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 [...]


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


Speed Preston: Brian, in our last exchange you talked about how the internet has enabled us to do things faster, cheaper and more efficiently. We discussed this in the specific application of developing a minimally viable product. I want to focus on the “faster” element whether enabled by the internet or not. Speed, in [...]


Audacity "In a time when computers are replacing many basic human functions, it will eventually come to be that audaciousness, vision, courage, creativity, a sense of justice – these will be the only tasks left to us." -Ryan Holiday Artificial Intelligence (AI) may be the great equalizer when it comes to competitive advantage...until courage and [...]

By | September 19th, 2018|Categories: Competitive Advantage, Creativity, Strategy|Tags: , , , , , |0 Comments

The Power of Why

The Power of Why "If you always tell people why, they'll understand it better, they'll consider it more important, and they'll be more likely to comply" -Charlie Munger Asking why repeatedly until you get to the root cause of a problem is a powerful tool from the Toyota Management System. Explaining why is a powerful [...]

By | September 19th, 2018|Categories: Competitive Advantage, Lessons Learned, Management, Process|Tags: , , , , |0 Comments

MVP (It’s not what you think)

MVP (It's not what you think) Preston: Brian, “Ready, Fire, Aim” is great advice in those situations where we feel paralyzed by a lack of information. This is the state in which many entrepreneurial companies find themselves. It is also the state any business may find itself in when developing a new product or [...]

Counter-Intuitive Strategy

Counter-Intuitive Strategy Being "easy to do business with" can be the basis of a competitive advantage. Look at the success of IKEA. They take an opposite approach. Rather than convenience, they compete by giving their customers pride in building what they buy. Be open-minded as you create or re-create your business model. Understand psychology and [...]

Don’t Let Sunk Costs Be an Anchor on Your Business

Don’t Let Sunk Costs Be an Anchor on Your Business By Preston Sumner and Brian Rouff Preston: Brian, when you described tearing down and rebuilding your business model, the phrase that came to mind was “creative destruction.” Besides being a powerful concept from John Boyd’s OODA process, creative destruction goes against the grain of the [...]

High Tech, High Touch

High Tech, High Touch John Naisbitt coined the phrase “high tech, high touch” in his 1982 book Megatrends. Facebook epitomizes the application of the concept in its business model. Naisbitt made the point that as technology permeates our lives, there will be a countervailing desire for human connection. Oftentimes our mobile devices seem to cut [...]

By | March 18th, 2018|Categories: Competitive Advantage, Management|Tags: , , , |0 Comments