Volume 1   |   Number 1   |   October 2013




elcome to Just The F.A.C.T.S., my new monthly newsletter. It's published on the third Friday of every month and offers practical approaches to executing strategy for executives of small and mid size companies (if that's you, keep reading!).

welcomeWith Fall here, we get to engage in some of my favorite activities: leaf-peeping, football, apple picking and (more) golf. Today's newsletter looks at how a lesson learned in golf - how a small change can lead to a big improvement - applies to your business as well. Fore!

Bob Katz, President

Financial Analysis and Control Technology Services LLC (F.A.C.T.S.)

P.S. You're receiving this newsletter because you and I have a prior connection. If I've included you by mistake, please accept my apologies. Click the unsubscribe link at the bottom of this e-mail and you'll be removed from the list permanently.










 There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact.

- Arthur Conan Doyle, The Boscombe Valley Mystery







I recently spoke at the Adaptive Planning  Roadshow held in Boston Sept. 16 and 17 on "Driving Operational Performance
and Consolidation". If you'd like to get a copy of the presentation, click here.







Looking for other small changes that make a difference: Tony Tsieh, CEO of Zappos, describes how he helped create a service-oriented culture in his book "Delivering Happiness."













Getting a Grip on It


've been playing golf since I was 15, growing up in Queens. My first set of golf clubs, Kroydons, were purchased by my dad at Korvettes, one of the first discount department stores in the US. It was a good thing I was big for my age because those steel clubs were heavy. But, that also allowed them to withstand the less than country club conditions found at Kissena public golf course, a couple miles from my home.


These days, most of my golfing occurs as a substitute at Stow Acres CC in the former Digital (DEC) Golf League (now called the Maynard Golf League), something which allows me to stay in touch with friends and slow the rust in my swing.

A few weeks ago, I was playing in a match but despite having practiced earlier, my game had really taken a bad turn. I couldn't seem to get off the tee or hit anything even close to straight - we lost our match decisively.

The next week, however, I made a small adjustment to force my hands to work together using a more overlapped grip, turning my right hand just slightly over the left.

Wow! The improvement was instant and significant. I birdied the next 3 holes (something I'd never done before), hit some terrific shots along the way and, on the final hole, sank a 25-foot putt to seal the match win. The league secretary, whose team we were playing, threatened to suspend my league membership!

In business, as in golf, a seemingly small change can have significant impact, sometimes transforming an organization and its operational or financial performance.

Consider the example of Marissa Mayer, CEO for Yahoo, who recently made headlines by banning telecommuting company-wide. Not a big change, but one with marked impact. Worker productivity increased, as did the company's employee and shareholders' perception of Yahoo overall. All in all, a small change that achieved short term gains at little cost to the company.

Now think about this: What could you do to achieve similarly big results from small changes in your organization?

Could you:

  • reorganize a department to clearly define responsibility and increase accountability?
  • tweak a product feature set to enhance customer value?
  • introduce a new metric to improve underperforming operations?

Or something else entirely?

Remember, while these types of minor adjustments are not always a guarantor of long term success (business, unlike golf, is a contact sport), as an executive you need to be constantly on the lookout for ways to improve performance, build on your successes and make measurable changes as needed to win in an ever-changing marketplace.

As we say on the golf course, "You're Away!"



About Us: With our unique insights and expertise, F.A.C.T.S. provides practical, cost-effective solutions to clarify and execute your business vision and objectives.





F.A.C.T.S.  |  info@factservices.com  |  www.factservices.com
Phone: 508.353.3571  |  Fax: 978.841.7910  |  P.O. Box 1574  |  Concord, MA 01742


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