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 Leadership Factors That Drive Growth

An effective leader realizes that sustaining growth, or reigniting it, depends on the depth to which his or her people are committed. Successful, dedicated teams are bonded by more than their aspiration to achieve a shared goal.

These 3 leadership factors result from the awareness that your people are your most sustainable competitive advantage for driving growth.

Purpose: Commitment cannot be compelled; it must be inspired. People must choose to invest discretionary effort above and beyond their workload, and that choice comes from their belief in the meaningfulness of their work. People who seek to commit, want to make a difference. They want to know how their efforts contribute to the success and value of the business. Leaders who articulate a Purpose that describes why the organization exists and how it makes a difference for its customers tap into this motivation. The resulting commitment empowers imagination and vision, enables the overcoming of obstacles, and provides the fuel that elevates performance and achieves goals.

Principles: The people on committed teams know what to expect from each other because they have developed a set of core values that define how they will act in pursuit of their Purpose and goals. And they […]

By |November 29th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

5 Questions – How Leadership Drives Growth

Over a five-year period, the financial performance of organizations whose senior leaders were highly engaged with their personnel was significantly stronger than those companies who followed a different model. Net income growth was almost 18 times higher, and stock price was nearly 3 times higher.

While their high level of engagement isn’t the only reason for this exceptional performance, it is clear that leadership behaviors focused on key engagement practices consistently deliver better results.

Here are 5 questions about engaged leadership behaviors:

People choose to follow leaders they judge to be credible. Credibility is grounded in authenticity. Authentic leaders act in accordance with their values. Are your actions aligned with your and your organization’s core values? Are you leading by example? Do you walk the talk?

You can’t command commitment; you have to inspire it. Your people are your most sustainable competitive advantage. How are you stimulating the great energy and talents of your people to invest discretionary effort towards making a difference and achieving goals?

Organizations with sustained profitability create a culture of experimentation that challenges the status quo. They look outward to identify new growth opportunities, remain alert for innovative ideas, and pursue continuous improvement. What forum do you […]

By |November 15th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

The Two Driving Visions of Change

For some, considering a new idea or approach, a change from the current method, represents an opportunity to improve the existing. For others, it represents a threat – what if things go wrong?

Conflicting perspectives, driven by people in an organization, with different experiences, who see the world differently. They are the opposing sides of a proposed change, the two driving visions of change.

The supporters of change seek to challenge the current line and accelerate progress. Change offers the chance to improve, to learn, to grow. They insist on investing in the better tool or technology that helps them move faster, even if it costs more than what was previously purchased. In their minds, moving faster protects them from competitive threats and enables growth. They are future-focused and all about pursuing opportunity. They drive by looking forward through the windshield.

The detractors on the other side seek to defend the status quo. They want to avoid the possible failure, disappointment, wasted effort and negative attention that could occur by pursuing change. There’s no need to spend more money for a better tool when what they’ve been using works well; instead, they prefer to change suppliers to get their current tool for […]

By |November 2nd, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

Crafting Price Satisfaction

When the selling/problem solving process is done well, both buyer and seller can be satisfied with the final price.

To earn your price, and leave the customer feeling satisfied with that decision, preparation is the key. Use these 3 methods to maximize preparation:

Start early. Ensuring that both parties will be satisfied when the deal is done begins with your decision to do more than resolve a customer’s current pain. Early in the discovery process, position your proposed solution as an investment in the customer’s future success, rather than as just a necessary cost paid to address today’s problem. Learn about the customer’s business.  Why is removing the pain important?  What defines success for the customer? What barriers must be overcome to achieve their goals? How does your solution produce quantifiable benefits that address these questions and move them towards the future?

Help them make money. Convert your promised quantifiable benefits into money. Decisions are evaluated and made using the language of money; it’s the language of management. How is an investment in your solution going to produce a strategic financial advantage for them? Before proposing a solution that reduces a customer’s cost, look first to a means of increasing […]

By |October 25th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

Breaking Things Makes You Stronger

Leaders are hired to break things. To generate, and sustain, improved results, they push past the status quo, making a purposeful choice for productive change.

And because our economy is so dynamic, breaking things must become perpetual. Managing the risk associated with continuous adaptation, and using energy to defeat fear, is a key characteristic of leadership in this era.

A more robust and sustainable business is derived from these benefits of change:

Deciding to change reaffirms control. The fear of losing control constrains change initiatives. Sometimes a crisis is necessary to overcome that fear.  Every day we’re reminded that few things remain the same over time, so deciding from the start to embrace change reaffirms control. Choosing to adapt encourages movement, towards all that is possible because of that decision. That movement may even avoid a pending crisis.

Choosing to change increases versatility. Resisting change only elevates the stress felt each time we’re confronted with the need to adapt. So much energy is invested in resistance that we’re blinded to opportunities that can only occur through evolution. Choosing change increases versatility, a valuable asset in times of perpetual motion, enabling a commitment to the pursuit of new prospects.

