob has more than 30 years of service as a senior sales and business development executive, CEO and business owner. His expertise includes customer-partnered business development, strategic planning, sales management, customer service, operational alignment, lean process analysis and improvement, quality assurance, and performance management. He has worked in the energy, medical device, bioscience & pharmaceutical, discrete and process manufacturing, packaging and distribution, communications and information technology, and business-to-business service industries.

3 Steps to Ensuring Team Commitment


Leaders seeking commitment from their teams regarding the implementation of a decision often encounter delays as a team pursues consensus and certainty. Living with the reality that decisions must be made promptly, and typically with limited time for research or analysis, is a fact of life for leaders; they understand that these circumstances could lead to a decision being wrong. But their teams may struggle with this reality as they work towards committing to the decision.

Commitment is possible when there is clarity about its impact and unanimous team agreement that fosters confidence about the support of every team member to proceed, without lingering doubts that might later diminish support.

Failure to secure this team commitment will generate ambiguity among the team about direction and priorities, producing discord and conflict within the organization. Hesitation and fear of failure grow as second guessing becomes the norm. Opportunities disappear because reaction times are too slow.

Consider these 3 steps to ensure team commitment:

Clarify and confirm your message.  At the end of team meetings, summarize decisions that have been made, identify employees and other stakeholders that will be impacted by the decisions, and agree on precisely what will be communicated to these stakeholders.  This post-meeting […]

By |May 23rd, 2017|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

The Sale Tale

Without customers, there is no business. New orders from these customers are the lifeblood of every company. As a result, sales teams are incented to close more orders.

But getting the order is only the beginning of the sale tale. Until the customer pays the invoice, new orders are just promissory notes, reflecting your commitment to deliver your promised solution and the customer’s promise of payment if satisfied. The order may be booked, but the sale isn’t closed until you get paid.

Compensating a sales team exclusively on orders booked, without consideration of all that is required to fulfill your solution’s promise, satisfy the customer and get paid, does nothing to help your team build enduring customer partnerships or raise appreciation about how producing promised results for the customer sustains the success of your business.

Every day that payment is delayed – because results didn’t match your promise, or delivery took longer than what you specified, or your quoted price didn’t reflect the customer’s history of paying later than agreed terms – reduces the value of the booked order for your organization. Why? Because to deliver what is promised, your business invests resources to produce and deliver your solution, and then waits […]

By |May 16th, 2017|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

Inspiring Improvement

Bob Schultek
Author of The Gauntlet

Pursuing improvement means tackling change.

Change is hard work…it requires commitment, perseverance and discretionary effort.
Commitment, perseverance and discretionary effort cannot be commanded…they must be inspired.

Inspiration rises when people believe that their work is meaningful…that they are making a difference.

The awareness that work is meaningful springs from the expression of a Company’s Purpose and how consistently its leaders and people act in accordance with that Purpose.

Only the people in a business can change it, and they will only invest the commitment, perseverance and discretionary effort required to do so if they believe that their actions can make a difference.

Inspiring improvement begins with a declaration of Purpose.

How are you inspiring your people to invest discretionary effort?
When was the last time you pondered your organization’s Purpose?

The 2 Sides of Promise

Bob Schultek
Author of The Gauntlet

Customers don’t buy your product or service – they buy the benefits your solution promises to produce. The most compelling solutions generate strategic value, a quantifiable financial advantage that stimulates customer growth, paired with a strengthening of their distinctiveness and competitive advantage. These promises cultivate enduring relationships when they are fulfilled.

Delivering what you pledged to deliver is the other side of your promise. Without fulfillment, your promise is a wasted gesture that breeds mistrust.

Your sales team can book a record number of orders, but if your operating teams choke on the influx of business, and can’t deliver what you promised when you promised it, then the record-setting sales effort will generate frustration rather than additional orders. You can demand that your people ship all orders on time, and if they are committed to your business, they will do their best; but consequences will arise, ranging from quality problems to employee burn-out. To give your order fulfillment people, your promise keepers, the best shot at success, encourage them to continuously increase throughput by improving operational processes that boost quality, efficiency and capacity, in addition to cash flow, so you can capitalize on order growth.

To grow a business, […]

Challenging the Status Quo

Bob Schultek
Author of The Gauntlet

Implementing standard procedures helps sustain the consistency and quality of work, usually boosting productivity. But the drive for conformity has a price. It increases bureaucracy which can inadvertently stifle the very creativity and initiative you ask your people to practice, potentially compromising innovation and improvement. The same conformity that delivers greater reliability, risk-proofing and safety can breed a fear of failure and a drift towards mediocrity.

Since leaders are expected to cultivate an environment of continuous improvement and productive change intended to improve results, while preserving a level of stability which ensures that quality work gets done, keep change efforts focused on targets where the benefits can be quantified and validated.

Investigate a novel technology that disrupts the conformity without increasing risk, and strengthens your competitive advantage. Accelerate your response time or time-to-market. Change the infrastructure, the rules or the flow of information to empower or quicken decision-making.

