The Three Most Important Qualities of a Leader

I have just come out of two intense days of professional development. The first day involved a presentation to 70 franchising professionals on The Science of Successful Franchising. To prepare for this session, I reviewed FRI’s latest data on what creates an ACE Mindset in franchisees. This is where they Advocate the franchise to others (essential for a network’s growth), a 
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What’s Your Purpose?

There’s a story of a Prince who had taken over the running of the Kingdom after the sudden death of his peace-loving father. The Prince was inexperienced in the ways of leadership and wanted to prove his worth. His power-hungry generals suggested an invasion would show others his strength (and of course increase their power). So he led his army into battle to take over  
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Growing with Confidence

Last year Aziz Hashim, Chairman of the IFA, addressed our annual Multi-Unit Summit to an audience of 130 franchisees and franchisor executives. Because Aziz is, amongst other things, a highly successful multi-unit franchisee, he spoke with passion and credibility. His clear and direct message was this. If you are going to take on additional franchise units, do it  
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11 Ways to Keep Franchisees Growth-Minded

In this Tip I'll share 11 growth strategies to emerge from a franchise operations leadership breakfast we held on the topic “How to Encourage Franchisees to be Growth-Minded”. Steve Rafsky, a former franchisee of Padgett Business Services, a 50 year old franchise network with 400 franchisees in North America, first spoke of how the company was facing serious financial p 
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The Hubris Trap and How to Avoid It

I just watched an interview with one of the world’s greatest violinists, Joshua Bell. He was asked by a rather serious journalist, “Apart from your obvious musical skill, what are the qualities that have helped you succeed in this industry?” His response caused me to burst out laughing with delight because I had literally just completed a blog quoting the world’s most popul 
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The Sock Thief

I once operated a bakery cafe where we made all our pastries from scratch. Because our top-seller was apricot danish, we kept a large stock of tinned apricots. One evening when reviewing our supplier invoices, I noticed we were buying more tins of apricots, which was strange as I knew our sales of apricot danish had remained pretty constant. The following day I instigat 
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This is No Joking Matter

While I love to run workshops, it’s even more fun learning from wise colleagues and teachers. Moshe Lang is one of these, a highly experienced psychologist with a strong interest in humour. Moshe is also one of Australia’s leading family therapists. Last weekend I attended a workshop he conducted on the use of humour by psychologists. While the room was hot and stuffy, (the 
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Name it to Tame it!

I’m just back from the IFA Convention in Las Vegas where I gave a talk on how to increase franchisee engagement in group meetings and conferences. In this Tip I’m going to share the most important point I made, which is to identify what’s important to the people in your audience, and then name it. In the 1960s, Ursula Le Guin, a talented science fiction writer, released 
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Confessions of a So-Called Expert

When I was 12 my dad brought home a vinyl LP record containing a live lecture on life skills by a well-known New York psychologist, Dr Murray Banks. I was fascinated by the ideas and the light-hearted way these were communicated. As I repeatedly listened to it, I remember thinking “what an awesome way to earn a living”. Fast forward 50 years and I am grateful to have been a 
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Lessons from a Leprechaun Taxi Driver

As part of a European speaking tour, I’ve been staying in an old rambling hotel in Dublin, formerly a monastery. It’s been fun wandering around the underground corridors, filled with so much history and character. This morning, while checking out at reception, I was pleasantly surprised to meet what I can only describe as a leprechaun taxi driver. I had just asked how I get 
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