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7 Business Models for the Decade Ahead That You Need to Know About

Posted by Cliff Locks On September 22, 2021 at 10:02 am / In: Uncategorized

7 Business Models for the Decade Ahead That You Need to Know About

Some of the most potent innovation taking place today does not involve breakthrough technologies… but rather the creation of fundamentally new business models.

For most of history, these models were remarkably stable, dominated by a few key ideas, upgraded by a few major variations on these themes. 

In the 1920s, it was the “bait and hook” model, where customers are lured in with a low-cost initial product (the bait: a free razor) and then forced to buy endless refills (the hook: blade refills).

In the 1950s, it was the “franchise model” pioneered by McDonald’s. Or take the 1960s, where we got “hypermarkets” like Walmart.

But with the internet’s arrival in the 1990s, business model reinvention entered a period of radical growth. 

In less than two decades, we’ve seen network effects birth new platforms in record time, Bitcoin and blockchain undercut existing “trusted third party” financial models, and crowdfunding upend the traditional ways capital is raised. 

We are now seeing 7 emerging models slated to redefine business over the next few decades.

And today, while countless businesses are anchored by a mentality of maintaining—competing solely on operational execution—it is more vital than ever to leverage these business models for success in the 2020s. 

Each is a revolutionary new way of creating value—each is a force for acceleration.

Let’s dive in…

7 BUSINESS MODELS THAT WILL RULE THE NEXT DECADE

(1) The Crowd Economy: Crowdsourcing, crowdfunding, leveraged assets, and staff-on-demand—essentially, all the developments that leverage the billions of people already online and the billions coming online.

All have revolutionized the way we do business. Just consider leveraged assets, like Uber’s vehicles and Airbnb’s rooms, which have allowed companies to scale at speed. These crowd economy models also lean on staff-on-demand, which provide a company with the agility needed to adapt to a rapidly changing environment. And it’s everything from micro-task laborers behind Amazon’s Mechanical Turk on the low end, to Kaggle’s data scientist-on-demand services on the high end.

Example: Airbnb has become the largest “hotel chain” in the world, yet it doesn’t own a single hotel room. Instead, it leverages (that is, rents out) the assets (spare bedrooms) of the crowd, with more than 7 million rooms, flats, and houses in over 100,000 cities across the globe. 

(2) The Free / Data Economy: This is the platform version of the “bait and hook” model, essentially baiting the customer with free access to a cool service and then making money off the data gathered about that customer. It also includes all the developments spurred by the big data revolution, which is allowing us to exploit micro-demographics like never before.

Example: Facebook, Google, Twitter—there’s a reason this model has transformed dorm room startups into global superpowers. Google’s search queries per day have risen from 500,000 in 1999, to 200 million in 2004, to 3 billion in 2011, to 5.6 billion today. While more users are becoming aware of the valuable data they exchange in return for Google’s “free” search service, this tried-and-true model will likely continue to succeed in the 2020s.

(3) The Smartness Economy: In the late 1800s, if you wanted a good idea for a new business, all you needed was to take an existing tool, say a drill or a washboard, and add electricity to it—thus creating a power drill or a washing machine.

In the 2020s, AI will be the electricity. In other words, take any existing tool, and add a layer of smartness. So, cell phones became smartphones and stereo speakers became smart speakers and cars become autonomous vehicles. 

Example: We all know the big names incorporating AI into their business models—from Amazon to Salesforce. But more AI startups arise each day: 1,000 AI-related companies in the US raised over $27B in venture capital in 2020, according to Pitchbook. One of the most highly valued of those companies is Scale AI, a data-labeling company that supports machine learning teams, currently valued at $7.3B. Expect AI to continue transforming most businesses in the 2020s.

(4) Closed-Loop Economies: In nature, nothing is ever wasted. The detritus of one species always becomes the foundation for the survival of another species. Human attempts to mimic these entirely waste-free systems have been dubbed “biomimicry” (if you’re talking about designing a new kind of product) or “cradle-to-cradle” (if you’re talking about designing a new kind of city) or, more simply, “closed-loop economies.” These models will grow increasingly prevalent with the rise of environmentally-conscious consumers and the cost benefits of closed-loop systems.

Example: The Plastic Bank, founded in 2013, allows anyone to pick up waste plastic and drop it off at a “plastic bank.” The collector is then paid for the “trash” in anything from cash to WiFi time, while the plastic bank sorts the material and sells it to the appropriate recycler—thus closing an open loop in the life cycle of plastic.

(5) Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs): At the convergence of blockchain and AI sits a radically new kind of company—one with no employees, no bosses, and nonstop production. A set of preprogrammed rules determines how the company operates, and computers do the rest. A fleet of autonomous taxis, for instance, with a blockchain-backed smart contracts layer, could run itself 24-7, including driving to the repair shop for maintenance, without any human involvement.

Example: While DAOs are just beginning to emerge, the platform DAOstack is working to provide these businesses with tools for success, including reliable crypto-economic incentives and decentralized governance protocols. DAOstack aims to create businesses where the only external influence is the customer. 

(6) Multiple World Models: We no longer live in only one place. We have real-world personae and online personae, and this delocalized existence is only going to expand. With the rise of Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, we’re introducing more layers to this equation. You’ll have avatars for work and avatars for play, and all of these versions of ourselves are opportunities for new businesses. 

Example: Second Life, the very first virtual world created in 2003, gave rise to a multimillion-dollar economy. People were paying other people to design digital clothes and digital houses for their digital avatars. Every time we add a new layer to the digital strata, we’re also adding an entire economy built upon that layer, meaning we are now conducting our business in multiple worlds at once. Today we have all mastered Zoom, tomorrow we’ll be diving deep in the SpatialWeb, moving back and forth between multiple virtual worlds and our physical reality using technologies like Vatoms and Spatialweb.net to navigate the Metaverse.

(7) Transformation Economy: The Experience Economy was about the sharing of experiences—so Starbucks went from being a coffee franchise to a “third place.” That is, neither home nor work, but a “third place” in which to live your life. Buying a cup of coffee became an experience, a caffeinated theme park of sorts. The next iteration of this idea is the Transformation Economy, where you’re not just paying for an experience, you’re paying to have your life transformed by this experience.

Example: Early versions of this model can be seen in the rise of “transformational festivals” like Burning Man, or fitness companies like CrossFit, where the experience is generally bad (you work out in old warehouses), but the transformation is great (the person you become after three months of working out in those warehouses). Consumers are no longer searching for merely pleasurable experiences—they are looking for challenges that transform. This is also where technologies like Spatialweb.net and Dreamscape will help to digitize, dematerialize, and democratize such experiences everywhere on the planet.

FINAL THOUGHTS

What all this tells us is that business as usual is becoming business unusual.

And for existing companies, as Harvard’s Clayton Christensen explained, this is no longer optional: “Most [organizations] think the key to growth is developing new technologies and products. But often this is not so. To unlock the next wave of growth, companies must embed these innovations in a disruptive new business model.”

And for those of us on the outside of these disruptive models, our experience will be better, cheaper, faster.

Better meaning new business models do what all business models do—solve problems for people in the real world better than anyone else. 

Cheaper is obvious. With demonetization running rampant, customers—and that means all of us—are expecting more for less.

But the real shift is the final shift: faster. New business models are no longer forces for stability and security. To compete in today’s accelerated climate, these models are designed for speed and agility.

Most importantly, none of this is in any danger of slowing down.

JOIN ME

If you want my coaching as an exponential entrepreneur and to reinforce those mindsets that will inspire and guide you to create a hopeful, compelling and abundant future for yourself and humanity, then consider joining my executive coaching.

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University, with edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

Are you looking for a gift for yourself, friends, family, or colleagues? I love giving Audible by Amazon as a gift. Audible online audiobook platform is where books are read to you while driving, relaxing at home, or on the go. Use any smartphone, tablet, and computer and turn it into an excellent learning resource. (Click on the Amazon logo below to get started and search for Audible.)


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

LinkedIn

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minute Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks #WSJ #VC #VentureCapital #PE #PrivateEquity #LimitedPartners #FamilyOffice #FundsofFunds #IBD #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #DE&I #ESG #diversity #cybersecurity #artificialintelligence #climate #ActivistInvestor #ethicalbusiness #directors #corporategovernance #accountability #integrity #ethics #corporateleadership #leadership #nonexecutivedirector #nonexec #boarddevelopment #boardmembers #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The growing robotics market will impact your business sooner than you think. Let’s start with real live examples of deployment today.

Posted by Cliff Locks On September 15, 2021 at 10:00 am / In: Uncategorized

The growing robotics market will impact your business sooner than you think. Let’s start with real live examples of deployment today.

 

The robots are coming! For years, Hollywood has warned us about the rise of robots, especially those of the stone-cold killer variety.

However, the reality is far more exciting and humanizing—robots are rapidly becoming our friends, colleagues, employees, and the basis of our workforce.
Robotics venture investment grew 50% over the course of 2020, with no signs of stopping in 2021. Investments have now grown five-fold in 5 years, soaring to $5 billion in 2020 from $1 billion in 2015.

 

With so much investment, the time is ripe for ambitious entrepreneurs to take advantage of this generational opportunity.

In this blog, I’m going to discuss some of the fundamentals of robotics: where the technology is today, where it will be in a few years, and where the hidden opportunities are.
Let’s dive in.

ROBOTS: OUR FRIENDS & EMPLOYEES

Camel racing is a centuries-old tradition in the Middle East—think the Kentucky Derby for sheikhs—and it’s one of the richest sports on Earth. However, it’s the jockeys who have changed the most. 

Twenty years ago, camels were ridden by children—the lightest possible riders—but general principle, injury, and death led to a humanitarian outcry. So, both the UAE and Qatar banned the practice, replacing children with an even lighter saddle occupant: the robot jockey.

Today, in camel racing, robot jockeys are the norm. Exactly like traditional jockeys, these robo-replacements sit on a saddle, steer with the reins, and prod with a whip. 

The latest robot jockeys are small, about a foot high, and light, weighing between five and eight pounds, with skinny hinged arms that control the reins and whip. 

Of course, my point isn’t that there’s a bevy of entrepreneurial possibility in camel racing. It’s that robotics, another exponential technology long mired in deception, is now heading for disruption. 

According to a report by the Littler Workplace Policy Institute: “Robotics is the fastest growing industry in the world, poised to become the largest in the next decade.” Which is to say, robot jockeys are just the beginning.

Consider Moxie, the brainchild of NASA roboticist Paolo Pirjanian, Co-founder of Embodied, Inc. (creator of Moxie). Moxie is a small, Pixar-like robot with large-eyes on a cute and dynamic virtual face and converses with children in a natural, lifelike manner, becoming a personalized companion to them.

You can continuously talk to it (as opposed to simply saying “Hi, Alexa”), and the AI knows to take turns when conversing, allowing for fluid conversation and storytelling. 

Importantly, Moxie doesn’t try to be too human or perfect—in fact, that’s where many other robotics companies have failed. Instead, Moxie has a key human-like element: it makes mistakes and learns. 

Rather than a full prebuilt chatbot, Moxie has an actual personality and will learn over the course of an interaction. New interactions “unlock” new content and behaviors, further engaging the child in a goal-oriented manner. (If you have young kids, or kids with learning disabilities, please check out Moxie here: https://embodied.com/

Besides human-like, user-friendly robots, we’re also seeing exponential progress in robotic agility, mobility, and diversity. 

Enabled by a new generation of sensors and actuators, and driven by near-unlimited computing and artificial intelligence, there’s a Cambrian explosion in robotics, with species of all sizes, shapes, and modes of mobility crawling out of the muck of the lab and onto the terra firma of the marketplace. 

Of course, what is driving the current robotics revolution is the convergence of exponentials. First and foremost is computation and machine learning/neuralnets. A lot of what today’s amazing walking, flying, dancing and talking robots can do is a simply result of cheaper, faster and more ubiquitous computation driving artificial intelligence. The second exponential is 3D printing, which is allowing researchers and tinkerers to design, build and test robotic parts faster and faster. Finally, it’s all about the networks and sensors that collect and feed data into the robot’s algorithms.

Festo, for one example, has created a robot that flies like a bird. Boston Dynamics, for another, now makes robots that can climb, crawl, jump, and hop, and all while carrying heavy loads (some bots can manage over a hundred kilograms of weight). Their robots can even dance to music or unpack boxes out of the back of an 18-wheeler.

Incredible companies like Chef Robotics are putting robots to work in the food industry. The National Restaurant Association reported that in 2017, 37% of its members listed labor recruitment as their top challenge, up from 15% in 2015. This means long lines for you, food deserts with little fresh food, and inconsistent orders (aka not enough guacamole). Chef Robotics believes robots are the best solution to this problem.

What’s the alure of robots? Robots don’t unionize, don’t show up late, and don’t take lunch, and they can work on an assembly line for just a few dollars an hour. And as the minimum wage continues to increase now $14 per hour in California as of January 1, 2021 (for employers with 26 or more employees), there is a cross-over point coming where robots are just cheaper and better for certain roles.

THE GROWING INDUSTRIAL ROBOTICS MARKET

Indeed, the market for industrial robots has been experiencing double-digit growth annually since 2013, and is expected to continue at a CAGR of 12.3% through 2026.

A 2017 report by the McKinsey Global Institute concludes that almost 50 percent of tasks done by employees at work are at high risk of being taken by computers (AI and robots). Among these are data collection and processing, which represent 51% of the activity in the US economy. 

In China, Foxconn, the Chinese electronics manufacturer that builds Apple’s iPhone, made news back in 2013 when the skyrocketing demand for cell phones led to labor disputes, reports of harsh working conditions, even riots and suicides. 

In the aftermath of these reports, Foxconn has been moving to automate 30% of its workforce by cutting 60,000 jobs in 2016 and replacing them with robots, a trend accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic.  

Besides replacing our blue-collar workforce, robots will and have been invading a much wider assortment of fields. Just consider the effect autonomous driving will have on truck drivers, or surgery robots on healthcare, or companion robots for therapy and eldercare. 

“If I were an exponential entrepreneur looking to create tremendous value”, says robotics expert Dan Barry, “I’d look for those jobs that are least enjoyable for humans to do … Given that the global market for unskilled labor is worth many trillions of dollars, I would say this is a huge opportunity.”

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University and edited by and Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

Are you looking for a gift for yourself, friends, family, or colleagues? I love giving Audible by Amazon as a gift. Audible online audiobook platform is where books are read to you while driving, relaxing at home, or on the go. Use any smartphone, tablet, and computer and turn it into an excellent learning resource. (Click on the Amazon logo below to get started and search for Audible.)


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

LinkedIn

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minute Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks #WSJ #VC #VentureCapital #PE #PrivateEquity #LimitedPartners #FamilyOffice #FundsofFunds #IBD #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #DE&I #ESG #diversity #cybersecurity #artificialintelligence #climate #ActivistInvestor #ethicalbusiness #directors #corporategovernance #accountability #integrity #ethics #corporateleadership #leadership #nonexecutivedirector #nonexec #boarddevelopment #boardmembers #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Successful leadership depends on how we manage paradoxes

Posted by Cliff Locks On September 8, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Successful leadership depends on how we manage paradoxes

These days, paradoxes abound—grit vs. grace, perform vs transform, speed vs. significance, critique vs. create, execute vs. engage, head vs. heart. And one that I’ve seen a lot of lately is self vs. system—which can be expressed simply as “I vs. we.”

The good news is we don’t have to choose between the opposites. We can find the connections and congruencies between them. That’s where things get interesting—and messy.

“It’s difficult to hold two opposing ideas in our minds because it creates cognitive dissonance, and we humans don’t like that. It’s super-uncomfortable,” Amelia Haynes, a research associate with our Korn Ferry Institute, told me this week. “But when we can find the congruencies between those ideas, the tension resolves, and our brains reward us with a shot of feel-good dopamine.”

In our conversation this week, Kevin Cashman, our Global Co-Leader of CEO & Enterprise Leader Development, peeled back the layers even further. As he explained it, we all have our patterns—too often leaning in one direction toward what’s most comfortable and familiar. But those go-to reactions and knee-jerk behaviors over time can become a rut—and even a derailer. It’s more than just an engrained habit—as Kevin put it: “even our neurophysiology gets stuck.”

That’s when it’s time to pause, as Kevin told me. “Stepping back, evaluating, and reflecting become our only chance of rewiring new neural pathways and reforming patterns. A pause can happen when we reflect on feedback we’ve received, observe someone we admire, or even when we rest and reflect. That’s why the more we pause for the complex and the important, the better we get at synthesizing the dots across polarities and paradoxes.”

It doesn’t just happen automatically. It starts with becoming more self-aware. Only then can we be intentional about where and how we expand our thinking—mastering the balancing act between what appear to be polar opposites, but actually complete us.

The good news is we can change our minds—literally. Here are some thoughts:

  • Rewiring our reality. When we get good at something, our brains literally become hard-wired. In fact, if someone were to use brain imaging, they’d see the neural pathways that reflect the well-worn habits of how we think and act. Rather than get stuck in a rut, we need to expand our thinking. In fact, the more open our minds become, the more we can develop and tap the capabilities that allow us to make a positive impact. But it takes more than just will and skill. To get to the other side of paralyzing paradoxes we need to shift our mindsets so we can expand and reframe our reality. Then our possibilities become probabilities.
  • Compare, contrast—always connect. When we compare and contrast between two opposites—spreadsheet vs. stories, profit vs. people—we’re using a skill set known as critical thinking. From elementary school onward, it became ingrained in us—or so our teachers hoped. While critical thinking is important, there’s another way of processing ideas that can open more possibilities: integrative thinking. It’s the opposing muscle that allows us to build integration and congruencies. In other words, it’s not enough to only see the dots, we also have to connect them. It’s a little like playing 3D chess—and, to be honest, it doesn’t come naturally to most people. As Kevin Cashman said, “Critical thinking is what we usually think of as intelligence. But it represents the discerning part of intelligence—not the synthesizing part. We need integrative thinking to go beyond seeing one thing or the other. It’s all about how they come together.” So, if our heads are buried in spreadsheets, perhaps it’s time to think more about stories. If we’re only focused on profit, now is the time to elevate people. It’s the yin and yang of leadership—seeing the dynamic balance between opposing forces.
  • Our tale of two brains. We live largely in a left-brain world—overly focused on our technical skills and caught up in the details. Instead, we need to tap Google Earth and zoom out—and that takes our right brain. Looking at things from 30,000 feet helps us contextualize information. And the bigger the picture we see, the more we can connect and collaborate with others, instead of getting stuck in our own silos. Make no mistake—it’s not that our left brains don’t matter. We need both brains—left and right. By connecting them, we can see farther, wider, and deeper. That’s how we can look up, look out, and leap forward, becoming the best “us”—and bringing others with us.

With all due respect to what we learned in 11th grade, the dreaded compare-and-contrast no longer serves us in these times. The new world is not one or the other—or one versus another—neither for people nor ideas. There’s room for both—and more. Indeed, that’s the real brain game-changer.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

Are you looking for a gift for yourself, friends, family, or colleagues? I love giving Audible by Amazon as a gift. Audible online audiobook platform is where books are read to you while driving, relaxing at home, or on the go. Use any smartphone, tablet, and computer and turn it into an excellent learning resource. (Click on the Amazon logo below to get started and search for Audible.)


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

LinkedIn

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Moving forward with purpose and incorporating sustainability – it’s imperative today for a firm to thrive

Posted by Cliff Locks On September 1, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Moving forward with purpose and incorporating sustainability – it’s imperative today for a firm to thrive

Last year, IBM reported that nearly six in ten consumers are willing to change their shopping habits to reduce environmental impact. Meanwhile, 50% of Gen Z’ers (those born after 1995) report having recently called out a brand for behaving in a way they believed was unethical.
 

Consumers aren’t the only ones moving the needle when it comes to purpose and sustainability. Earlier this year, Sustainable Brands (SB) brought together representatives from sustainability-focused organizations like Impossible Foods to discuss “a number of critical environmental, social, cultural and business trends that are defining the moment and shaping post-2020 and post-pandemic life.”

At the event, Dimitar Vlahov, SB’s Sustainable Business & Brand Transformation Expert, set the stage by commenting that the overlapping crises of the past year have led us to what he calls the “Great Restart” or the “Great Reset”: a moment of reckoning and new beginnings. Studies have pointed to a rise in empathy and nine out of ten consumers have reported that they are willing to pay more for ethical retailers.

Bea Boccalandro is the founder of VeraWorks, a global consulting firm whose mission is to help companies “offer employees the opportunity to do societal good through their everyday jobs.”  Boccalandro recently reported this in the Harvard Business Review: employees whose work experience incorporated social purpose experienced 13% higher job satisfaction than those whose work didn’t. Boccalandro argues that social good is no longer just the responsibility of Chief Sustainability Officers— the purpose movement means CFOs, CMOs and other members of the executive leadership team must also be champions of CSR.

Paul Herman is the CEO of the impact investing firm HIP Investor. He cites five crises of our time: health, wealth, earth, equality, and trust. Herman argues that in order to promote positive purposes across these five areas we need new metrics, innovative investing, and multi-sector solutions. This includes developing new ways to measure impact and stakeholder value creation and identify gaps between policy and impact; increasing the appetite for sustainable finance, and building bridges across sectors and industries so diverse stakeholders can collaborate on solutions that benefit society as a whole.

These assertions align with what some call stakeholder capitalism. “We have to deliver great returns for our shareholders and help drive progress on society’s most important priorities,” explains Brian Moynihan, Chairman and CEO of Bank of America. “That is stakeholder capitalism in action. Common metrics will help all stakeholders measure the progress we are making and ensure that the resources capitalism can marshal — from companies, from investors, and others — are directed to where they can make the most difference.”

At the start of the pandemic, there was a fear that corporations and investment funds would force corporations to pull back on their social impact efforts. But actually, 2020 was the year that the environmental, social and governance (ESG) movement came of age.

Total assets in sustainable funds grew over 50% to $1.7 trillion last year and by the last quarter of 2020, we saw that ESG’s had become critical for organizations who wanted to attract new investors. At the close of the year more than three times as many CFOs of S&P 500 companies discussed ESG matters during fourth-quarter earnings calls in 2020 than they did three years ago.

Gloria Mirrione, sector leader for Asset Management and Impact Investing with Korn Ferry, said the pandemic led “investors of all types to accelerate the decision to align their personal values directly where they place investable dollars.”

So, consumers aren’t the only ones demanding organizations address more than the bottom line. They are one of many stakeholder groups putting pressure on organizations to be a part of solving the world’s most pressing problems.

Contributor, Daniel Goleman is the author of the best-selling Emotional Intelligence, as well as many other works in emotional and social intelligence, leadership, and education, and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach

Are you looking for a gift for yourself, friends, family, or colleagues? I love giving Audible by Amazon as a gift. Audible online audiobook platform is where books are read to you while driving, relaxing at home, or on the go. Use any smartphone, tablet, and computer and turn it into an excellent learning resource. (Click on the Amazon logo below to get started and search for Audible.)

 
 
 
 

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition. 

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

10 Metatrends Shaping the Next Decade That You Need To Know About

Posted by Cliff Locks On August 25, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

10 Metatrends Shaping the Next Decade That You Need To Know About

Over the next decade, waves of  advance exponential tech advancements will stack atop one another, eclipsing decades of breakthroughs in scale and impact.

Emerging from these waves are 20 “Metatrends,” likely to revolutionize entire industries (old and new), redefine tomorrow’s generation of businesses and contemporary challenges, and transform our lives from the bottom up.

These Metatrends include augmented human longevity, the surging smart economy, AI-human collaboration, urbanized cellular agriculture, and high-bandwidth brain-computer interfaces… just to name a few.

This is where master entrepreneurs and their teams must see beyond the immediate implications of a given technology, and capture second-order, Google-sized business opportunities on the horizon. 

Discussing these Metatrends is a key focus of my executive coaching program.

In this two-part blog series, we’ll look at how these 20 Metatrends are shaping our future. Today, I’ll discuss the first 10: from increasing healthspan to AI-human collaboration.

Welcome to a new era of runaway technological booms, historic watershed moments, and extraordinary abundance. 

Let’s dive in…

10 METATRENDS SHAPING OUR FUTURE 

(1) Continued Increase in Global Abundance: The number of individuals in extreme poverty continues to drop, as the middle-income population continues to rise. Everyday goods and services (finance, insurance, education, and entertainment) are being digitized and becoming fully demonetized, available to the rising billion on mobile devices. The case for abundance has massively proven out since the publication of Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think in 2012.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: high-bandwidth and low-cost communication, ubiquitous AI on the cloud, growing access to AI-aided education and AI-driven healthcare.

(2) Global Gigabit Connectivity Will Connect Everyone and Everything, Everywhere, at Ultra-low Cost: The deployment of both licensed and unlicensed 5G, plus the launch of a multitude of global satellite networks (Starlink, OneWeb, etc.), allow for ubiquitous, low-cost communications for everyone, everywhere––not to mention the connection of trillions of devices. And today’s skyrocketing connectivity is bringing online an additional 3 billion individuals, driving tens of trillions of dollars into the global economy.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: low-cost space launches, hardware advancements, 5G networks, artificial intelligence, materials science, and surging computing power. 

(3) The Average Human Healthspan Will Increase by 10+ Years: A dozen game-changing biotech and pharmaceutical solutions (currently in Phase 1, 2, or 3 clinical trials) will reach consumers this decade, adding an additional 10+ years to the human healthspan. Technologies include stem cell supply restoration, Wnt pathway manipulation, senolytic medicines, a new generation of Endo-Vaccines, GDF-11, and supplementation of NMD/NAD+, among several others. And as machine learning continues to mature, AI is set to unleash countless new drug candidates, ready for clinical trials. This is the topic of my next book called LIFEFORCE being co-authored with Tony Robbins and Bob Hariri, MD/PhD (Celularity) that will be available in February 2022.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: genome sequencing, CRISPR technologies, AI, quantum computing, and cellular medicine. 

(4) An Age of Capital Abundance Will See Increasing Access to Capital Everywhere: Over the past few years, humanity hit all-time highs in the global flow of seed capital, venture capital, and sovereign wealth fund investments. While this trend will witness some ups and downs in the wake of future recessions, it is expected to continue its overall upward trajectory. Capital abundance leads to the funding and testing of “crazy” entrepreneurial ideas, which in turn accelerate innovation. Already, $300B in crowdfunding is anticipated by 2025, democratizing capital access for entrepreneurs worldwide. And even during a pandemic (2020), the world deployed more venture capital than ever before, handily beating out the last high-water mark in 2019.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: global connectivity, dematerialization, demonetization, and democratization.

(5) Augmented Reality and the Spatial Web Will Achieve Ubiquitous Deployment: The combination of Augmented Reality (yielding Web 3.0, or the Spatial Web) and 5G networks (offering 100Mb/s – 10Gb/s connection speeds) will transform how we live our everyday lives, impacting every industry from retail and advertising, to education and entertainment. Consumers will play, learn and shop throughout the day in a newly intelligent, virtually overlaid world. This is where technologies like SpatialWeb.net, Vatoms, and Apple’s next generation AR & VR headsets will shine.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: hardware advancements, 5G networks, artificial intelligence, materials science, and surging computing power. 

(6) Everything is Smart, Embedded with Intelligence: The price of specialized machine learning chips is dropping rapidly with a rise in global demand. Imagine a specialized $5 chip that enables AI for a toy, a shoe, a kitchen cabinet? Combined with the explosion of low-cost microscopic sensors and the deployment of high-bandwidth networks, we’re heading into a decade wherein every device becomes intelligent. Your child’s toy remembers her face and name. Your kid’s drone safely and diligently follows and videos all the children at the birthday party. Appliances respond to voice commands and anticipate your needs. 

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: AI, 5G networks, and more advanced sensors. 

(7) AI Will Achieve Human-level Intelligence: As predicted by technologist and futurist Ray Kurzweil, artificial intelligence will reach human-level performance this decade (by 2030). Through the 2020s, AI algorithms and machine learning tools will be increasingly made open source, available on the cloud, allowing any individual with an internet connection to supplement their cognitive ability, augment their problem-solving capacity, and build new ventures at a fraction of the current cost.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: global high-bandwidth connectivity, neural networks, and cloud computing. Every industry, spanning industrial design, healthcare, education, and entertainment, will be impacted. 

(8) AI-Human Collaboration Will Skyrocket Across All Professions: The rise of “AI as a Service” (AIaaS) platforms will enable humans to partner with AI in every aspect of their work, at every level, in every industry. AIs will become entrenched in everyday business operations, serving as cognitive collaborators to employees—supporting creative tasks, generating new ideas, and tackling previously unattainable innovations. In some fields, partnership with AI will even become a requirement. For example: in the future, making certain diagnoses without the consultation of AI may be deemed malpractice. 

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: increasingly intelligent AI, global high-bandwidth connectivity, neural networks, and cloud computing.

(9) Most Individuals Adapt a JARVIS-like “Software Shell” to Improve Their Quality of Life: As services like Alexa, Google Home, and Apple HomePod expand in functionality, such services will eventually travel beyond the home and become your cognitive prosthetic 24/7. Imagine a secure JARVIS-like software shell that you give permission to listen to all your conversations, read your email, monitor your blood chemistry, etc. With access to such data, these AI-enabled software shells will learn your preferences, anticipate your needs and behavior, shop for you, monitor your health, and help you problem-solve in support of your mid- and long-term goals.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: increasingly intelligent AI, neural networks, and cloud computing.

(10) Globally Abundant, Cheap Renewable Energy: Continued advancements in solar, wind, geothermal, hydroelectric, nuclear and localized grids will drive humanity towards cheap, abundant, and ubiquitous renewable energy. The price per kilowatt-hour will drop below 1 cent per kilowatt-hour for renewables, just as storage drops below a mere 3 cents per kilowatt-hour, resulting in the majority displacement of fossil fuels globally. And as the world’s poorest countries are also the world’s sunniest, the democratization of both new and traditional storage technologies will grant energy abundance to those already bathed in sunlight. Incredible companies like Heliogen will be able to mine sunlight and water to create cheap, abundant hydrogen as a storage medium. We are also on the cusp of many breakthroughs in fusion power as capital, new materials, and entrepreneurs pour in this arena.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: materials science, hardware advancements, AI/algorithms, and improved battery technologies.

The decade ahead is going to be the BEST TIME EVER to be an exponential entrepreneur. With many dozens of Google-sized ($1T) opportunities emerging and thousands of multi-hundred-million-dollar startups on the horizon.

Are you clear about how you’re going to use these Metatrends? About what company you’re going to build next?

Would you like my coaching on this topic? Then… 

JOIN MY EXECUTIVE COACHING PROGRAM

If you want my coaching as an exponential entrepreneur and to reinforce those mindsets that will inspire and guide you to create a hopeful, compelling and abundant future for yourself and humanity, then consider joining my executive coaching program.

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University, with edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

Are you looking for a gift for yourself, friends, family, or colleagues? I love giving Audible by Amazon as a gift. Audible online audiobook platform is where books are read to you while driving, relaxing at home, or on the go. Use any smartphone, tablet, and computer and turn it into an excellent learning resource. (Click on the Amazon logo below to get started.)


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minute Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks #WSJ #VC #VentureCapital #PE #PrivateEquity #LimitedPartners #FamilyOffice #FundsofFunds #IBD #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #DE&I #ESG #diversity #cybersecurity #artificialintelligence #climate #ActivistInvestor #ethicalbusiness #directors #corporategovernance #accountability #integrity #ethics #corporateleadership #leadership #nonexecutivedirector #nonexec #boarddevelopment #boardmembers #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The Exponential Leader’s Guide to Achieving 10x Growth

Posted by Cliff Locks On August 18, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

The Exponential Leader’s Guide to Achieving 10x Growth

Take moonshots and create abundance as an Exponential Leader.

The only constant is change and the rate of change is increasing. Regardless of your organization’s size, sector, or industry, this guide can help you create a sense of urgency around innovation and add important new leadership competencies to spur innovation.

Singularity University’s ebook, The Exponential Leader’s Guide to Achieving 10x Growth, is your blueprint for achieving 10x growth by developing the skills, approaches, and mindset of what we at Singularity University call an exponential leader.

Free download: https://bit.ly/Exponential-Leaders-Guide

What’s inside?

Grow your toolkit by learning the key principles to master to succeed in an accelerating world, including the importance of being an Exponential Leader:

  • Understanding the impact of rapidly accelerating technologies
  • Having a transformative purpose and taking moonshots
  • Leveraging exponential technologies such as virtual reality, artificial intelligence, digital biology, and more
  • Seeing the world through a lens of abundance rather than scarcity
  • Leveraging the crowd for expertise, solutions, and capital
  • Launching your vision, experimenting, and disrupting yourself (before someone else does)

You’ll learn from the best to understand how and why expanding Into new markets can disrupt entire industries by:

  • Examining some classic examples of disruption
  • Learning how to identify great adjacent markets for your business

Learn new ways to disrupt yourself with moonshot thinking and “unholy alliances” is part of being an Exponential Leaders

See how we can help transform your organization into an exponential enterprise with leaders who are prepared to tackle the coming changes and seize new opportunities.

Take moonshots and create abundance.

The only constant is change and the rate of change is increasing. Regardless of your organization’s size, sector, or industry, this guide can help you create a sense of urgency around innovation and add important new leadership competencies to spur innovation, yes you can be a successful change executive.

Singularity University’s ebook, The Exponential Leader’s Guide to Achieving 10x Growth, is your blueprint for achieving 10x growth by developing the skills, approaches, and mindset of what we at Singularity University call an exponential leader.

What’s inside?

Grow your toolkit by learning the key principles to master to succeed in an accelerating world, including the importance of of being a Exponential Leader:

  • Understanding the impact of rapidly accelerating technologies
  • Having a transformative purpose and taking moonshots
  • Leveraging exponential technologies such as virtual reality, artificial intelligence, digital biology, and more
  • Seeing the world through a lens of abundance rather than scarcity
  • Leveraging the crowd for expertise, solutions, and capital
  • Launching your vision, experimenting, and disrupting yourself (before someone else does)

You’ll learn from the best to understand how and why expanding Into new markets can disrupt entire industries by:

  • Examining some classic examples of disruption
  • Learning how to identify great adjacent markets for your business

Learn new ways to disrupt yourself with moonshot thinking and “unholy alliances” by:

  • Recognizing how your biggest problems are your biggest opportunities
  • Examining examples of the most successful unholy alliances
  • Exploring how to start creating your own unholy alliances
  • Learning how to 10x your thinking and take moonshots

See how I can help transform your organization into an exponential enterprise with leaders who are prepared to tackle the coming changes and seize new opportunities.

Free download: https://bit.ly/Exponential-Leaders-Guide

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University and edited by and Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minute Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks #WSJ #VC #VentureCapital #PE #PrivateEquity #LimitedPartners #FamilyOffice #FundsofFunds #IBD #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #DE&I #ESG #diversity #cybersecurity #artificialintelligence #climate #ActivistInvestor #ethicalbusiness #directors #corporategovernance #accountability #integrity #ethics #corporateleadership #leadership #nonexecutivedirector #nonexec #boarddevelopment #boardmembers #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

It’s How They Make Us Feel – Mentors believe in us, even before we believe in ourselves

Posted by Cliff Locks On August 11, 2021 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

It’s How They Make Us Feel – Mentors believe in us, even before we believe in ourselves

Building a collaborative “Dream Team” that consistently wins gold. Remember there is a mentor in all of us.

