24 CEO Nuggets Including Staying Small, Leadership, Personal Branding & More [CEO Bookshelf]

You’ve heard you are what you eat, well we believe that you are what you read. Teach a CEO presents lessons from our CEO Bookshelf on how you can improve and grow your venture. We have taken gems or nuggets from our library and provide them for CEO’s, startups, entrepreneurs and business owners. Shop for your copy of these books and more at CEO Books.

Staying Small – 6 Nuggets

  1. Traditionally, having a small business was thought of as a good starting point, whereas what happens when a business finds only limited success. but there's a new breed of business that start small and stay small, and not for lack of vision or strategy, but because these days one person (or a tiny team) can accomplish a lot. (Company of One)
  2. Most companies grow for four reasons: inflation, investors, churn, and ego. By examining each, we can be ready for the decisions will have to make and better able to prevent social and business pressures from swaying us into doing something we don't want to do or something that isn't right for our business. (Company of One)
  3. As companies of one, we are very much in the people – serving business. It's critical that we listen to each of our customers and take full ownership and make sure they are pleased with our service level and then successful in their own lives. Customer service is a huge differentiating factor and why people choose the places where they want to spend their money. If you serve your clients well, they in turn become brand evangelist for your company: basically an unpaid salesforce that reduces your need to hire more staff. (Company of One)
  4. There are also very few completely new ideas. Most ideas are just rip off existing companies, plans, ideas, or solutions. By focusing a lot of time and energy on protecting ideas instead of sharing them, you run the risk of not letting them get better through critical feedback from others. Even sharing your business idea with potential customers has its benefits, as they can weigh in early, before you've invested a lot of time or resources and help you shape and position that idea into an even better execution. (Company of One)
  5. … companies of one needs to continually enter 8 on their products to keep them useful, fresh, relevant to the market they serve. So, launcher company quickly, but then immediately start to refine your product and make it better. (Company of One)
  6. In some, all business is a choice about the life we went outside of it. One choice is better than any other semicolon all are simply choices, Guided by our own internal and deeply personal factors. (Company of One)

Personal Branding – 6 Nuggets

  1. Personal branding is built on four main factors: personal proof, social proof, recognition, and association. These are the elements that support your personal brand. However, you cannot successfully achieve any of these objectives without clear direction, planning, and goals. (Platform)
  2. It's about understanding that you must improve yourself before you can assist and bring meaning to someone else. Being influential is all about adding value to the lives of other people. (Platform)
  3. A common misconception about social media is that conversations you have with other people or brands is between you and them. The truth is any conversation you have is a three-way conversation among you, the person you are communicating with, and a machine. (Platform)
  4. When you are ready to grow your brand, evolve, and move on to the next thing, it is crucial that you do it all at once. If you try to gradually Implement change for your brand, you will create confusion and inconsistency. You have to plan the change and then make it happen quickly. Go back to the drawing board, and think about where you are now where you want to go. Create a new brand statement, a new look for your website, and updated bios that emphasize the new you. (Platform)
  5. Your personal brand message will guide everything you do. It is the statement you will reference whenever you are unsure whether you should do something. The brand statement is your mantra and encapsulates your holistic view. It doesn't just reflect who you are now, it can encompass who strive to be as well. (Platform)
  6. Staying top-of-mind, even if it requires you to game the advertising arms of social media companies, is absolutely okay and even necessary. Spend a little more time in groups, write a couple of blogs on your LinkedIn page, and connect with people. Your brand when it comes to getting more work and recognition, is 30 to 50% depending on your network, how they perceive you, and what they know about you. (Platform)

Leadership – 4 Nuggets

  1. In a nutshell, a CLO is a more complete leadership approach than a CEO. A CLO has a heart for service head for profit, the resilience of the military, and a moral imperative. Our value of ‘Everyone Profits' cause for high Mastery of management and Leadership to integrate and produce an abundance of positive results. We all exist to increase the wealth of the world. (Chief Leadership Officer)
  2. the CLO system confounds and disturbs the CEO psyche because it runs counter to generations-long, deeply held norms and understanding. Admittedly, the CEO-system has done so much to improve the quality of life of so many people. “Why risk changing it?” That's the scary and obvious objection I repeatedly hear. “The world has changed!” The old ways were wrong from the start but produced so much gain that it was an accepted cost of doing business. Like frogs in the kettle we gradually been warmed into complicit complacency at the expense of our standards of wealth. (Chief Leadership Officer)
  3. …The starting point for the CLO Integrity map is the purpose of the organization. Distilling a business purpose to two words may appear daunting, but once written, its value and power courses through the Map and beyond. It becomes a reference point whereby every decision, every dollar invested, every person hired, and every tangible and intangible asset can be assessed as either off- or on-purpose. This binary clarity of being off- or on-purpose liberates us to be more mindful and aligned to the deep strategy. (Chief Leadership Officer)
  4. Being a CLO is the inevitable wave of the future. You can either position a business to ride it, let it pass you, or have it come crashing down on you. Why languish in the CEO past when you can prepare and prevail in the CLO future? Trust your instincts. (Chief Leadership Officer)

