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Howard A. Tullman

Howard A. Tullman
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Getting Out Whole - With Your Soul Intact

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 12/19/16 1:55 PM

In a recent post I explained the importance of timing in the shutdown of an unsuccessful business. The main point is that, especially in the context of a "fire sale," most tech startups and digital businesses don't have too many hard assets to offer, but if the entrepreneur doesn't wait too long, there is still plenty of potential value to be realized. Sometimes the sum of the parts is greater than the whole.

What "the Boss" Can Teach Us About Loss

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 12/16/16 2:33 PM

If you love Springsteen songs for the lyrics like I do (not that there's anything wrong with the music) then you know what I mean when I say that there's a line or a poignant phrase from some Bruce song that seems perfect for just about any and every occasion. I can think of dozens of times - staring down into one abyss or facing up to another impending disaster-- when the Boss was the only solace I could find. 

Old School: Who Said You Have to Be Young to Be an Innovator?

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 12/5/16 10:44 AM

Visitors to 1871 are always surprised to see so many gray hairs zipping around the place. (No one here saunters - everyone's in a hurry.) That's because a significant portion of these older folks are our mentors and, while gray hair can be simply a sign of age and not necessarily of wisdom, that hasn't been our experience. 

IT Guys: Stop Playing Defense

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 11/28/16 4:33 PM

I used to feel bad for the guys in our IT department because they had the same career issue that the heads of Homeland Security have. As we all know, the terrorists and other scumbags only have to get it right one time and horrible things can happen. Yet our counter-terrorism teams and other law enforcement agencies have to try to be right every time and then, when nothing happens, no one bothers to thank them or offer recognition for their work. 

Why Entrepreneurs Are Really Terrible at Saying Thank You

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 11/23/16 4:43 PM

Who would have thought that there would be some worthwhile words of wisdom coming from Glinda, the Good Witch, in Wicked? I saw Wicked again recently for the umpteenth time and I was struck by how relevant some of the lyrics from the song "Thank Goodness" were to the entrepreneurial mindset and to the ways many entrepreneurs behave. 

Make Your Meetings "CRISP" or Forget Them

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 11/21/16 1:42 PM

It's not possible to read any new or old material about organizational behavior without coming across a screed or two on the general subject of how too many meetings simply represent a waste of time, energy and resources. I've taken a shot at it, too. (See How to Deal with Time Wasters) Such sessions rarely accomplish anything except maybe some pseudo-bonding.

Where Will Your Business Be When the Music Stops?

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 11/8/16 2:01 PM

I've always loved the game "musical chairs." You know, that game where a group of kids is circling a cluster of chairs, and everyone has to find a seat when the music abruptly stops. There is always one less chair than the number of players. The one person left standing is eliminated.

These Five 'Cs' Might Save Your A__

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 10/18/16 9:28 AM

Winter is on its way-- something we're more than familiar with in Chicago-- but I'm not just talking about the weather. It's becoming frostier and frostier for startups caught in the lukewarm limbo between ideas and invoices to get their early backers to up their bets, especially when it's not clear that they've found a viable business model and/or a way to stop the bleeding sooner rather than later. 

There's Never a Great Time to Plan Your Succession

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 10/5/16 10:57 AM

There have been a lot of prescriptive articles about the critical--and often ignored or overlooked--need for succession planning in large companies, particularly at the highest management level. And I've seen the massive notebooks at some big businesses that detail the candidates and the replacement process for practically every member of the senior team. 

How the Cubs, a 140-Year Old Baseball Team, Operate Like a Startup

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Posted by: Howard A. Tullman on 9/26/16 3:49 PM

The Chicago Cubs are having a spectacular season, clinching their division and on the way to winning 100+ games. Without taking anything for granted, it's clear that their talent strategy and their commitment to rebuilding with young, impact players has begun to pay serious dividends.

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