Let’s get started… with the differences between the roles – Coaches speak to you; mentors speak with you; and sponsors speak for you.

I searched and searched for that dusty field, but never found it—later, I saw that it was gone. Yet that place remains etched in my mind.

While visiting my home town to see family about a week ago, I drove by a play field, where I spent some of my childhood. Places that seemed so big when I was a kid—like the elementary school—were actually quite small. But the one place that loomed large in my memory was a field where I learned a powerful lesson.

I was in fourth grade, and we were playing kickball. But on one particular day, the coach changed the rules. He randomly called people out when they were clearly safe and also called them safe when they were clearly out. And when it happened to me, my competitiveness got the best of me. “Why do you keep doing that?” I asked.

The coach paused and waited patiently until I was listening. “Now you have a taste of what so many people live with every day.” That had been his intent, as coach and teacher, all along—to give us a wider perspective, not telling us what to think, but rather what to think about.

Over the years, we’ve all had those coaches. Think for a moment about who they were. Some were in the classroom or the gymnasium; others were in music rooms and marching bands—and many other places as well. Later in life, we found others who guided, nurtured, and challenged us to think differently. Collectively and individually, they made a lasting impact.

“At different and pivotal points in my career I have had the opportunity to work with some amazing coaches who have helped me gain clarity about how I saw my future, but more importantly, how I could get there,” Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, President and CEO of Celebrity Cruises Inc., told us this week. “They have made an indelible imprint on who I am, and I will be forever grateful for their genuine caring and wise insight.”

Mark Arian, head of our global Consulting business, told me a moving story this week about a boss who made a lasting difference in his life. For more than 30 years, Mark has carried with him a thick folder full of notes this boss wrote—a mix of praise, direct feedback, and emotional stories that guide him to this day. As Mark told me, “Just recently, I had the occasion to reach out to this boss—my very first manager—who is now in his 80s. I told him how much his coaching and caring meant to me—and still mean to me.”

Mark read me a few of those notes: “Stick with it.… Don’t get discouraged…. You have the energy to see this through.” This is what a great manager does.

Now it’s our turn—paying it forward to others. Their aspiration needs to be our inspiration as we become that coach for them.

“I pray that I will have the benefit of working with at least one more great mentor leader; one who will energize me to take the hill, calm the crisis, transform the old way, and achieve something great with or for a team,” an executive and a member of a Fortune 10 board of directors told me this week. His words—our calling.

Amid the echo of the biggest reset of our lifetimes, a good coach can be that still, small voice.

As Kevin Cashman, our Global Co-Leader of CEO & Enterprise Leader Development and a renowned coach, said in our conversation this week, “Coaching is everywhere around us, all the time—in life, people, examples and challenges. Coaching and learning can never be separated.”

Indeed, there is a coach in all of us. Here are some thoughts:

  • In our corner. “Coaches speak to you; mentors speak with you; and sponsors speak for you.” This description—shared with me by an executive recently—succinctly captures the roles of three of the most important people in our careers. Mentors take others under their wings and help them learn. Sponsors advocate for others, making the case for why they should get a particular assignment or promotion. And then there are coaches—the formal and the informal—and the best bring perspective with objectivity. Most important, a coach is someone to be vulnerable with. When that level of trust exists, people have the psychological safety to speak their minds—and bare their souls. As Dennis Baltzley, our firm’s Global Head of Leadership Development, told me this week, “When an environment of psychological safety exists, people know they can be candid—not only about what they want and where they see themselves, but also about their fears and failures. And that’s where all great coaching starts.”
  • When coaching meets caring. It’s not only about the coach’s expertise—or even their title, position, or seniority. Rather, it’s all about the coach’s ability to ask the right questions. Doing that requires the right mixture of caring and directness. As Kevin Cashman observed: “If coaching is only caring, it won’t go anywhere. And if it’s only direct, people will find it hard to connect. But when coaching combines caring and directness, that’s when the best outcomes happen—and the benefits flow in both directions.” And the key ingredient is heart.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
  • Coaches coach. Growing up, I went to a basketball camp led by Coach Gene Keady—a legend, who later went on to an acclaimed coaching career at Division 1 colleges, most notably Purdue, where he was a head coach for 25 years. He was also part of the coaching staff for the U.S. “Dream Team” that won the gold medal at the 2000 Olympic Games. For me, personally, Coach Keady was the first person to tell me that I could be a leader … one day. Flash forward to several months ago. Coach Keady, who is now in his 80s, reached out to reconnect with me. We had about a half-hour phone conversation, and it was great to hear his voice. Suddenly, I was that kid on the court again, with a basketball on my hip, listening to every word Coach Keady had to say. Then, just recently, I received a note and a signed picture—now a treasured memento of yet another coach who helped set a foundation that guided my life. After all, coaches coach. They believe in us, even before we believe in ourselves. That’s what a good coach does. But more than what they say, it’s how they make us feel. Indeed, the impact of their words and actions lasts a lifetime.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minute Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks #WSJ #VC #VentureCapital #PE #PrivateEquity #LimitedPartners #FamilyOffice #FundsofFunds #IBD #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #DE&I #ESG #diversity #cybersecurity #artificialintelligence #climate #ActivistInvestor #ethicalbusiness #directors #corporategovernance #accountability #integrity #ethics #corporateleadership #leadership #nonexecutivedirector #nonexec #boarddevelopment #boardmembers #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

What if you could achieve 10X growth while your competitors only achieve 10%?

Posted by Cliff Locks On August 4, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

What if you could achieve 10X growth while your competitors only achieve 10%?

That’s what a Moonshot is: going 10X bigger or better when everyone else is pursuing incremental change.

Most companies ask questions such as, “How do we reduce costs by 10%?” or “How can we increase profits by 10%?”

Having a Moonshot Mindset means applying 10X thinking (or 1,000%) to all your efforts and challenges.

It’s one of the critical mindsets enabled by exponential technologies that any exponential entrepreneur or leader needs to succeed in the decade ahead.

In this blog, I’m going to discuss what a Moonshot Mindset is and the benefits of having one. 

Let’s dive in…

WHY SHOULD YOU AIM FOR 10X GROWTH INSTEAD OF 10%?

I’ll give you three reasons:

  1. As my friend Astro Teller, Alphabet’s “Captain of Moonshots” says, when you try to do 10% better, you’re putting yourself in direct competition with everyone else in your industry. And it’s a competition that you’re likely to lose.
  2. When you shoot for 10X improvement and try to do something radically hard, you approach the problem you’re solving in a completely different way.
  3. When you attack a problem (any problem) as though it were solvable, even if you don’t know how to solve it, you’ll be shocked at what you come up with.

In our world, change is the only constant, and the rate of change is increasing.

As a result, you either disrupt yourself, or someone else will.

6 BENEFITS OF A MOONSHOT MINDSET

  1. You understand “the day before something is a breakthrough, it’s a crazy idea.” With a Moonshot Mindset, you have permission to pursue your crazy ideas.
  2. You are willing to take the risks necessary to transform industries and society for the better. You recognize that those with a Moonshot Mindset are the innovators making the world a better place, moving humanity forward, and charting the future.
  3. You understand that a Moonshot within the realm of your Massively Transformative Purpose (MTP) can be the adventure of a lifetime, giving you joy and fulfillment, and providing you with purpose.
  4. You are willing to aim at billion-person challenges. You recognize that the world’s biggest problems are the world’s biggest business opportunities.
  5. You understand that Moonshots striving for a 10X improvement (or 1,000%) offer one-hundred-fold the benefit compared to 10% incremental improvement, but are rarely one-hundred-fold more difficult to achieve. A 10X improvement is 100 times more worth it, but it’s not 100 times harder.
  6. As a leader, you know that Moonshots focus and motivate your team, help you attract the best talent in the world, and allow you to solve interim problems while creating interim products and services along the way.

How much more could you achieve if you had a Moonshot Mindset?

What can you do in the next hour to make progress towards your 10X goal?

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University and edited by and Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

How do you become an “expert” in exponential tech? I’ll teach you.

Posted by Cliff Locks On July 28, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

How do you become an “expert” in exponential tech? I’ll teach you.

Are you taking the time to analyze exactly HOW entire industries are being revolutionized from the bottom up?
 
Over the next decade, waves of exponential tech advancements will stack atop one another, eclipsing decades of breakthroughs in scale and impact.
 
These waves will lead to 20 “Metatrends” that will revolutionize industries and redefine tomorrow’s generation of businesses.

Let’s dive in…

NOTE: Discussing these Metatrends is a key focus of my year-round entrepreneur coaching program Abundance360.

10 MORE METATRENDS SHAPING OUR FUTURE 

(1) The Insurance Industry Transforms from “Recovery After Risk” to “Prevention of Risk”: Today, fire insurance pays you after your house burns down. Life insurance pays your next-of-kin after you die. And health insurance (which is really sick insurance) pays only after you get sick. During the next decade, we’ll see a new generation of insurance providers that offer you a service to KEEP you healthy and keep your house safe during a wildfire.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: machine learning, ubiquitous sensors, low-cost genome sequencing, and robotics to detect risk, prevent disaster, and guarantee safety before any costs are incurred. 

(2) Autonomous Vehicles and Flying Cars (eVTOL) Will Redefine Human Travel (Soon to be Far Faster and Cheaper): Fully autonomous vehicles, car-as-a-service fleets, and aerial ridesharing (flying cars) will be fully operational in most major metropolitan cities in the coming decade. The cost of transportation will plummet 3-4X, transforming real estate, finance, insurance, the materials economy, and urban planning. Where you live and work, and how you spend your time, will all be fundamentally reshaped by this future of human travel. Your kids and elderly parents will never drive. Already, a half dozen eVTOL companies have gone public raising >$10B to fuel their growth. These vehicles are real and will help define the decade ahead.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: machine learning, sensors, materials science, battery storage improvements, and ubiquitous gigabit connections. 

(3) On-demand Production and On-demand Delivery Will Birth an “Instant Economy of Things”: Urban dwellers will learn to expect “instant fulfillment” of their retail orders as drone and robotic last-mile delivery services carry products from local supply depots directly to your doorstep. Further riding the deployment of regional on-demand digital manufacturing (3D printing farms), individualized products can be obtained within hours—anywhere, anytime.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: networks, 3D printing, robotics, and AI.

(4) Ability to Sense and Know Anything, Anytime, Anywhere: We’re rapidly approaching the era wherein 100 billion sensors (the Internet of Everything) is monitoring and sensing (imaging, listening, measuring) every facet of our environments, all the time. Global imaging satellites, drones, autonomous car LIDARs, and forward-looking augmented reality (AR) headset cameras are all part of a global sensor matrix, together allowing us to know anything, anytime, anywhere. In this future, it’s not “what you know,” but rather “the quality of the questions you ask” that will be most important.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: terrestrial, atmospheric, and space-based sensors, vast data networks, 5G communication networks, next-gen Wi-Fi, and machine learning.

(5) Disruption of Advertising: As AI becomes increasingly embedded in everyday life, your custom AI will soon understand what you want better than you do. In turn, we will begin to both trust and rely upon our AIs to make most of our buying decisions, turning over shopping to AI-enabled personal assistants. Your AI might make purchases based upon your past desires, current shortages, conversations you’ve allowed your AI to listen to, or by tracking where your pupils focus on a virtual interface (i.e., what catches your attention). As a result, the advertising industry—which normally competes for your attention (whether at the Superbowl or through search engines)—will have a hard time influencing your AI.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: machine learning, sensors, augmented reality, and 5G/networks.

(6) Cellular Agriculture Moves from the Lab into Inner Cities, Providing High-quality Protein that is Cheaper and Healthier: This next decade will witness the birth of the most ethical, nutritious, and environmentally sustainable protein production system devised by humankind. Stem cell-based “cellular agriculture” will allow the production of beef, chicken and fish anywhere, on-demand, with far higher nutritional content, and a vastly lower environmental footprint than traditional livestock options. To support this area, the XPRIZE has launched a $15M “Feed the Next Billion” competition focusing on fish and chicken.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: biotechnology, materials science, machine learning, and agtech.

(7) High-bandwidth Brain-Computer Interfaces (BCI) Will Come Online for Public Use: Technologist and futurist Ray Kurzweil has predicted that in the mid-2030s, we will begin connecting the human neocortex to the cloud. This next decade will see tremendous progress in that direction, first serving those with spinal cord injuries, whereby patients will regain both sensory capacity and motor control. Yet beyond assisting those with motor function loss, several BCI pioneers are now attempting to supplement their baseline cognitive abilities, a pursuit with the potential to increase their sensorium, memory, and even intelligence. Recent demonstrations of a macaque monkey playing Pong using a Neuralink implant is proof of incredible progress. Add to this the breakthrough work of Dr. Mary Lou Jepsen using red laser light holography to read and write onto brain neurons, and we have the making for an incredible future.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: materials science, AI/machine learning, and robotics.

(8) High-resolution VR Will Transform Both Retail and Real Estate Shopping & the Future of Education: High-resolution, lightweight virtual reality headsets will allow individuals at home to shop for everything from clothing to real estate—all from the convenience of their living room. Need a new outfit? Your AI knows your detailed body measurements and can whip up a fashion show featuring your avatar wearing the latest 20 designs on a runway. Want to see how your furniture might look inside a house you’re viewing online? No problem! Your AI can populate the property with your virtualized inventory and give you a guided tour. On the education front, the use of VR and AI-driven avatars with technology such as that demonstrated by Dreamscape promises a future of game-like, immersive, and powerful education and training.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: VR, machine learning, and high-bandwidth networks.

(9) Increased Focus on Sustainability and the Environment: An increase in global environmental awareness and concern over global warming will drive companies to invest in sustainability—both from a necessity standpoint and for marketing purposes. Breakthroughs in materials science, enabled by AI, will allow companies to drive tremendous reductions in waste and environmental contamination. One company’s waste will become another company’s profit center. A key example of this area of focus is the recent launch of the $100M XPRIZE Carbon Removal that has been funded by Elon Musk. Thousands of prospective teams have hit our XPRIZE website and many hundreds have registered thus far.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: materials science, AI, CRISPR, digital biology, and broadband networks.

(10) CRISPR and Gene Therapies Will Minimize Disease: Perhaps one of the most powerful, underappreciated technologies in the world is CRISPR. In 2020, two incredible women won the Nobel Prize in medicine for its discovery, and revenues from CRISPR doubled between 2019 and 2020 to over $1.5B. A vast range of infectious diseases, from AIDS to Ebola, are now potentially curable, as are a wide range of genetic ailments like sickle cell anemia, thalassemia and certain forms of congenital blindness. In addition, gene-editing technologies continue to advance in precision and ease of use, allowing families to treat and ultimately cure hundreds of inheritable genetic diseases.

This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of the following: various biotechnologies (CRISPR, Gene Therapy), genome sequencing, and AI.

In the decade ahead, master entrepreneurs will look beyond the immediate effects of a given technology to seize second-order, Google-sized business opportunities on the horizon.

As an entrepreneur, you should be asking yourself: What challenges or problems can I solve? How can I leverage the coming waves of tech advancements?

If you would like my coaching on how to take advantage of these Metatrends in your business, then…

JOIN MY EXECUTIVE COACHING PROGRAM

If you want my coaching as an exponential entrepreneur and to reinforce those mindsets that will inspire and guide you to create a hopeful, compelling and abundant future for yourself and humanity, then consider joining my executive coaching program.

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University and edited by and Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minute Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks #WSJ #VC #VentureCapital #PE #PrivateEquity #LimitedPartners #FamilyOffice #FundsofFunds #IBD #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #DE&I #ESG #diversity #cybersecurity #artificialintelligence #climate #ActivistInvestor #ethicalbusiness #directors #corporategovernance #accountability #integrity #ethics #corporateleadership #leadership #nonexecutivedirector #nonexec #boarddevelopment #boardmembers #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Becoming an Exponential Executive Is Easier Than You Think – I’ll Show You

Posted by Cliff Locks On July 21, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Becoming an Exponential Executive Is Easier Than You Think – I’ll Show You

Being an executive today is vastly different than it was 20 years ago.

 

Today, each of us has access to more capital, more technological tools, more information, more talent, and more computational power than the CEOs of the world’s biggest companies did just two decades ago.
 
As I think about what it takes to succeed in this world of Abundance and accelerating returns, I want to focus on six mindsets and tools that every exponential entrepreneur needs to master.

Let’s dive in…

1. YOU *MUST* UNDERSTAND EXPONENTIALS

We’re local and linear thinkers in an exponential world.

Our brains haven’t had a significant upgrade in over two million years, whereas our technology is doubling in power every 18 to 24 months. 

I often talk about my “6 Ds” framework—it’s a lens, and a roadmap, through which I contextualize all technological change and opportunities.

The 6 Ds Progression

  • Digitized: Anything that becomes digitized enters the same exponential growth we see in computing. Digital information is easy to access, share, and distribute–it can spread at the speed of the internet. Once a product or service can be represented as “1s and 0s”—from biotechnology to music—it becomes an information-based technology and enters exponential growth. 
  • Deceptive: Once something is digitized, its initial period of growth is deceptive because exponential trends don’t seem to grow fast at first. Doubling .01 only gets you 0.2, then 0.4, and so on. At this phase, everything looks like “zero.” But exponential growth really takes off after it breaks the whole-number barrier. 2 quickly becomes 32, which then becomes 32,000 before you know it.
  • Disruptive: The existing market for a given product or service is disrupted by the new market that the exponential technology creates because digital technologies outperform in terms of cost and effectiveness. Once you can stream music on your phone, why by CDs or records? If you can also snap, store, and share photographs, why buy a camera and film?
  • Demonetized: Money is increasingly removed from the equation as the technology becomes cheaper—often to the point of being free. Software is less expensive to produce than hardware and copies are virtually free. You can now download any number of apps on your phone to access terabytes of information and enjoy a multitude of services at costs approaching zero.
  • Dematerialized: Separate physical products are removed from the equation. Technologies that were once bulky or expensive—cameras, GPS, phones, maps—are now all in a smartphone that fits in your pocket.
  • Democratized: Once something is digitized, more people have access to it. Powerful technologies are no longer only for governments, large organizations, or the wealthy. 

Exponential entrepreneurs use the 6 Ds as a technological road map to predict where technologies are going and when to capitalize on the opportunities.  

The framework gives them an unfair advantage over competitors.

How can you use the 6 Ds framework in your business and industry?

2. YOU SEE ABUNDANCE—NOT SCARCITY

Exponential entrepreneurs understand that technology is a force that transforms things from scarcity to abundance. 

They have an Abundance Mindset.

Exponential tech is creating a world of Abundance in almost every major arena, including computation, education, energy, finance, healthcare, and transportation, among others. Once these industries transform from scarcity to abundance, their products and services become cheap (or free) and their quality goes through the roof. 

Many things that we paid millions of dollars for just two decades ago are now available for free on our smartphones.

The challenge is that our minds evolved during a world of absolute scarcity, and most people are trapped in an unhealthy “Scarcity Mindset.” 

In a world of scarcity, there is a limited pie. If your neighbor gets a slice, it means that you get a smaller slice. But with an Abundance Mindset, rather than slicing the pie into thinner and thinner pieces, we just bake more pies—millions more pies.    

Exponential entrepreneurs also know that scarcity-minded, closed business models ultimately fail, and that open platforms ultimately win.

3. YOU LEVERAGE EXPONENTIAL TECH

Exponential entrepreneurs experiment constantly and have a deep sense of curiosity about a group of exponentially growing technologies:

  • 3D Printing
  • AR, VR & Spatial Web
  • Artificial Intelligence & Computation
  • Blockchain
  • Biotech & Longevity
  • Material Sciences
  • Robotics & Drones

Exponential entrepreneurs understand that these are the technologies that can transform and disrupt industries.

They see how these technologies are allowing individuals to do what was previously only possible by governments and the largest corporations.

And further, they know that today, you don’t have to become a technologist yourself, but instead take the first step: to understand the potential and implications of the technologies.

4. YOU HAVE AN MTP AND A MOONSHOT

Exponential entrepreneurs and executives must have a Massively Transformative Purpose (MTP) that drives them to power through hardship and attract the best talent to join them.

The most successful entrepreneurs then use their MTP to power their Moonshot: a product or service that allows them to go 10X bigger or better while everyone else is pursuing incremental change. 

Most businesspeople and companies ask questions such as, “How do we reduce costs by 10%?”

Going after Moonshots means applying 10X thinking (or 1,000%) to all your efforts and challenges. 

Finally, the best entrepreneurs subscribe to Google’s eight innovation principles, making them central to their startup mindset:

  1. Focus on the user
  2. Open will win
  3. Ideas can come from everywhere
  4. Think big, but start small
  5. Never fail to fail
  6. Spark with imagination, fuel with data
  7. Be a platform, float all boats
  8. Have a mission that matters

5. YOU LEVERAGE THE CROWD FOR EXPERTISE, SOLUTIONS & CAPITAL

Exponential entrepreneurs and executives can crowdsource nearly everything they need—ideas, capital, design, software—to grow their company.

And they take advantage of these abundant resources.

We live in a hyper-connected world of 4.5 billion, growing to 7 billion+. Around the world, cognitive surplus can help you build your products, services, and drive innovation—regardless of your company’s size.

As Bill Joy, cofounder of Sun Microsystems once said, “No matter who you are, most of the smartest people work for someone else.”

With current technology, people can work from anywhere in the world at any time, and large corporations can tap into this global knowledge base to improve their systems. 

Perhaps one of the most powerful aspects of the crowd is its ability to provide you with capital: either in the form of equity or advanced market commitments. Crowdfunding has grown into an opportunity worth multi-tens-of-billions of dollars, providing more capital to today’s startup game than any time ever in human history.

Access to startup capital is no longer scarce.

There are proven ways to run a Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign. For exponential entrepreneurs, these capabilities are second nature.

Finally, you can create incentive competitions through platforms such as HeroX.com that allow you to crowdsource technologies, designs, solutions… whatever you want. This is an important tool in your tool chest.

All you need to know is exactly what you want

If you do, in most cases, the crowd can do the rest.

6. YOU LAUNCH YOUR VISION, EXPERIMENT & DISRUPT YOURSELF

Exponential entrepreneurs and executives must bring their ideas to life.

These entrepreneurs and executives understand the importance of action, rapid iteration, and experimentation. They follow Reid Hoffman’s philosophy: “If you’re not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve launched too late.”

As such, exponential entrepreneurs understand the importance and means for rapid experimentation and iteration. They push tirelessly to reinvent and disrupt themselves.

They drive idea exchange and create a culture of idea interaction capable of fostering creative solutions to previously unsolvable problems.

They understand where, when, why and how breakthroughs happen inside the communities they create.

They know how to constantly keep their companies, ideas, and processes focused on the future, moving forward, and leveraging the latest exponential growth techniques in the pursuit of even bigger goals.

We live in incredible times.

The potential for entrepreneurs to disrupt industries has never been greater. Let’s talk about your disruptive technology.

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University, with edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Productivity Secrets of Elon Musk’s Mindset & Strategies and You Can Easily Apply Them Into Your Life For Additional Success

Posted by Cliff Locks On July 14, 2021 at 10:07 am / In: Uncategorized

Productivity Secrets of Elon Musk’s Mindset & Strategies and You Can Easily Apply Them Into Your Life For Additional Success

Elon Musk’s entrepreneurial success is a direct result of his mindset, strategies, and intelligence.  

 

Having known Elon for 20 years, I’ve had the opportunity to watch his meteoric rise into someone who is arguably the greatest entrepreneur of our age.

In this blog, I’ll summarize what every exponential entrepreneur can learn and emulate from Elon’s core success tactics and strategies.

I’ve divided these lessons into 6 sections: 

  1. Deep-rooted Passion
  2. Massively Transformative Purpose
  3. Singular, Unwavering Focus
  4. First Principles Thinking
  5. Thinking in Probabilities
  6. Not Settling for “No” / Not Giving Up

Let’s dive in…

1. DEEP-ROOTED PASSION

“I didn’t go into the rocket business, the car business, or the solar business thinking, ‘This is a great opportunity.’ I just thought, in order to make a difference, something needed to be done. I wanted to create something substantially better than what came before.” – Elon Musk

Elon only tackles those problems where he has deep-rooted passion and conviction.

After selling PayPal, with $165M in his pocket, he set out to pursue three Moonshots, and subsequently built three multibillion-dollar companies: SpaceX, Tesla, and SolarCity.

This passion (and the underlying emotional drive) allowed him to push forward through extraordinarily difficult times and take big risks.

You might think it was always easy for Elon, but back in 2008 he was at a lowest low: SpaceX had just experienced its third consecutive failure of the Falcon-1 launch vehicle, Tesla was out of money, SolarCity was not getting financed, and Musk was going through a divorce. 

He had to borrow money for basic living. Traumatic times.

Despite the 2008 economic crisis at the time, he bet every penny he had, and eventually everything turned around. Going from being in debt, to the wealthiest person on the planet just 13 years later. Wow, what a journey!

Ultimately, it was his passion, refusal to give up, and drive that allowed him to ultimately succeed and begin to impact the world at a significant scale.

2. CLEAR MASSIVELY TRANSFORMATIVE PURPOSE(S)

Part of Elon’s ability to motivate his teams to do great things is his crystal-clear Massively Transformative Purpose (MTP), which drives each of his companies.

As I always say, social movements, rapidly growing organizations, and remarkable breakthroughs in science and technology are all backed by a powerful MTP.

Elon’s MTP for Tesla and SolarCity is to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.

To this end, every product Tesla brings to market is focused on this vision and backed by a Master Plan he wrote nearly 15 years ago.

Elon’s MTP for SpaceX is to backup the biosphere by making humanity a multi-planet species.

Elon has been preaching this since the founding of SpaceX back in 2002, even when he was experiencing numerous rocket failures.

“I think fundamentally the future is vastly more exciting and interesting if we’re a spacefaring civilization and a multi-planet species than if we’re or not. You want to be inspired by things. You want to wake up in the morning and think the future is going to be great. And that’s what being a spacefaring civilization is all about.” – Elon Musk

MTPs are like a north star for any exponential entrepreneur and their employees.

They keep all efforts focused and aligned, which helps his organizations grow cohesively even in times of chaos. 

And when you combine passion and purpose, that gives you something else… 

3. SINGULAR, UNWAVERING FOCUS

Elon is notorious for working 75 – 80 hour weeks, especially in the early days of SpaceX and Tesla.  

There were times during Tesla’s early days where a specific problem needed to be solved, so he would sleep under his desk or on the factory floor if he had to. Elon didn’t think about anything else—all he focused on was the task at hand. 

And now look at Tesla: it’s a giant transforming the automotive world.

Passion, purpose, and focus. All of these put you into what psychologists call a flow state: a highly enjoyable and meaningful state where work ceases to become work and instead becomes energizing and immersive.

This intensity that Elon brings is different from the kind of intensity that burns people out or causes them to quit jobs. For him, the intensity is energizing—not draining.

4. FIRST PRINCIPLES THINKING

First principles thinking is a mode of inquiry borrowed from physics that is designed to relentlessly pursue the foundations of any given problem from fundamental truths.  

Elon has deployed this thinking strategy to give himself an unfair advantage when developing new batteries, a key component for both Tesla and SolarCity.  

Here is Elon describing first principles thinking in an interview with Kevin Rose:

“I think it is important to reason from first principles rather than by analogy. The normal way we conduct our lives is we reason by analogy. [When reasoning by analogy] we are doing this because it’s like something else that was done or it is like what other people are doing — slight iterations on a theme. 

First principles is kind of a physics way of looking at the world. You boil things down to the most fundamental truths and say, “What are we sure is true?” … and then reason up from there. 

Somebody could say, “Battery packs are really expensive and that’s just the way they will always be… Historically, it has cost $600 per kilowatt hour. It’s not going to be much better than that in the future.”

With first principles, you say, “What are the material constituents of the batteries? What is the stock market value of the material constituents?”

It’s got cobalt, nickel, aluminum, carbon, some polymers for separation and a sealed can. Break that down on a material basis and say, “If we bought that on the London Metal Exchange what would each of those things cost?”

It’s like $80 per kilowatt hour. So clearly you just need to think of clever ways to take those materials and combine them into the shape of a battery cell and you can have batteries that are much, much cheaper than anyone realizes.”

First principles thinking works so well because it gives us a proven strategy for editing out complexity and allows entrepreneurs to sidestep the tide of popular opinion.

5. THINKING IN PROBABILITIES

Elon is always trying to broaden his view by thinking in probabilities. 

“Outcomes are usually not deterministic … they’re probabilistic. But we don’t think that way. The popular definition of insanity—doing the same thing over and over and expecting a dierent resultthats only true in a highly deterministic situation. If you have a probabilistic situation, which most situations are, then if you do the same thing twice, it can be quite reasonable to expect a dierent result.” – Elon Musk

This difference is key. 

Thinking in probabilities—this business has a 60 percent chance of success—rather than deterministically—if I do A and B, then C will definitely happen—doesn’t just guard against oversimplification. It also protects us against the brain’s inherent laziness. 

The brain is an energy hog (it’s 2 percent of our body mass yet uses 25 percent of our energy), so it’s always trying to conserve. As it’s way more energy efficient to think in black and white, we often do. 

But outcomes exist across a range. 

As Elon puts it, “The future is not certain. It’s really a set of branching probability streams.”

How he chooses which streams to explore depends on the relationship between those probabilities and the importance of his objective. 

“Even if the probability for success is fairly low, if the objective is really important, it’s still worth doing. Conversely, if the objective is less important, then the probability needs to be much greater. How I decide which projects to take on depends on probability multiplied by the importance of the objective.”

SpaceX and Tesla are great examples. When Musk started both companies, he thought their probability of success was less than 50 percent—probably a fair bit less than 50 percent.

But as Elon points out, “I also thought these were things that needed to get done. So even if the money was lost, it was still worth trying.”

6. NOT SETTLING FOR “NO” / NOT GIVING UP

I’ve always said that “No” simply means begin one level higher. Or as Martine Rothblatt, another great exponential entrepreneur puts it, “Every no is just a step closer to yes.”

Elon’s first wife tells an anecdote about him from his college days. He received a 98% one of his tests, but he wasn’t satisfied. So Elon went to his professor and got them to change the grade to a 100%.

Most people might think this is a waste of time: 98% is a perfectly respectable grade. 

But Elon is not like most people

He didn’t take “No” for an answer. 

And when SpaceX was started and was building their first rocket, Falcon-1, Elon had expected early failure, budgeting for 3 flights. But when his 3rd launch attempt failed, he did whatever it took, including borrowing money and going into debt, to get to a 4th, and ultimately successful flight of the Falcon-1. 

When you are driven by deep passion and conviction with a singular unwavering purpose, it is incredible what you can ultimately achieve.

CLOSING THOUGHTS

These 6 strategies from Elon have contributed to his massive success as an exponential entrepreneur. They reinforce that your mindset is the most important resource you have to achieve your grandest dreams.

Ultimately, for you to make a difference in your business and the world, if you’re not absolutely passionate and driven by that purpose, you will not take risks when you need to, and you will not keep going in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles.

What mindset have you chosen to develop? What mindset are you utilizing to overcome hardship, to inspire your team and to attract the capital and resources required?

My belief is that as entrepreneurs we need to carefully choose our mindsets, and surround ourselves the colleagues and data that reinforce those mindsets, every day and throughout the year.

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University, with edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Look up, look out, look forward. Indeed, a new world is right in front of us—waiting for us to discover.

Posted by Cliff Locks On July 7, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Look up, look out, look forward. Indeed, a new world is right in front of us—waiting for us to discover.

 

The other day, while speaking to a client’s leadership team, I was asked, “When are things going to get back to the way they were?” My answer was instantaneous: “They’re not—there’s no going back.”.
 
Time has not stood still for any of us. Nor can we simply turn the clock back to 2019 and start again. That moment is gone forever.


It’s like a saying shared with me recently by an executive who had been in the Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps for 33 years: “These things are irrelevant to fighter pilots: the runway behind them, the altitude above them, and three seconds ago.”

This is our “telling time.” Given what we know now—about ourselves and each other—we no longer contemplate when we will move forward. The only question is how. We have three choices: procrastinate, pause, or push.

The starting point is to accurately perceive the reality of today—an unbiased picture of where we are—personally and organizationally. Anticipation comes next. It’s future-focused, projecting beyond the horizon—Plan C for Plan B for Plan A. Navigation is the companion to anticipation—course correcting in real time. Together, they keep the wind at our back.

If anticipation is the course we chart, and navigation is the ship’s mast—then agility is the rudder. Indeed, these times take world-class agility that stretches our intellectual and strategic abilities to navigate in the moment.

As we anticipate and navigate, we keep making our way. After all, the path of progress is never linear. But that’s how we develop agility—from our experiences, both positive and negative.

Agility ensures learning never ends. Here are some thoughts:

·  Connecting time and space. When I spoke with Nathan Blain, an organizational expert in our firm, this week, I asked him about the top concern he’s hearing from clients these days. He didn’t hesitate in his response: “Connectivity.” He shared a conversation he had the other day with a senior leader who expressed concern that, while her teams were productive, continued isolation is creating a culture of verticality—working only for their managers instead of working horizontally as part of cross-functional teams. “This organization had committed so much time and effort to collaboration, they can’t get caught up in silos again,” he told me. Regardless of where or how we work, we need a horizontal mindset—taking the time to connect across our organizational space, even as scattered as it might be right now.

·  Survival of the agile. Amid great uncertainty and ambiguity for more than a year—when change has been the only constant—agility was our survival. There was no other option. Although our firm’s research reveals there are many types of agility, learning agility tops them all. All of us have had to become increasingly learning agile—synthesizing and applying our past experiences in real time to fluid, changing conditions. Or, as I like to say—knowing what to do when we don’t know what to do. So, why learning agility and why now? The ability to navigate ever-present ambiguity with agility separates those who are merely effective from those who are truly exceptional. Agility transmutes loss into learning in first-time situations; the new world belongs to the most agile. Learning agile people are insatiably curious and engaged with the world around them. They don’t just rely on the same old solutions and status quo problem-solving tactics that worked in the past. They’re willing to go against the grain of what they know how to do and prefer to do.

·  Tempus fugit. Time flies. It’s wisdom as old as time itself, captured by the poet Virgil in 29 B.C.—and it’s as true today as it ever was. If we become stuck in the past, unable to keep pace, we will be left behind. As Ken Blanchard, the management expert and co-author of The One Minute Manager, described in a conversation we had a few years ago, we all must be the “president of the present” and the “president of the future”— both at the same time. If the past 15 months have taught us anything, it’s the importance of adaptability. This is the equivalent of surfing: paddling out and choosing the right wave. While you ride that wave, you decide whether to take it all the way to shore—or bail out and find a better one. We make our path as we walk it, with agility and learning in the moment—while elevating our horizon.

Just like that old watch, nostalgia has its attraction—but all that remains are shadows of what was. In the words of Spanish poet Antonio Machado: “Wanderer, your footsteps are the road, and nothing more; wanderer, there is no road, the road is made by walking. By walking one makes the road, and upon glancing behind one sees the path that never will be trod again. Wanderer, there is no road—Only wakes upon the sea.” Look up, look out, look forward. Indeed, a new world is right in front of us—waiting for us to discover. That’s how we tell time.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, CEO of Korn Ferry and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Actionable Management Plan – It’s Your Why Not the Where You Are

Posted by Cliff Locks On June 30, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Actionable Management Plan – It’s Your Why Not the Where You Are

Everyone is trying to figure out the workplace these days. And it’s not about the where—it’s all about the why.

