About Preston Sumner

Preston Sumner, President of CEO Focus of Nevada (www.ceofocusnv.com), is a curious observer of and participant in business. His curiosity extends to domains such as psychology, sports, physics, and warfare. He finds that these other domains offer models and lessons for business performance.

“I Don’t Know”

"I Don't Know" There are 3 answers to every question: the right one, the wrong one, and “I don’t know.” Most of us need to answer “I don’t know” more often. In business decision-making the reality is that we rarely know the right answer with certainty. Usually the right move is to go with [...]

By | January 21st, 2020|Categories: Decision Making, Management, Uncategorized|Tags: , , |0 Comments

10 Laws

10 Laws I first came across Metcalfe's Law in a Forbes article "10 Laws of the Modern World." It was published nearly 15 years ago yesterday. The world is much different today but it is remarkable how these laws still hold. Social media is explained by the perfect storm of the first 5. With [...]

By | January 10th, 2020|Categories: Forecasting, Lessons Learned, Management, Strategy|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Paradox of Progress

Paradox of Progress “There is a familiar story of a New York banker vacationing in Greece, who, from talking to a fisherman and scrutinizing the fisherman’s business, comes up for a scheme to help the fisherman make it a big business. The fisherman asked him what the benefits were; the banker answered that he [...]

By | December 9th, 2019|Categories: Lessons Learned, Management|Tags: , |0 Comments

Overconfidence

Overconfidence Daniel Kahneman, a Nobel Prize winning behavioral economist, said that if he could eliminate only one human psychological bias, it would be overconfidence. In one study of American drivers, 93% claimed to be better than the median. Obviously only 50% can be better than the median. How can you deal with this all [...]

By | December 6th, 2019|Categories: Lessons Learned, Management|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Re-Framing

Re-Framing As CEOs and business owners gain knowledge and experience, they find their problem-solving skills growing. We gain confidence and make decisions with less stress and greater speed. Then we encounter a particularly vexing problem where our knowledge seems inadequate. When this occurs, it often helps to re-frame the problem. Let’s look at an example. WeWork [...]

Time Discounting

Time Discounting The value of something promised in the future is less than the value of that same thing received today. This is the concept of time discounting. This concept is a corollary of compound interest which Albert Einstein called the 8th wonder of the world. $1,000 earning 5% compounded annually will grow to [...]

By | November 19th, 2019|Categories: Decision Making, Forecasting|Tags: , , |0 Comments

Antifragility

Antifragility Antifragility is the characteristic of those things that gain from disorder and the title of a book by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. No word captured that concept of the opposite of fragility, so Taleb coined the obvious word “antifragile.” If the concept of gaining from disorder seems non-sensical, think about things such as vaccines, [...]

By | November 18th, 2019|Categories: Competitive Advantage, Management|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

Skin in the Game

Skin in the Game “Skin in the Game” is a powerful book by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. Skin in the game requires exposure to not only the upside of your own actions but also the downside. That is the problem with the grant of large stock options to executives of public companies. There is no [...]

By | November 17th, 2019|Categories: Books, Management, Productivity|Tags: , , , , |0 Comments

Via Negativa

Via Negativa Via negativa is gaining through subtraction. Less is more is another way this is expressed. Charlie Munger attributes much of Berkshire Hathaway’s success to avoiding doing stupid things rather than trying to be brilliant. Eliminate bad habits. Cease doing useless things. The bad is often much more obvious than the good…identify it [...]

By | November 16th, 2019|Categories: Uncategorized|Tags: , , |0 Comments