Fundamental Series

Number 3

Velocity and Pace

A successful owner manages the velocity or pace of their organization. He or she must be prepared to upshift (i.e. increase sales, pricing adjustments, collections) or downshift (i.e. cut spending, quality control, manipulate crew size) the focus of the organization at any moment. This may involve contract reviews, employee one-on-ones, group planning meetings, or even organizational changes. Interpretation of timely and accurate data against goals, plan or budget creates accountability and thus a forward looking mentality. This approach “bucks” the norm as most owners and managers tend to review historical data or have “rear view mirror” approach to managing. Take action! Use the following reports/tools to help manage velocity and pace in your organization.

  1. Labor report with realized rate
  2. Sales pipeline report
  3. Rolling budget
  4. Account manager status log

Number 2


Lombardi believed that winning started with the right mindset. “All the talent in the world cannot make up for a losing mindset”, he explained. He often felt he was misquoted when he said, “Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing” because to many it seemed to suggest victory at any cost. “What I mean”, Lombardi said, “is that there is no other purpose for which we play the game – than to win”.

Running a business and making money starts with the right mindset – the mindset that anything but making money is not an option. Those who live and breathe their numbers, make the sacrifices and hard decisions to correct problems, and hold people’s feet to the fire create a charisma about themselves which moves everyone on the team. Some of these people even get referred to as “the old man” just as Lombardi was.

There are people like this in the industry. Their companies routinely make top profits. Yes, you need systems and processes, but without the winning mindset…

Read More: “The Lombardi Rules” 26 Lessons” – by Vince Lombardi Jr.

Number 1


Last week I made calls with salesmen in the field again. I was reminded that while many are good, most can improve their methods and results. While your people tell you they are doing all the right things, when you actually observe them they are often not doing it as effectively as they might.

Everyone needs a coach. Coaches observe, give feedback and work on the fundamentals. I recently read “When Pride Still Mattered” (A biography of Vince Lombardi) by David Maraniss. I thought I would read a football story. Turns out I got a lesson in management. It’s true Lombardi is a legendary leader. But at the heart of it – he was pure manager. One of his methods was to grade each player everyday and provide specific feedback and teaching to improve his skills. Lombardi said it best, “I am a teacher of men. If I teach them well they will win.”

Here’s a link to the book. It’s a worthwhile read.