For employees, it’s about community and opportunity—how they can be part of something bigger than themselves—and receive the coaching, mentoring, and sponsorship they need to advance. For organizations, it’s about connection, commitment, and culture—how things get done.
 
To be honest, my own thinking on this has evolved. Physical, virtual, hybrid—I used to have an old-school view. Earlier in my career, when I served a West Coast investment bank, I noticed that the CEO looked a bit disheveled by mid-afternoon. Then I discovered that the CEO routinely came in the office at four o’clock in the morning—and sometimes after his daily jog.

He came in two-and-a-half hours before the stock market opened because that was the way he liked to operate—including monitoring the overseas markets.

This mentality stayed with me. When I first joined Korn Ferry, I made it a habit to be in the office by six or six-thirty each morning. But today, my thinking has absolutely gone 180 degrees. It’s possible to be all-in, all the time without being physically present. After all, it’s not about activity; it’s about accomplishment.

Now, as we figure out what comes next, it’s time to unearth and eliminate outdated thinking. As Bryan Ackermann, Managing Partner of our firm’s Global Leadership and Professional Development Practice, observed this week, “If companies are overly focused on location, they’re applying an old mentality to a new world.”

It’s like when we were in junior high and high school, and the day started in homeroom, where everybody had to be at a desk so attendance could be taken. Ironically, though, it was a positive experience back then and for one important reason. Homeroom wasn’t a class—it was a “horizontal community” of students who often were not in classes together the rest of the day.

Today, we need to make sure we have that “horizontal homeroom”—so that community and opportunity are omnipresent and available to everyone no matter where or how they work. There is no one-size-fits-all solution that applies to every organization—or even within an organization.

As we’re all discovering, there are people who want (and need) to continue working remotely—in fact, recent surveys have indicated that some of them might even quit if their employers aren’t flexible. Everywhere, the circuit breakers have been tripped. Now, it’s the big reset—including where and how we work.

Gregg Kvochak, our Senior Vice President of Finance, used to spend five hours a day commuting. Working remotely has given him back about 1,200 hours a year—that’s the equivalent to almost a half-year of vacation.

At the same time, there are people who view returning to the office as a long-awaited escape from isolation. I’m lonely…. I don’t feel connected…. We’ve all heard these comments. I remember speaking with someone several months ago who told me through tears how “my life is all in one room—I feel boxed in.”

As we move forward, it’s not either/or—today’s workplace is all about and.

For perspective, I’ve reached out across our firm. Sue Puncochar, director of administration in Minneapolis, is going back to the office. This arrangement not only works for her personal schedule, but also helps her ensure that office space is ready and available for colleagues. As Sue told me, “For those who get fed by having that particular tangible, in-person experience—or seeing people in the hallway—it’s an important option.”

Another colleague, Jodi Fournier, who leads client service in North America, would rather keep working remotely, which allows her to avoid two hours of commuting each day and feel more balanced. “However, I do want the flexibility to work in-person and experience the sense of community,” Jodi told me.

The center of gravity is shifting, from a place of work to a location for collaboration. It’s headspace and heart space. The why will always point to the where. Here are some thoughts:

  • Words motivate, actions inspire. “Our people can work from anywhere”—that may be the message spoken. But if the tone, nonverbal cues, word choice, and actions convey a different meaning—for example, those who come in almost every day get recognized or advanced more than peers who work remotely—guess what people will pay attention to. “Leaders need to think about the many paradigms they have created about why, where, and how people work—especially beliefs around why people need to come to the office,” Simon Holland, our firm’s President of Consulting in EMEA, told me this week. “As with so many things—from flexible work arrangements to greater diversity and inclusion in the work environment—if old paradigms go unchecked, there is a greater risk of self-perpetuating outdated beliefs.” In other words, we need to say what we mean—and mean what we say. And it starts with the leader.
  • The importance of being SEEN. No matter why, how, or where they work, people need to be SEEN. That means: Self-awareness, starting with the leader; Empathy for others; Energizing people; and Never leaving anyone behind. We must see others equally—no matter where they are.
  • Mentoring—here, there, and everywhere. Mentoring, coaching, and sponsorship—each uniquely opens the door to new opportunities. As an executive shared with me recently, “Coaches speak to you; mentors speak with you; and sponsors speak for you.” In the past, people often found mentors, coaches, and sponsors among those they interacted with in person. But not anymore. “There has been a democratization of talent and leadership—connections can be made everywhere,” Jean-Marc Laouchez, President of the Korn Ferry Institute, told me this week. “I am now mentoring people in our firm who I’ve never met in my life—a group of 10 or 12 in Europe and the Middle East. In our coaching and mentoring, we can go very deep—even though we are not together.” This is the time not to ask why, but rather why not; to think not only in probability, but in possibility; to re-up on mentorship, coaching, and sponsorship—broadly and for everyone—here, there, and everywhere.
Employees yearn for community and opportunities—employers thirst for commitment and connection. Culture is the bridge—a bridge we all must walk, while never forgetting that where we are is not who we are. Indeed, the why will lead us to the where.
 
Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

A Stunning Array of Shortages of Workers – Solutions that You Can Implement Quickly

Posted by Cliff Locks On June 23, 2021 at 10:00 am / In: Uncategorized

A Stunning Array of Shortages of Workers – Solutions that You Can Implement Quickly

Five-hour-long hold times to talk to an airline customer service representative. Restaurants normally open every day of the week now open only five days. Fast-food drive-through lanes closed. Manufacturers pushing back product delivery dates by days or even weeks.

For years, experts have worried that there would be a massive shortage of worker talent that would hinder future growth. Only now, that long-term worry has become a reality—today. Particularly in the service sector, companies and customers alike are finding that routines of the past—from booking flights over the phone to ordering goods that aren’t the second-best option—can no longer be taken for granted. “Firms are saying they won’t take on business because it’s too expensive,” but it’s really because they don’t have the people to do the work,” says David Vied, global sector leader of Korn Ferry’s Medical Device and Diagnostics practice.
 
A confluence of short-term events and long-term factors is hitting at once. First, and most obvious, is the economic recovery as the nation emerges from the pandemic-inspired economic slowdown. The lockdowns and subsequent economic slowdown pushed companies to lay off or furlough more than 22 million employees in the first four months of 2020. Companies hired back about 14 million people through this April, but that still leaves 8 million roles unfilled as the economy pushes forward at an annualized 6% clip. Companies are finding candidates and scheduling job interviews, only to have people not show up for the interviews because they’ve taken another offer. Even firms that can process an applicant from original application to job offer in five days are finding that their process is too slow.

What’s more, many employees who have been working through the pandemic are fatigued, experts say, not working at their top productivity levels or simply needing a break. “There’s just a limit to the work people can now take,” Vied says. Those tired workers are beginning to take the vacations they didn’t use during the pandemic; by one estimate, they missed 768 million days altogether last year. Since organizations don’t have anyone to cover for those out-of-office workers, organizations have to cut back on services.

In the long term, experts say this can become a bigger issue that may force many firms to rethink their business models.

Typically, the best industries for many entry-level employees without a college degree have been basic manufacturing or a consumer-focused field such as retail or hospitality. But technology firms have now taken an interest in this group, offering training programs to teach people information technology skills; e-commerce companies and logistics firms are scooping up these workers by the thousands for warehouse roles, and healthcare firms are eyeing these candidates as health aides or for similar jobs. “We aren’t just competing within the industry, but the industries are competing with each other,” says Radhika Papandreou, a Korn Ferry’s senior client partner and a leader in the firm’s Travel, Hospitality, and Leisure practice.

Retail and hospitality aren’t the only industries suffering from shortages. In a recent survey, manufacturers said it is 36% harder to find talent today than in 2018, and 77% of manufacturing executives said they expect to have trouble attracting and retaining workers this year and beyond. The new competitors were starting to chip away at the talent pool before 2020, but the pandemic accelerated the trend. Plus, these new talent rivals have been offering higher wages and benefits packages to this group.

Even with those advantages, some the new rivals can’t fill all of their talent needs, either. “Supply chain was already in a talent gap crisis prior to the pandemic,” says Melissa Hadhazy, a Korn Ferry senior client partner and advisor for the firm’s Industrial practice. This has only gotten worse with distribution centers most severally unable to fill open roles and shifts.

Experts suggest multiple solutions to fix both the short- and long-term issues. For the short term, companies need to figure out how to quicken the time it takes to find employees, vet them, and offer them a job. Papandreou says some of her clients have tried hiring third parties to find new workers fast and giving current employees significant referral bonuses for bringing in new workers. Artificial intelligence software can also help trim down employee vetting time.

For the longer-term issue, organizations may just have to make their offers more competitive. Indeed, this spring, McDonald’s, Walmart, and a slew of other firms announced higher wages for lower-level employees. “When McDonald’s moves, the market has to follow,” Papandreou says. Changing wage structures, of course, may force organizations to make other decisions on pricing.

But it isn’t only about higher pay. The industries that are losing business because they don’t have enough workers need to make their roles seem more attractive as a whole, potentially offering employees more defined career paths, flexible work schedules, additional training opportunities, or more meaningful work. Otherwise, a multitude of industries can expect their inability to hire more people will quickly impact their current and future businesses. “This is an insidious thing causing unexpected issues in markets that least expect it,” Vied says.

Contributor: David Vied, Global Sector Leader, Radhika Papandreou, Office Managing Director, Melissa Hadhazy, Senior Client Partner, Korn Ferry and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach.


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Zooming remote or back to the office – Solid solutions for you and your team

Posted by Cliff Locks On June 16, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Zooming remote or back to the office – Solid solutions for you and your team

Emboldened by the rapid pace of vaccinations and the ability to once again be together without masks, a small but growing number of business leaders aren’t shying away from airing their true feelings about remote work—and it’s clear they’re skeptical of whether it produces the best results.
 

 

Home Office Team Member

The push to return people to the office—which in many ways is being led by the financial services firms that started bringing people back months ago—underscores the sense of unease leaders feel about maintaining control with a dispersed workforce, says Chad Astmann, a Korn Ferry senior client partner and the firm’s global co-head of investment management. “Many leaders are not ready or trained for this paradigm shift,” he says of the move to remote work; looking at work through the lens of the office or the home is like “using a blunt instrument when a surgical tool is needed.”

Business leaders have always been worried about remote work succeeding, of course. Experts point out that during the height of the pandemic lock-downs, many said productivity hadn’t suffered. Part of the change of heart for some may be tied to the fact that a lot of the C-suite returned to offices or will soon. “CEOs are clearly on a different page than most workers,” says Dan Kaplan, a senior client partner in Korn Ferry’s Chief Human Resources Officers practice. He says leaders need to be very careful about their change of tune. “They don’t want to appear to be betraying commitments made over the last year,” he says.

To be sure, the same survey that showed 84% of CEOs want people back in the office also found that only 10% of employees want to go back full-time. One-third of people in another recent survey said they would turn down an offer for an in-office job. Kaplan says the message from workers that they want either a remote-first or hybrid work schedule is getting through to chief human resources officer (CHROs), if not CEOs. He says CHROs who work for companies that are open to flexible scheduling are using it as a competitive advantage in recruiting and retention. “A meaningful number of people will choose to work for a company that offers a flexible arrangement over one that doesn’t,” he says.

Still, experts caution there will be companies that force the issue of returning to the office, at least for some positions. In fact, many companies have been going through positions one by one, categorizing them as in-office, hybrid, or fully remote—the idea being that in the short term, they can collect data from managers and talent about what setups work best for each position and then make longer-term decisions. “It isn’t about the future of work, it’s about the immediate future,” says Linda Hyman, executive vice president of global human resources for Korn Ferry. “Let’s take the next step in getting back to work and then figure out what’s best longer term.”

Contributor: Chad Astmann, Dan Kaplan Senior Client Partners, and Linda Hyman, Executive Vice President, Global Human Resources, Korn Ferry and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach.


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

New Cyberattacks: The Threat Is Real

Posted by Cliff Locks On June 9, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

New Cyberattacks: The Threat Is Real

High-profile hacks have shut down some big businesses. Is there any defense? The headlines alone can be nerve-racking. In March, a hack forced one of Australia’s biggest broadcasters off the air. Two weeks ago, a hack crippled a major US oil pipeline. And this week, a hack shut down operations in several countries of one of the world’s largest meatpackers.

At a time when organizations might deal with everything from mounting supply shortages to continued pandemic safety concerns, the last thing any C-suite needs is to fret about mounting cybersecurity attacks. And yet experts agree that other significant disruptions are on the way, that all organizations are vulnerable, and that there is no foolproof defense. “It’s only going to get worse,” says Craig Stephenson, Korn Ferry’s managing director for the North America Chief Technology Officers practice.

By some estimates, a hack attempt occurs every 39 seconds, and the proliferation of internet-connected devices, organizations relying on old software, and even the increase of people working remotely will make it more challenging to squash all the attempts. Indeed, as the major hack of the US Department of Defense exposed last year, an organization can vigorously check its computer systems internally and still end up with externally purchased software that has been compromised. “Rather than companies securing their own perimeter, they need to secure an ecosystem,” says Freddie Montagu, a principal in Korn Ferry’s EMEA Technology Officers practice and a specialist in cybersecurity.

Normally, hackers will threaten to shut down an organization’s digital systems unless paid a ransom. The amount given to hackers—or adversaries, as they are called in the cybersecurity industry—is also on the rise. While individual ransom attempts vary wildly, Coveware, a ransomware-negotiation firm, reported that the average payout was $220,298 in the first quarter of 2021, up 43% from the previous quarter and close to the record high hit in the third quarter of 2020. The firm says hackers almost always deliver a decryption tool to the hostage companies or organizations once the ransom is paid. The United States government does not encourage organizations to pay a ransom, but many organizations do.

These days, most chief information security officers are realistic, says Tarun Inuganti, head of Korn Ferry’s global Technology Officers practice. “They say a hack is going to happen,” he says, adding that it’s up to the firm’s top technology executives to alert the board of the risks and the potential impact of a successful hack. It’s why these days, one of the most prized skills in chief information security officers isn’t their ability to code or find the right software package, but working with the C-suite and even the board to understand the issue.

Experts say it is primarily boards—not just management—that will have to step up, since directors must oversee the overall corporate risk and weigh the firm’s tolerance for it. To do that, they will need to understand that cybersecurity isn’t a problem that can be solved by throwing money or people at it. Some forward-thinking boards have added chief technology officers or chief information security officers as directors, a move that can help highlight not only the risks of cybercrime but help the entire board and management determine how much risk they are willing to take, Stephenson says.

To be sure, realizing your organization will get hacked doesn’t mean that a firm should just roll out the red carpet for the perpetrators. Security officers and other executives need to ensure all employees are trained to use basic security methods, such as logging in using two-factor identification and not opening strange-looking emails. (“If you don’t know it, delete it,” Inuganti says.)

Contributor: Craig Stephenson, Senior Client Partner, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The latest ways to build up your leadership skills; it’s easier than you think!

Posted by Cliff Locks On June 2, 2021 at 10:04 am / In: Uncategorized

The latest ways to build up your leadership skills; it’s easier than you think!

Becoming a better leader normally involves, well, being a leader. Indeed, most leadership experts say about 70% of learning and development comes from challenging assignments that force leaders to learn new skills. The rest of that development usually involves hours of training seminars, working with coaches, and dedicating oneself to become more self-aware, mindful, and reflective.

Dennis Carey, Korn Ferry Vice Chairman, Co-Leader, Board Services, with edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach

In a pandemic, of course, much of that training wasn’t possible. But the skill sets for being a strong leader—of a team, a department, or an entire company—couldn’t have been more in demand, and still are. Only these days, leadership-building advice has been shifting, with greater emphasis on careful listening, more transparency, and greater probing. Below, a host of our tips—some fairly standard, some unorthodox—to grow into a better leader.

Say it straight.

Journalists learn that if a story doesn’t state who, what, where, when, and why, then the story isn’t clear. Experts say that’s something leaders should keep in mind. Indeed, leaders can get into trouble if they aren’t transparent about what to do, when to finish it, how to do it, and why it needs to be done.

Leaders also should avoid “happy talk,” or empty platitudes that can muddle the issue, says Dennis Carey, vice chair and co-leader of Korn Ferry’s Board and CEO Services practice. “If something could apply to any company when you say it out loud, it’s useless because it’s too generic,” he says.

Actually listen.

There are reams of research indicating people aren’t very good listeners. That’s particularly true when the topic involves something distressing or uncomfortable.

A leader who listens can help build trust among stakeholders, improve employee engagement, and even lower those stakeholders’ stress levels, says Evelyn Orr, chief operating officer of the Korn Ferry Institute. Anyone can start a technique called “active listening” right away. Instead of thinking about your response, which is what most people do when others are talking, take in what is being said and repeat it back in different terms to show that you understand and can place yourself in the other person’s shoes. At a minimum, don’t cut people off or ignore what they’re saying. “I don’t think you need a lot of skill for that,” Orr says.

After listening, ask questions.

This isn’t new advice; it’s the Socratic method. But there’s a reason why it has lasted a few thousand years. It stimulates critical thinking and can draw out ideas and underlying presuppositions. Asking questions, by its very nature, invites comments and conversations. Research shows that expressing vulnerability, which is what a question is, is a strong signal to others that you are trusting, and you’re more likely to be trusted in return.

To be sure, these questions shouldn’t be accusatory, such as “How could you miss the production targets?” Instead, ask questions that invite people to explore major new opportunities. Experts say that when a leader asks questions, it gives employees the freedom to ask questions also. Questions can spur innovation and literally change a corporate culture.

Specifically ask “What would you do?”

Asking this question is particularly empowering, experts say, because it gives a subordinate or a peer the chance to be in the driver’s seat. Serious employees will learn to think critically to find solutions that can work or, at the least, bring a new perspective that the leader hasn’t thought of before. 

Even if an employee doesn’t have an answer, he or she usually appreciates that you, the leader, are open to suggestions. Asking “What would you do?” can lead to higher employee empowerment, engagement, and productivity, says Linda Hyman, Korn Ferry’s global vice president for human resources.

Prioritize.

Many leaders have to-do lists that give every task equal weight, like a grocery shopping list. But effectively prioritizing allows leaders to figure out which areas they should spend their valuable time. More broadly, when a leader sets priorities, it helps create meaningful tasks for teams.

Especially now, when people have been overloaded with work for more than a year due to the pandemic, prioritizing is essential. “Leaders who prioritize for themselves help their teammates as well,” says Melissa Swift, Korn Ferry’s head of workforce transformation.

Read books… by comedians.

There are countless leadership books out there, including several by Korn Ferry authors. They’re filled with good advice. But Kevin Cashman, one of those Korn Ferry authors, suggests that corporate leaders can learn as much from funny people, citing books by George Carlin, Jerry Seinfeld, Jim Carrey, and Steve Martin. Nearly all comedians consistently have to deal with pressure, adversity, and second-guessing, and nearly every comedian has learned the importance of being agile. Leaders can take away valuable lessons from improve, along with stories about awe, surprise, and irony, says Cashman, Korn Ferry’s global leader of CEO and enterprise leader development.

Contributors: Dennis Carey, Korn Ferry Vice Chairman, Co-Leader, Board Services, with edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The days of getting power solely from your title are fading fast. Great leadership requires more!

Posted by Cliff Locks On May 26, 2021 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

The days of getting power solely from your title are fading fast. Great leadership requires more!

It was an unexpected reaction—encountered for the first time many years ago when I was a newly promoted CEO. The event was a formal dinner, and it started late, as was the custom. Three hours later … we were still there.

Not wanting to appear rude to the hosts, I waited for others to leave first. No one did. Finally, as it approached midnight, I mentioned the late hour to a colleague sitting next to me. “No one has gotten up to leave because you haven’t,” the colleague explained.
 
Then I realized it. When people looked at me, they didn’t see me as just another person. They only saw the CEO—the function.

That’s simply the way it is—people defer to the most senior person in the room.

Today, we all must show that we’re more than just the title, the function, the medal, the uniform, the white coat, the stethoscope…. Yes, such distinctions deserve respect. But far more important than these stripes on the sleeves are the hearts in our chests.

It starts with looking in the mirror. What do we see—hubris or humility? Anyone who hasn’t been humbled over the past 12 months probably never will be. And, if someone is still wearing that pre-pandemic badge of honor—putting a premium on function and what they do over who they are—then it’s high time to take off that medal.

Whether we’re interacting with or leading others, we all need humility—the grace that constantly whispers, “It’s not about you.”

We went to the front lines this week—to one of the many places where the battle of the pandemic is being waged. There we found Sharon Pappas, PhD, RN, chief nursing executive for Emory Healthcare, who leads 7,000 nurses. In the worst of the crisis, it was all hands on deck.

“There is no human alive in this world who can know the answers to everything,” Pappas told us. “Healthcare is too complex for one person—for any one leader—to think they have all the answers.”

To illustrate the point, she described how involving others in her healthcare system became even more important during the pandemic. As the nurse ending the day shift and the nurse beginning the night shift discuss each case, the patient is front and center and always brought into the conversation with a question: “Is there anything we missed?”

“It becomes a dialogue,” Pappas added. “And that’s how relationships are built.”

If anyone understands this, it’s Gen. (Ret.) Lori Robinson, a member of our board of directors, with whom I spoke this week. A four-star general in the U.S. Air Force, she led the North American Aerospace Defense Command and the U.S. Northern Command. “When I was in active duty, and even now when I’m in an official capacity—or I meet someone who I outranked—then I’m General Robinson. Otherwise, I’m just Lori. Most of all, I’m a human being, whether I’m in or out of uniform.”

With moist eyes, Lori shared the story of when she was a Wing Commander of 6,000 service people and a tragedy occurred. On the day of the memorial ceremony, Lori spoke in the morning to comfort the grieving families. “I had tears in my eyes, my voice cracked,” Lori said, her voice faltering as she recalled the intense emotions of that day. “Afterwards, I had to spend an hour alone to collect myself.”

A little later, Lori presided over an entirely different kind of ceremony—this time a promotion. “I needed to express how truly happy I was for this person and the family,” she told me. “They didn’t need to know what else was going on. That did not need to be their worry. It was all about the families—never about me.”

In a period of a few hours, she shifted—from grief and sadness to joy and celebration. And that’s the essence of radically human leadership. We understand that each circumstance is far bigger than ourselves. Sometimes we lead with those stripes on our sleeves, but every time we must move beyond—to connect and console, celebrate and elevate.

The days when leaders are seen as functions—by virtue of their rank, responsibility, and regalia—are fading fast. Our roles simply require more. We need to show who we are as people—with humility, authenticity, and vulnerability. Here are some thoughts:

·  It’s all about our A.C.T.: I’ve always found this to be true of great leaders, whether they are in the uniform of their position—or in the casual clothes of just being themselves. They’re always approachable and keep their focus on others. In other words, there is no difference in how they A.C.T. It’s the first and foundational principle of any interaction: being authentic, making a connection, and giving others a taste of who we are. Leaders must continually demonstrate purpose, meeting everyone—in all places—where they are. Leadership is not about the leader, but it starts with the leader.

·  Leadership (to go): A new CEO held his first town-hall meeting with employees. He charged up to the podium to show that he was the new boss and things were going to change. As the CEO spoke, he noticed a man in the corner who wasn’t paying attention. He had on jeans, a T-shirt, and a baseball cap on backward. The nerve of this guy! The CEO called him out. “How much do you make a week?” The guy shrugged. “About four hundred bucks.” The CEO reached into his pocket, pulled out a thousand dollars in cash, and told the man he was “out of here!” The guy counted the bills with a sly grin all the way to the door. After the meeting, the CEO called one of his senior vice presidents over and said, “I sure made an example of that guy.” “Yeah, he was surprised,” the SVP replied. “By the way, that was the pizza delivery guy who brought us lunch. He certainly appreciated the tip you gave him.” Moral of the story: lead with your function—lose credibility. And that’s a leadership delivery that has to go.

·  Walking in the shoes of others. It goes against everything that people associate with the highest echelons of leadership. As Brené Brown, author and researcher, observed: “The difficult thing is that vulnerability is the first thing I look for in you and the last thing I’m willing to show you. In you, it’s courage and daring. In me, it’s weakness.” Great leaders, however, are not afraid to let down their guard. It was about ten years ago, and I was strolling down the cobblestones in a small town in Mexico with former Mexican President Vicente Fox, who led his country from 2000 to 2006. We were deep in conversation when President Fox suddenly looked up. I followed his gaze across the street to an elderly woman with a cane, walking slowly and looking around as if she had lost her way. Immediately, President Fox went over to her. The woman did not seem to recognize this tall man as he listened intently, then put his arm around her shoulders and led her in the right direction. He wasn’t running for president—he wasn’t running for anything. Humbly, with great empathy and no ceremony or show, he simply saw the woman and responded to her needs.

Leadership is easy to visualize, but elusive to actualize. The stripes on our sleeves must serve as the bridge of humility—between simply characterizing it and purposefully walking it; not with power but empowerment … of others.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach.


Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Making Inspiration Our Aspiration

Posted by Cliff Locks On May 19, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Making Inspiration Our Aspiration

I’ll never forget that first day of my first job out of college. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I walked through the door of the KPMG office in Los Angeles.

But I looked the part—three-piece suit, shiny wingtips, and carrying that hard-sided brown leather briefcase. You know the one with that official sounding click-click of the two “gold” latches. Whenever I clicked them, they just reverberated, “I’m open for business.”
 
My briefcase, though, was mostly empty, except for a few unsharpened pencils.

I was all aspiration. Aspiration comes from within—and it’s usually focused on ourselves. Inspiration is the other side of it—and it’s all about others.

Aspiration and inspiration—inextricably linked, they are, quite literally, breathing in and breathing out. And just like breathing, we cannot give out what we have not first taken in.

I was reminded of this just the other day when an executive shared with me a deeply personal experience. Two years ago, the executive told me, her husband died from colon cancer. She was still struggling with the magnitude of the loss when the pandemic hit. “My life was shifted sideways, upside down and unrecognizable,” she confided. “I struggled, trying to come out of the fog of grief I had for over a year.”

Eventually, she found solace in the one activity she could do during the pandemic—cycling, which she had enjoyed with her husband. That led to a cycling trip in central Oregon and Crater Lake, which she’d wanted to see for 20 years. While there, one star-filled night, she found inspiration.

“I woke up at 1 a.m. to see the Big Dipper right out over the lake. It was incredible—I could practically touch the stars. I stood there, by myself in the dark, talking to my husband about my life,” she told me.

In that moment, everything changed. She told me that although the life they’d shared had ended, their love, joy, laughter, and caring still live on. “I miss my husband more today than I did two years ago, but that night at Crater Lake left me a different person.”

We all have our aspirations—the next job, the next role, the title, the promotion, the money. Let’s be real—that’s how most people measure success. I would argue that “inspiring others” rarely makes the performance review, the KPI, or even the long list of accomplishments that we’re sure will get us from here to there.

But the biggest risk we face as leaders is going up the mountain and suddenly, halfway up, when we look behind there’s nobody there. Ultimately, leadership is about inspiring others to believe. But if we don’t believe it ourselves, why should anybody else?

Our aspiration should truly be the inspiration of others. After all, what else should leaders aspire to?

And yet, how often do we hear these words when others feel stuck and unmotivated? I’m just not inspired.

It makes you wonder—what’s missing? Does someone not tell good stories? Do they lack presence? Charisma? Personality? Or is the problem that your aspiration isn’t about igniting their inspiration?

Breathe in, breathe out—suddenly, so much more is possible. Here are some thoughts:

  • Where inspiration meets exasperation. His assessment was off the charts. This candidate, who I met a couple of years ago, had checked all the boxes in almost every leadership trait and skill—except for one: self-awareness. On his assessment graph, that quality sunk like a stone. I was curious, but one minute into our conversation, I knew exactly why. I started with small talk, but he wasn’t having it. He launched immediately into a long, one-sided conversation—a litany of everything he had done. For 36 minutes (yes, I timed it) he talked—at me, not to me. He must have used “I,” “me,” and “my” 200 times—that’s more than five “I’s” per minute. My team, my company, I run … Whoa! I thought to myself. What was he running—a herd of cattle? Seriously, what about everyone else? As I listened, I couldn’t ignore the nagging question in my head. As good as his left-brain, technical skills were, without the right brain how could he ever inspire anyone? At the end of his filibuster, he was parched—and I was exasperated.
  • Breathe in, breathe out. The moment we were born, we took our first breath. It was aspiration in its truest form—as any parent who has waited to hear their baby’s first cry will attest. After that, breathing for most of us becomes completely automatic and unconscious. But every breath is truly a moment for inspiration. Quite literally. Inspiration comes from the Latin inspirare, which stems from spirare, meaning “to breathe.” The word also shares a connection with “spirit” (from the Latin, spiritus, also derived from spirare). In every moment, we literally could be breathing in collective inspiration. Jean-Marc Laouchez, President of the Korn Ferry Institute, recently told me that he goes on 10-day silent retreats almost every year to get inspired—so he can be more, believe more, and hopefully aspire to inspire more. The most recent retreat had a particular impact. “It helped me connect with myself and clean up all the emotions I had aspirated during a year marked by the pandemic, isolation and loneliness from confinement,” Jean-Marc told me. “I went back to center—to gain better stability and wisdom. Then I could be present, listening and appreciating others for who they are.”
  • Easy to visualize, elusive to actualize. No one can proclaim themselves to be inspiring. Just saying it, won’t make it so. And as for being charismatic—like the guy selling knives at the county fair—that won’t cut it, either. The designation of being “inspirational” can only be given to us by others. As Paul Dinan, who leads our firm’s North American Consulting business for technology, told me this week: “Almost everyone who makes it to a senior leadership position will have largely realized their professional and financial aspirations. But for many, taking that final step to become a leader who can inspire others in a meaningful and sustainable way can prove elusive.” You think you’ve made it, but it’s in title and function only until you can truly actualize inspiring others. David Dotlich, Ph.D., a CEO and Board advisor and a senior leader in our Consulting business, explained why. “Leaders are very ‘head-oriented’—they are trained to be rational and strategic,” David told me this week. “But these are the times that test us. Leaders need to tap into their heart for emotion and their gut for courage. That’s where inspiration lives and breathes.”
It’s never just about the title, the role, or anything else we aspire to. First, last, and always—leadership is all about inspiring others to believe and enabling that belief to become reality. Indeed, this is the emotional, even spiritual, part of leadership—making inspiration our aspiration.
 
Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Being CEO May Be Hazardous to Your Health

Posted by Cliff Locks On May 12, 2021 at 10:07 am / In: Uncategorized

Being CEO May Be Hazardous to Your Health

A new study says industry-wide turmoil can shave 18 months off a CEO’s life. Will more modern leaders handle stress better?

It isn’t news that CEOs are under a lot of pressure. Even in less stressful times, they have to create successful strategies, energize thousands of employees, navigate investors, and fend off rivals. But can the role literally make their lives shorter?

In a disturbing new study, researchers from the National Bureau of Economic Research found that the average lifespan of CEOs who lead their firms through “industry-wide downturns” decreased by 1.5 years. The authors, all professors at well-respected US universities, question whether CEOs are fully aware of the personal costs of high-level leadership. At the same time, the results reflect how some CEOs have difficulty handling stress. “Most CEOs are people who are very driven, and in times of pressure and stress, their natural tendency is to drive even harder,” says Ron Porter, a senior client partner in Korn Ferry’s Human Resources Center of Expertise.

The researchers looked at 1,605 executives who served as CEOs of large, publicly traded US corporations in part from 1975 until 2012—long before the pandemic. An industry-wide shock was defined as a 30% median firm stock-price decline over a two-year horizon. About 40% of the bosses witnessed at least one period of industry turmoil during their tenure—such as the financial crisis of 2008—and 20% experienced two or more. The study used comparable death rates and other calculations for CEOs who didn’t face turmoil, to determine the shorter lifespans. Interestingly, the researchers also analyzed CEO photos and, using machine learning, concluded that they looked roughly one year older than they would have without the distress.

To be sure, some question whether industry-wide stress, while certainly mentally taxing on top bosses, really does shave years off a CEO’s life. “Stress can actually strengthen an organism,” says David Vied, global sector leader of Korn Ferry’s Medical Devices and Diagnostics practice. Indeed, he points to the so-called Greatest Generation, those born between 1901 and 1927, who dealt with the Great Depression and World War II. “Many of these guys were enormously long-lived,” Vied says.

But in her view, Melissa Swift, Korn Ferry’s global leader of workforce transformation, says the results are a reflection of the type of leaders that companies traditionally favored in an earlier era. The leadership style then leaned toward the intense, inflexible, and authoritarian. “They were more brittle,” she says. These days, the ideal CEOs are ones that, while having the required business skills, also are learning agile and have a higher tolerance for ambiguity. “The new ones tend to be self-disruptive—a bit of a Swiss army knife,” she says. Modern leaders can be more even-keeled, even in times of great turmoil.

Along with picking a better breed of leaders, companies can rely more on corporate wellness programs to develop high-level executives and other employees who manage both physical and mental stress. An analysis of the corporate wellness program at one large firm showed that for every dollar spent on the program, the organization saved nearly $4 in healthcare costs for its 56,000 employees. “Wellness programs have actual demonstrated impact on health,” says Brian Bloom, Korn Ferry’s vice president of global benefits.

Companies might also consider keeping tabs on the CEO’s mental health. The lead director or board chairperson can become a resource for the CEO to share their frustrations. The company’s chief human resources officer, who often has a finger on the pulse of overall employee health, can be the person in the C-suite to make sure the CEO doesn’t work themself into the ground. “Someone who is fatigued is as likely to screw up as much as they are to be productive,” Porter says.

Contributor: Ronald Porter, Senior client partner, global human resources center of excellence, at Korn Ferry and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach.

 

 

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Quantum Supremacy: What Now? Let’s Get You Up To Speed!

Posted by Cliff Locks On May 5, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Quantum Supremacy: What Now? Let’s Get You Up To Speed!

Imagine a computer that could crack the most sophisticated network in a mere few seconds. Perfectly model complex weather and biological systems.

What could you do with such computational power? Invent new drugs? Create simulations of multiple universes? What about optimizing your investment portfolio?

Now, breakthrough after breakthrough threatens to make these science fiction scenarios science fact.

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University, with edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

Google made a monumental announcement of “quantum supremacy”: completing a computation that would normally take 10,000 years on the most powerful supercomputers in just 200 seconds.

Meanwhile, companies like Rigetti Computing are edging us ever closer to democratized quantum in the cloud.

But what exactly is quantum computing?

Let’s dive in…

A NEW KIND OF COMPUTER

A quantum computer operates in a fundamentally different way from a classical computer.

In classical computing, a “bit” is a tiny chunk of binary information: either a 1 or a 0.

A “qubit”—or a quantum bit—is the newer version of this idea. Unlike binary bits, which are an either/or scenario, qubits use “superposition.” This allows them to be in multiple states at once.

Think of the two options of flipping a coin: heads or tails. Now think about a spinning coin—where both states flash by at once. That’s superposition.

Superposition means power. A lot of power.