Challenging the status quo does not mean destroying what has worked; it means making it work better.

How does your organization identify continuous improvement opportunities?
How do you prioritize these opportunities?

By |April 25th, 2017|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

Leadership and Challenge

Bob Schultek
Author of The Gauntlet

 There are times when leaders must confront adversity that threatens their business. Other times, to improve performance, they disrupt the established order by challenging the status quo. Whether the challenge is external or internal, leaders make things happen. Leadership and challenge are inseparable.

Business leaders you admire are likely remembered for launching an entrepreneurial venture, developing a novel product and service, transforming a failing business, or revolutionizing an industry. Challenge was the context in which these leaders operated and productive change was their message.

The best leadership stories describe triumphs over trouble, departures from the past, doing what has never been done, or going where no one has ever been.  Every story is about challenge and change.

There’s no need to study historical leaders to learn this lesson. You can find it in committed leaders like you, working at every level of an organization. They may be fighting complacency and seeking improvement by disturbing the status quo, challenging what is possible and pursuing new opportunities. Or, they may be guiding people through uncertainty, disruption, transition, recovery, new initiatives and other significant challenges.

The uncertainty and fear often triggered by challenge and change may be seen by some as negative, de-motivating […]

By |April 19th, 2017|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

How Customers Assess Value

Bob Schultek
Author of The Gauntlet

Whether you provide a product or a service, its value to your customers depends on their goals. Your success in earning their business depends on your ability to discover what your customer values and why.

If the customer’s business is mature, then proposing solutions that reduce cost typically capture attention.  Cost reduction targets are easily identified and validated; they directly impact net profit. And, unfortunately, they make it easier for your customer to compare you to others. Cost reduction solutions focus on the short term, on some current pain related to the customer’s core business. Proposals that reduce cost usually offer negligible sustained strategic value for the customer. Next time, you’ll again be expected to propose another reduction in their expenses rather than offering an investment in their future, increasing your vulnerability to competitors.
On the other hand, solutions that support an increase in the customer’s sales or productivity produce enduring strategic value. These solutions can be positioned as investments supporting the customer’s growth goals and future. The quantifiable benefits produced by a growth-based solution are more sustainable and cumulative over time. When your solution also strengthens your customer’s distinctiveness, then your commitment to their success is […]

By |April 12th, 2017|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

3 Questions People Ask About You

Bob Schultek

People take action because it benefits them. If you’re a leader or a salesperson trying to connect with others, your focus must be on them. It’s a simple truth that is often forgotten.

Your target audience will ask themselves 3 questions to discover your intentions:

1. “Do you care about me?” Mutual interest is the impetus for establishing a connection. Trying to learn another person’s perspective regarding a shared goal or concern helps them understand that you genuinely care about their needs. Taking the next step, using what you’ve learned to help others succeed, opens the door to connection, communication and collaboration. It’s this generosity that creates relationships which can become mutually beneficial. And good relationships typically produce positive results: ideas, growth, partnerships, etc.

2. “Can you help me?” These days,people are constantly bombarded with information about products and services, so they tend to tune out the noise. If you want to get someone’s attention, focus on how your connection can benefit them. The more quantifiable those benefits are, the stronger will be the motivation to connect with you.

3. “Can I trust you?” Trust is the foundation of enduring relationships. Since it is earned over time, for a new connection attempt, the most reasonable response […]

By |April 5th, 2017|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

Your Life – Your Choice

Bob Schultek

Life does not arbitrarily impose itself on you. Rather, you choose how you feel about the circumstances in your life and work. You’re making this choice every day, multiple times a day.

Will you choose to be optimistic, to engage with or to encourage others?

Will you choose to be curious, to inquire, or to challenge the status quo?

Will you strive to make a difference?

It may seem that your attitude depends on how things are going in your life, at work, or in the world around you. But the exact opposite is true. How things are going depends on how you choose to feel. Your feelings reflect your most genuine, heartfelt expectations.

Every fragment of your daily life reveals these expectations.  They’re present in your thoughts, your words, your actions, your habits and your character. Thoughts lead to words, that lead to actions, that become habits, that define your character. And the results produced by all of these are derived from the way you choose to feel – your attitude.

When faced with a challenge, will you choose to feel discouraged or energized? Those with an optimistic attitude expect to succeed. When they encounter obstacles, they try harder, finding ways to overcome […]

By |March 28th, 2017|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

Bob Schultek Releases New Book

Bob Schultek’s new book The Gauntlet is now available on Amazon.

The Gauntlet tells the tale of a business in crisis, and how the leader, his team and his family experience a transformational journey as they confront the challenge of business survival. Told through the eyes of the senior leader, the story describes his concurrent, integrated struggles to change the course of his business while preserving his family’s well-being. The trials encountered by the company and people described in the story, and the lessons they learn during their ordeal, are authentic, based on actual events and shared by numerous small and mid-sized organizations.

By |March 21st, 2017|Grolistic, News and Events|0 Comments