Creating Competitive Advantage from Monitoring, Efficiency, Globalization
Once you and your team are committed to the strategy, we remain committed to the implementation with your team from start to finish.
we help you find the right metrics, track performance and adjust strategies as needed.
My father, whose imprint was deep and wise, kept a small bark-edged slice of pine on the wall. It was there in my earliest memory, and was buried with my Dad. It said simply, in broken Germanic English, "Ve get too soon alt, und too late schmart".
I retired November 1, 2015 at the age of 65. Like my father, many of my friends reminisce, "if only I know then, what I know now." Dad had another ditty he liked to repeat, that I should not try to learn all life's lessons by personal experience - that I should learn, in part, from the mistakes of others. If you choose to engage with me, you will hear more from my father and grandfather, who did their best to share their insights in ways that I cannot ever forget.
As I reflect on my career of good fortune, hard work, and great fun, I realize that I have learned a lot ---- and that some of what I have learned is especially valuable under the right circumstances. I enjoyed my career immensely, though naturally there were certain activities and assignments which were more fun than others. Upon reflection, I can see clearly that the greatest value I was able to deliver to my employers and stockholders was when I was doing what I enjoy most.
--> I love the larger subject of business strategy, where I have been engaged since 1982.
--> My profession is in marketing, business to business and business to consumer.
--> I am a professional engineer - though a friend with 3 PhD's recently described me as "a mile wide, while he is a mile deep"
--> I enjoy the game of business - enjoy winning even more. Watching a strategy I helped to craft prevail is the ultimate "ureka"for me.
When you mix an engineer's fascination with emerging technology, with a marketer's inner need to convince others, and a peculiar interest in business strategy, you end up with a career that uses emerging technology to create competitive advantage. At Trane Company in the '80's, at American Standard in the '90's, at my own company for 15 years from '96 to 2011, and at Air Movement and Control Association for the last 5 years.
Along the way, I have run teams of 5 to 2500, been responsible for businesses from $5 million to $300 million. We (it's always "we", because I owe my success to the folks who surrounded me, and worked their tails off for our mutual success) - We turned a $200 million business that was loosing money for 20 years to profitability in only 18 months. We launched a business unit that embraced an unfamiliar technology to drive earnings in a $3 billion company. We went to the college of hard knocks on radio based telemetry, eventually succeeding and surviving with an optimistic future. We founded a conservative student newspaper on the liberal University of Wisconsin campus, that put the 80 year-old competitor out of business. (The Badger Herald thrives today.) We turned an association of air-product manufacturers from an opportunistic exporter to secure global leadership outside of Europe. And we pulled together competing companies to negotiate a DOE regulation that will boost industry sales and earnings, as it saves 7 quadrillion btus of energy. (Note that fans consume about 15% of all electricity used in American commercial and industrial buildings.)
Those who know me well at Trane and American Standard where I spent 24 years branded me a change agent - they gave me the turn-around and intrepenurial assignments. At US Plumbing, I reported financial results to 2500 employees, both union and non-union, in a series of in-person meetings on all three shifts, at 4 locations and did this once every three months. One of our bargaining units believed enough in what we were doing to trade their defined benefit pension plan for a 401k with company stock. Earlier in my tenure at Trane, the print shop I was responsible for decertified their union affiliation. Both these changes were unprecedented.
Great leaders have one thing in common - they have lots of folks who enjoy working with them as their leader. I have been blessed in this regard, from the effort my parents expended to inspire me as a kid, to the many friends and supporters who made the businesses I led successful. They did it, not me. I was just the fortunate one who created the environment where success was probable - and helped them believe it would happen with their efforts. We all had a lot of fun - and now I am ready for more - to leverage what I have learned to help others win in the competitive marketplace, with creative strategies that leverage emerging technologies and enlightened management techniques to deliver for their companies.
That is why I consult. I do only what I enjoy, because I want to focus where I add the most value. Some might call what I do "work." To me, it is pure fun and enjoyment. This is as it should be in retirement. If what I do can add value to your company, we should talk. If your need seems to be a good fit with what I do so well, call me and lets explore having some fun together.
We link our network to yours, brainstorm strategies, then analyze, test with customers, suppliers, partners, competitors to inform your choices.
Wade explores the potential for strategic impact with company principals, owners at no cost. If you see a fit, we engage in a comprehensive strategic audit.