While a classical computer requires thousands of steps to solve a hard problem, a quantum computer can accomplish that same task in only two or three steps.

To put this in perspective, IBM’s Deep Blue was able to beat world champion chess player Garry Kasparov by examining 200 million moves per second.

A quantum machine can bump that up to a trillion or more.

IBM’s largest quantum computer has 65 qubits. And just last year, the company announced plans to build a 1,000 qubit computer by 2023. 

GOOGLE’S QUANTUM SUPREMACY

If a quantum computer is vastly more powerful than a classical computer, then Google’s quantum supremacy announcement is a massive game-changer for the future of computing.

Using a machine called Sycamore with a chip consisting of 53 qubits, Google’s team of researchers was able to perform a task called random circuit sampling.

This entails performing random operations on the qubits, “literally as if the code of their program was chosen randomly,” as explained by computer scientist Bill Fefferman of the University of Chicago.

The values of all qubits were then measured, and the whole process was repeated multiple times. The resulting distribution is nonrandom due to quantum effects and is exorbitantly challenging (not to mention time-consuming) to calculate with classical computers.

Ultimately, it took Sycamore 200 seconds to repeat the sampling process a million times, while a top-of-the-line classical supercomputer would take close to 10,000 years to complete the same process.

A smaller version of the Sycamore chip (just 12 qubits) has been used to simulate chemical reactions, a process that could lead to useful discoveries like improved batteries, fertilizers, and carbon sequestration techniques. 

But Google is far from alone in the race to scalable quantum supremacy… 

THE STORY OF RIGETTI

The coldest place in the universe is located in sunny California.

On the outskirts of Berkeley, inside an oversized warehouse, hangs a large white pipe. It’s a human-made contraption, a next-generation cryogenic refrigerator cooled to .003 Kelvin, or just north of absolute zero.

The pipe belongs to Rigetti Computing, the next contestant aiming to build useful quantum computers.

The company got going in 2013, when a physicist named Chad Rigetti decided that quantum computers were a lot closer to prime time than many suspected, and that he wanted to be the one to push the technology over the finish line.

In pursuit of his vision, Rigetti left a comfortable job as a quantum researcher at IBM, raised nearly $200 million in funding to date, and built the coldest pipe in history. Over fifty patent applications later, Rigetti now manufactures integrated quantum circuits that are directly linked to a quantum computer in the cloud.

One of the biggest and most exciting aspects about Rigetti, however, is their push towards democratization of quantum computing.

Right now, if you go to Rigetti’s website you can download Forest (https://qcs.rigetti.com/sdk-downloads), their quantum developer’s kit. The kit provides a user-friendly interface to the quantum world.

With it, almost anyone can write a program and run it on Rigetti’s computers, ranging from 8 to 31 qubits. To date, over 120 million programs have already been run on their machines.

And other companies are fast following suit, as Microsoft, IBM, and Google have now rolled out quantum cloud services.

SO, WHERE ARE WE NOW AND WHERE ARE WE GOING?

Within the quantum computing community, the very notion of “quantum supremacy” is under scrutiny. “Supremacy” implies that quantum computers will replace traditional computation, rather than serve as a supplement.

By contrast, another term often used (proposed by Rigetti) is “quantum advantage.” According to the company, this concept is demonstrated when an algorithm run on a quantum computing platform “has either a faster time to solution, a better quality solution, or lower cost of classical compute compared to the best classical algorithm.”

In either case, quantum computation offers tremendous quantitative advantages over classical computers in a range of problem domains.

To give an idea of scale: if all the atoms of the universe were each capable of storing one bit of information, an 80 qubit computer would have more information-storage capacity than all the atoms in the universe.

And already, current state-of-the-art quantum computers, including Google’s Sycamore and IBM’s Hummingbird, have reached a count of 53 and 65 qubits, respectively.

Yet today, we have no concrete idea of what innovations might arise once quantum computing matures at scale. But what we do know is tantalizing.

Because chemistry and physics are quantum processes, computing in qubits will usher in what Oxford’s Simon Benjamin calls “a golden age of discovery in new materials, new chemicals, and new drugs.”

It will thrust aside today’s computing constraints to artificial intelligence, fundamentally transform cybersecurity, and allow us to simulate systems of unprecedented complexity.

As Chad Rigetti explains, “[The technology] change[s] the economics of research and development. Say you’re trying to create a new cancer drug. Instead of building a large-scale wet lab to explore the properties of hundreds of thousands of compounds in test tubes, you’re going to be able to do much of that exploration inside a computer.”

In other words, the gap between experimental questions and any new solution—whether novel drug, optimized material, or personalized product—is about to become a lot smaller.

Brace yourself. The era of democratized, scalable, and cloud-accessible quantum computing has begun.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Trustworthiness is earned – do it, mean it, say it, believe it—for we are only as good as the last promise kept

Posted by Cliff Locks On April 28, 2021 at 10:04 am / In: Uncategorized

Trustworthiness is earned – do it, mean it, say it, believe it—for we are only as good as the last promise kept

Trust is an investment, earning interest over time. And one errant withdrawal can lose it all. Yet, being trusting or being trustworthy are actually two different sides of the same coin.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director, Board Member, and Executive Coach

Trust me. If ever a statement has the opposite effect of its intended meaning, it’s this one. We’re not likely to give our trust to just anyone—and especially not just because they say those two words. To truly trust another person, there needs to be a two-way contract of sorts—a promise based on character, capability, and follow-through.

Trustworthiness is the other side of the coin. It literally means being worthy of others’ trust—and it’s an aspiration for anyone, at any level. In fact, our firm tests for trustworthiness as a key leadership trait. Based on nearly 70 million executive assessments Korn Ferry has done, the know it’s not binary. There are several layers and levels between being trustworthy and untrustworthy. There are those who do it well, such as the person who “actively promotes and protects the interest of others”—and those who do it poorly, such as a person who “undermines others” or “distorts the facts with [their] own biases and agenda.”

But words alone won’t suffice when it comes to being perceived as trustworthy—far more important is what others experience. Over the past year, society has made a lot of promises—to walk in others’ shoes, to listen before we speak, to be more tolerant, to be more inclusive. To be trustworthy is to be inclusive. Diversity is a fact – therefore inclusion is essential.

We must say what we mean and do what we say. There can be no daylight between the two. As James Lewis, a senior scientist in the Korn Ferry Institute, told me this week, “Being trustworthy is about showing it—not just telling it. And that happens over time.” After all, we’re only as good as our last promise kept.

A few years ago, Gary flew into the Midwest for business, arriving well after midnight. There he was, driving a rental car along unfamiliar, pitch dark country roads. He could only see as far as my headlights allowed. The only hope was that oncoming cars saw me as they rounded a curve or crested a hill.

All he had to guide him were the left and right lines that kept me in my own lane. By being a trustworthy driver, though, he had a better chance of keeping myself and others safe on that road. That’s what he could control—not the driver approaching from the other side.

Within organizations today, trust and belief form two lanes of the highway, while unwavering commitment, continuous communication, and purposeful action paint the stripes down the middle. The values of the organization are the left and right guardrails, keeping us moving forward toward our destination.

So what builds trustworthiness? The answer can be found in a six pack of soda and a handful of dollar bills. Author and researcher Dan Ariely conducted an experiment a few years ago in which six packs of soda were left randomly in dorm refrigerators all over a college campus. Within days, every can was taken. Later, when six loose dollar bills were left instead, not one was touched. The difference? It comes down to values. While a soda in a refrigerator may seem like fair game, it’s unthinkable for most people to take someone else’s money.

That’s why the trustworthiness we want to see in others actually starts with ourselves. Here are some thoughts:

  • Trust taking flight. My son has recently learned to fly. Do I trust him—that he is putting in the flying hours? Yes. Do I trust him enough right now to take me flying? Soon. This has nothing to do with his character. Rather, it’s about the continued development of his capabilities. As much as we might like to think of ourselves as being trusting, are we really? Early in my career, during a performance review, Gary’s boss told him, “Gary, you’re not always trusting of others.” It just didn’t come easy for him. But when we focus on our own trustworthiness, performance improves across the board. In fact, a recent analysis of 360-degree reviews of executives by our Korn Ferry team found that leaders who were viewed as instilling trust, making good decisions, and collaborating well with others were anywhere from twice to four times more likely to be rated as high performers.
  • Our say/do ratio. We do what we say and say what we mean. It comes down to having a say/do ratio of 1-to-1. Others will know they can trust our words by observing our consistent actions. Then, and only then, will they mirror what we say and do. In the opposite scenario, distrust corrodes everything it touches. Moreover, when people work for a trustworthy leader, they are more likely to be motivated and inspired, show persistence when work is challenging, and learn from failures instead of being fearful of making mistakes. Bottom line: the more trustworthy the environment, the less stress people experience—and the more productive they are.
  • Trust sets others free. Where trust exists, people speak their minds. Feedback flows from bottom to top and back down again. But if a leader repeats the stories heard or, worse yet, attributes names, that skip-level feedback will never be forthcoming again. People will default to saying only what they think leaders want to hear. Not long ago, we were convening a global video conference, and I purposefully joined first to make sure it was working. Then I turned off my camera and muted my sound while I made myself a cup of coffee. When I tuned back in as people joined, I heard the casual tone of their conversation—and participated in the small talk. It’s up to all of us to make sure others truly feel comfortable saying what needs to be said.
  • Say what you mean, mean what you say. Years ago, Gary wanted to try an exercise among with his leadership team—and it was all about communication and trust. He used the “telephone game” from childhood. (Silly, yes, but in the end, effective.) Gary started off the game by whispering a simple phrase to the person next to me: “Communication is where leadership lives and breathes.” That person then whispered the phrase to the next person, and that person to the next … through 15 different people. Then the last person announced proudly what they were sure they had heard: “Call me on vacation when your ship leaves.” We all laughed … but the point was made. If there is one broken link in communication, no one knows who or what to trust.
It comes down to one simple, but profound statement: do it, mean it, say it, believe it—for we are only as good as the last promise kept.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The importance of staying flexible, nimble, and agile—stretching ourselves and building on our team’s strengths

Posted by Cliff Locks On April 21, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

The importance of staying flexible, nimble, and agile—stretching ourselves and building on our team’s strengths

When I was a kid, Sunday afternoon drives were a big deal—starting the moment somebody jangled the car keys and said, “Let’s go for a ride.”

I can remember sitting in the back seat of our old car—the windows rolled down, the radio up, and the breeze in our faces. We didn’t live in a big town—it took less than 15 minutes to drive from one end to the other. Once we drove east on Long Island, there was nothing but farm fields and open road. We could just go—for miles and miles—and just for the pure pleasure of it.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

These days, we all long for that sensation. After a year of isolation and sometimes insulation, our coiled-up energy feels like an electrical charge in the air. We all want to be going somewhere—anywhere.

Just like a carefree Sunday drive, being in motion can be enough for some people. And we know that the path of progress is often less like a straight line and more like a labyrinth. Not everyone has an exact destination in mind—and that’s okay. It’s like Alice in Wonderland, asking the Cheshire Cat for directions, but not really caring about where she gets to. And so, as the Cheshire Cat observes, “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”

But for others, there needs to be a destination with a sense of purpose. That duality can coexist because that’s the reality of where people are right now.

Our worlds are opening up, thanks to the vaccines. It seems like nearly every phone call and every conversation starts with who’s been vaccinated and who’s going to get it next. It’s the new “how’s the weather” conversation, but it does more than merely break the ice.

As many of us receive their first and second shots now—finally— you can visit your elderly parents. It’s a hopeful story that’s repeated, in various forms, all day, every day.



It’s a perspective on why sharing these stories is so important. It helps move us out of the total darkness of the unknown. And, for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, it aligns with spring—the promise of a new season.

With each vaccination, one more person safely makes it over the wall. More pathways begin to open, allowing people and organizations, once again, to be on the move.

The essence of any leadership journey is transporting people from one place to another—inspiring them to believe in what we can achieve. An analogy I’ve used to illustrate this is to imagine leading thousands of people from diverse backgrounds, countries, experiences, and perspectives on a cross-country trip—New York to Los Angeles—by foot.

Not everyone is in the same place. Some people are bringing burdens from last year—losses, weariness, loneliness. At times, however, it may seem like heresy to ask them to take one more step, to do one … more … thing. Others, though, long to sprint ahead—they can’t wait to get moving.

Along the way, leaders are “shepherds”—sometimes in front, sometimes behind, but always beside others. Here are some thoughts:

  • A purposeful drive. It was another Sunday drive—but this one started with a very specific purpose, destination, and outcome. “I want to show you something,” a friend of mine told me on that day, during a visit to Kansas about 15 years ago. Our objective: the Hutchinson salt mines, now part museum. As a young boy, I had salt rocks (I can remember licking them to taste the saltiness) but didn’t think much about where they’d come from. And even if someone had told me, I couldn’t have imagined it—not until I saw it with my own eyes. My friend and I stood in a cavernous mine—some 650 feet underground and a constant 68 degrees. The Hutchinson Salt Company mine covers 980 acres, and the network of tunnels measures 150 miles. Stored in a secure area of the mine—safe from floods, fires, and tornadoes—are priceless collections, from the original footage of Hollywood classics to valuable documents from all 50 states and foreign countries. Until that moment, I never knew what existed all along—right below my feet. And all it took was someone to show me.
  • Failing to fail. It’s a question I hear in almost every conversation with executives these days: How can we ask people to do one … more … thing—to help them feel motivated and empowered? My answer, surprisingly perhaps, starts with failure. A year ago, companies everywhere took any and all actions—unconcerned about the prospect of failure because everything around us was failing. There was freedom to act without fear. Now, moving forward, if people are afraid to fail—if there are punishments or if rewards are withheld because of failure—then people won’t feel empowered to take chances. And without those risks, there will be no innovation. As we push the restart button, the only real failure will be failing to fail. When people know it’s safe to fail, learning happens.
  • Marking our calendars. A year ago, when the world turned upside down, the only way for any of us to get through was to look out just a few months—even a few weeks—at a time. Imagine if we had known then where we are now—it would have lifted a lot of burdens. But we couldn’t see it and wouldn’t have believed it. Yet, here we are, and our perspectives have been reset. Now as certainties replace the unknowns, milestones are easier to set—with purpose and optimism—three months, six months, a year from now. “We all need to listen, to meet people where they are—and we also have to talk about the future,” Doug Charles, the President of our Americas region, told me this week. “It’s taking both one step ahead of the next—and thinking six months out in front of us.”
  • Time to stretch. Like marathon runners about to take that last stride over the finish line, we’re on the cusp of celebrating a major achievement: we made it! How fast, how slow—it does not matter. Getting here is everything. And just like a marathon runner after 26.2 miles, we cannot just sit down. We have to stay in motion, and then it’s time to stretch—our moment of celebration. We need that pause to savor just how far we’ve come. Unless we stay flexible, nimble, and agile—stretching ourselves and building our strength—it will be impossible to start another race. It’s not intuitive, but that’s what leadership is—yin and yang, pushing and pulling, knowing when to tap the brakes and when to accelerate. And, above all, it’s showing appreciation for the distance we’ve traveled and just how much more capable we’ve become.
Just like those Sunday afternoon drives, all of us want to be in motion right now. Indeed, the question we need to ask ourselves is: Where do we go next?

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

How to Be an Inspiring Leader it’s Easy, and the Rewards are Great

Posted by Cliff Locks On April 14, 2021 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

How to Be an Inspiring Leader it’s Easy, and the Rewards are Great

It’s been a longstanding idea in business that emotions should be kept out of the workplace. Whatever’s going on in your personal life, you leave it at home so you can bring your most productive self to work.

But in a year when so many lines have become blurred — when a home has become work, and people are so exhausted they couldn’t possibly leave their personal experiences at the door — it’s clear that this old-fashioned idea can’t hold up much longer. 

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

I think that what the world is calling for now is radically human leadership — leadership based on humility, on not just showing empathy but having empathy, on being vulnerable, on being authentic.

While it’s pretty obvious how leading this way would create a more enjoyable workplace for employees, it also leads to higher productivity and success.

People want to know that they’re part of something bigger than themselves,” he said. “They want to grow, they want to learn, they want to be loved, and they want to know what they do matters to somebody else. And research clearly shows that companies that do those things will outperform.

So, many of my colleagues have had to make many hard decisions as a company, like the layoffs that so many faced. They did it in the most humane way they could and made sure to be there for their employees along the way — and now are seeing business levels that have bounced fully back to normal.

If you’re used to keeping emotions at a distance in the workplace, learning to become a radically human leader can feel foreign. Here are a few ways to get started. 

Begin with yourself

Being a radically human leader has to start with you.

I don’t think you can be a radically human leader unless you are radically human. That starts with looking in the mirror and candidly saying, ‘Where are my blind spots? Where are my strengths? What are my weaknesses?’

In particular, take a hard look at how you and your organization deal with failure. If failure is punished rather than encouraged, your employees may never feel comfortable opening up the things that are making it hard for them to do their jobs, meaning you’ll never have the opportunity to support them through it. 

This also means modeling the behaviors you want to see in others and not being afraid to show up with vulnerability to demonstrate to your team that they’re free to do the same. This doesn’t mean dumping all of your troubles on your team, but not feeling like you always have to plaster on a happy face when you’re going through something tough.   

Create space for connection

Of course, your employees aren’t just going to start suddenly opening up to you about their troubles, particularly if you haven’t had a culture of radically human leadership before. 

Instead, start by connecting with your employees in smaller ways — asking about their weekends, families, and hobbies. Over time, this will make them feel comfortable sharing some of the harder things going on in their life.

In today’s virtual workplace, that also means being very purposeful about creating space for connection.

If anything, I’ve increased the amount of time I’ve spent just talking to my employees. When I do a Zoom call, never start with the topic at hand — I’ll try to make a connection with the people on the call first because it would have happened if we were in person.” 

Show up even if you don’t have the answers

As a leader, there will be many situations where there’s no solution, no way to fix what’s going on. 

The trick is to be humble enough to recognize that and still go out of your way to reach out to your employees and make sure they know you’re there for them.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The Questions to Ask Yourself for Extraordinary Goal-Setting

Posted by Cliff Locks On April 7, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

The Questions to Ask Yourself for Extraordinary Goal-Setting

I can personally attest to its importance in my own professional life. I cannot overstate that it always has been and remains one of the first steps you take in your journey toward finding unparalleled success. My goal is to share the easy steps to write your goals down on paper.

To quote another expert on the subject, philanthropist and author Tony Robbins, “Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.”

I like that, don’t you? I think it explains the importance extremely well, but to delve deeper into the topic and further explain why I believe goal setting is of paramount importance when attempting to achieve success.

Contributor: Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach. Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

GREAT Goals are:

  1. Outcome focused: Once you understand your WHY (and it’s an enthusiastic WHY) you’re 90% there!
  2. In line with your values: The more a goal aligns with your inner or core values – the EASIER it will be to NOTE: We can achieve goals that don’t align with our values but it’s harder to do and less satisfying.
  3. Stated in the positive: “I want healthy fingernails” rather than “I want to stop biting my nails”

and SMART:

Specific  (so you know exactly what you’re trying to achieve)

Measurable  (so you know when you’ve achieved it!)

Action-oriented  (so you can DO something about it!)

Realistic  (so it IS achievable) and

Time-Bound  (has a deadline)

Focusing on the Outcome:

  1. What is it that you really, REALLY want? Dig deep…
  2. What is the SPECIFIC outcome you’re looking for?
  3. What is the PAIN for you of NOT achieving your goal?

Aligning with your Values:

  1. Is this goal in line with your life vision/overall life-plan? (Don’t know – what does your gut tell you?)
  2. Is this goal in line with your values? (Unsure? Ask yourself what’s REALLY important to you in life – will this goal help you achieve more of that?)
  3. Are the goals something YOU truly want, or are they something you think you SHOULD have or SHOULD be doing? (Tip: If it is a SHOULD, it may be someone else’s dream…)
  4. When you think about your goal does it give you a sense of deep contentment or ‘rightness’, happiness and/or excitement? (If so, these are good signs that it’s a healthy goal.)
  5. If you could have the goal RIGHT NOW – would you take it? (If not, why not? What issues are there?)
  6. How does this goal fit into your life/lifestyle? (Time/effort/commitments/who else might be impacted?)

Identifying Obstacles:

  1. Can YOU start & maintain this goal/outcome? (ie. Do you have complete control over achieving it?)
  2. How will making this change affect other aspects of your life? (ie. What else might you need to deal with?)
  • What’s good about your CURRENT SITUATION? (ie. What’s the benefit of staying right where you are?) Then ask, how can I keep those good aspects while STILL making this change?
  1. WHAT might you have to give up/stop doing to achieve this goal? (Essentially, what’s the price of making this change – and are you willing to pay it?)
  2. If there was something important around achieving this goal (to help you succeed, or that could get in the way) that you haven’t mentioned yet, what would it be?
  3. WHO will you have to BE to achieve this goal?

Goal Sizing:

  1. Is your goal the right size to be working on?
    Too big? Break down into smaller goals. Too small? Fit into a larger goal.
  2. What would be the MINIMUM/Super-Easy level of goal to achieve?
  3. What would be your TARGET level of goal to achieve?
  4. What would be your EXTRAORDINARY level of goal to achieve?

Resources – get moving:

  1. What RESOURCES do you already have to help you achieve your goal? Make a list! (eg. things, support from people, contacts, personal qualities, knowledge, skills, money, time etc).
  • What RESOURCES do you NEED to help you achieve your goals? Make a list!

Yes, I’m available to walk you through this important process; you are not alone. Just reach out by phone or email.

IMPORTANT: REMEMBER – GOALS are there to INSPIRE YOU not to beat yourself up with!

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Materials Science: The unsung hero, let’s see how it is impacting your business

Posted by Cliff Locks On March 31, 2021 at 10:02 am / In: Uncategorized

Materials Science: The unsung hero, let’s see how it is impacting your business

Few people recognize the vast implications of materials science. To build today’s smartphone in the 1980s, it would cost about $110 million, require nearly 200 kilowatts of energy, and the device would be 14 meters tall, according to Applied Materials CTO Omkaram Nalamasu.

Contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University, with edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

That’s the power of materials advances. Materials science has democratized smartphones, bringing the technology to the pockets of over 3.5 billion people.

But far beyond devices and circuitry, materials science stands at the center of innumerable breakthroughs across energy, future cities, transit, and medicine.

As the name suggests, materials science is the branch devoted to the discovery and development of new materials. It’s an outgrowth of both physics and chemistry, using the periodic table as its grocery store and the laws of physics as its cookbook.

And today, we are in the middle of a materials science revolution. In this blog, we’ll unpack the most important materials advancements happening now.

Let’s learn more…

THE MATERIALS GENOME INITIATIVE

In June 2011 at Carnegie Mellon University, President Obama announced the Materials Genome Initiative, a nationwide effort to use open source methods and AI to double the pace of innovation in materials science.

Obama felt this acceleration was critical to the U.S.’s global competitiveness, and held the key to solving significant challenges in clean energy, national security, and human welfare.

And it worked.

By using AI to map the hundreds of millions of different possible combinations of elements—hydrogen, boron, lithium, carbon, etc.—the initiative created an enormous database that allows scientists to play a kind of improv jazz with the periodic table.

This new map of the physical world lets scientists combine elements faster than ever before and is helping them create all sorts of novel elements.

And an array of new fabrication tools are further amplifying this process, allowing us to work at altogether new scales and sizes, including the atomic scale, where we’re now building materials one atom at a time.

BIGGEST MATERIALS SCIENCE BREAKTHROUGHS

These tools have helped create the metamaterials used in carbon fiber composites for lighter-weight vehicles, advanced alloys for more durable jet engines, and biomaterials to replace human joints.

We’re also seeing breakthroughs in energy storage and quantum computing.

In robotics, new materials are helping us create the artificial muscles needed for humanoid, soft robots—think Westworld in your world.

Let’s unpack some of the leading materials science breakthroughs of the past decade.

(1) Lithium-ion batteries

The lithium-ion battery, which today powers everything from our smartphones to our autonomous cars, was first proposed in the 1970s. It couldn’t make it to market until the 1990s, and didn’t begin to reach maturity until the past few years.

An exponential technology, these batteries have been dropping in price for three decades, plummeting 90% between 1990 and 2010, and 80% since. Concurrently, they’ve seen an eleven-fold increase in capacity.

But producing enough of them to meet demand has been an ongoing problem. Tesla has stepped up to the challenge: one of the company’s Gigafactories in Nevada churns out 20 gigawatts of energy storage per year, marking the first time we’ve seen lithium-ion batteries produced at scale.

Musk predicts 100 Gigafactories could store the energy needs of the entire globe. Other companies are moving quickly to integrate this technology as well: Renault is building a home energy storage based on their Zoe batteries, BMW’s 500 i3 battery packs are being integrated into the UK’s national energy grid, and Toyota, Nissan, and Audi have all announced pilot projects.

Lithium-ion batteries will continue to play a major role in renewable energy storage, helping bring down solar and wind energy prices to compete with those of coal and gasoline.

(2) Graphene

Derived from the same graphite found in everyday pencils, graphene is a sheet of carbon just one atom thick. It is nearly weightless, but 200 times stronger than steel. Conducting electricity and dissipating heat faster than any other known substance, this super-material has transformative applications.

Graphene enables sensors, high-performance transistors, and even gel that helps neurons communicate in the spinal cord. Many flexible device screens, drug delivery systems, 3D printers, solar panels, and protective fabric use graphene.

As manufacturing costs decrease, this material has the power to accelerate advancements of all kinds.

(3) Perovskite

Right now, the “conversion efficiency” of the average solar panel—a measure of how much captured sunlight can be turned into electricity—hovers around 20-22%, at a cost of roughly $3 per watt.

Perovskite, a light-sensitive crystal and one of our newer new materials, has the potential to take that conversion efficiency much higher. Last year, scientists paired perovskite with silicon in a hybrid solar cell that achieved a new world record of 30% efficiency. 

And perovskite has the potential to get that number up to 66%.

The ingredients that make up perovskite are both widely available and inexpensive to combine. What do all these factors add up to? Affordable solar energy for everyone.

MATERIALS OF THE NANO-WORLD

Nanotechnology is the outer edge of materials science, the point where matter manipulation gets nano-small—that’s a million times smaller than an ant, 8,000 times smaller than a red blood cell, and 2.5 times smaller than a strand of DNA.

Nanobots are machines that can be directed to produce more of themselves, or more of whatever else you’d like. And because this takes place at an atomic scale, these nanobots can pull apart any kind of material—soil, water, air—atom by atom, and use these now raw materials to construct just about anything.

Progress has been surprisingly swift in the nano-world, with a bevy of nano-products now on the market.

Never want to fold clothes again? Nanoscale additives to fabrics help them resist wrinkling and staining.

Don’t do windows? Not a problem! Nano-films make windows self-cleaning, anti-reflective, and capable of conducting electricity.

Want to add solar to your house? We’ve got nano-coatings that capture the sun’s energy.

Nanomaterials make lighter automobiles, airplanes, baseball bats, helmets, bicycles, luggage, power tools—the list goes on.

Researchers at Harvard built a nanoscale 3D printer capable of producing miniature batteries less than one millimeter wide.

And if you don’t like those bulky VR goggles, researchers are now using nanotech to create smart contact lenses with a resolution six times greater than that of today’s smartphones.

And even more is coming. Right now, in medicine, drug delivery nanobots are proving especially useful in fighting cancer. Computing is a stranger story, as a bioengineer at Harvard recently stored 700 terabytes of data in a single gram of DNA.

On the environmental front, scientists can take carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and convert it into super-strong carbon nanofibers for use in manufacturing. If we can do this at scale—powered by solar—a system 10% the size of the Sahara Desert could reduce CO2 in the atmosphere to pre-industrial levels in about a decade.

The applications are endless. And coming fast. Over the next decade, the impact of the very, very small is about to get very, very large.

FINAL THOUGHTS

With the help of artificial intelligence and quantum computing over the next decade, the discovery of new materials will accelerate exponentially.

And with these new discoveries, customized materials will grow commonplace. Future knee implants will be personalized to meet the exact needs of each body, both in terms of structure and composition.

Though invisible to the naked eye, nanoscale materials will integrate into our everyday lives, seamlessly improving medicine, energy, smartphones, and more.

Ultimately, the path to demonetization and democratization of advanced technologies starts with re-designing materials: the invisible enabler and catalyst. Our future depends on the materials we create.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The Large Benefits of Spring Cleaning your Thinking Process

Posted by Cliff Locks On March 24, 2021 at 10:00 am / In: Uncategorized

The Large Benefits of Spring Cleaning your Thinking Process

Spring cleaning was a yearly ritual when I was growing up, replacing storm doors with screen doors, washing windows, cleaning out closets. It was the rite of passage to summer.

As we marked start of spring this past weekend, we are hopefully on the precipice of this century’s rite of passage: a vaccinated, post-pandemic world—a new world.

The question for each of us will be: Do we revert to the old world, or do we advance to a new world? The reality is that it’s not either/or; it’s AND—taking from the old and the new to create the different, it’s up to leaders to model a new way forward.
 

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and edits by Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

Spring cleaning takes us first inward, so we can move onward. Only then can we consider moving outward. It’s a subtle point that’s easily overlooked. We can get caught up in trying to change the external without really seeing what’s internal. Self-awareness, after all, precedes self-change—and at every level of the organization.

It’s not about transactional doing—it’s more of a transformational being.

For change to take root, we need to decide what stays, what goes. Reminiscing is one thing, but getting stuck in the past is quite another.

When I was a kid, people used to talk a lot about the “good old days.” And sometimes, it seemed like those were the days they wanted to live in. To be sure, memories are to be cherished. I have a pair of green scrubs that I wore at the hospital when one of my children was born in the back of my closet. I’ll never wear them again—but I won’t get rid of them, either.

It’s amazing what we hold onto—like those five pairs of faded khaki pants or the jacket that doesn’t fit anymore. However, if we don’t make space, we’ll never incorporate the new—to illuminate our own attitude.

Our sights must be on where we want to go, not where we have been. If we don’t evolve and grow, and if our colleagues don’t grow—and go—with us, we will all be left in the old world. As I’ve said to our team, “We can’t think of ourselves as a 52-year-old firm. We need to think like a 5-month-old startup.”

At the same time, our spring cleaning can help us gain a new appreciation for what has brought us to this point. Instead of revamping everything, we also want to focus on what has served us well.

It’s time to wash the windows. Here are some thoughts:

  • What goes—chaos, clutter, outdated thinking. This is the “junk” that takes up the space we need to grow. It’s about removing clutter, eliminating chaos, restoring a sense of order, and ushering in the new. Top of the disposal list—the complacent inertia of conventional wisdom that keeps people and organizations stuck in that’s the way we do things around here. Easy to intellectualize, but elusive to actualize—part strategy, but mostly judgment. It’s sense and sensibility. A clean sweep, though, is liberating. It brings fresh air—and opens the space for a new perspective.
  • What stays—the five mindsets: Purpose. Courage. Awareness. Inclusion. Integrative Thinking. These are the five crucial mindsets—identified in our firm’s latest research, based on hundreds of thousands of executive assessments. They’ve guided the best of leaders through the crisis, and they’re non-negotiable in a post-pandemic world. This is what we need to keep—and develop. These five mindsets will continue to make a huge difference in terms of impact and contribution. And they apply everywhere, at every level. The purpose is the reason behind everything we do—the bridge from what we’ve been to what we will become. Courage—not having “no fear,” but rather to “know fear”—as we embrace continued ambiguity. Awareness, as we shift from “me” to “we.” Inclusion—it’s a behavior: leading the many while at the same time understanding the perspective of all. Integrative thinking—sculpting a mosaic, rather than only chipping away at the individual tiles.
  • Clean the whole house. Once we create an order for ourselves, we can now help others. Not everyone is in the same place right now. Despite the longer, brighter days, many people are still suffering, and some of us are still locked in winter; a colleague shared his observations on a recent drive. While sitting at a stoplight, he looked left and saw a man jogging by in shorts and no shirt—then, looking right, an ice fisherman huddled in a parka on a frozen lake. Last week, as I called to make dinner reservations, the person asked if we “would like to eat inside.” I was dumbfounded—what a novel concept. In the old world, the question was, “Would you like to sit outside?” My mind had only myopically focused on the present, not fully incorporating the reality of the past. For many more months, as we live in the duality—masks or no masks, Zoom or in-person—the key will be AND, not simply either/or, as we clean the entire house. It’s a holistic approach.

As we spring clean the nooks of our minds, we may find things that may not be of use to us, but they may be useful to others. Spring cleaning is a lot like leadership—it can be learned and absorbed only by doing, starting with the most important lesson of all: to lead others, you must first lead yourself.

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Three amazingly easy actions to ensure you are clear on the outcomes you’re looking to achieve.

Posted by Cliff Locks On March 17, 2021 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

Three amazingly easy actions to ensure you are clear on the outcomes you’re looking to achieve.

There are huge benefits to improve by 10x your outcomes, and it’s super easy. My clients say it’s magical how they get unstuck on a goal or issue. With this brilliant go-forward plan, you’ll always have a clear path to sound options and choices; you’ll find it liberating with the questions below!

Yes, I’m available to walk you through those tough decisions you need to make; you are not alone. Just reach out by phone or email.

Contributor: Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach. Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

What do you want? Are you clear on the outcomes you’re looking for?

Before going for solutions, understand the problem! How will you know you’re unstuck? What would be different? What do you really want? What specific results are you looking for? What would be your ideal outcome?

Identifying Options – So now you know what you want, answer these questions:

  • What specifically have you done so far? What worked and what didn’t?
  • What do you have already (eg. skills and resources) that could move you forwards?
  • What research could you do to help you find the first (or next) step?
  • What do you need to do before you do anything else?
  • Who else could you ask for help in achieving your goal?
  • If you were at your best, what would you do right now?
  • What would you do if you were an expert in (the area of your goal/problem)?
  • What would you advise your best friend to do if they were in your situation?
  • What would your best friend advise you to do?
  • What would (someone who inspires you) do in your situation?
  • If you had a choice what would you do?
  • What if you had as much time as you needed?
  • What if money were not an issue?
  • Imagine you’re fully confident in your abilities, what could you do?
  • Imagine you’re fully confident that others will support you. Now what could you do?
  • What other angles and options have you not thought of yet?
  • What is an impossible option?
  • What is the decision you have been avoiding?
  • If you (secretly) knew the answer to getting unstuck, what would that be?

Taking Action – Look at the list of ideas and options you now have:

  • What would be the smallest or easiest first step for you?
  • Which options or actions grab you?
  • How could you make the tasks/actions more enjoyable or fun?
  • Who else could help you in completing your action/s?
  • What’s one action you could take in the next 10 minutes?
  • What are three actions you could take that would make sense this week?
  • Let’s imagine you have found a magic lamp. You pick it up and absent-mindedly begin to stroke it. What’s that? I think it’s talking! Now, as you listen, I wonder what action it tells you to take?

Commitment – Do something! Now choose your actions:

  • When specifically will you do your action/s? Include the day AND time.
  • On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to complete each action?
    – If it’s below an 8, then ask “What is stopping you from completing this action?” And make this their first action.
  • How do you normally sabotage yourself – and what will you do differently this time?
  • How will I know you’ve completed your action/s?
  • Who will you tell about your actions (to support you in completing them)?
  • What specifically will you ask your supporters to do for you?
  • Tell me how you’ll feel once you have completed your actions?
  • How will you reward yourself when you complete your actions?