Business Guerilla – 5 Nuggets

  1. Therefore, if you cannot be the first, the second, the cheapest in your category, every marketing attempt is creating demand for your competitor, and you will be cast out of the market as soon as your losses become unsustainable. Although you cannot be the first, the second, or the cheapest in a category, you can still have a chance of survival, and that chance comes from your ability to create and own a new category by relying on the weakness of your opponents. (Sabotage & Subversion)
  2. The method of concentrating superior forces to destroy the enemy forces is part of a guerilla strategy, and as such it requires multiple decisive engagement with the enemy, making the outcome of a fight dependent on neither the dimension of the territory conquered nor on the number of conquest. (Sabotage & Subversion)
  3. Lacking endless resources gives you the creativity which only the rare virtue of perseverance can nourish. (Sabotage & Subversion)
  4. a business exponentially usually requires an average of 5 to 10 years. This time is precious. Entrepreneurship isn't a get – rich quick scheme. It demands perseverance and dedication. (Sabotage & Subversion)
  5. Becoming a pro takes more passion. You need to be dedicated, determined, and most importantly, patient. The greatest achievements, the most wonderful dreams, are accomplished thanks to undisputed love, focus, positivity, and years of restless application. (Sabotage & Subversion)

Doing – 3 Nuggets

  1. We're continually learning and seeking to improve in everything we do – and attitude that firmly supports our core purpose: to eliminate the attitude of “try” from teams and Inspire them to do anything by leveraging the power of purpose, alignment, and accountability. (No Try Only Do)
  2. For most business leaders, the most difficult part of learning the “Habits” is learning how to set aside the need for control. (No Try Only Do)
  3. creating new habits isn't easy, but worthwhile things are never easy. (No Try Only Do)

Books on The CEO Bookshelf

Descriptions are from Check out this editon at CEO Books.

  • Company of One: Why Staying Small Is the Next Big Thing for Business – What if the real key to a richer and more fulfilling career was not to create and scale a new start-up, but rather, to be able to work for yourself, determine your own hours, and become a (highly profitable) and sustainable company of one? Suppose the better—and smarter—solution is simply to remain small? This book explains how to do just that.
  • Platform: The Art and Science of Personal Branding – The indispensable guide to developing a personal brand, finding an audience, and nurturing followers, by digital marketing thought-leader Cynthia Johnson. In the modern world, influence is everything and personal branding equals influence. Platform is the why-to, how-to handbook by top expert Cynthia Johnson for everyone who wants to develop and manage a personal brand. In Platform, Johnson explains the process of going from unknown to influencer by achieving personal proof, social proof, recognition, and association. Johnson herself went from an on-staff social media manager to social media influencer, entrepreneur, and marketing thought-leader in just three years using her process of accelerated brand development, continuous brand management, and strategic growth. Fans of #GirlBoss and #AskGaryVee, who wonder how their favorite influencers found their voices and built their audiences, will find the answers here and discover that the process is technical, creative, tactical, and much easier than they might have expected.
  • Chief Leadership Officer: Increasing Wealth So Everyone Profits – Let The Business Reformation Begin The premise of this book’s message and movement is simple. The title and role of a Chief Executive Officer (CEO) is obsolete. CEOs are command and control holdouts based on the archaic thinking and ways of the Industrial Age. We're well into the Digital Age and heading into the Age of Purpose and Meaning. We need a reformation in business. New times call for new leadership. The emerging business leaders will be called Chief Leadership Officers (CLOs). CLOs authentically embrace people, not as ‘human resources,’ but as human beings, the crucial contributors to organizational success. For the average business person much of what lives in this book will seem familiar. On the other hand, many of the CLO constructs, models and terms will at a minimum challenge your thinking and give you pause to reflect on your complete competency as a leader. Hopefully, you’ll discover yourself saying, “There actually is a better, more completely right way of being in business.”
  • Sabotage & Subversion: The 10 Principles of Business Guerrilla – Sabotage & Subversion. The 10 Principles of Business Guerrilla was conceived as an answer to a simple question that many new entrepreneurs (startups and SMEs) ask themselves: If I do not have the marketing budget and therefore cannot overspend my competition, how can I stay in business, grow my business and scale my business?
    Borrowing the most advanced and respected theory on warfare from the most influential thinkers and leaders,
  • No Try Only Do: Building A Business On Purpose, Alignment, And Accountability – Business is hard―but it doesn't have to be. You have realized that your business needs change―that's the first step. Andy Bailey knows entrepreneurs. Now the Founder of Petra Coach, Andy started his career as an entrepreneur himself, founding NationLink Wireless while still in college and growing it into an Inc. 500 corporation. After burning the candle at both ends for years, however, Andy realized that he was working “for” his job, not “on” his business. He began searching for ways to achieve his ultimate entrepreneurial dream and began implementing a specific methodology, based on the Rockefeller Habits.


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