More Than Great, Let’s Be Excellent!

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Tom Peters on Scaling Up Business Podcast with Bill GallagherWe want companies to be more than good, in fact, we want them to be more than great, we want them to be excellent! Today’s podcast show is all about achieving business excellence and our special guest will show you how.

Tom Peters is the co-author of In Search of Excellence, the book that changed the way the world does business. 17 books and 35 years later, Tom is still at the forefront of the business management industry. The best part of all of this is that Tom’s written and speech material covering the last 15+ years is available and free, to download on his website.

Through his father’s recommendation, Bill first read Tom’s book in 1982 while he was still in college. The funny thing is, a book critic, in an attempt to shame and undermine Tom’s business book, said that ‘Fathers are just buying it to give to their teenage kids.’ This ended up being a fantastic endorsement.

How did Tom’s search for excellence begin and why did he decide to write the book? It all started with the Vietnam war. Tom graduated with a civil engineering degree but suddenly found himself responsible for the lives of 15-20 sailors. He was underprepared for a leadership role to say the least.

After two deployments, Tom saw two different leadership styles. One he calls ‘Captain Day,’ who was a fantastic leader and mentor of what good leadership looked like and the other was ‘Captain Night,’ who was the direct polar opposite and made Tom and his crews’ lives hell.

Why is it that people use the word ‘excellence’ to describe ballet, theater, football, baseball, etc., but never use the same word for business? Tom thought this was nonsense. Excellence should be an aspiration all of us in business strive for. By adding personalized human touches and making customers feel valued, recognized, and appreciated, it will only increase your business, not hurt it.


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Scaling Up is the best-selling book, by Verne Harnish and the team at Gazelles, on how the fastest growing companies succeed where so many others fail. My name is Bill Gallagher, host of the Scaling Up Business podcast and a leading business coach with a Gazelles. We help leadership teams to get the 4 Decisions around People, Strategy, Execution, and Cash right so that they can Scale Up successfully and beat the odds of business growth success. Our 4 Decisions are all part of the Rockefeller Habits 2.0 (from the original best-selling business book, Mastering the Rockefeller Habits).

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