Cliff Locks is a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted mentor, confidant, and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Mentor, Confidant, and Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The Science Behind Personality Tests and now there are DNA Personality Tests

Posted by Cliff Locks On March 10, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

The Science Behind Personality Tests and now there are DNA Personality Tests

In the documentary Persona: The Dark Truth Behind Personality Tests, the discriminatory nature of a widely used tool is put under the microscope https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2021/mar/03/they-become-dangerous-tools-the-dark-side-of-personality-tests

Personality Test

Contributor: Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

A few personality tests:

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, the world’s most well-known personality quiz, which categorizes everyone into 16 distinct types gleaned from four binaries: people are either introverted or extroverted, sensing (relying on evidence from one’s senses) or intuitive, thinking or feeling, and judging or perceiving. A new perspective on you let personality insights guide your success https://www.mbtionline.com/en-US/Products/For-you ($49.95)

14 Free Personality Tests That’ll Help You Figure Yourself Out

https://www.themuse.com/advice/14-free-personality-tests-thatll-help-you-figure-yourself-out

Personality DNA Tests

The idea that your personality hinges on genetics is still highly controversial, though, but once we accept the inevitable truth, we can begin exploring a whole new world of information and discover our true self on an atomic level.

If you’re interested in learning how your genetics affect your personality, you should start by choosing a quality DNA testing provider.

Do Genes Influence Personality?

A summary of recent advances in the nature vs. nurture debate. The current prevailing genetic evidence appears to suggest that we actually don’t have specific genes for personality. And this conclusion doesn’t come from a lack of trying: The US government has spent billions on genetic research. But there are companies providing the testing.

The Science behind Behavioral Genetics

In order to fully grasp the Science behind Behavioral Genetics, we’ll first have to take a quick glance at behavioral genetics. The science uses numerous methods to pinpoint the origins and nature of behavioral differences between individuals. Contrary to popular belief, its methods aren’t solely tied to genetic influences but environmental ones as well. 

Behavioral genetics went a long way from its humble beginnings in Plato’s Protagoras (Dialogues) to modern medical and scientific publications and companies that implemented their findings and turned them into specific testing solutions (Karmagenes, for example). 

One of the breaking points was the Human Genome Project initiated in 1990 to sequence the entire human genome and create a comprehensive map of its genes. The entire project took more than 13 years to complete, providing a solid foundation for personality DNA testing.

After applying our rigorous set of ranking criteria and testing all the biggest providers on the market, we’ve come up with a definitive list of the best companies that offer personality DNA testing. From: https://www.top10dnatests.com/best-personality-dna-tests/

  • Orig3n – Among many other testing solutions, Orig3n also features one designed to establish a link between your DNA and the way you act, feel, and react to certain stimuli. With the Orig3n Behavior Test you’ll discover how your genetics impacts your tolerance to pain and stress, whether certain drugs make you more or less empathic, whether your genes increase your risk of addiction, and much more. ($29.00)
  • Karmagenes – With Karmagenes, you can choose between 4 different options designed to determine your behavioral patterns based on your unique genetic prerequisites. You can start with a simple psychometric analysis and work your way toward a complete behavioral analysis ($96.17)
  • New Life Genetics – New Life Genetics offers the so-called Talent Test which contains a psychological segment that defines the genetics of major proteins and neurotransmitters that impact your brain function (BDNF neurotrophins, dopamine, oxytocin, KIBRA protein…). Oxytocin affects your mood, personality, and social skills; KIBRA protein impacts your verbal communication but can also increase your predispositions for dyslexia and language difficulties; BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) influences your special orientation and memory; COMT gene is also explored to reveal your susceptibility to stress. The second part of the test is designed to identify the best sport to fit your genetic potential. Therefore, it’ll explore your muscles, energy metabolism, and motor talents and recommend the best exercise plans for your specific genetic makeup. New Life Genetics’ Talent Test is primarily designed to uncover your potential regarding different sports, but it can also tell you a lot about your personality. ($137.00)

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Create Your Own Personal User Manual And Share It With Your Team

Posted by Cliff Locks On March 3, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Create Your Own Personal User Manual And Share It With Your Team

A Personal User Manual helps others understand your history, leadership, and communication style, which helps your team and stakeholders to learn more about the real you; plus, you can always return any time to update it.

Cliff Locks - Goals

Contributor: Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

 

Communication Style: Direct and to the point

I am known for:

I am an executive management leader with experience as a President and CEO, VP of Sales & Marketing, acquiring new customers, and supporting operational teams to fulfill the company’s long-term strategic direction and achieve unprecedented success levels along the way. I’m a sales and marketing expert with a proven record of cultivating and securing relationships with major international corporate partners/clients.

I’ve built positive working relationships within large organizations, including Amazon, Walmart, Target, LG, DeLonghi, Haier America (GE Appliances), Breville, Newell Brands (Jarden Corporation), Ford, GM, Toyota, Nissan, Mercedes Benz, and BMW.

Businesses served range in size from early pre-revenue entrepreneurial firms to $520 billion multinationals.

Personal Approach to Work:

  • Plan and Execute
  • Flexible start and end times
  • Time commitments are always met with enthusiasm and punctuality

You’ll find my approach to work is with a solid understanding of the vision of success, and it’s always at the forefront of everything I do. I’m logical, analytical, linear, and data-oriented, very organized, sequential, planned, and detailed-oriented. I’m supportive of my teams and clients, helping them remove obstacles and gain new knowledge to do their jobs better. I’m expressive with praise. I consistently see the big-picture, and my ideation solves challenges.

Preferred Communication Channels: Regularly scheduled 1:1 meetings, normally a scheduled Zoom meeting.

I enjoy setting expectations for my teams and clients. This so important; it’s an essential responsibility that many business owners gloss over. Clear employee expectations benefit not only your staff but your business as a whole.

Feedback Preferences: Very open – give me feedback in any form at any time

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator: ENFJ

  • Here is my results: https://www.truity.com/personality-test/17600/test-results/29891760
  • The most prevalent:
    • ENFJ – The Teacher a 86% Match – ENFJs are idealist organizers, driven to implement their vision of what is best for humanity.
    • ENTJ – The Commander an 82% Match – ENTJs are strategic leaders, motivated to organize others and drive innovation.

 What is Important:

  1. I don’t worry so much about hours worked as about outcomes.
  2. That my team is open and honest with each other.
  3. Everything that needs to be said is said in the room and not whispered afterward.

Every employee should expect to maintain the following behaviors in the workplace:

  • Work with honesty and integrity.
  • Respect each other and be courteous and sensitive to everyone’s needs and concerns.
  • Be accountable for your work.
  • Be flexible about job and task assignments.
  • Be willing to help each other.
  • Ask for help when needed.
  • Be self-motivated and reliable.
  • Be cheerful, positive, and encouraging to other team members.

My Management Style:

  • I want to understand what people are working on and give input when needed.
  • I expect people to be 100% independent, and they don’t need to run actions or decisions by me.

Every employee should have from their management:

  • Proper training, support, and leadership
  • Safe and healthy working environments
  • Full disclosure and explanation of the job responsibilities, company policies, and procedures
  • Regular feedback on performance from supervisors or managers
  • Keep it friendly and ask for input

Leadership Values and Principles:

  • I work with many current and next generation of leaders; their teams always solve complex challenges.
  • Instead of looking outside of the box, get rid of the boxes.
  • Think both in terms of outside-in and inside-out.
  • Focus on root causes instead of symptoms.
  • Approach things through two-directional thinking.
  • Focus on relationships/networks instead of transactions.
  • Collaborate and co-create.
  • Align purpose and profit.
  • Steer away from complacent compliance.
  • Think BIG, plan, and execute!

Career:

  • Expertise as the founder of three entrepreneurial companies, each had a successful exit.
  • Including my firm’s resale with additional assets for KKR – Primedia, $1.2B in cash.
  • Board of Director, Executive Coach, and Angel Investor.

    Fields of experience:

    ♦ Enterprise Software as a Service (SaaS)
    ♦ Multinational Enterprises Global Value Chains – Reshoring and Nearshoring
    ♦ Hydrogen Production & Fuel Cell Technology – CleanTech
    ♦ Wellness, Digital Health, and Organic Produce
    ♦ Financial Portfolio Analysis Software
    ♦ eCommerce Platforms
    ♦ Machine and Deep Learning, AI, Computer Vision, Neuromorphic & Natural Language
    ♦ Smart Manufacturing that applies information and manufacturing intelligence
    ♦ Dental Oral Appliances – Epigenetics, and Biotechnology
    ♦ Nanotechnology
    ♦ Internet of Things (IoT)
    ♦ Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
    ♦ Supply Chain – Reverse Logistics – Manufacturing
    ♦ Social Media Software

    Executive Specialties: Strategic Organizational Leadership • Strategic Visioning & Direction Setting • Sales & Marketing Strategy • Business Development • Capital Raising • Operations Management • Strategic Analysis & Planning • Market Research & Opportunity Identification • Digital Media • Advertising • Customer Relationship Management • Executive Team Leadership • Financial Control • P&L Management • Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A) • Team Building • Talent Development & Coaching • Kaizen Methodology of Continuous Improvement • Trusted Executive and Professional Confidant

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Making the most of our now with your vision for the team’s bright future

Posted by Cliff Locks On February 24, 2021 at 10:04 am / In: Uncategorized

Making the most of our now with your vision for the team’s bright future

We felt like we could reach out and touch the stars.

A few years ago, my family and I went stargazing in a remote location. Without city lights to obscure our view, every tiny dot of brilliance shone crystal clear. As we looked through the telescope, we were awestruck by the countless stars and swirls of the Milky Way. In that moment, we felt connected to something bigger than ourselves.

The future is bright

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry, CEO, with insights from Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director

Today, we all need this same cosmic shift in perspective. When we look through the eyepiece of a telescope, what is distant suddenly zooms closer. But if we look through the wrong end of the telescope, things shrink away from us.

We need to ask ourselves, which end of the telescope are we looking through?

That question is more important than ever. A survey of global professionals conducted by Korn Ferry told a shocking story: 60% of respondents said stress, boredom, and sadness best describe their mood. Obviously understandable, for sure. We are connected, yet isolated—hopeful, yet numb. Maybe part of the problem is actually the lens we’re looking through.

Ironically, it’s the glimmers of hope that make us impatient. With every piece of “good news”—cases declining, some people receiving the vaccine—we just want it to be over. It’s like when you’re on a long road trip and the last 50 miles drag endlessly.

As paradoxical as it may sound, when nothing seems to be progressing, we actually can make the most progress! When everything appears unchanged externally, we experience tremendous growth internally. When things seem so far away, they are much closer than they appear. When we clearly see just how far we’ve come, we appreciate more fully just how capable we’ve become. And it all happens in a moment.

I’ll never forget when I got that call a few years ago. It came out of nowhere—and yet it really wasn’t a surprise. As soon as I heard my cousin’s voice, telling me my uncle wasn’t doing well, there was no mistaking her meaning. I was on my way to New York on business and immediately got on a connecting flight to Kansas to see my uncle one more time. When I arrived at the nursing home, I instantly saw just how frail he had become.

He knew and I knew—but we let it be the unspoken truth. It was just my uncle and me in that small room. My uncle was one of the strongest people I knew, and there he was—smiling at me. The last thing I wanted to do was break down in front of him. And so, I didn’t think about the days ahead or what would come next. Embracing the moment was all that mattered.

We reminisced about old times. My uncle had worked at the local oil refinery and had remodeled my aunt’s house himself—everything from the framing to the plumbing. He had taught me how to fish. Even though my eyes misted as I gave him one last hug, I felt far more gratitude than sadness. As I left the nursing home and stepped out into that hot Kansas sun, I finally let my tears flow.

Today, despite sporadic green shoots all around us, we still must embrace this moment before we can own the next. Here are some thoughts:
• Our existential moment. Over the past year, companies and even entire industries have transformed. It has happened on a personal level, too—and to all of us. Everyone has stories. “Who we are in February 2021 is not the same as who we were in March 2020,” Bryan Ackermann, Managing Partner of Korn Ferry’s Global Leadership and Professional Development Practice, told me this week. If we’re not self-aware, we can lose our perspective on just where we are. “Are we still in the old world or in the new world? Do we have a foot in some weird hybrid of both?” Bryan commented. These questions can be a welcome opportunity to continually shift our focus to the bigger picture of what we value, how we find meaning, and who we want to become.

• The neutral zone. Even as we look ahead with optimism, the reality is we’re not quite there yet. We’re in transition—moving through a neutral zone—from one place (physical, mental, emotional) to the next. “We’re like trapeze artists, flying through the air ungrounded,” David Dotlich, PhD, a CEO and Board advisor and a senior leader at Korn Ferry, said “We can’t make the next trapeze appear automatically. We have to wait for it. And as it approaches, we have to let go of the old trapeze so we can reach for the new one.” Being “up in the air” can feel uncomfortable. But in that instant, we develop the courage and creativity that will bring us closer to whatever comes next.

• Making the most of our “now.” We have a choice of what we see: obstacles or opportunities. When Christina Gold, former CEO of Western Union and a member of several boards, including ours, started out in her career, there were few opportunities for women. As she related to me, her first job out of college was counting coupons for the local grocery store—at a time when a man with a college degree could easily land a supervisory position. Her break came when she was hired by Avon as an inventory clerk. Christina went on to a series of firsts in her career, but always made the most of the here and now—which led to the top spot at Western Union. “I never thought of what I faced as being obstacles,” Christina told me. In other words, her attitude was her altitude.

Look up, look out, look forward. The signs of hope that had once seemed as unreachable as the most distant star are suddenly within our grasp. Indeed, we can see the future—but only if we ground ourselves in this moment.

Success is measured by what you and your team accomplish towards fulfilling your strategic goals, ensuring they are aligned with the company’s vision of success.

Let’s work together on creating the tools:

  1. Develop a One-Page Strategic Plan.
  2. Set the top company priorities.
  3. Create clear, measurable objectives.
  4. Use one-on-one check-ins with your team members.
  5. Maintain an ongoing feedback loop with early corrective action and positive praise.

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Believe to Achieve – Why it’s critical in these times for leaders to train others to lead

Posted by Cliff Locks On February 17, 2021 at 10:04 am / In: Uncategorized

Believe to Achieve – Why it’s critical in these times for leaders to train others to lead

Come gather ’round people

Wherever you roam …

       – Bob Dylan, The Times They Are A-Changin’

For organizations today, the times they are a-changin’ — and to make it ashore, we need to keep believin’.

Many years ago, a ship out in the middle of the ocean was rocked by a fierce storm. Everyone had to abandon ship. After countless days in a small life raft, the captain finally stood on the beach of a deserted island, surrounded by 10 other wet, cold, and scared people.

Instinctively, the captain reassured the others that they would be rescued. In the meantime, the priorities were shelter, fire, and food. People worked together in small groups—and they began to believe.

Light-after-the-Storm-300x198

The captain climbed a hill above the beach to search the horizon for signs of a rescue. Instead, the captain saw at least 10 more life rafts being carried toward the island by the tide. “We’re going to have company,” the captain called out to the others. “Soon, there will be 100 or so people on this beach—and they need our help.”

“Lucky for them, you’re here to take charge,” someone called out from the group, and many others nodded.

“No,” said the captain. “That’s not going to work. There will be too many for one person to lead directly. I need each of you to meet one life raft and help those people for the next few days until we get rescued.”

The group didn’t look happy. “How will we do that?” they asked.

“The same way I did,” the captain said. “It’s not that difficult—reassure them about their future, help them understand what needs to be done now, and be clear about their accountability within their capabilities.”

“So, what will you be doing?” another person asked.

The captain explained: “It’s my job to help each of you become the leader that your team needs.”

The captain’s fable, which was shared with me this past week by Peter O’Neill, a colleague in Europe, reminds us that there may be many life rafts approaching this year— filled with people who are in search of hope, help, and heroes—and we each must rise up and bring them ashore.

And, just as in the fable, we need the ABCs of leadership: AccountabilityBelief, and Capability.

  • Accountability. The accountability we wish to see in others starts with each of us. In other words, we must first be accountable to ourselves for our own behaviors. Believe it, say it, mean it, act it!
  • Belief. When we believe we can make a difference—that change is possible—then our actions will follow. But if we don’t believe, we won’t achieve.
  • Capability. This is a broad brush: listening, connecting, inspiring, giving and getting honest feedback, expanding networks, exploring with others, and constantly looking for opportunities to learn. It’s all about allowing belief and accountability to shine through actions.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO. The tide is changing—and the life rafts are coming in. They’re filled with colleagues and clients; they’re carrying family and friends. We will all be accountable for who we are—and how we show up: as partners, parents, neighbors, and citizens. Indeed, we must believe.

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

How to be agile, adaptable, and resilient, you will not only survive—but thrive.

Posted by Cliff Locks On February 10, 2021 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

How to be agile, adaptable, and resilient, you will not only survive—but thrive.

Thrive

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO and Cliff Locks, Investment Capital Growth, Managing Director and Executive Coach

Potential. It’s the common denominator for all of us. Yet, it will always remain a mere fraction—substantially less than one—without the numerator of opportunity.
 

“I’m going on a date tonight,” one of my daughters announced excitedly this week. “We’re having dinner together.”

Given the lockdown, I wondered how that was going to work.

“It’s by Zoom,” she told me and went on to explain they were having food simultaneously delivered.

Instantly, I was reminded of the first time I heard of internet dating sites to “meet” people and wondered how that would work. Yet, it has—different times always demand another level of adaptation.

Flash back a few weeks ago, when my family and I socialized with another family on New Year’s Day. We didn’t give a second thought to having to be outside, masked, and socially distant. But when my friend brought out a treasured vinyl LP to play some music for us, my first thought was I could do the same thing with an app on my phone. For my friend, though, the physical album was clearly a tangible part of the whole experience. In his mind, it was the only way to listen to this “classic.”

I get it—nostalgia has its attraction. For me, seeing that album took me back to my hometown record store. I can distinctly remember going there to buy a record of “Midnight Train to Georgia” by Gladys Knight & the Pips. Later, when I was in college, I’d go to Tower Records.  I’d stand in front of displays of my favorite artists, walking my fingers across stacks of albums, flipping from one cool cover to the next.

Now it’s a swipe left, swipe right world.

So many things that used to be special have become commonplace—like travel. Growing up, I’d see pictures in “old” magazines of people all dressed up to get on an airplane. Flash forward, now we’ve taken it to ultra-uber-casual.

Until we reflect, we just don’t realize how much has changed—even the little things. Pre-Covid, I used to start each day early, reading newspapers and magazines for a couple of hours. Now, I start with a walk—always with phone in hand and buds in ears, scrolling the headlines, listening to Audible books on tape, and calling to catch up with friends and clients. Then, I head back home to work, as I have over the past 10 months and counting – understanding that so many on the front lines don’t have this option. Just a year ago, all of this would have been unthinkable.

Mindset is a conscious choice—one we make every minute of every day. We need to ask ourselves: What lens are we looking through? Do we resist change? Or, do we embrace it—a chance to expand our perspectives and seek out opportunities to meet new people, learn new things, and have new experiences? Paraphrasing slightly, Aldous Huxley, the philosopher and author, observed: “Experience is not what happens to you; it is what you do with what happens to you.”

Change continually confronts us. There’s no escaping it. That’s not to say change isn’t hard at times. For many, the losses suffered recently have been very difficult, even, excruciating at times. And yet, here we are. It’s good to remind ourselves just how far we’ve come—and how resilient we can be.

With change comes an abundance of opportunity. And that’s how we actually exceed potential. Here are some thoughts:

  • Take a bow. We don’t give ourselves enough credit. We’ve adapted more in the past few months, and at a faster pace, than we have in years. Yet, we’ve been moving so fast, we probably don’t understand, recognize, or appreciate how much has changed in every aspect of our lives. Frustrating and exhausting at times—yes, but also an accomplishment we can all be proud of. The fact is humans are wired to be agile and adaptable. As Charles Darwin observed: “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, it is the one that is most adaptable to change.” Having proved just how agile, adaptable, and resilient we are, we know we will not only survive—but thrive. And that’s a very good thing—because in the next two years, we will see more change than we have in the past ten. What that will entail exactly may not be clear just yet. But make no mistake—the seeds of seismic change have been planted.
  • “Comparison is the thief of joy.” These wise words from President Theodore Roosevelt remind us of the danger of measuring today against the nostalgia of yesterday or some idealized vision of tomorrow. It’s a formula for disappointment. We learned this in the early days of the pandemic when we longed for the “normal” of what used to be and tried futilely to replicate it. As Evelyn Orr, Chief Operating Officer of the Korn Ferry Institute, shared, “The more we let go of the past, the more we greet the new. Instead of trying to meet some previous standard, we can create new experiences that are not diminished by comparisons to what we used to do.” As such, that object in the mirror—the one that’s “closer than it appears”—will never pass us by.
  • Appreciating relief, respecting loss. We need to be honest with ourselves: change stirs a multitude of emotions. Even a positive experience—a new job, a new relationship, moving to a new home—is stressful. Rather than judging our experiences as “good” or “bad,” we must simply acknowledge what we’re feeling. For example, people who used to deal with the grind of near-constant business travel might feel relief now that they’re home every day. At the same time, they probably also feel loss over not being able to travel to different places. “Relief and loss are two sides of the exact same coin. We hope that change brings relief, just as we fear loss will come with it, the suggestion is to embrace change.
  • Fail fast, learn faster. The pandemic has made novices of us all. It’s made us humble, which should lead to self-awareness and, ultimately, to learning. But where there’s learning there will be challenges and even failure, especially at the beginning. That’s why, over the years, I’ve encouraged colleagues to “fail fast, fail often”—because if we’re not failing, we’re not learning. Indeed, the only real failure is failing to fail! We should always be a “new beginner” at something. To make the learning process faster and more successful, use an experienced executive coach, to help guide your path forward.

 

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The entire social media marketing market will vanish, hard to believe as Google’s ad campaign revenue totaled $135 billion, while Facebook’s reached nearly $70 billion. Taken together, this is roughly 35% of all global advertising expenditures.

Posted by Cliff Locks On February 3, 2021 at 10:07 am / In: Uncategorized

The entire social media marketing market will vanish, hard to believe as Google’s ad campaign revenue totaled $135 billion, while Facebook’s reached nearly $70 billion. Taken together, this is roughly 35% of all global advertising expenditures.

Today, just a few decades after the arrival of the internet, Google and Facebook together command more advertising dollars than all print media on the planet. Google-and-Facebook-300x169

In 2019, Google’s ad campaign revenue totaled $135 billion, while Facebook’s reached nearly $70 billion. Taken together, this is roughly 35% of all global advertising expenditure.

Fueled by open source e-commerce platforms, mobile devices, and advances in online payment infrastructure, social media marketing has replaced virtually the entire traditional advertising industry. That took fewer than fifteen years.

And the numbers are huge. In 2019, the global advertising industry reached nearly $600 billion, driving Google’s valuation to $1 trillion and Facebook’s above $600 billion.

All this value is fueled by our searches: our likes and dislikes, what we desire, who our friends are, and what we (and they) are clicking on.

But with a blitzkrieg of technologies converging on the industry, advertising will continue to change. First, it’s likely to get a little more invasive and a lot more personal. Yet this won’t last, per contributor: Peter Diamandis, Founder, X Prize Foundation and Chairman of Singularity University. Not long after, the entire social media marketing market will vanish.

How long will that take? We give it ten to twelve years.

Let’s dive in…

Advertising in Our Virtually Enhanced World

Because of the convergence of high-bandwidth 5G connectivity, augmented reality eyewear, our emerging trillion-sensor economy, and powerful AI, we have gained the ability to superimpose digital information atop physical environments—freeing advertising from the tyranny of the screen.

Imagine stepping into a future Apple Store. When you approach the iPhone display, a full-sized AR avatar of Steve Jobs materializes to give you a tour of the product’s latest features. Avatar Jobs is a little too much, so with nothing more than a voice command, he’s replaced with floating text—and a list of phone features hovers in the air in front of you. After you’ve made your selection, eschewing the iPhone for a new pair of AR iGlasses, another voice command is all it takes to execute a smart contract.

Next, glasses on, you head over to a friend’s house. While chatting in her kitchen, you gaze at her new cabinets. Sensors in the glasses track eye motion, so your AI knows your focus has been lingering.

Via your search history, it also knows you’ve been considering remodeling your kitchen. Because your smart recommendation preferences are turned on, cabinet prices, design, and color choices fill your field of vision. It’s a new form of advertising: either an extension of frictionless shopping, or a novel type of spam.

The early version of this reality is already here. Known as “visual search,” the feature is currently available from a range of companies.

For example, a partnership between Snapchat and Amazon, called Visual Search, allows you to point their app-camera at an object, then get a link showing either the product itself or something similar, available for purchase.

Pinterest, meanwhile, has a multitude of visual search tools, such as Shop the Look, which uses machine learning to “dot” every object in a photo. Like the couch? Click the dot. The site will find you similar products for sale. Or take Lens, their real-time visual search tool. Point the app-camera at a scene and the app will generate links to all the products in that scene.

Google takes this one step further. Released in 2017, their Google Lens app is a general visual search engine. It does more than just identify products for sale—it decodes an entire landscape. You can learn anything you want: the botanical breakdown of the plants in a flowerbed, the breeds of dogs romping through a park, the history of the buildings lining a city street.

And IKEA has taken things the farthest. By using their AR app via smartphone, you can map your living room into a digital version with exact dimensions. Need a new coffee table? Their technology lets you try out different styles and sizes. It will even allow you now to preview multiple pieces of furniture at once. Your choice triggers a smart payment, and just like that, an Ikea customized coffee table is delivered at your doorstep. Need help assembling? Their AR app can walk you through it step-by-step.

All this visual search competition has kicked development into overdrive, spiking consumer adoption rates as well. As more people use these systems, more data is fed back to the AI running them. By fall of 2018, this feedback loop had pushed visual searches above a billion queries a month.

Pretty much every global brand is preparing for a world of “point, shoot, and shop.” But it could get even creepier. 

Hyper-Personalized Advertising

You’ve been spotted. You’re just out for a casual stroll through a department store, and their facial recognition system has you in its sights. Your AR glasses light up: “Hi Sarah, great to see you. . .”

You forgot to change your preferences to “Do Not Disturb.” A microsecond later, the store’s TV monitors continue the assault.

Maybe it’s a hologram or the President of the United States calling out your name, “Sarah, just one second. Your pores are a matter of national security. I want to tell you that your genome sequence matches a new line of L’Oréal skincare products.”

When you don’t respond to POTUS, the AI switches tactics. Now it’s Mom. You flinch, involuntarily. Her voice is deeply imprinted on your brain. But you know better, and just keep walking.

Sometimes it’s your favorite movie stars (based on data from your Netflix account), or your favorite sports star (based on internet searches).

Does this sound like a far-off fantasy? Guess again.

The Age of Jarvis & The End of Advertising Itself

From the Mad Men of old to the Madder Men of today, the purpose of advertising hasn’t changed: to sell you stuff. So ads extol benefits: Buy X because it’ll make you Y—sexy, successful, shiny, whatever.

But what happens when you are no longer the one making the buying decisions? That’s when Shopping JARVIS comes to the rescue.

Imagine a future when you simply say: “Hey JARVIS, buy me some toothpaste.”

Does JARVIS watch TV? Did he happen to catch those late-night ads filled with bright-white smiles? Of course not.

In a nanosecond, JARVIS considers the molecular formulations of all available options, their cost, the research that supports their teeth-whitening claims, published client-satisfaction reports, and evaluates your genome to determine the flavor formulation most likely to tingle your taste buds. Then it makes a purchase.

Taking it a step further, in the future, you’ll never actually have to order toothpaste. JARVIS will be monitoring your supply of regularly consumed items—from coffee, tea, and almond milk to toothpaste, deodorant, and all the rest—and will order supplies before you realize what needs restocking.

How about purchasing something new? That drone your son wants for his birthday? Just specify functionality. “Hey JARVIS, could you buy me a drone for under $100 that is easy to fly and takes great photos?”

What about fashion decisions? Will we trust our AIs to choose our clothes? Seems unlikely, until you consider that AIs can track eye movement as we window-shop, listen to our daily conversations to understand our likes and dislikes, and scan our social feeds to understand our fashion preferences as well as those of our friends. With that level of detail, Fashion JARVIS will do a pretty accurate job of selecting our clothing—no advertising required.

Final Thoughts

In the next decade, expect advertising to get far more personalized—learning from an explosion of layered data and expanding into new surfaces of our digitally superimposed world.

Next, we’ll be heading toward a future in which AI will take over the majority of our buying decisions, continually surprising us with products and services we didn’t even know we wanted.

Or, if surprise isn’t your thing, just turn that feature off and opt for boring and staid. Either way, it’s a shift that threatens traditional advertisers, while offering considerable benefits to the consumer.

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Building a Better Board/CEO Partnership: How Boards Can Find the Right Balance

Posted by Cliff Locks On January 27, 2021 at 10:08 am / In: Uncategorized

Building a Better Board/CEO Partnership: How Boards Can Find the Right Balance

The COVID-19 health crisis and accompanying business disruption require boards and CEOs to chart a near-term response and develop a longer-term strategy for accelerating out of the downturn and winning in a post-COVID world. How well a company emerges from the crisis will have much to do with the ability of the board and CEO to align on a future direction and work effectively together on the plan.

 

Board of Directors

Contributors: George Anderson, Claudius Hildebrand, Robert Stark, at Spencer Stuart and Cliff Locks at Investment Capital Growth

 

The crisis only heightens the inherent tension between the board’s responsibility to serve as a supportive partner to the CEO and to hold the CEO accountable for performance. Managing the tension between the two is a difficult balancing act. Boards can be too complacent — ceding too much responsibility for strategy and performance to the CEO — or over-involved, hyper-focused on measures of short-term performance or pushing for too-frequent changes in strategy.

CEOs frequently report feeling isolated and under-supported by their boards. All too often, a relationship with a particular director is the thread that holds things together along with the use of a trusted executive confidant, like Cliff Locks. And with fewer experienced CEOs serving on boards today, sitting CEOs are less likely to have a peer who truly understands what they are dealing with. How can boards strike the right balance between support and accountability so that they work more effectively with the CEO on long-term value creation?

 Spencer Stuart’s research into the CEO Life Cycle — a rigorous analysis of performance data for 750 S&P 500 CEOs, including more than 7,000 data points and interviews with more than 50 CEOs and board directors — shows that boards have a significant impact in shaping company and CEO performance when they encourage transparency and collaboration. Equally, CEOs need to establish and maintain trust by sharing information and engaging the board in meaningful dialogue, so that directors feel like they have sufficient opportunities to share their views and support the CEO. The CEO Life Cycle reveals the importance of the board’s support of the CEO at key moments, including investing time in the new CEO’s transition, creating alignment around realistic expectations throughout the CEO’s tenure, committing to the kind of reinvention and renewal required for future growth, and overseeing a robust, forward-looking succession process.

The CEO Life Cycle

Support the CEO’s transition

CEO selection marks the start — not the end — of a CEO transition. After a long succession process, boards tend to celebrate the wisdom of their decision and move on to the next thing, leaving the transition in the CEO’s hands.

 Spencer Stuart’s research found that when boards and CEOs invested in building trust early, CEOs were less likely to experience a deep Sophomore Slump and were less likely to be ousted. Boards can help set the tone early by expressing their preferences on the ideal cadence and style of communication, the use of meeting time and their role in developing strategy.

“We want to be more engaged in building that strategy, and make sure that we are all owning that together.”

“We have told [the new CEO] that unlike the past, we do not want the CEO to bring to us a fully baked strategy. We want the CEO to bring us ideas. We want to be more engaged in building that strategy, and make sure that we are all owning it together,” one director told us. When the board views itself as a partner in developing strategy, it can help build trust with the CEO. “We’re all in this together. If we determine we’ve made the wrong decision, we’ve made it together. He’s not going to be out there on the limb by himself. That’s a change in tone from how we’ve operated in the past.”

It’s also important to begin building the personal relationships that will sustain the partnership over time. CEOs can feel unsupported when directors don’t seem to fully understand how difficult some big initiatives are to execute. Wise CEOs strive to develop one-to-one relationships with individual directors outside of the boardroom to seek advice and feedback on ideas, and this builds trust over time. Directors can encourage these interactions by hosting informal dinners and activities and making time to meet with the CEO one on one, even when it seems more efficient to plan small group gatherings. One CEO who commits to meeting with directors when traveling learned that meeting even with two directors at a time changes the dynamic significantly and is much less valuable for relationship-building.

Align on realistic expectations

Unrealistic and misaligned expectations are often at the root of adversarial board and CEO relationships. Every CEO journey is unique, but the CEO Life Cycle framework can help the board and CEO understand where they are and what may lie ahead, enabling them to discuss potential risks and opportunities at each stage. With less ambiguity, boards and CEOs can view performance in terms of the larger context and avoid overreacting in moments of doubt or tolerating mediocrity for too long.

 Spencer Stuart’s research found that when CEOs and boards worked to stay aligned, they were more likely to create the conditions for driving long-term change and insulating the management team from unnecessary short-term pressure. During the Sophomore Slump period, for example, most CEOs experience a decline in performance. “In the second year reality often sets in. You’ve already taken advantage of the best opportunities and now have to refine plans and reassess your team,” explained one former CEO. How the CEO responds during this period and the support the board provides can set the stage for high performance or under performance in the succeeding years. “Either you survive,” the director said, or the board determines that “The CEO’s not working.”

Boards have an ongoing responsibility to monitor performance and recognize when it’s time to support, challenge or change the CEO. Amid a major strategic initiative with a longer-term payoff for the business, CEOs are looking for support. “It’s during those really difficult time periods, that’s when good companies have a solid and supportive board for the CEO.” But boards also need to be alert to changes in the CEO’s motivation or energy that could signal a need for a change. “When an individual has been in a role for five, six, seven years, they either get a little tired or they are ambitious and want to do more,” observed one director.

Boards can make sure they use their time with the CEO to check on progress and maintain alignment. A natural time for these conversations is the formal executive session. Reserving that time for a substantive, but intimate discussion of the issues that are on the CEO’s mind can help build a trusting environment and reinforce their mutual responsibilities. “It’s very important that the board handle that in an appropriate way. The board has to be open and appropriately supportive, surrounding the CEO with the resources needed to do what they need to do be successful.”

Boards can make sure they use their time with the CEO to check on progress and maintain alignment. A natural time for these conversations is the formal executive session.

Commit to ongoing renewal and change

A protective mindset can emerge when the strategy is working great and the team is humming. “There’s a tendency to think if the results are all right, the CEO’s doing a good job. Boards must be far more thoughtful about what’s around the corner and whether the CEO can meet those challenges,” one director told us. It is in the late stages of a tailwind period — rather than during headwind periods — when CEOs have freedom to adjust or place new bets on the future. As one board member explained, “By the time you smell the fire in the boardroom, it is often too late.”

Spencer Stuart’s research found that CEOs who are successful over the long term learn to reinvent themselves and their companies at a pace that is as fast as the world is changing, and boards of these companies expect and support reinvention. These leaders were more likely to reinvent their approach to leadership, transform the organization and think in terms of long-term impact or purpose, resisting complacency and incremental thinking.