Embracing change expands knowledge. If nothing ever […]

By |October 18th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

3 Factors That Persuade Customers To Choose You

In this age of limited time and unlimited access to information, customers want more than better, faster and cheaper. They specify 3 factors that persuade them to choose you.

 Customers seek to learn if you are more interested in helping them make money or in taking their money. They choose you once they sense your commitment to their success, and evaluate your motivation using these 3 criteria:

Sharing valuable insight about market trends. Customers understand that their exposure to new concepts or challenges evolving in their market may be limited, and they recognize that they can be overwhelmed with readily accessible, but unfocused, information from the web. They value the expertise of a salesperson that knows their business, shares trends, novel ideas and other market insights, and helps them prioritize possible solutions on the basis of strategic value produced for them.

Proposing multiple potential solutions. Customers appreciate the opportunity to explore two or three alternative recommendations rather than just one. Collaborating with you to evaluate the pros and cons of each potential solution encourages a more transparent discussion about the options, reducing the customer’s decision risk and enabling an assessment of your commitment to their success.

Remaining engaged. Customers expect […]

By |October 11th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

3 Steps to Defeat the Initiative Dilemma

When organizations promote “initiative” as a core value, they often encounter the “initiative dilemma.” How can you encourage initiative and avoid the typical pitfalls that prevent action?

Encouraging initiative energizes employees to make improvements, solve problems, deal with change, and provide customers with exceptional service.  When executives were recently polled about the most productive way for employees to advance, 82% responded with: “Ask for more work and responsibility.”

When employees are asked why they are reluctant to take the initiative, the most frequently stated barrier is their belief that their managers really don’t want them to do so. A Gallup survey of 1,200 U.S. workers cited that 66% of the respondents have been asked by their managers to get more involved in decision-making, but only 14% feel they have been empowered with the authority, resources, and support necessary to be successful in doing so. This is the “initiative dilemma.”

Most employees want new challenges; it increases the meaningfulness of their work and restores their enthusiasm. But they need guidance and support from their leaders before they will take action.

Leaders seek to unleash untapped innovation, creativity, and risk-taking in the workplace, but they don’t specify how their employees may demonstrate this initiative.  So, […]

By |October 4th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

7 Questions That Drive Marketing Strategy

Every marketing strategy must answer seven key questions.
1. WHO are you trying to reach? Specify your target audience and stay focused.
2. WHAT is your story? How credible is it?
3. HOW does your story align with the established perceptions of your target audience? What do they believe?  What do they need?
4. HOW will you alert your target audience to your offering? How will you raise their awareness?
5. HOW soon do you expect your audience to act on your offering? How are you motivating them to act sooner?
6. WHAT will prevent your audience from taking action? What fears/barriers must be overcome before action will occur?
7. WHY will action occur? How will the customer experience you create be shared with others?
How has your marketing strategy addressed these questions?
Which answers challenge your strategy?

By |September 28th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

Mastering Mindset

When your team encounters challenges, obstacles or criticism, they face a choice about how to react.

At moments like these, they need you to help them adopt a mindset that leads to success.

Stanford University psychologist, Carol Dweck, uses the word “mindset” to describe how people are constantly monitoring and interpreting what’s happening to them, what it means, and what they should do. People can choose to react to challenges or criticism using a “fixed” or a “growth” mindset.

In a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are fixed traits. They focus on validating their intelligence and talent instead of developing them because they believe that inherent qualities alone create success—without effort. As a result, the fixed mindset concentrates on judging or being judged.  Situations in which their qualities might be assessed as lacking are to be avoided.

In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point. They understand that effort gives meaning to life; effort signifies caring about achievement and a willingness to work for it.  Rather than judging, a growth mindset focuses on learning and constructive action to […]

By |September 20th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments

3 Steps to Managing Autonomy

Give people choices, some control over their actions, and their performance improves. This is the essence of autonomy and why it is a proven motivator.

But once autonomy is earned, then it must be managed, because the circumstances that originally enable it are likely to change. If you want your high performing, self-directed people to succeed, then monitoring the situation in which they work is critical; one change in your team’s work pattern can cause a crash.

It’s a leader’s responsibility to recognize changing circumstances and direct how an autonomous person or team adapts to them. Adding a new person, revising an established process, or implementing a new policy are examples of subtle revisions that can impact autonomous performance. When such a circumstance develops, it’s time to get directive again, if only for a short while.

Review your rationale. Change is often accompanied by altered expectations. Allowing a high performing person or team to assume how your expectations for goal achievement and behavior might have evolved in reaction to a new circumstance increases the probability that mistakes will be made and well-earned success will be compromised.  Share your rationale for temporarily increasing your direct engagement; to support their efforts and ensure that they […]

By |September 7th, 2016|Grolistic, Grolistic...No-Excuses Growth Blog|0 Comments