It’s not just the CEO who has to guard against complacency and seek renewal. Boards also can get comfortable with solid performance and incremental change and stop pressing for the kind of reinvention and bold moves companies need to thrive today. “The world is moving in a certain place, and that’s what we have to compete against — not just our peers.” Boards will be in a better position to ask the right questions for the future when they have the right mix of expertise in the boardroom. “You actually have those discussions in the boardroom. The whole water level starts to go up a little bit.”

Directors also can fight complacency by finding opportunities for ongoing learning. These could include factory visits, meetings with customers or experts, or spending a day with management, which can help directors stay close to the business and understand the pace and intensity of the challenges facing the company, beyond what directors would hear in a boardroom discussion.

It’s not just the CEO who has to guard against complacency and seek renewal. Boards also can get comfortable with solid performance and incremental change and stop pressing for the kind of reinvention and bold moves companies need to thrive today.

Plan for CEO succession

CEO succession planning “is one of the biggest stumbling blocks for many who would otherwise be perceived as great CEOs,” one CEO told us. Ultimately, a CEO won’t be considered great if “at the end of the day, they didn’t instill the confidence in that shareholder base that the person taking their place is going to be able to follow their performance.” A PwC study found a much higher risk that successors of long-serving, high-performing CEOs will significantly under perform and be forced out of office. Our research found that the risk of failure was significantly lower when boards were actively involved in succession planning and the successor’s development.

The risks for boards neglecting succession planning are great. Transitioning CEOs is one of the hardest things a board has to do, and it’s even harder for boards to confront when performance is middling — when there is no burning platform for change. “There’s nothing really forcing you to do it,” said one director, describing the conundrum for boards.

Some CEOs are more willing than others to examine their own performance and motivation. Said one, “I was losing a little bit of my energy. I always say you need to step down when you can’t put on the uniform the way you used to.” But it’s up to the board to ensure that it has regular conversations about long-term value creation and the CEO’s time horizon. Understanding the natural headwinds and tailwinds CEOs will face during their tenure, the board should lead frank conversations about whether or not the CEO has the energy and ability to renew the strategy and organization to unlock value or the company’s next phase.

In addition to these conversations with the CEO, the board should actively manage a succession planning process that’s based on a forward-looking strategy for the company, which will shape the criteria for the next CEO. The process also should include thorough and thoughtful assessments of internal candidates with the goal of helping them get ready for the role within a certain time frame. Directors should get to know members of senior leadership in formal and informal settings.

The lead independent director, in particular, has to be a close partner to the CEO, setting the right expectations and tone from the beginning, closing the loop on questions and board feedback, and checking in periodically. Cliff Locks is available to be your lead independent director.

Embedding renewal in board processes

As part of their annual self-assessment, boards typically consider questions about the relationship between the board and CEO: How effective is the relationship? Does the board strike the right balance between its monitoring role and its advising role? Where does the board add value in the relationship? Where does the board misstep or struggle in that relationship? Our research suggests that boards should go further, not only asking about how effective the relationship is, but also how they can best support the CEO given where he or she is in the CEO Life Cycle.

For many boards, the compensation committee or nominating/governance committee can take the lead in CEO development and ensuring the CEO has the necessary support. An increasing number of compensation committees are expanding their mandate to include leadership development — sometimes changing their name to “management development and compensation committee” to reflect the broader mandate. Those that do are likely to consider a range of people issues, including leadership development, succession planning, CEO tenure and where the CEO is in the Life Cycle. Ideally, these conversations would happen a couple times a year to ensure the board and CEO are partnering on development.

While all directors should build a one-to-one relationship with the CEO early in his or her tenure, certain board leaders are better placed to facilitate board/CEO communication. The lead independent director, in particular, has to be a close partner to the CEO, setting the right expectations and tone from the beginning, closing the loop on questions and board feedback, and checking in periodically. Ideally, this relationship is one of transparency and mutual understanding about what excites and worries the other about leading the organization forward. During our interviews, CEOs and directors often expressed how frameworks like the CEO Life Cycle can help initiate a dialogue and chart a new approach to working together.

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Getting you up to speed for exponential change – Think BIG!

Posted by Cliff Locks On January 20, 2021 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

Getting you up to speed for exponential change – Think BIG!

Highly successful people practice exponential thinking and you can too. Exponential business models aren’t designed to create a better company or product. They’re used to create a vastly different company or product. Think Amazon and Uber. Exponential technologies shape every aspect of our lives. These technologies include artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality (VR), data science, digital biology, making hydrogen directly from sea water, digital fabrication, robotics, and autonomous vehicles.

Exponential Change

Contributors: Peter Diamandis and Cliff Locks [Note: This article incorporates  excerpts from Peter Diamandis book The Future Is Faster Than You Think, co-authored with Steven Kotler.]

What’s faster than autonomous vehicles and flying cars?

Try Hyperloop, rocket travel, and robotic avatars. Hyperloop is currently working towards 670 mph (1080 kph) passenger pods, capable of zipping us from Los Angeles to downtown Las Vegas in under 30 minutes. Rocket Travel (think SpaceX’s Starship) promises to deliver you almost anywhere on the planet in under an hour. Think New York to Shanghai in 39 minutes.

But wait, it gets even better…

As 5G connectivity, hyper-realistic virtual reality, and next-gen robotics continue their exponential progress, the emergence of “robotic avatars” will all but nullify the concept of distance, replacing human travel with immediate remote telepresence.

Let’s dive in.

Hyperloop One: LA to SF in 35 Minutes

Did you know that Hyperloop was the brainchild of Elon Musk? Just one in a series of transportation innovations from a man determined to leave his mark on the industry.

In 2013, in an attempt to shorten the long commute between Los Angeles and San Francisco, the California state legislature proposed a $68 billion budget allocation for what appeared to be the slowest and most expensive bullet train in history.

Musk was outraged. The cost was too high, the train too sluggish. Teaming up with a group of engineers from Tesla and SpaceX, he published a 58-page concept paper for “The Hyperloop,” a high-speed transportation network that used magnetic levitation to propel passenger pods down vacuum tubes at speeds of up to 670 mph. If successful, it would zip you across California in 35 minutes—just enough time to watch your favorite sitcom.

In January 2013, venture capitalist Shervin Pishevar, with Musk’s blessing, started Hyperloop One with myself, Jim Messina (former White House Deputy Chief of Staff for President Obama), and tech entrepreneurs Joe Lonsdale and David Sacks as founding board members. A couple of years after that, the Virgin Group invested in this idea, Richard Branson was elected chairman, and Virgin Hyperloop One was born.

“The Hyperloop exists,” says Josh Giegel, co-founder and chief technology officer of Hyperloop One, “because of the rapid acceleration of power electronics, computational modeling, material sciences, and 3D printing.”

Thanks to these convergences, there are now ten major Hyperloop One projects—in various stages of development—spread across the globe. Chicago to DC in 35 minutes. Pune to Mumbai in 25 minutes. According to Giegel, “Hyperloop is targeting certification in 2023. By 2025, the company plans to have multiple projects under construction and running initial passenger testing.”

So think about this timetable: Autonomous car rollouts by 2020. Hyperloop certification and aerial ridesharing by 2023. By 2025—going on vacation might have a totally different meaning. Going to work most definitely will.

But what’s faster than Hyperloop?

Rocket Travel

As if autonomous vehicles, flying cars, and Hyperloop weren’t enough, in September of 2017, speaking at the International Astronautical Congress in Adelaide, Australia, Musk promised that for the price of an economy airline ticket, his rockets will fly you “anywhere on Earth in under an hour.”

Musk wants to use SpaceX’s megarocket, Starship, which was designed to take humans to Mars, for terrestrial passenger delivery. The Starship travels at 17,500 mph. It’s an order of magnitude faster than the supersonic jet Concorde.

Think about what this actually means: New York to Shanghai in 39 minutes. London to Dubai in 29 minutes. Hong Kong to Singapore in 22 minutes.

So how real is the Starship?

“We could probably demonstrate this [technology] in three years,” Musk explained, “but it’s going to take a while to get the safety right. It’s a high bar. Aviation is incredibly safe. You’re safer on an airplane than you are at home.”

That demonstration is proceeding as planned. In September 2017, Musk announced his intentions to retire his current rocket fleet, both the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy, and replace them with the Starships in the 2020s.

Less than a year later, LA mayor Eric Garcetti tweeted that SpaceX was planning to break ground on an 18-acre rocket production facility near the port of Los Angeles. And April of this year marked an even bigger milestone: the very first test flights of the rocket.

Thus, sometime in the next decade or so, “off to Europe for lunch” may become a standard part of our lexicon.

Avatars

Wait, wait, there’s one more thing.

While the technologies we’ve discussed will decimate the traditional transportation industry, there’s something on the horizon that will disrupt travel itself. What if, to get from A to B, you didn’t have to move your body? What if you could quote Captain Kirk and just say “Beam me up, Scotty”?

Well, shy of the Star Trek transporter, there’s the world of avatars.

An avatar is a second self, typically in one of two forms. The digital version has been around for a couple of decades. It emerged from the video game industry and was popularized by virtual world sites like Second Life and books-turned-blockbusters like Ready Player One.

A VR headset teleports your eyes and ears to another location, while a set of haptic sensors shifts your sense of touch. Suddenly, you’re inside an avatar inside a virtual world. As you move in the real world, your avatar moves in the virtual.

Use this technology to give a lecture and you can do it from the comfort of your living room, skipping the trip to the airport, the cross-country flight, and the ride to the conference center.

Robots are the second form of avatars. Imagine a humanoid robot that you can occupy at will. Maybe, in a city far from home, you’ve rented the bot by the minute—via a different kind of ridesharing company—or maybe you have spare robot avatars located around the country.

Either way, put on VR goggles and a haptic suit, and you can teleport your senses into that robot. This allows you to walk around, shake hands, and take action—all without leaving your home.

And like the rest of the tech we’ve been talking about, even this future isn’t far away.

In 2018, entrepreneur Dr. Harry Kloor recommended to All Nippon Airways (ANA), Japan’s largest airline, the design of an Avatar XPRIZE. ANA then funded this vision to the tune of $10 million to speed the development of robotic avatars. Why? Because ANA knows this is one of the technologies likely to disrupt their own airline industry, and they want to be ready.

ANA recently announced its “newme” robot that humans can use to virtually explore new places. The colorful robots have Roomba-like wheeled bases and cameras mounted around eye-level, which capture surroundings viewable through VR headsets.

If the robot was stationed in your parents’ home, you could cruise around the rooms and chat with your family at any time of day. After revealing the technology at Tokyo’s Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies in October, ANA plans to deploy 1,000 newme robots by 2020.

With virtual avatars like newme, geography, distance, and cost will no longer limit our travel choices. From attractions like the Eiffel Tower or the pyramids of Egypt to unreachable destinations like the moon or deep sea, we will be able to transcend our own physical limits, explore the world and outer space, and access nearly any experience imaginable.

Final Thoughts

Individual car ownership has enjoyed over a century of ascendancy and dominance.

The first real threat it faced—today’s ride-sharing model—only showed up in the last decade. But that ridesharing model won’t even get ten years to dominate. Already, it’s on the brink of autonomous car displacement, which is on the brink of flying car disruption, which is on the brink of Hyperloop and rockets-to-anywhere decimation. Plus, avatars.

The most important part: All of this change will happen over the next ten years. Welcome to a future of human presence where the only constant is rapid change.

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Available to join your Board as a Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

* (Pricing is shown at the bottom of this blog post)

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

* Investment:

One-to-One – Individual payment: Strategic Coaching: $295 per month (weekly for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the depth of our conversation Zoom meeting).

One-to-One – Corporate payment:
i. Coaching & Leadership Development: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
ii. One-to-One Executive Coaching and Mentoring: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iii. Increasing Top Team Performance and 1:1 Mentoring Sessions: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).
iv. Planning New Futures for Senior Executives: $600 per month engagement (weekly 1 hour Zoom meeting).

Team coaching:
i. Enhancing Boardroom Effectiveness & Executive Impact Group: Starting at $15,250 per annual engagement.
ii. Strategic & Operational Planning/KPI Development: Starting at $25,500 per annual engagement.
iii. Productivity Assessment & Profitability Improvement: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
iv. Sales Channel and Product Development: Starting at $25,250 per annual engagement.
v. Energy and Sustainability Efficiency Initiatives: Starting at $18,500 per annual engagement.

Board of Directors or Board of Advisors:

 

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth  

What’s coming in retail is astounding, a transformation of shopping on every dimension

Posted by Cliff Locks On January 13, 2021 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

What’s coming in retail is astounding, a transformation of shopping on every dimension

AI and broadband were already eating retail for breakfast. In the first half of 2019, we saw 19 retailer bankruptcies. And with the COVID-19 pandemic, the retail apocalypse is only accelerating.

S&P Global Market Intelligence has now tallied over 49 bankruptcies in 2020, the highest in over a decade.

What’s coming in this retail era is astounding, per contributor Peter Diamandis.

Shopping Transformation

For example, why drive when you can speak? Revenue from products purchased via voice commands is expected to quadruple from roughly US$2 billion today to more than US$8 billion by 2023.

VR, AR and 3D Printing are converging with AI, drones and 5G to transform shopping on every dimension. And as a result, shopping is becoming dematerialized, demonetized, democratized, and delocalized… a top-to-bottom transformation of the retail world.

In today’s blog, we’ll discuss the future of retail, including a deep-dive into AI and its far-reaching implications for the industry.

Let’s dive in…

A Day in the Life of 2029

Welcome to April 21, 2029, a sunny day in Dallas. You’ve got a fundraising luncheon tomorrow, but nothing to wear. The last thing you want to do is spend the day at the mall. No sweat. Your body image data is still current, as you were scanned only a week ago. Put on your VR headset and have a conversation with your AI. “It’s time to buy a dress for tomorrow’s event” is all you have to say. In a moment, you’re teleported to a virtual clothing store. Zero travel time. No freeway traffic, parking hassles, or angry hordes wielding baby strollers. Instead, you’ve entered your own personal clothing store. Everything is in your exact size… And I mean everything. The store has access to nearly every designer and style on the planet. Ask your AI to show you what’s hot in Shanghai, and presto—instant fashion show. Every model strutting down the runway looks exactly like you, only dressed in Shanghai’s latest. When you’re done selecting an outfit, your AI pays the bill. And as your new clothes are being 3D-printed at a warehouse—before speeding your way via drone delivery—a digital version has been added to your personal inventory for use at future virtual events. The cost? Thanks to an era of no middlemen, less than half of what you pay in stores today. Yet this future is not all that far off…

Digital Assistants

Let’s begin with the basics: the act of turning desire into purchase. Most of us navigate shopping malls or online marketplaces alone, hoping to stumble across the right item and fit. But if you’re lucky enough to employ a personal assistant, you have the luxury of describing what you want to someone who knows you well enough to buy that exact right thing most of the time. For most of us who don’t, enter the digital assistant. Right now, the four horsemen of the retail apocalypse are waging war for our wallets. Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s Assistant, Apple’s Siri, and Alibaba’s Tmall Genie are going head-to-head in a battle to become the platform du jour for voice-activated, AI-assisted commerce. For baby boomers who grew up watching Captain Kirk talk to the Enterprise’s computer on Star Trek, digital assistants seem a little like science fiction. But for millennials, it’s just the next logical step in a world that is auto-magical. And as those millennials enter their consumer prime, revenue from products purchased via voice-driven commands is projected to leap to US$8 billion by 2023. We are already seeing a major change in purchasing habits. On average, consumers using Amazon Echo spent more than standard Amazon Prime customers: US$1,700 versus US$1,300. And as far as an AI fashion advisor goes, those too are here, courtesy of both Alibaba and Amazon. During its annual Singles’ Day (November 11) shopping festival, Alibaba’s FashionAI concept store uses deep learning to make suggestions based on advice from human fashion experts and store inventory, driving a significant portion of the day’s US$75 billion in sales. Similarly, Amazon’s shopping algorithm makes personalized clothing recommendations based on user preferences and social media behavior.

Customer Service

But AI is disrupting more than just personalized fashion and e-commerce. Its next big break will take place in the customer service arena. According to a recent Zendesk study, good customer service increases the possibility of a purchase by 42%, while bad customer service translates into a 52% chance of losing that sale forever. This means more than half of us will stop shopping at a store due to a single disappointing customer service interaction. These are significant financial stakes. They’re also problems perfectly suited for an AI solution. During the 2018 Google I/O conference, CEO Sundar Pichai demoed the Google Duplex, their next generation digital assistant. Pichai played the audience a series of pre-recorded phone calls made by Google Duplex. The first call made a reservation at a restaurant, the second one booked a haircut appointment, amusing the audience with a long “hmmm” mid-call. In neither case did the person on the other end of the phone have any idea they were talking to an AI. The system’s success speaks to how seamlessly AI can blend into our retail lives and how convenient it will continue to make them. The same technology Pichai demonstrated that can make phone calls for consumers can also answer phones for retailers—a development that’s unfolding in two different ways: (1) Customer service coaches: First, for organizations interested in keeping humans involved there’s Cogito, a startup founded by MIT alumni that has built an AI customer service coach. Based on the founders’ own research at MIT, the company can analyze customer voice intonation, using it to tell whether the person on the phone is about to blow a gasket, is genuinely excited, or anything in between. The AI then delivers behavior recommendations or “nudges” to facilitate more productive interactions. Cogito has been used in more than three dozen call centers, helping human sales agents understand and react to customer emotions, ultimately making those calls more pleasant and more profitable. For example, managers at insurance giant MetLife say that the program has improved customer satisfaction by 13%. It also helped agents, who take an average of 700 calls a week, become more efficient. One employee remarked that Cogito helped her cut her average call time nearly in half. (2) Replacing customer service agents: Second, companies like New Zealand’s Soul Machines (which raised $40 million earlier this year) are working to replace human customer service agents altogether. Powered by IBM’s Watson, Soul Machines builds lifelike customer service avatars designed for empathy, making them one of many helping to pioneer the field of emotionally intelligent computing. With their technology, 40% of all customer service interactions are now resolved with a high degree of satisfaction, no human intervention needed. And because the system is built using neural nets, it’s continuously learning from every interaction—meaning that percentage will continue to improve. The number of these interactions continues to grow as well. Soul Machines’ customers include Google, Sony, the Royal Bank of Scotland, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Autodesk, and Procter & Gamble, among others. And customers continue to prefer AIs over humans. More than 81% of customers say that they would chat with the company’s avatars again. And nearly 90% say they achieved their goals through engaging with the avatars. For Daimler Financial Services, Soul Machines built an avatar named Sarah, who helps customers with arguably three of modernity’s most annoying tasks: financing, leasing, and insuring a car. This isn’t just about AI—it’s about AI converging with additional exponentials. Add networks and sensors to the story and it raises the scale of disruption, upping the FQ—the frictionless quotient—in our frictionless shopping adventure.

Final Thoughts

AI makes retail cheaper, faster, and more efficient, touching everything from customer service to product delivery. It also redefines the shopping experience, making it frictionless and—once we allow AI to make purchases for us—ultimately invisible. Prepare for a future in which shopping is dematerialized, demonetized, democratized, and delocalized—otherwise known as “the end of malls.” Of course, if you wait a few more years, you’ll be able to take an autonomous flying taxi to Westfield’s Destination 2028—so perhaps today’s converging exponentials are not so much spelling the end of malls, but rather the beginning of an experience economy far smarter, more immersive and whimsically imaginative than today’s shopping centers. Either way, it’s a top-to-bottom transformation of the retail world.

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

A New Year’s resolution to help your team to flourish

Posted by Cliff Locks On January 6, 2021 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

A New Year’s resolution to help your team to flourish

The ripple of empathetic leadership that spread across organizations last year needs to become a tidal wave in 2021.

Our mantra for the New Year—whether we lead a team of 5, 5,000 or 50,000—should be the relentless pursuit of providing opportunity, mentoring and sponsoring others. Opportunity is the gateway for each of us to discover our potential.  

Leadership is all about inspiring others to believe and enabling that belief to become reality. However, this requires a shift in mindset because, unfortunately, it’s simply not human nature for most people to focus first on developing others. Yet, indeed, that’s exactly what we need to do.

Leadership

Contributing writer: Gary Burnison, CEO Korn Ferry and Cliff Locks, Managing Director of ICG

Ken Blanchard, the leadership guru with whom I’ve had great discussions, often tells a story about his early days as a college professor. His approach was radical. On the first day of class, he gave his students the answers to the final exam. Ken often found himself in trouble with other faculty members, but he defended his decision by explaining his main job was to teach students the content they needed to learn—not to evaluate them along some distribution curve. It’s a concept Ken calls “Helping People Get an A.”

Now contrast that with an experience in my son’s class, a few years ago. On the first day, the professor proudly announced, “Nobody gets an A in my class.” In his first year College Engineering, a different professor shared, “Look to your right and then look to your left, those students will have left the Engineering program, by the Senior year.” Having high standards is one thing, but to say that no one can excel is completely demotivating!

We need a radically human approach to leadership and a set of leadership resolutions for 2021. Let’s commit to them heart, mind, and soul. Here are some thoughts:

It starts with you. Awareness awakens. Before we do anything else, we resolve to take a look in the mirror at our values, motivations, strengths, and blind spots. By knowing ourselves we can manage ourselves first, so we can positively impact others.

But it’s not about you. We’re not sculptors working alone in a studio, chipping marble or molding clay. We aren’t solo performers. We work with and through others. Quite simply, our success is measured in what others achieve.

Purpose. At some point, we need to stop trying to make sense of 2020. Instead, we need to create a sense of purpose for 2021—an overarching “why” that will take us out of the wilderness and into a new light—and a new beginning. Purpose always precedes the first step.

Empathy. Given all that people have gone through, empathy rules the day. It’s all about meeting others where they are, to understand their experience. We used to say, “How are you?”; now it’s “how are you feeling?” But that’s not all. The more empathetic we are, the more we broaden our view. We see beyond our own perspective—through the lens of others.

Empower. 2020 tripped the circuit breakers; 2021 is the big reset. Change must bubble up from within the organization, not merely cascade down—because the next two years we’ll see more change than we’ve seen in the last 10. To paint tomorrow, people throughout the organization must be empowered to think. I’ll never forget the advice I received from a board member many years ago, when I was a new CEO: “As the leader, don’t tell people what to do—instead, tell them what to think about.”

Collective genius. It’s been said that the strength of a team is each individual member—and the strength of each individual member is the team. When teams are inclusive, and differences are not just tolerated but celebrated, they become more creative and innovative—and collective genius is born. Let’s create an ethos of inclusiveness in the New Year.

Shepherd. I’ve met a number of military leaders who led during periods of conflict, and many confided in me, “I’ve never lost a soldier”—revealing a deep mindset of humility and accountability. While most of us won’t face such life-or-death scenarios, we also need to make sure we don’t lose anyone. Think shepherd: occasionally in front, sometimes beside, but mostly behind.

Own the moment. When most people think about accountability, they immediately think about how accountable others are to them. But first, we need to examine how accountable we are to ourselves—for who we are and how we act. If we want to know how we’re doing, we only need to count the number of times we say, “I’m sorry”—in all its forms, including “That’s on me,” “That was the wrong call,” and “You were right.” That’s how we truly own the moment.

Be the message. Throughout 2020, we just tried to help people get through—one day to the next—by seeing the blue sky through a tiny opening in the clouds. Now it’s time for the clouds to part—and for people to believe they can punch right through the sky. That comes from inspiration—and it’s best done with stories. As Peter Guber, the Academy Award–winning producer and co-owner of four professional sports teams, once told me, “Leadership is storytelling in a way that becomes memorable and actionable.” And the leader IS the message.

In this New Year, may we stay resolute—to our resolutions. As positive trusted leaders, we enable others to exceed their potential and, in doing so, we all will collectively rise. I wish you and your family a Happy and Healthy New Year!

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Master Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

The robots are coming! Managers should work to incorporate skills training for the vibrancy of our organization

Posted by Cliff Locks On December 30, 2020 at 10:45 am / In: Uncategorized

The robots are coming! Managers should work to incorporate skills training for the vibrancy of our organization

The robots are coming! On our sidewalks, in our skies, in our every store… Over the next decade, robots will enter the mainstream of retail. And the numbers back it up: in a mere 8 years, the global retail robotics market is projected to grow by an order of magnitude, from US$4.78 billion in 2018 to US$41.67 billion in 2026. As countless robots work behind the scenes to stock shelves, serve customers, and deliver products to our doorstep, the speed of retail will continue to increase. These changes were already underway, and the pandemic has accelerated them.

    

Reskill and Retrain

Manufacturers considering purchasing a robot should also consider investing in the training and upskilling of their existing employees. Reskilling existing workers will reduce the likelihood of redundancies and therefore improve the company’s reputation as an employer — a common problem when reducing the number of employees but increasing automation.

Deploying robots, or any automation machinery for that matter, will create a new requirement for engineers with programming and maintenance skills. As opposed to employing a new programmer, manufacturers should consider training an existing production operative to take on this role — perhaps a worker whose role the robot will replace or reduce.

Several industrial robot manufacturers and suppliers will provide free training on how to correctly program and maintain their machinery, so it is worth looking into this before investing in external courses.  

It is also important to reiterate to existing workers that deploying robots will eliminate tedious and manual tasks. By nature, humans want to create, invent and solve problems — not complete repetitive movements such as box opening, bin-picking or basic assembly processes. This is particularly prevalent for workers with engineering backgrounds.

Communicating this benefit with staff is essential. Manufacturers need to be clear that, rather than engineering humans out of a job, robots can be used to allow operators to take on more challenging opportunities. But only of course, if plant managers allow it.

Robot Delivery

On August 3rd, 2016, Domino’s Pizza introduced the Domino’s Robotic Unit, or “DRU” for short. The first home delivery pizza robot, the DRU looks like a cross between R2-D2 and an oversized microwave. LIDAR and GPS sensors help it navigate, while temperature sensors keep hot food hot and cold food cold. Now called “DOM” (which is also the name of Domino’s chatbot for placing orders), the robot has been undergoing trial runs in ten countries, including New Zealand, France, and Germany, but its August 2016 debut was critical, as it was the first time we’d seen robotic home delivery. And it won’t be the last. A dozen or so different delivery bots are fast entering the market. Starship Technologies, for instance, a startup created by Skype founders Janus Friis and Ahti Heinla, has a general-purpose home delivery robot. Right now, the system is an array of cameras and GPS sensors, but upcoming models will include microphones, speakers, and even the ability—via AI-driven natural language processing—to communicate with customers. Since 2016, Starship has already carried out 500,000 deliveries across more than 20 countries. Along similar lines, Nuro—co-founded by Jiajun Zhu, one of the engineers who helped develop Google’s self-driving car—has a miniature self-driving car of its own. Half the size of a sedan, the Nuro looks like a toaster on wheels, except with a mission. This toaster was designed to carry cargo—originally about 12 bags of groceries — which it has been doing for select Kroger stores since 2018. Two years later, the company has a new second-generation vehicle with a range of new features, including improved capacity, battery life, and safety measures. Concurrently, Nuro has partnered with large chains such as CVS Pharmacy and Walmart. As these delivery bots take to our streets, others are streaking across the sky. Back in 2016, Amazon came first, announcing Prime Air—the e-commerce giant’s promise of drone delivery in 30 minutes or less. Almost immediately, companies ranging from 7-Eleven and Walmart to Google and Alibaba jumped on the bandwagon. Fast forward to today, and the FAA has granted approvals for drone delivery to Amazon, Alphabet-owned Wing, and UPS. Prime Air Vice President David Carbon has emphasized that “this certification is an important step forward for Prime Air and indicates the FAA’s confidence… for an autonomous drone delivery service.”

In-Store Robots

While delivery bots start to spare us trips to the store, those who prefer shopping the old-fashioned way (i.e., in person) also have plenty of human-robot interaction in-store. In fact, these robotics solutions have been around for a while. In 2010, SoftBank introduced Pepper, a humanoid robot capable of understanding human emotion. Pepper’s cute: 4 feet tall, with a white plastic body, two black eyes, a dark slash of a mouth, and a base shaped like a mermaid’s tail. Across her chest is a touch screen to aid in communication. And there’s been a lot of communication. Pepper’s cuteness is intentional, as it matches its mission: help humans enjoy life as much as possible. Over 12,000 Peppers have been sold and over 2,000 companies globally have adopted Pepper as an assistant. She serves ice cream in Japan, greets eaters at a Pizza Hut in Singapore, and interacts with customers at a Palo Alto electronics store. And with the COVID-19 pandemic, Pepper has been used to prepare food, greet customers, and ease loneliness caused by social distancing. More importantly, Pepper’s got company. Walmart uses shelf-stocking robots for inventory control. Best Buy uses a robo-cashier, allowing select locations to operate 24-7. And Lowe’s Home Improvement employs the LoweBot—a giant iPad on wheels—to help customers find the items they need while tracking inventory along the way.

Warehouse Bots

Yet the biggest benefit robots provide might be in warehouse logistics. In 2012, when Amazon dished out $775 million for Kiva Systems, few could predict that just eight years later, over 200,000 Kiva robots would be deployed at the company’s fulfillment centers, helping to process hundreds of items per second. And many other retailers are following suit. Order jeans from the Gap, and soon they’ll be sorted, packed, and shipped with the help of a Kindred robot. Remember the old arcade game where you picked up teddy bears with a giant claw? That’s Kindred, only her claw picks up T-shirts, pants, and the like, placing them in designated drop-off zones that resemble tiny mailboxes (for further sorting or shipping). The big deal here is democratization. Kindred’s robot is cheap and easy to deploy, allowing smaller companies to compete with giants like Amazon.

Final Thoughts

For retailers interested in staying in business, there doesn’t appear to be much choice in the way of robotics. It’s going to become increasingly difficult for store owners to justify human workers who call in sick, show up late, and can easily get injured. Robots work 24-7. They never take a day off, never need a bathroom break, health insurance, or parental leave. Going forward, this spells a growing challenge of technological unemployment (a blog topic I will cover in the coming month). But in retail, robotics usher in tremendous benefits for companies and customers alike. And while professional re-tooling initiatives and the transition of human capital from retail logistics to a booming experience economy take hold, robotic retail interaction and last-mile delivery will fundamentally transform our relationship with commerce.

Contributor: Peter Diamandis and Clifford Locks

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Resiliency – It’s about being the light for others and letting others be the light for us.

Posted by Cliff Locks On December 23, 2020 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Resiliency – It’s about being the light for others and letting others be the light for us.

“It’s beginning to look a lot unlike Christmas and Hanukkah…”

This year, we might be tempted to change the lyrics of this nearly 70-year-old holiday classic to fit the mood of the times. But not so fast. Sure, this year the holidays do look and feel different—smaller for one, minus the parties and traveling for another. But there are certain times of the year that are steeped in tradition—this is one of those times. While we can deeply honor tradition, we must also pivot forward, with meaning that is both timeless and timelier than ever: It’s about being the light for others— and letting others be the light for us. Holiday cards were a big tradition when I was growing up. My mom would set up a couple of folding tables in the living room where she wrote and addressed more than 500 cards by hand. Not just a few lines—full-blown notes! In those days, everyone’s mailbox was full of cards. They were displayed everywhere—bookshelves, in the slats of louver doors, and taped to the woodwork around doorways. For our family, it was all about that refrigerator door where we displayed the most cherished cards. So barren all year and then suddenly—little by little—filled with life, color, pictures, the annual update letters from family and friends, and invitations to holiday gatherings. The refrigerator transformed into the light of our home during the holidays. We couldn’t walk past it without opening a card, re-reading greetings, rekindling fond memories, and feeling sparks of love and connection. When our company was smaller, I tried to continue this tradition. Starting in the middle of October, I carried around a tote bag full of cards that I wrote out to hundreds of colleagues. Whenever I had a spare moment, I wrote out a few. If ever there was a year to go old school with a box of cards, some handwritten notes, and a sheet of stamps, this is it. But it doesn’t take hundreds of cards, and there’s no need to be the Hemingway of holiday greetings. A few cards with a simple, sincere message can make all the difference in another person’s life. Unfortunately, what we all need the most—is probably what we’ll do the least. Yet, now more than ever, we need to create that refrigerator door for ourselves and others by sharing authentic expressions of our love and connection. But probably not simply on the bottom of an email. Like the one I received the other day: “Have a wonderful holiday season.” As I read it through the lens of 2020, I reflected on what that means this year. And so, I asked family, friends, and colleagues how they felt about wishing someone “happy holidays.” Not surprisingly, their answers were all over the map: I don’t know if it feels right to say that. I actually do want people to be happy. Does someone really mean it—or are they just saying it? At least ‘holidays’ is a more appropriate word than assuming everyone celebrates the same way. Maybe it’s the Midwest in me, but I really mean it this year. We bought a tree and decorated early. We are so ready for this. Are you kidding me? You can’t say that to people without knowing what’s going on in their lives. These candid replies remind me that we can’t assume anything, especially what people are feeling right now. The Emotion Curve swings to higher highs and lower lows at this time of year. We used to look forward to presents—and now we yearn for others to be present. This year, personal losses run deep. Our colleague Doug Charles, President of our Americas region, told me this week that his family will be celebrating their first holiday without Doug’s father. “For many in my family, having one less present to give makes it difficult to get excited,” Doug confided. And yet, as he told me, “It’s also the first Christmas with my granddaughter.” In my own life, I have experienced both ends of the spectrum. I remember one long-ago, eating by myself at a diner. Then, many years later, we brought our newborn son, Jack, home from the hospital at during the holiday season. Having known the bitter, we can truly savor the sweet. It’s like that lyric in a George Strait song, “There’s always lost in the found, and darkness in the I-saw-the-light.” That’s the calling card of 2020, the ups and downs of a very different holiday season. Even in the mist, we can be the light—and find illumination. Here are some thoughts:

  • Three gifts of the season. This year, when our holidays feel completely upended, we can still reap the blessings of three key gifts. The first is connectivity—authentic and heart-to-heart, even if we cannot physically be with others. If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s the importance of feeling connected to others—with gratitude. Gratitude doesn’t belong to any one culture, tradition, or philosophy—it runs through them all. Second, adaptability, which helps us look beyond what used to be normal and accept that this is normal! Third, receptivity, knowing that our hearts must be open to receive, as well as to give.
  • Looking back, wishing forward. During a town hall last week with thousands of global colleagues, I was asked two questions that prompted me to look back on 2020—and ahead to 2021. First, I was asked to pick one word that, to me, describes this year and our firm. Without hesitation I said, “Resiliency.” I’m sure that many people feel the same way. At a time when we’ve faced so many challenges, personal and professional, we have no doubt surprised ourselves with how resilient we can be. Second, I was asked to imagine it was this time, next year. What should we hope for? I paused and searched, then offered a non-CEO answer, but one that was in my heart: “I hope that we’re all happy—truly. That would be the best outcome of all.” Hope is the ultimate light in the darkness, with the deep-seated belief that tomorrow will, indeed, be better than today.
  • Old traditions, new again. The holidays used to be simpler, rooted in traditions. At some point, though, we let these things get away from us. I can remember, years ago, being at Disneyland during the holidays. While my children enjoyed the rides, I searched on my phone for last-minute deals to someplace warmer. As I look back, to be honest, I’m embarrassed. Why wasn’t it enough just to be in that moment, together as a family? This holiday season, amid spiking numbers and lockdowns, wouldn’t all of us give anything to be able to gather with our entire family to appreciate these precious, fleeting moments?

Whatever we celebrate, however we celebrate, let us remember why we celebrate. When we connect our hearts with others, we spark hope, we kindle joy, we become the light. And when we pick up a pen to write a holiday card, if we don’t know what to say, three words will do: I love you. Indeed, that should be our hallmark for 2020. Let’s be Resilient in 2021 together.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO.  

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success. As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning. Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition. The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships. As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence. What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life. I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.” By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life. As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including: • Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence. The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in. Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems. The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when: • Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes. Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”? Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome. Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Recalibrating everything from our emotions to our expectations – we are winners!

Posted by Cliff Locks On December 16, 2020 at 10:10 am / In: Uncategorized

Recalibrating everything from our emotions to our expectations – we are winners!

All of my children are hoping for something right now. For my youngest, it’s about getting into a “good” college (whatever that means). My college-age daughter’s hopes are for a good job next year. My son longs for an end to the lockdown so he can enjoy some normalcy before he is deployed. For my oldest daughter, it’s about a relationship working out. And, for the next daughter, her hopes are much more intense as she focuses all her thoughts on two dear friends—newlyweds, one of whom was severely injured in an auto accident.

Contributor: Gary Burnison, Korn Ferry CEO

We are all hoping for something, but hoping alone is not a strategy. When we’re caught up in hoping, we’re focused on the future, which means we may not accurately perceive nor fully cherish today. Every day, we reset to zero—recalibrating everything from our emotions to our expectations. Along the way, we also redefine hope. We’ve come to realize that hope is not a rescue—magically transforming our lives. Rather, hope is a recharge—an infusion of resiliency. The other day, as I walked on the beach, I watched the sunset. As the sun sank lower to the horizon, the sky changed from pink to orange to red. The light dimmed to darkness, and then it was gone. I could practically time it—like a curtain quickly closing on that waning day. How different is sunrise. We don’t perceive the exact moment of the sun rising because all we see is the growing intensity of light. Then, we have no choice but to turn our attention from the horizon to the day ahead. As we seize the day, do we want to waste our time clinging to the false hope of recreating what once was? Or do we invest our time resetting hope, grounded in what is and what will be? It is human nature to want to go back in time—to when we were young, our children were still growing up, loved ones were still with us. We tell ourselves we would make different choices—play more, enjoy more, be more present. We’d give anything to go back to those days, but none of us get that extra lap around the track, to rewind Father Time. It is this moment—right here, right now. If we want to be hopeful about tomorrow, we need to reset how we show up today. Hope requires hustle to turn possibilities into opportunities. That’s why, throughout this pandemic, our hope has not just been in the science. Nor have those scientists diligently working on vaccines and treatments relied on hope. The saving grace has been the resilience of the human spirit, even through the most difficult of times. As our colleague Felicia Cash, an administrative assistant in our Dallas office, wrote to me the other day: “What comes in this life may not be what I would choose, but…even in the midst of pain and confusion, I can find joy and peace knowing that ultimately…my world will be OK. The heart of the matter is that it’s a matter of the heart!” What truly hopeful words. Hope is not just a noun—it’s a verb. Hope is not a wish or a want—it is willpower. Hope is not a promise—it is a purpose. Hope is not merely our lifeline—it is our life raft. Here are some thoughts:

 

  • H.O.P.E. It can be a gamechanger—Harvesting Opportunities and Possibilities Every day. Every day, we have to dream about the possibilities for a different tomorrow and, at the same time, pursue opportunities that emerge from the choices we make—that is, if we’re willing to empower ourselves and others. Opportunity and potential are inextricably linked. Without opportunity, none of us know our potential. Hope means being in the opportunity business. Harvesting those opportunities is about making decisions on the things we can control. The fact is, there are those who make it happen, those who watch it happen, and those who ask, “What happened?”
  • Where there’s hope, there’s hustle. If we want to manifest hope, it takes hustle. That’s why the most important qualities I look for in new employees are hunger and hustle. Over the years, I’ve noticed that hunger starves complacency and hustle quashes pedigree every time. We commit to a say/do ratio of 1-to-1—saying what we mean and doing what we say. That’s the best way to give others hope—through trust in our words and belief in our actions. It’s not enough to talk about it—we have to be about it.
  • Hope…and second chances. It started out as a routine business meeting when Linda Hyman, our firm’s Executive Vice President, Global Human Resources, traveled to Boston in January 2019. Then, suddenly and inexplicably, Linda dropped her papers. Alarmed by what they were witnessing, our colleagues, Doug Charles and Jonathan Kuai, asked, “Linda, are you all right?” Their concern became more urgent when she replied in a slurred voice, “I’m fine.” Linda later learned that everyone rushed into action: calling 9-1-1 and getting her to one of a few hospitals that had the expertise and technology to save her life. Within an hour Linda was undergoing a new procedure known as thrombectomy to extract a 2-inch clot from her mid-cerebral artery. She had a complete recovery, but Linda was changed in different ways. As she told me this week, “I just feel like the universe conspired to give me hope—by bringing together the most magical array of people to recognize, then treat, and ultimately save me. I feel hopeful every day that I am here, doing something meaningful to honor that.

Over the centuries, humans have conquered so much—not through false hope or wishful thinking, but with science and innovation. This perspective is good for recalibrating our thinking—to remember that rockets didn’t take us to the moon; the dreamers and engineers did. The internet didn’t create a globally networked economy; it was the innovators and creators. In the same way, a vaccine in a vial won’t end the pandemic; the researchers, scientists, and everyone on the front lines will. That, indeed, is a reason to reset hope.  

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Exponential growth is happening all around us, but it can be hard to see.

Posted by Cliff Locks On December 9, 2020 at 10:12 am / In: Uncategorized

Exponential growth is happening all around us, but it can be hard to see.

Given the restrictions of our linear thinking minds, it’s difficult for us to grasp how something that starts off deceptively small can…
  • Double 10 times, resulting in 1,000x growth, and
  • Double 30 times and get you to 1,000,000,000x growth.

    Contributor: Peter Diamandis

Part of overcoming this evolutionary bias is actively working to develop an Exponential Mindset. Today, I’m going to share and explore the overwhelming “proof of exponentials.” Proof ranging from accelerating computing power and internet access, to the digitization of retail and the rapidly falling costs of sequencing the human genome. Proof that offers all of us “data-driven optimism.” Let’s dive in…

Moore’s Law Continues…

Almost all of our exponential tech trends discussed in this blog are being built on top of ever-increasing computational power. For the past ~70+ years, Moore’s Law, the exponential growth of computing power has continued non-stop. The chart below, plotted on a log-scale, demonstrates this trend.

Computers are also becoming much more efficient. Processing efficiency is measured as the number of watts needed per million instructions per second (watts per MIPS). As you can see in the below chart, processing efficiency has increased by a factor of 100,000 since 1990.

With continued advances in quantum computing, we’ll see an explosion of information-processing capability. By 2023, IBM expects to reach 1,121 qubits with their processor codenamed Condor. As you can see in the below chart, this would be a 17-fold increase from today. IBM sees 2023 as the inflection point for the commercialization of quantum technology.

One key effect of continued improvements in computation is an explosion of the total amount of information produced. Between now and 2025, we will produce 3x the amount of information and data globally.

The Internet Continues its Explosive Growth

Since 2010, the number of internet users worldwide has doubled while global internet traffic has grown twelvefold. At the same time, rapid improvements in energy efficiency have helped to limit energy demand growth from data centers and data transmission networks, which combined accounted for just 1% of global electricity use in 2019.

Today, nearly 60% of the world’s population has access to the internet. We passed the 50% milestone in 2018 and this trend is only accelerating. As I’ve written previously, with such progress, internet access may soon become a universal human right.

Another way to appreciate just how much and how quickly the internet has grown is to look at the number of internet searches conducted. For example, as you can see in the below chart the number of Google searches alone has increased by 2,000x during the last 20 years.

One factor that has made such a dramatic increase in internet searches possible is the increasing speed of an end user’s connection, which is measured in megabits per second (Mbps). As you can see below, end user connection speed has jumped 10x in the last decade alone.

Mobile Devices, Smartphones & 5G Growing Rapidly

After an extended period of exponential growth, the number of mobile subscriptions globally is greater than the number of all people on Earth. Given the total number of mobile subscriptions in the world, as of 2019 global mobile penetration was 108%.

In the US, the share of Americans who own a smartphone is 81%. According to the Pew Research Center, this is a 50% increase from when the organization first started collecting this data in 2011.

The advancement of 5G networks and technology will both accelerate and enhance mobile and smartphone adoption. Ericsson projects that there will be 80 million 5G mobile subscriptions by the end of 2020. That number will then balloon to 2.8 billion in 2025.

We’ll also see an explosion of all sorts of connected devices. Cisco estimates that by 2022 (just a few years away), we’ll have over 1 billion total connected wearable devices in the world.

Some of the most dramatic growth in devices and hardware will come from VR & AR headsets. Research firm IDC estimates that between now and 2024 we will see a 10x growth in global VR & AR headset shipments worldwide.

Dramatic Growth in Battery Technology We’ll need a significant increase in battery storage to power all of these devices. According to McKinsey, by 2024 we will see a 17x increase in battery demand.

Growth of Digital Memory Storage

DRAM (dynamic random-access memory) is a type of memory chip used in most desktop and laptop computers. Demand for DRAM chips has been increasing for years, and over the next three years we’ll see at least an additional 100 billion 1 GB equivalent modules shipped globally.

Electric Vehicles (EVs) and Solar Energy With rapid growth in electric car sales over the past decade, electric cars now make up about 1% of the global car fleet.

Solar generation is one of humanity’s major renewable energy sources. We saw massive growth of solar during the last decade, increasing by a factor of twenty from 2010 to 2019.

The Digitization of Retail

Global retail e-commerce sales more than doubled from $1.5 trillion in 2015 to $3.5 trillion in 2019. That trend will only continue. By 2023, global e-commerce sales are projected to be almost $7 trillion.

Growth of Industrial Robots

The market for industrial robots has been growing at record rates of 19% per year since 2013, and is expected to continue double-digit growth at least through 2021.

3D Printing Adoption

In 2018, the global additive manufacturing market grew to over $10.4 billion, crossing the pivotal double-digit billion threshold for the first time in its decades-long history.

Exponential Growth in Biotech The below chart shows the progress we have made in reducing the cost of sequencing the human genome. In 2008, that progress began to exceed Moore’s Law. This rapid growth continues and direct-to-consumer genome sequencing is now widely available.

NIH funding for CRISPR-related research grew from $5 million in 2011 to $1.1 billion in 2018. During that time, the number of CRISPR-related scientific publications increased by a factor of 45x.

 

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success. As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning. Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition. The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships. As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence. What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life. I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.” By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life. As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including: • Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence. The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in. Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems. The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when: • Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes. Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”? Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome. Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Privacy in the Age of Facial Recognition: Everything You Need to Know

Posted by Cliff Locks On November 25, 2020 at 10:08 am / In: Uncategorized

Privacy in the Age of Facial Recognition: Everything You Need to Know

Privacy in the Age of Facial Recognition: Everything You Need to Know

Facial recognition is a biometric technology primarily used to identify an individual or verify their identity using their face. Facial recognition software can capture, analyse, and compare patterns based on a person’s facial features. The use of the AI-powered technology is expected to become more commonplace in the new decade. Today, facial recognition is considered the most natural of all biometric technologies.

Facial Recognition

Facial recognition has been increasingly gaining popularity in the last few years. The technology is used everywhere from shopping malls, airports, venues, and is now heavily relied upon in a broad range of commercial applications. In 2019, the facial recognition market was valued at $5.07 billion. This figure is projected to rise to $10.07 billion by 2025. Keep reading to learn more about facial recognition tech including recent trends, benefits, and controversies surrounding this technology.  

Recent Facial Recognition Trends The benefits of facial recognition technology are expanding into new end-user applications rapidly. For instance, the technology is gaining a lot of traction in the hospitality sector and the healthcare industry. The application of facial recognition technology is also extending to retail and banking, which is made possible by tech giants such as Apple offering facial recognition features in their latest releases. Here are some of the most recent facial recognition trends.  

Healthcare in the Covid-19 Era Facial recognition software is becoming prominent in the healthcare sector. In the last few years, we’ve seen an increase in the use of facial recognition tech in hospitals, clinics, and healthcare organizations. The technology can replace devices or passwords to allow medical professionals quick access to records. In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, health experts are deploying facial recognition technologies in digital healthcare and disease outbreak prevention. For instance, the technology can be used to identify people with protective masks.  

Security The success and popularity of facial recognition technology is largely attributed to its potential in security. The primary role of facial recognition technology is to identify human faces. Law enforcement agencies in various parts of the world are using the tech to identify and track criminals and terrorists. Airlines are increasingly implementing face authentication technologies in airports to improve security. Passengers will be able to use face detection tech to check-in, check their luggage, and board a plane.  

Digital Banking and Ecommerce Identity and authentication have always been a challenge in the world of digital services. Trusting someone who is not physically present can be risky. There is a need for a fool proof security method to replace email, passwords, and other verification methods that are susceptible to hacking. Facial recognition could be the much-needed solution, and many digital banking and eCommerce platforms are turning to the technology to mitigate digital fraud. Using facial recognition in online transactions is quickly becoming commonplace.  

Benefits of Facial Recognition Technology Facial recognition is a very powerful technology. The AI-based technology is becoming more popular every year. Here are some of the benefits that facial recognition technology affords governments, companies, and individuals.

  Digital Facial Recognition

Enhanced Security As stated earlier in the article, facial recognition technology can be used to improve security. Individuals can use facial recognition technology to unlock their mobile devices and set up a home security system. Security agencies can use the technology to identify terrorists and any other criminals just by scanning faces. Law enforcement groups can easily identify and track down thieves, burglars, and other criminals using face recognition technology.  

Faster Identification/Authentication Facial recognition technology has greatly improved the process of identifying individuals in different settings. For instance, companies had to use actual people to make sure that only employees and authorized individuals access their premises. With facial recognition tech, you don’t need a guard to perform manual identification at the entrance. Companies only need to set up a face-scanning system at the gate, which is faster and more accurate.  

Disadvantages of Facial Recognition Technology Like any other technology, facial recognition presents some drawbacks. Here are some of the concerns raised with respect to the widespread adoption and integration of facial recognition technology.  

Privacy Privacy is a major concern when it comes to facial recognition technology. Government agencies and law enforcement groups can use facial recognition technology to identify and track anybody, any time using Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) systems. People have expressed concerns about the potential of facial recognition technology in mass surveillance. Suddenly, we feel like we are being watched, and these fears aren’t unwarranted. The government can use facial recognition technology to track down people without consent in the same way it tracks criminals and terrorists.  

Bias and Inaccuracy Facial recognition systems can be way off when it comes to identifying individuals, especially in situations where they have to identify in low light or use poor quality videos and images. These systems are often inaccurate, often misidentifying people, especially persons of colour and are generally unreliable. This creates the problem of racial bias. With the use of the technology quickly becoming commonplace in law enforcement, errors can cause a lot of damage in society. Misidentification can easily implicate innocent people and leave the real criminals to roam free.  

How to Protect Yourself Against Facial Recognition Technology Facial recognition technology has a lot of potential. It can enhance security, streamline identification and authentication, but it also comes with some drawbacks. Privacy in public spaces is the biggest concern when it comes to the use of facial recognition technology by government agencies and law enforcement. Out in public, you can protect yourself from this intrusive technology wearing a face mask or anti-facial recognition glasses. You also need to protect yourself online on social media by turning off Facebook’s face detection feature, for instance.   Government agencies are also known for spying on individuals on the internet, and there are ways to defend against that. You can secure your traffic with a VPN to protect yourself from other forms of online spying by the government and other malicious actors. A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a service designed to help you establish a secure internet connection and maintain internet privacy. VPN hides your IP address and encrypts your internet traffic, allowing you to maintain complete anonymity on the world wide web.    

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks

OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Exponential technological advancements let’s get educated on the 20 “Metatrends” you can harness for your life and business

Posted by Cliff Locks On November 18, 2020 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

Exponential technological advancements let’s get educated on the 20 “Metatrends” you can harness for your life and business

Over the next decade, waves of exponential technological advancements are stacking atop one another, eclipsing decades of breakthroughs in scale and impact.

Welcome to a new era of runaway technological booms, and extraordinary abundance. Emerging from these waves are 20 “Metatrends,” likely to revolutionize entire industries (old and new), redefine tomorrow’s generation of businesses and contemporary challenges, and transform our livelihoods from the bottom up.

These Metatrends include augmented human longevity, the surging smart economy, AI-human collaboration, urbanized cellular agriculture, and high-bandwidth brain-computer interfaces… just to name a few.

20 Metatrends for the 2020s, per one of my mentors Peter Diamandis:

(1) Continued increase in global abundance: The number of individuals in extreme poverty continues to drop, as the middle-income population continues to rise. This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of high-bandwidth and low-cost communication, ubiquitous AI on the cloud, growing access to AI-aided education and AI-driven healthcare. Everyday goods and services (finance, insurance, education and entertainment) are being digitized and becoming fully demonetized, available to the rising billion on mobile devices.

(2) Global gigabit connectivity will connect everyone and everything, everywhere, at ultra-low cost: The deployment of both licensed and unlicensed 5G, plus the launch of a multitude of global satellite networks (OneWeb, Starlink, etc.), allow for ubiquitous, low-cost communications for everyone, everywhere–– not to mention the connection of trillions of devices. And today’s skyrocketing connectivity is bringing online an additional 3 billion individuals, driving tens of trillions of dollars into the global economy. This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of: low-cost space launches, hardware advancements, 5G networks, artificial intelligence, materials science, and surging computing power.

(3) The average human healthspan will increase by 10+ years: A dozen game-changing biotech and pharmaceutical solutions (currently in Phase 1, 2, or 3 clinical trials) will reach consumers this decade, adding an additional decade to the human healthspan. Technologies include stem cell supply restoration, wnt pathway manipulation, Senolytic Medicines, a new generation of Endo-Vaccines, GDF-11, supplementation of NMD/NAD+, among several others. And as machine learning continues to mature, AI is set to unleash countless new drug candidates, ready for clinical trials. This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of: genome sequencing, CRISPR technologies, AI, quantum computing, and cellular medicine.

(4) An age of capital abundance will see increasing access to capital everywhere: Over the past few years, humanity hit all-time highs in the global flow of seed capital, venture capital and sovereign wealth fund investments. While this trend will witness some ups and downs in the wake of future recessions, it is expected to continue its overall upward trajectory. Capital abundance leads to the funding and testing of ‘crazy’ entrepreneurial ideas, which in turn accelerate innovation. Already, $300 billion in crowdfunding is anticipated by 2025, democratizing capital access for entrepreneurs worldwide. This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of: global connectivity, dematerialization, demonetization, and democratization.

(5) Augmented Reality and the Spatial Web will achieve ubiquitous deployment: The combination of Augmented Reality (yielding Web 3.0, or the Spatial Web) and 5G networks (offering 100Mb/s – 10Gb/s connection speeds) will transform how we live our everyday lives, impacting every industry from retail and advertising, to education and entertainment. Consumers will play, learn and shop throughout the day in a newly intelligent, virtually overlaid world. This Metatrend will be driven by the convergence of: hardware advancements, 5G networks, artificial intelligence, materials science, and surging computing power.

(6) Everything is smart, embedded with intelligence: The price of specialized machine learning chips is dropping rapidly with a rise in global demand. Combined with the explosion of low-cost microscopic sensors and the deployment of high-bandwidth networks, we’re heading into a decade wherein every device becomes intelligent. Your child’s toy remembers her face and name. Your kids’ drone safely and diligently follows and videos all the children at the birthday party. Appliances respond to voice commands and anticipate your needs.

(7) AI will achieve human-level intelligence: As predicted by technologist and futurist Ray Kurzweil, artificial intelligence will reach human-level performance this decade (by 2030). Through the 2020s, AI algorithms and machine learning tools will be increasingly made open source, available on the cloud, allowing any individual with an internet connection to supplement their cognitive ability, augment their problem-solving capacity, and build new ventures at a fraction of the current cost. This Metatrend will be driven by the convergence of: global high-bandwidth connectivity, neural networks, and cloud computing. Every industry, spanning industrial design, healthcare, education, and entertainment, will be impacted.

(8) AI-Human Collaboration will skyrocket across all professions: The rise of “AI as a Service” (AIaaS) platforms will enable humans to partner with AI in every aspect of their work, at every level, in every industry. AIs will become entrenched in everyday business operations, serving as cognitive collaborators to employees — supporting creative tasks, generating new ideas, and tackling previously unattainable innovations. In some fields, partnership with AI will even become a requirement. For example: in the future, making certain diagnoses without the consultation of AI may be deemed malpractice.

(9) Most individuals adapt a JARVIS-like “software shell” to improve their quality of life: As services like Alexa, Google Home and Apple Homepod expand in functionality, such services will eventually travel beyond the home and become your cognitive prosthetic 24/7. Imagine a secure JARVIS-like software shell that you give permission to listen to all your conversations, read your email, monitor your blood chemistry, etc. With access to such data, these AI-enabled software shells will learn your preferences, anticipate your needs and behavior, shop for you, monitor your health, and help you problem-solve in support of your mid- and long-term goals.

(10) Globally abundant, cheap renewable energy: Continued advancements in solar, wind, geothermal, hydroelectric, nuclear and localized grids will drive humanity towards cheap, abundant, and ubiquitous renewable energy. The price per kilowatt-hour will drop below 1 cent per kilowatt-hour for renewables, just as storage drops below a mere 3 cents per kilowatt-hour, resulting in the majority displacement of fossil fuels globally. And as the world’s poorest countries are also the world’s sunniest, the democratization of both new and traditional storage technologies will grant energy abundance to those already bathed in sunlight.

(11) The insurance industry transforms from “recovery after risk” to “prevention of risk:” Today, fire insurance pays you after your house burns down; life insurance pays your next-of-kin after you die; and health insurance (which is really sick insurance) pays only after you get sick. This next decade, a new generation of insurance providers will leverage the convergence of machine learning, ubiquitous sensors, low-cost genome sequencing and robotics to detect risk, prevent disaster, and guarantee safety before any costs are incurred.

(12) Autonomous vehicles and flying cars will redefine human travel (soon to be far faster and cheaper): Fully autonomous vehicles, car-as-a-service fleets, and aerial ride-sharing (flying cars) will be fully operational in most major metropolitan cities in the coming decade. The cost of transportation will plummet 3-4X, transforming real estate, finance, insurance, the materials economy, and urban planning. Where you live and work, and how you spend your time, will all be fundamentally reshaped by this future of human travel. Your kids and elderly parents will never drive. This Metatrend will be driven by the convergence of: machine learning, sensors, materials science, battery storage improvements, and ubiquitous gigabit connections.

(13) On-demand production and on-demand delivery will birth an “instant economy of things:” Urban dwellers will learn to expect “instant fulfillment” of their retail orders as drone and robotic last-mile delivery services carry products from local supply depots directly to your doorstep. Further riding the deployment of regional on-demand digital manufacturing (3D printing farms), individualized products can be obtained within hours, anywhere, anytime. This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of: networks, 3D printing, robotics, and artificial intelligence.

(14) Ability to sense and know anything, anytime, anywhere: We’re rapidly approaching the era wherein 100 billion sensors (the Internet of Everything) is monitoring and sensing (imaging, listening, measuring) every facet of our environments, all the time. Global imaging satellites, drones, autonomous car LIDARs, and forward-looking augmented reality (AR) headset cameras are all part of a global sensor matrix, together allowing us to know anything, anytime, anywhere. This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of: terrestrial, atmospheric and space-based sensors, vast data networks, and machine learning. In this future, it’s not “what you know,” but rather “the quality of the questions you ask” that will be most important.

(15) Disruption of advertising: As AI becomes increasingly embedded in everyday life, your custom AI will soon understand what you want better than you do. In turn, we will begin to both trust and rely upon our AIs to make most of our buying decisions, turning over shopping to AI-enabled personal assistants. Your AI might make purchases based upon your past desires, current shortages, conversations you’ve allowed your AI to listen to, or by tracking where your pupils focus on a virtual interface (i.e. what catches your attention). As a result, the advertising industry—which normally competes for your attention (whether at the Superbowl or through search engines)—will have a hard time influencing your AI. This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of: machine learning, sensors, augmented reality, and 5G/networks.

(16) Cellular agriculture moves from the lab into inner cities, providing high-quality protein that is cheaper and healthier: This next decade will witness the birth of the most ethical, nutritious, and environmentally sustainable protein production system devised by humankind. Stem cell-based ‘cellular agriculture’ will allow the production of beef, chicken and fish anywhere, on-demand, with far higher nutritional content, and a vastly lower environmental footprint than traditional livestock options. This Metatrend is enabled by the convergence of: biotechnology, materials science, machine learning, and AgTech.

(17) High-bandwidth Brain-Computer Interfaces (BCI) will come online for public use: Technologist and futurist Ray Kurzweil has predicted that in the mid-2030s, we will begin connecting the human neocortex to the cloud. This next decade will see tremendous progress in that direction, first serving those with spinal cord injuries, whereby patients will regain both sensory capacity and motor control. Yet beyond assisting those with motor function loss, several BCI pioneers are now attempting to supplement their baseline cognitive abilities, a pursuit with the potential to increase their sensorium, memory and even intelligence. This Metatrend is fueled by the convergence of: materials science, machine learning, and robotics.

(18) High-resolution VR will transform both retail and real estate shopping: High-resolution, lightweight virtual reality headsets will allow individuals at home to shop for everything from clothing to real estate from the convenience of their living room. Need a new outfit? Your AI knows your detailed body measurements and can whip up a fashion show featuring your avatar wearing the latest 20 designs on a runway. Want to see how your furniture might look inside a house you’re viewing online? No problem! Your AI can populate the property with your virtualized inventory and give you a guided tour. This Metatrend is enabled by the convergence of: VR, machine learning, and high-bandwidth networks.

(19) Increased focus on sustainability and the environment: An increase in global environmental awareness and concern over global warming will drive companies to invest in sustainability, both from a necessity standpoint and for marketing purposes. Breakthroughs in materials science, enabled by AI, will allow companies to drive tremendous reductions in waste and environmental contamination. One company’s waste will become another company’s profit center. This Metatrend is enabled by the convergence of: materials science, artificial intelligence, and broadband networks.

(20) CRISPR and gene therapies will minimize disease: A vast range of infectious diseases, ranging from AIDS to Ebola, are now curable. In addition, gene-editing technologies continue to advance in precision and ease of use, allowing families to treat and ultimately cure hundreds of inheritable genetic diseases. This Metatrend is driven by the convergence of: various biotechnologies (CRISPR, Gene Therapy), genome sequencing, and artificial intelligence.

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Magic happens whenever there are engagement and genuine connection; let’s expanded on this winning strategy.

Posted by Cliff Locks On November 11, 2020 at 10:10 am / In: Uncategorized

Magic happens whenever there are engagement and genuine connection; let’s expanded on this winning strategy.

Another year has passed me by… And I’m still in the dark ‘Cause I can’t seem to find the light alone – “Man in the Wilderness,” by Styx

We’re at the 11th hour of the 11th month of a year like no other. From time to time, the sentiment for all of us has been, “What else could 2020 possibly bring?” During those times, we are like that person in the wilderness—wandering along, never quite knowing why—trying to make sense of it all.

Yesterday, my wife, and I took a long walk on a local beach, stepping away to find meaning amid today’s unsettled waters. Never would we have suspected that the perspective we sought was right around the next cove—where we came upon a young couple standing at the shore. At their feet, etched in sand, were the couple’s names and “4ever Together,” surrounded by a heart. The woman held up her left hand so that her ring caught the sun’s rays just at the right angle and sparkled, as she snapped selfies.

They were newly engaged, as it turned out. Watching them, we were transported to a different time when we had our whole future ahead of us and everything seemed possible—even though we had no idea what that could be. Leslie turned to me and said, “See that sparkle between them? I know they’re going to make it.”

That’s the magic that happens whenever there is engagement and genuine connection. It’s the light that can’t be extinguished no matter what life throws at us.

For all of us, coming together is ultimately all about transforming finite self-interest into infinite shared interest. How does this happen? First and foremost, through purpose and then much more. Most people want to be connected to something bigger than themselves. They want to be loved; they want to know that what they do matters to someone else. They want to grow; they want to be recognized. They want to be seen and heard—and, yes, they want to belong.

Whether personally or professionally, we all search for the same basic things: purpose, love, and happiness. Here are some thoughts: 

  • Catching people doing things right. We have a choice: critique or construct; divide or unite. I received a call this week from someone who was being reprimanded because, ironically, he was not handing out enough reprimands to others. It was quite simple for him. As he told me, “It’s 2020. This is not the time to dampen spirits. It’s the time to enlighten, to elevate, to inspire.” It’s like what management guru Ken Blanchard has said: we need to catch people doing something right.
  • Finding our why. For some of us, in different ways and at different times, we need to stop trying to make sense of 2020. Instead, we need to have a sense of purpose for 2021—an overarching “why.” Purpose brings us out of the wilderness and into a new light, a new beginning. But it does take some effort. The late John McKissick, America’s winningest football coach, shared with us the wise words of his father: “As my daddy used to say, ‘Son, if you don’t put something in the bucket, how are you going to get anything out of it?’” With a sense of purpose, we need to ask ourselves: What are we willing to put in the bucket today to help ourselves and others?
  • Showing love… I can still remember that phone call. It was about three years ago, while my family and I were living in London for a few months. I had just flown to Ireland to visit our team there, and I was in a cab. The person calling me out of the blue was Richard Ferry, one of the two pioneering founders of our firm; we had not spoken in some time. I can’t even recall exactly what he told me, but I remember vividly the love in his voice as Richard expressed his pride for how far our firm had come. It wasn’t about him; it wasn’t about me—it was all about our 10,000 colleagues around the world. Even today, the memory of that call lifts me up. All of us want to belong—we all want to be loved. It’s a timeless truth that resonates more deeply in challenging times. When we tell people, “We couldn’t have done it without you,” what we’re really saying is, “You are loved.”
  • …And pursuing happiness. It is the ultimate pursuit. In the United States, it is our inalienable right, as the Declaration of Independence promises us. And so, we chase after what we believe will make us happy, usually things like money, possessions, leisure time, adventure, even a job title. We tell ourselves that when we get this, can afford that, arrive there, we will be happy. Yet, it often doesn’t turn out that way. This year, we know all too well that everything we cherish can be gone, in seconds. A colleague recently shared a heartbreaking story about a child’s drug addiction—“losing a child who is still alive”—and then, after much worry and sadness, the almost indescribable joy of that child’s return. Can anything else compare?

After all, happiness is not given to us; it is recognized by us. It’s not about chasing tomorrow’s promise, but rather comes from savoring today.

Contributing writer: Gary Burnison, CEO, Korn Ferry

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting • Operations, planning, and execution • Career transition • Retirement • Legacy • Kids and money • Marriage and divorce • Health concerns • Values and life purpose • Vacations • Mentoring & depth of the executive bench • Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth. • Wanting more meaning and purpose in life. • Desiring a candid and experienced perspective. • The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily. • Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks  

OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

You Move, What Should Be The Impact on Pay?

Posted by Cliff Locks On October 28, 2020 at 10:07 am / In: Uncategorized

You Move, What Should Be The Impact on Pay?

Remote workers fleeing to cheaper towns may see their pay cut. Why firms think this is necessary.

Silicon Valley made Julia feel claustrophobic, and she didn’t like living far away from her elderly parents. So after moving back home to Austin because of the pandemic, she decided to stay there. Her company was fine with the decision, provided she would agree to a 15% salary reduction.

Julia is fictional, but the circumstance is becoming all too real for workers at a handful of large tech firms. In yet another new pandemic reality, organizations trying to set level salaries for a geographically dispersed workforce are taking back pay from workers who elect to permanently work remotely away from office locations. Naturally, the reductions aren’t winning any fans.

For their part, these companies argue that they are already paying cost-of-living premiums to staffers in expensive locations. That premium shouldn’t apply to those who move away, they say. “But this isn’t as straightforward as it appears,” says Don Lowman, a Korn Ferry senior client partner and global leader of the firm’s Rewards and Benefits practice. Most companies don’t mention this premium when hiring talent, he says, so adjusting pay now will seem like a “significant takeaway.”

There are other factors, as well. Experts say the idea of putting people first by not forcing them to come back to the office is undermined by cutting the pay of those who elect not to. The end result could be a morale buster that leads to lost productivity and higher turnover, says Tom McMullen, a Korn Ferry senior client partner and a leader of the firm’s Total Rewards practice. “In an increasingly competitive environment, these kinds of changes may prompt talent to look elsewhere, particularly since geography may no longer be a constraint,” he says.

To be sure, Jamen Graves, a Korn Ferry senior partner who specializes in leadership and talent consulting for tech firms, says it’s important for both organizations and talent to look at potential salary changes as a result of relocation through the context of job performance. “While newly hired candidates will generally accept wages that are adjusted for location, those already employed will not respond well to lower wages as a result of moving,” Graves says. He adds that the pandemic has proven employees’ claims that where and when they work doesn’t impact their ability to get the job done.

Experts say there are other ways to balance pay with a change in location that don’t involve reducing salaries. At least one company, for instance, is offering a relocation stipend to employees who move to lower-cost areas to offset pay cuts imposed by the move. Another option is to decrease salaries only for those employees who exceed the maximum range for the role. McMullen says companies can also employ a two-tiered system, with non-location-based differences used for employees hired pre-COVID and location-based wage scales for those hired post-COVID.

Even more simply, “organizations can freeze pay at the current level for two to three years until the cost-of-living difference is eliminated,” Lowman says.

Contributing Authors: Don Lowman, Global Leader, Rewards & Benefits, Tom McMullen Senior Client Partner, and James Graves, Senior Partner

Contributing Authors: Gary Burnison is CEO of Korn Ferry

OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting
• Operations, planning, and execution
• Career transition
• Retirement
• Legacy
• Kids and money
• Marriage and divorce
• Health concerns
• Values and life purpose
• Vacations
• Mentoring & depth of the executive bench
• Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth.
• Wanting more meaning and purpose in life.
• Desiring a candid and experienced perspective.
• The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily.
• Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks

Learn about Exponential Medicine that is available today

Posted by Cliff Locks On October 15, 2020 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Learn about Exponential Medicine that is available today

There is a medical revolution happening right now.

Where is quantified health heading? A growing array of technology sensors are becoming available: 

Wearables:  Our wrist-based devices can now go well beyond steps, some fit on our fingers (‘Ringables’ like the Oura ring)  to measure heart rate and heart rate variability, now an EKG on Apple Watches… to this August,  the first FDA cleared cuffless Blood Pressure device.

Inside’Ables:  Beyond the wrist we can now fit health related sensors into contact lenses.

While RFID chips beneath the skin (as Peter Diamandis has done) have been used to store data , unlock doors, we how have on the market Profusa Lumee, a subcutaneous chip that can sense various body chemistries.

Breathables:  Quantifying the molecules in your breath can be useful when going on a date,  but are now being utilized as a means to detect disease.  Just as dogs noses have been trained to sniff out cancer, nano-nose technology is in clinical trials to detect via ‘breath biopsy’ the molecular content and patterns that can indicate early detection of lung and other cancers as well as variety of metabolic diseases.   As ketogenic diets, breathables can also quantify ketones in the breath to help individuals get and stay in target metabolic states.

Underwearables:  As sensors have become more capable, less expensive, with a pack of  Spire Health Tag you can now purchase sensors for each pair of your underwear, that measure respiratory rate, activity, heartrate and sleep.   Spire, like many other quantified health sensor companies, began as a consumer and wellness focused, measuring breath, stress and helping optimize mindfulness sessions.  Now that reimbursement is becoming available for ‘remote patient monitoring’.

Trainables: It is  one thing to measure and even understand data about behavior and activity…  feedback can help provide nudges.  The Upright sensor worn on the back, measures posture, and if persistent slouching is detected ,buzzes, like a ‘digital mother’ reminding the wearer to ‘sit up straight’… several days of hour long upright sessions reportedly improved posture, and symptoms in many with lower back pain.

Invisibles: Ditch the wearable, requiring synching and charging… we are entering a time where our digital health exhaust can be measured by the ubiquitous sensors.  Cameras can now pick up heart and respiratory rate (Cocoon Health has a baby monitor on the market), and also behaviors (Kepler)…  WiFi has been modified by MIT engineers to detect the vital signs, movement and even the sleep patterns of several people in the same room. Voice can serve as a biomarker for health and disease (From detecting mental health changes, to neurologic issues and even heart disease). 

Making Sense of All the Data: As millions wear devices and billions of data points are collected daily we can start to understand the real world digital measures of health, and disease.  FitBit has demonstrated.  With crowd-sourced studies like Verily’s Project-Baseline, individuals can gain insights from their sleep patterns (and how it compares to others of their age and sex), to potentially new digital biomarkers indicating impeding medical issues. While privacy and data ownership issues are significant challenges, the sharing, crowd-sourced insights can improve healthcare, lower costs and democratize access to improved healthcare across the planet.

OptimizeLife #CEO #CFO #COO #BoD #CXO #Professionalpedia #TeamBuilder #success #beyourself #goals #lifeisgood #Influencer #Successful #Business #WorkLife #OfficeLife #Work #Office #Inspiration #Marketing #Tips #Leadership #BusinessIntelligence #InvestmentCapitalGrowth

Cliff Locks is a trusted confidant to CEOs, C-Level Exec, and high-potential employees to help them clarify goals, unlock their potential, and create actionable strategic plans.

Certified Professional Board of Director and Advisor.

I am a trusted confidant and advisor available by Zoom and by phone to be your right-hand man, who will make a significant contribution and impact on your way to success.

As a Trusted Confidant Advisor, I support you, along with your company’s strategic and annual operating plan. This plan may include marketing, sales, product development, supply chain, hiring policies, compensation, benefits, performance management, and succession planning.

Most successful leaders enjoy talking to someone about their experiences, which is why most develop a close relationship with a Trusted Confidant—a person with whom they feel free to share their thoughts, concerns, and ideas without fear of sharing too much or being judged by the people they lead, or their colleagues and superiors. I am a sounding board who will help you to better develop and see your ideas through to fruition.

The most effective Executive find confidants who complement their strengths and sharpen their effectiveness. Bill Gates uses Steve Ballmer in this way; Warren Buffett turns to vice chairman Charlie Munger. In the end, both the Executive and their organizations benefit from these relationships.

As your trusted confidant, I am always by your side, holding your deepest secrets and never judging. Everything discussed is held in complete confidence.

What many executives feel is missing from their busy life is a trusted business person who understands the holistic complexity of both their business and personal life.

I strive to provide solid financial, business, and family expertise and serve as a dispassionate sounding board, a role I like to call “Executive Confidant.”

By holding a safe place for the Executive to work on life path issues as well as direction, I repeatedly see remarkable benefits as personal values become integrated with wealth and family decisions, enhancing a more meaningful life.

As an Executive Confidant, I welcome a confidential conversation about the most important issues facing the business leader, including:

• Strategic planning toward your visions of success and goal setting
• Operations, planning, and execution
• Career transition
• Retirement
• Legacy
• Kids and money
• Marriage and divorce
• Health concerns
• Values and life purpose
• Vacations
• Mentoring & depth of the executive bench
• Succession planning

When I do my job well, I facilitate positive action in both your professional and personal life. This consistently has a positive benefit on impacting people within the sphere of your influence.

The job of an Executive can be lonely. For various reasons, confiding in colleagues, company associates, family members, or friends presents complications. Powerful, successful, and wealthy individuals often isolate themselves as a protective reaction because of their inability to find people they can trust and confide in.

Successful people are often surrounded by many people, yet they insulate and isolate themselves to varying levels of degree. This isolation factor is not often discussed in the same context because the assumption is that success and wealth only solve problems. The false belief is that it does not create more problems, when, in fact, sometimes it creates a unique set of new challenges. Success and wealth do not insulate you from the same pitfalls that the everyday person faces. It may give you access to better solutions perhaps, and that is what I can help you achieve. Financial business success can create unique vulnerabilities, often overlooked as most people feel that the “problems” of the wealthy are not real-life problems.

The Executive Confidant can be particularly helpful when:

• Aligning life priorities with the responsibilities of wealth.
• Wanting more meaning and purpose in life.
• Desiring a candid and experienced perspective.
• The answers often come from within, and we cannot arrive at them easily.
• Clarity often comes into focus, with skilled questions and guided discovery. The right questions can be the first step in achieving ideal outcomes.

Who can you turn to when you need to find clarity? Who is your “Executive Confidant”?

Referrals to a team members or family members are always welcome.

Email me: Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com or Schedule a call: Cliff Locks

Machine Learning Confronts the Elephant in the Room – A visual prank exposes an Achilles’ heel of computer vision systems: Unlike humans, they can’t do a double take.

Posted by Cliff Locks On October 31, 2018 at 10:06 am / In: Uncategorized

Machine Learning Confronts the Elephant in the Room – A visual prank exposes an Achilles’ heel of computer vision systems: Unlike humans, they can’t do a double take.

Score one for the human brain. In a new study, computer scientists found that artificial intelligence systems fail a vision test a child could accomplish with ease.

“It’s a clever and important study that reminds us that ‘deep learning’ isn’t really that deep,” said Gary Marcus, a neuroscientist at New York University who was not affiliated with the work.

The result takes place in the field of computer vision, where artificial intelligence systems attempt to detect and categorize objects. They might try to find all the pedestrians in a street scene, or just distinguish a bird from a bicycle (which is a notoriously difficult task). The stakes are high: As computers take over critical tasks like automated surveillance and autonomous driving, we’ll want their visual processing to be at least as good as the human eyes they’re replacing.

It won’t be easy. The new work accentuates the sophistication of human vision — and the challenge of building systems that mimic it. In the study, the researchers presented a computer vision system with a living room scene. The system processed it well. It correctly identified a chair, a person, books on a shelf. Then the researchers introduced an anomalous object into the scene — an image of an elephant. The elephant’s mere presence caused the system to forget itself: Suddenly it started calling a chair a couch and the elephant a chair, while turning completely blind to other objects it had previously seen.

“There are all sorts of weird things happening that show how brittle current object detection systems are,” said Amir Rosenfeld, a researcher at York University in Toronto and co-author of the study along with his York colleague John Tsotsos and Richard Zemel of the University of Toronto.

Researchers are still trying to understand exactly why computer vision systems get tripped up so easily, but they have a good guess. It has to do with an ability humans have that AI lacks: the ability to understand when a scene is confusing and thus go back for a second glance.

The Elephant in the Room

Eyes wide open, we take in staggering amounts of visual information. The human brain processes it in stride. “We open our eyes and everything happens,” said Tsotsos.

Artificial intelligence, by contrast, creates visual impressions laboriously, as if it were reading a description in Braille. It runs its algorithmic fingertips over pixels, which it shapes into increasingly complex representations. The specific type of AI system that performs this process is called a neural network. It sends an image through a series of “layers.” At each layer, the details of the image — the colors and brightnesses of individual pixels — give way to increasingly abstracted descriptions of what the image portrays. At the end of the process, the neural network produces a best-guess prediction about what it’s looking at.

“It’s all moving from one layer to the next by taking the output of the previous layer, processing it and passing it along to the next layer, like a pipeline,” said Tsotsos.

Neural networks are adept at specific visual chores. They can outperform humans in narrow tasks like sorting objects into best-fit categories — labeling dogs with their breed, for example. These successes have raised expectations that computer vision systems might soon be good enough to steer a car through crowded city streets.

They’ve also provoked researchers to probe their vulnerabilities. In recent years there have been a slew of attempts, known as “adversarial attacks,” in which researchers contrive scenes to make neural networks fail. In one experiment, computer scientists tricked a neural network into mistaking a turtle for a rifle. In another, researchers waylaid a neural network by placing an image of a psychedelically colored toaster alongside ordinary objects like a banana.

This new study has the same spirit. The three researchers fed a neural network a living room scene: A man seated on the edge of a shabby chair leans forward as he plays a video game. After chewing on this scene, a neural network correctly detected a number of objects with high confidence: a person, a couch, a television, a chair, some books.

In the unmodified image at left, the neural network correctly identifies many items in a cluttered living room scene with high probability. Add an elephant, as in the image at right, and problems arise. The chair in the lower-left corner becomes a couch, the nearby cup disappears, and the elephant gets misidentified as a chair.

Amir Rosenfeld

Then the researchers introduced something incongruous into the scene: an image of an elephant in semiprofile. The neural network started getting its pixels crossed. In some trials, the elephant led the neural network to misidentify the chair as a couch. In others, the system overlooked objects, like a row of books, that it had correctly detected in earlier trials. These errors occurred even when the elephant was far from the mistaken objects.

Snafus like those extrapolate in unsettling ways to autonomous driving. A computer can’t drive a car if it might go blind to a pedestrian just because a second earlier it passed a turkey on the side of the road.

And as for the elephant itself, the neural network was all over the place: Sometimes the system identified it correctly, sometimes it called the elephant a sheep, and sometimes it overlooked the elephant completely.

“If there is actually an elephant in the room, you as a human would likely notice it,” said Rosenfeld. “The system didn’t even detect its presence.”

Everything Connected to Everything

When human beings see something unexpected, we do a double take. It’s a common phrase with real cognitive implications — and it explains why neural networks fail when scenes get weird.

Today’s best neural networks for object detection work in a “feed forward” manner. This means that information flows through them in only one direction. They start with an input of fine-grained pixels, then move to curves, shapes, and scenes, with the network making its best guess about what it’s seeing at each step along the way. As a consequence, errant observations early in the process end up contaminating the end of the process, when the neural network pools together everything it thinks it knows in order to make a guess about what it’s looking at.

“By the top of the neural network you have everything connected to everything, so you have the potential to have every feature in every location interfering with every possible output,” said Tsotsos.

The human way is better. Imagine you’re given a very brief glimpse of an image containing a circle and a square, with one of them colored blue and the other red. Afterward you’re asked to name the color of the square. With only a single glance to go on, you’re likely to confuse the colors of the two shapes. But you’re also likely to recognize that you’re confused and to ask for another look. And, critically, when you take that second look, you know to focus your attention on just the color of the square.

“The human visual system says, ‘I don’t have right answer yet, so I have to go backwards to see where I might have made an error,’” explained Tsotsos, who has been developing a theory called selective tuning that explains this feature of visual cognition.

Most neural networks lack this ability to go backward. It’s a hard trait to engineer. One advantage of feed-forward networks is that they’re relatively straightforward to train — process an image through these six layers and get an answer. But if neural networks are to have license to do a double take, they’ll need a sophisticated understanding of when to draw on this new capacity (when to look twice) and when to plow ahead in a feed-forward way. Human brains switch between these different processes seamlessly; neural networks will need a new theoretical framework before they can do the same.

Leading researchers in the world are working on it, though, and they’re calling for backup. Earlier this month, Google AI announced a contest to crowdsource image classifiers that can see their way through adversarial attacks. The winning entry will need to unambiguously distinguish between an image of a bird and an image of a bicycle. It would be a modest first step — but also a necessary one.

Please keep me in mind as your life coach, openings for senior executive engagements, and board openings. If you hear of anything within your network that you think might be a positive fit, I’d so appreciate if you could send a heads up my way. Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com

Contributor: Peter Diamandis

In 2018 alone, over 22,000 businesses around the world borrowed more than $380 billion from crowdlending services

Posted by Cliff Locks On October 3, 2018 at 10:04 am / In: Uncategorized

In 2018 alone, over 22,000 businesses around the world borrowed more than $380 billion from crowdlending services

In 2018 alone, over 22,000 businesses around the world borrowed more than $380 billion from crowdlending services. Disruptive business models are often powered by alternative financing.

In this blog, we’ll discuss:

  1. Peer-to-peer lending
  2. AI financial advisors and robo traders
  3. Seamless Transactions

Let’s dive right in…

Decentralized Lending = Democratized Access to Finances

Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending is an age-old practice, traditionally with high risk and extreme locality. Now, the P2P funding model is being digitized and delocalized, bringing lending online and across borders.

Zopa, the first official crowdlending platform, arrived in the United Kingdom in 2004. Since then, the consumer crowdlending platform has facilitated lending of over 3 billion euros ($3.5 billion USD) of loans .

Person-to-business crowdlending took off, again in the U.K., in 2005 with Funding Circle, now with over 5 billion euros (~5.8 billion USD) of capital loaned to small businesses around the world. Now, in 2018 alone, over 22,000 businesses around the world borrowed over $380 billion from crowdlending services.

Crowdlending next took off in the United States in 2006, with platforms like Prosper and Lending Club. The U.S. crowdlending industry has boomed to $21 billion in loans, across 515 thousand loans.

Let’s take a step back… to a time before banks, when lending took place between trusted neighbors in small villages across the globe. Lending started as peer-to-peer transactions.

As villages turned into towns, towns turned into cities, and cities turned into sprawling metropolises, neighborly trust and the ability to communicate across urban landscapes broke down. That’s where banks and other financial institutions came into play — to add trust back into the lending equation.

With crowdlending, we are evidently returning to this pre-centralized-banking model of loans, and moving away from cumbersome intermediaries (e.g. high fees, regulations, and extra complexity).

Fueled by the permeation of the internet, P2P lending took on a new form as ‘crowdlending’ in the early 2000’s. Now, as blockchain and artificial intelligence arrive on the digital scene, P2P lending platforms are being overhauled with transparency, accountability, reliability and immutability.

Artificial Intelligence Micro Lending & Credit Scores

We are beginning to augment our quantitative decision-making with neural networks processing borrowers’ financial data to determine their financial ‘fate’ (or, as some call it, your credit score). Companies like Smart Finance Group (backed by Kai Fu Lee and Sinovation Ventures) are using Artificial Intelligence to minimize default rates for tens of millions of microloans.

Smart Finance is fueled by users’ personal data, particularly smartphone data and usage behavior. Users are required to give Smart Finance access to their smartphone data, so that Smart Finance’s artificial intelligence engine can generate a credit score from the personal information.

The benefits of this AI-powered lending platform do not stop at increased loan payback rates — there’s a massive speed increase as well. Smart Finance loans are frequently approved in under 8 seconds. As we’ve seen with other artificial intelligence disruptions, data is the new gold.

Digitizing access to P2P loans paves the way for billions of people currently without access to banking to leapfrog the centralized banking system — just as Africa bypassed landline phones and went straight to mobile. Leapfrogging centralized banking and the credit system is exactly what Smart Finance has done for hundreds of millions of people in China.

Blockchain Backed Crowdlending

As artificial intelligence accesses even the most mundane mobile browsing data to assign credit scores, blockchain technologies — particularly immutable ledgers and smart contracts — are massive disruptors to the archaic banking system, building additional trust and transparency on top of current P2P lending models.

Immutable ledgers provide the necessary transparency for accurate credit and loan defaulting history. Smart contracts executed on these immutable ledgers bring the critical ability to digitally replace cumbersome, expensive third parties (like banks), allowing individual borrowers or businesses to directly connect with willing lenders.

Two of the leading blockchain platforms for P2P lending are ETHLend and SALT Lending.

ETHLend is an Ethereum-based decentralized application aiming to bring transparency and trust to P2P lending through Ethereum network smart contracts.

Secure Automated Lending Technology (SALT) allows cryptocurrency asset holders to use their digital assets as collateral for cash loans, without the need to liquidate their holdings, giving rise to a digital-asset-backed lending market.

While blockchain poses a threat to many of the large, centralized banking institutions, some are taking advantage of the new technology to optimize their internal lending, credit scoring, and collateral operations.

In March 2018, ING and Credit Suisse successfully exchanged 25 million euros using HQLA-X, a blockchain-based collateral lending platform.

HQLA-X runs on the R3 Corda blockchain — a platform designed specifically to help heritage financial and commerce institutions migrate away from their inefficient legacy financial infrastructure.

Blockchain and tokenization are going through their own fintech and regulation shakeup right now. In a future blog, I’ll discuss the various efforts to more readily assure smart contracts, and the disruptive business model of security tokens and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Parallels to the Global Abundance of Capital

The abundance of capital being created by the advent of P2P loans closely relates to the unprecedented global abundance of capital.

Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and crowdfunding are taking a strong stand in disrupting the $164 billion venture capital market. The total amount invested in ICOs has risen from $6.6 billion in 2017 to $7.15 billion USD in the first half of 2018. Crowdfunding helped projects raise more than $34 billion in 2017, with experts projecting that global crowdfunding investments will reach $300 billion by 2025.

In the last year alone, using ICOs, over a dozen projects have raised hundreds of millions of dollars in mere hours. Take Filecoin, for example, which raised $257 million in only 30 days; its first $135 million was raised in the first hour. Similarly, the Dragon Coin project (which itself is revolutionizing remittance in high-stakes casinos around the world) raised $320 million in its 30-day public ICO.

Some Important Takeaways…

  • Technology-backed fundraising and financial services are disrupting the world’s largest financial institutions — anyone, anywhere, at anytime will be able to access the capital they need to pursue their idea.
  • The speed at which we can go from “I’ve got an idea” to “I run a billion-dollar company” is moving faster than ever.
  • Following Ray Kurzweil’s Law of Accelerating Returns, the rapid decrease in time to access capital is intimately linked (and greatly dependent on) a financial infrastructure (technology, institutions, platforms, and policies) that can adapt and evolve just as rapidly.

This new abundance of capital, requires financial decision-making with ever-higher market prediction precision. That’s exactly where artificial intelligence is already playing a massive role.

Artificial Intelligence, Robo Traders and Financial Advisors

On May 6, 2010, the Dow Jones Industrial Average suddenly collapsed by 998.5 points (equal to 8 percent, or $1 trillion). The crash lasted over 35 minutes and is now known as the ‘Flash Crash’. While no one knows the specific reason for this 2010 stock market anomaly, experts widely agree that the Flash Crash had to do with algorithmic trading.

With the ability to have instant, trillion-dollar market impacts, algorithmic trading and artificial intelligence are undoubtedly ingrained in how financial markets operate.

In 2017, CNBC.com estimated that 90 percent of daily trading volume in stock trading is done by machine algorithms, and only 10 percent is carried out directly by humans.

Artificial intelligence and financial management algorithms are not only available to top Wall Street players.

Robo-advisor financial management apps, like Wealthfront and Betterment, are rapidly permeating the global market. Wealthfront currently has $9.5 billion in assets under management, and Betterment has $10 billion.

Artificial intelligent financial agents are already helping financial institutions protect your money and fight fraud. A prime application for machine learning is in detecting anomalies in your spending and transaction habits, and flagging potentially fraudulent transactions.

As artificial intelligence continues to exponentially increase in power and capabilities, increasingly powerful trading and financial management bots will come online, finding massive new and previously lost streams of wealth.

How else are artificial intelligence and automation transforming finance?

Disruptive Remittance and Seamless Transactions

When was the last time that you paid in cash at a toll booth? How about for a taxi ride?

EZ-Pass, the electronic tolling company implemented extensively on the East Coast, has done wonders to reduce traffic congestion and increase traffic flow.

Driving down I-95 on the East Coast of the United States, drivers rarely notice their financial transaction with the state’s tolling agencies. The transactions are seamless.

The Uber app enables me to travel without my wallet. I can forget about payment on my trip, free up my mental bandwidth and time for higher-priority tasks. The entire process is digitized and, by extension, automated and integrated into Uber’s platform. (Note: This incredible convenience manytimes causes me to accidentally walk out of taxi cabs without paying!).

In January 2018, we saw the success of the first cutting-edge, AI-powered Amazon Go store open in Seattle, Washington. The store marked a new era in remittance and transactions — gone are the days of carrying credit cards and cash, and gone are the cash registers. And now, on the heals of these early ‘beta-tests’, Amazon is considering opening as many as 3,000 of these cashierless stores by 2023.

Amazon Go stores use AI algorithms that watch various video feeds (from advanced cameras) throughout the store to identify who picks up groceries, exactly what products they select, and how much to charge that person when they walk out of the store. It’s a grab and go experience.

Let’s extrapolate the notion of seamless, integrated payment systems from Amazon Go and Uber’s removal of post-ride payment to the rest of our day-to-day experience.

Imagine this near future:

  • As you near the front door of your home, your AI assistant summons a self-driving Uber that takes you to the Hyperloop station (after all, you work in L.A. but live in San Francisco).
  • At the station, you board your pod, without noticing that your ticket purchase was settled via a wireless payment checkpoint.
  • After work, you stop at the Amazon Go, pick up dinner — your virtual AI assistant passes your Amazon account information to the store’s payment checkpoint, as the store’s cameras and sensors track you, your cart and charge you auto-magically.
  • At home, unbeknownst to you, your AI has already restocked your fridge and pantry with whatever items you failed to pick up at the Amazon Go.

Once we remove the actively transacting aspect of finance, what else becomes possible?

Top Conclusions

Extraordinary transformations are happening in the finance world.

We’ve only scratched the surface of the fintech revolution.

All of these transformative financial technologies require high-fidelity assurance, robust insurance, and a mechanism for storing value.

Peter Diamandis and I’ll dive into each of these other facets of financial services in future blogs.

Please keep me in mind as your life coach, openings for senior executive engagements, and board openings. If you hear of anything within your network that you think might be a positive fit, I’d so appreciate if you could send a heads up my way. Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com

 

Contributor: Peter Diamandis

How Good Money is Redefining Banking

Posted by Cliff Locks On September 26, 2018 at 10:02 am / In: Uncategorized

How Good Money is Redefining Banking

The CIA estimates over $90 trillion of global value is stored in cash, banknotes, money markets, and bank accounts.

In 2018, a mere 8 percent (about $5 trillion) of this $90 trillion is in the form of cold, hard cash.

In this two-part blog series, we’ll cover how the internet, mobile devices, sensors, blockchain and AI are driving a revolution in the financial world and dramatically changing how we move money across the globe.

In this blog, I will cover:

  1. How a company called Good Money is redefining banking
  2. The mobile money revolution
  3. Cross-border payments

Let’s dive in.

How Good Money is Redefining Banking

Right now, most people store their money in a bank account. A person pays a fee (on average $400 per year) to put money in her bank account, and the bank then further profits on the client’s money by investing in other projects.

The kicker: these projects do not necessarily align well with the customer’s values, or provide any benefits or major returns… In fact, the average interest rates are effectively zero — currently on the order of 0.01 percent for checking accounts.

These large, centralized, intermediary institutions are ripe for disruption — and that is exactly the vision of platforms like Good Money.

Good Money is a mobile-first banking wallet that allows users to hold all of their assets, both fiat and cryptocurrencies, in one place. The wallet has no annual fee ($0 per year vs. the average $400 per year of consumer checking accounts) and allows for full fiat and cryptocurrency interoperability. Further, Good Money offers a 1.8 percent interest rate — over 100 times greater than interest rates offered by traditional checking accounts.

Beyond interest rates, a second failure of traditional consumer banking is that customers do not control how their stored money is invested by banks. Meaning that your money could well be invested in the petroleum industry when you are in fact a die-hard environmentalist. As the name implies, Good Money enables you as the user to choose how your stored money is invested, aligning it with your vision for humanity.

Fundamentally, we think of banks like Wells Fargo, Bank of America, and Citibank as necessary and very basic — places for us to store our money so that we have easy access without carrying around wads of cash.

Good Money’s vision adds a number of important features ranging from interoperability between Fiat and Crypto Currencies, as well as reasonable check-interest rates and most importantly, control of where your hard-earned cash gets invested.

Beyond Good Money, Mobile-first banking platforms are rising around the world.

Let’s take a deeper look.

The Mobile Money Revolution

As we’ve discussed in past blogs, the number of humans being connected to the web in the next six years is breathtaking.

Over the next 5 years, as global 5G network coverage and space-based systems come online, we will soon connect the entire planet.

In 2010, about a quarter of humanity was connected (1.8 billion people).

By 2017, that number had risen to half of the planet’s population (3.8 billion).

And now, we are on track to connect the entire human race — 8 billion people — by 2024. This translates to four billion new consumers, soon to upload and download on the internet for the first time in years ahead.

In terms of finance, all four billion of these new users are going to want access to the same banking services that each of us has come to expect. At the low end, it is estimated that 2 billion people around the world today lack the ability to securely save money, transfer money, and make payments.

Beyond the basic benefits of banking, we forget that banking also translates to health and education — allowing us to save money for future emergency medical fees or borrow money to pay for our children’s schooling.

So why is it that 2 billion people don’t yet have access to banking?

The short answer is that the tremendous cost of building and maintaining traditional banks, bank tellers, cash- and location-based bank branches and ATMs doesn’t make economic sense in poorer countries.

What if we skip the buildings and the people and go straight to all-digital, all-mobile operations?

Mobile phones are rapidly permeating the developing world; it’s estimated that Africa surpassed 1 billion mobile phones in 2017. In 2016, 61 percent (or 100 million) of the 163 million people in Bangladesh, had mobile phones.

This rapid rise in mobile phones is providing an avenue for entrepreneurs, investors, and particularly Telecom companies to bring banking services to the 2 billion unbanked people across the globe.

One brilliant example is the Bangladesh-based, Gates Foundation-backed start-up bKash.

bKash started in 2011 with $5 million and a vision of providing mobile financial services to the unbanked in Bangladesh. Since their arrival on the Bangladeshi financial scene, bKash has gained 17 million users and over $20 million in donations and investments.

With a low 1.85 percent fee (only on withdrawals), Bangladeshis are paying salaries through bKash, storing their money in bKash, and using bKash for their day-to-day shopping. And with growing profits, bKash plans to roll out other foundational financial services like loans and insurance.

Ant Financial (formerly Alipay, a subsidiary of Alibaba) recently purchased a 20 percent stake in bKash, in part to help enhance bKash’s services with lessons learned from deploying Alipay in China.

Ant Financial is at the forefront of the fintech revolution, facilitating $8 trillion of transactions in online payments last year alone. To further illustrate just how massive Ant Financial is, its most recent $14 billion funding round sets it up for a $150 billion valuation — nearly twice Goldman Sachs’ $87 billion valuation.

In South Africa and parts of Southern Asia, telecom provider Vodafone’s M-Pesa (‘pesa’ = ‘money’ in Swahili) brings mobile payments and banking to 30 million customers in 10 different countries.

M-Pesa’s initial use-case was transferring money across long distances, serving workers who face the major problem of physically transporting cash to support their families from afar.

Now, even the Indian government is using M-Pesa to pay pensions to retirees who live in rural areas, eliminating the former delays and crimes associated with shipping cash across the country.

Without bank branches or ATMs, how do M-Pesa mobile banking customers withdraw and deposit cash?

  1. M-Pesa embeds agents — sole individuals who sell cellphone airtime — in various shops around their service areas.
  2. These agents then exchange airtime minutes with customers for cash and vice versa.
  3. M-Pesa customers load the airtime to their SIM card.
  4. Customers use the mobile phone minutes as mobile money, by text message, through the M-Pesa platform to transfer money and make payments.

This system has penetrated more than 96 percent of households in Kenya. A 2016 MIT paper shows the impact of mobile payment capabilities: M-Pesa lifted 2 percent of Kenyan Households (196,000 families) out of extreme poverty between 2008 and 2016.

To conclude the above, we’re seeing developing countries use mobile phones to leapfrog the antiquated centralized banking model of finance, creating wealth and lifting people out of poverty.

Still, with this explosion of mobile banking in developing nations, there is a massive economic opportunity to further improve security, reliability, connectivity, and user control. As we saw above, traditional banks are lagging behind more nimble technology companies (Alibaba, Vodafone, etc.) in implementing these transformative platforms.

Cross-Border Payments

With mobile payment and banking infrastructure in place across the globe, you would imagine that moving money from country to country would be relatively straightforward.

Here’s an interesting question — if you wanted to move $9,999 from New York to London, what is the fastest way to do it?

Some would argue that physically carrying the money in cash on an airplane would be the fastest route (you need to declare more than $10,000 with US Customs).

You could also opt to make the payment through your bank. Your bank would then use a network called SWIFT to move your money to a London bank. SWIFT currently sits at the center of most cross-border payment technology.

Transactions on the SWIFT network can take 3-5 days to process; the network processes 24 million transactions per day (about 277 transactions per second). In addition to bank-varying fees, during the 3-5 day transfer time, exchange rates can vary by over 5%, a large tax for businesses making international payments.

Because of these relatively long transfer times, unpredictable fees (due to exchange rate variability), and a slew of security issues, banks and other fintech players are investigating alternatives.

With the coming innovation in cross-border payment infrastructure, Accenture forecasts that global cross-border payments will rise by 5.6 percent per year through 2022.

One exciting attempt to redefine international remittance is Stellar.org. In partnership with IBM, Stellar promotes its mission to move money quickly across borders, and “to expand access to low-cost financial services to fight poverty and maximize individual potential.”

The Stellar network can process over 1,000 transactions per day — more than 3x the number of transactions on the SWIFT network, on an immutable and decentralized blockchain.

Rather than waiting 3-5 days for the SWIFT network to process your transaction, Stellar processes transactions in 3-5 seconds. In addition to bypassing day-to-day exchange rate variability, Stellar’s low fee of about $0.01 per 600,000 transactions makes the network highly competitive with existing infrastructure.

Platforms like Stellar also offer cross-border, mobile-to-mobile money lending services, which we’ll cover in our next blog.

Conclusion

The fintech sector disrupts far more than “business as usual” on Wall Street.

How we transact and move money also transforms the day-to-day lives of people all over the world.

The convergences of technology such as IoT, Blockchain and AI will transform all aspects of Fintech (and insurance), challenging the long-dominant infrastructure of Wall Street.

In Part Two next week Peter Diamandis and I will cover the Future of Finance and Banking, we’ll explore how exponential technologies are impacting investing and lending, AI financial advisory services (e.g. Robo-Traders), new stores of value (e.g. Bitcoin and Stable Coins), and a discussion on how we might ensure that FinTech can be trusted in our rapidly accelerating future.

With the dematerialization, demonetization and democratization of financial resources, today is the greatest time in human history to be an entrepreneur — no matter where you live on planet Earth.

Please keep me in mind as your life coach, openings for senior executive engagements, and board openings. If you hear of anything within your network that you think might be a positive fit, I’d so appreciate if you could send a heads up my way. Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com

Executive Presence – Casual Friday Conundrum

Posted by Cliff Locks On September 5, 2018 at 10:05 am / In: Uncategorized

Executive Presence – Casual Friday Conundrum

When you look at your CEO or Founder do you think “I will look just as amazing if I had a special stylist.” And if you happen to share the same sentiments with me, or if you are not so sure of the clothes to put on a simple Friday, here is some help.

Let’s get started, as a senior executive heading for a conference out of the city; you’d need to pack clothing for business sessions, golfing outfits and probably a cocktail dinner. A stylist’s job is to assist him/her concentrate on a professional business dressing, ensuring that he/she has a fitting representation in every area.  He/she would like to ensure that every component of her dressing, shoes, jewelry and other accessories complements each other; for instance, you would want to avoid patterned or bold designs which distract peoples focus from the presentation. You would like to ensure that your audience is paying attention to you.

With regards to the golfing session, I suggest that you are a bit conservative since you will be playing with other business executives and then for the cocktail dinner, don’t forget that it’s a business dinner, and you should put on something handsome/beautiful.

Ask yourself have I upgraded my shirts and suits in recent time? Have they become old, are they dated? Have you purchased new ties? Have you add or shed weight? It is very crucial to put all that into consideration because tailoring plays a big role in how good you appeared in your clothing.  Are you still using your old glass or you’ve just bought a new one? The new glass will make you look fresher and modern, and you have to consider that. Then do you have good shoes? Are they suitable for your kind of business? Well-polished shoes with newly done heels.

Sorry men but then the media has always been paying so much attention to women fashion. My suggestion, every woman needs the services of specialists who can give them a personal evaluation of the look that suits them best. Women need to provide answers to certain questions like; is my clothing reflective of the position I’m occupying? Is this cloth appropriate for my shape, body style, and age? If presented the same cloth again, would I buy it? And then if you don’t like the styles and the colors of the clothes shown in the fashion magazines, you don’t have to buy it. Make sure you only buy clothing items that are beautiful on you and also make you comfortable.

What about the accessories? Do you have shoes that enhance your appearance or those that make it worse? What about your bags? Are they big enough to contain all your paper presentation? Do you have a smaller bag to contain other essential items?

Many of us are confident to some extent with our style and sense of fashion for normal business meetings, however, we often become confused on casual Fridays when companies permit us to dress down or maybe even adorned jeans. So how should we dress on casual Fridays?

I believe that this is one area where several people both men and women alike, are so confused about the right thing to wear. If you work in an organization that allows you to wear jeans, I think any black jeans or dark wash jeans would be fantastic, and certainly not those ragged ones you wear at home for gardening or yard work.

For the men, a beautiful, and maybe a dark stripe shirt blended with a nice sweater together with a navy blazer will always be a fantastic choice. You can put on more casual shoes. However they should be suitable for the position you occupied, nice belt and a well-polished loafer complements the dressing.

For the women, once more I believed that jeans would also be a fantastic choice or maybe a cotton trouser, a light wool trouser and they could adorn a pretty blouse and sweater and maybe a set of sweaters, blending it all with flat shoes. Always have it in mind that you might need to meet your favorite client on a casual Friday, and you have to look your best.

Please keep me in mind as your life coach, openings for senior executive engagements, and board openings. If you hear of anything within your network that you think might be a positive fit, I’d so appreciate if you could send a heads up my way. Cliff@InvestmentCapitalGrowth.com

Cliff Locks Host Angel Investors Network Podcast with Tony Pompliano, CEO and President of ANEXIO, a company on the Inc 500 list of America’s fastest-growing privately held companies

Posted by Cliff Locks On August 1, 2018 at 10:03 am / In: Uncategorized

Cliff Locks Host Angel Investors Network Podcast with Tony Pompliano, CEO and President of ANEXIO, a company on the Inc 500 list of America’s fastest-growing privately held companies

ANEXIO is transforming the IT industry by building high-performance technology infrastructure to serve the complex computing needs of the world’s most innovative companies. Learn how ANEXIO’s revenues have grown over 1,400 percent since 2013 and continue to accelerate as the company builds new infrastructure for emerging technologies.

 

Podcast

 

 

 

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Posted by Cliff Locks On July 25, 2018 at 10:16 am / In: Uncategorized