Nuggets from Behind Closed Doors

Inside every private Alliance meeting, there are hundreds of years of experience. While keeping confidentiality of the member who provided the challenge to their group, we’ve captured (with permission) just some of the insightful comments from a handful of members. Read what these members had to say to get a glimpse of what it is like to be an Alliance member.

To see insights for a certain category, choose one from the following list:

Member John Maydonovitch Speaks: Don’t Miss the Analyst Calls

Managing risk exposure in your client portfolio is key to sustainable growth. John Maydonovitch, CEO of MCE, reveals a simple way to gain helpful insights.

Read More

Insight categories include: Marketing   Sales   Strategy & Planning   

Member Eric McAfee Speaks: Consider the Conveniences of Licensing

A new technology company owned by a close-knit group of founders is looking for a CEO – but they don’t want to give up any equity. Eric McAfee, Chairman and CEO of Aemetis, explains an ideal workaround.

Read More

Insight categories include: Entrepreneurship   Finance   Leadership   Sales   Strategy & Planning   Technology   

Member Kevin Kujawski Speaks: Bring in the Bankers

Correcting misalignment among managing partners is a herculean task. Kevin Kujawski, President and CEO of Menlo Equities, explains how investment bankers can help.

Read More

Insight categories include: Finance   Leadership   Strategy & Planning   

Member Manuel Gonzalez Speaks: The Power of Questioning

Low employee morale seriously impacts a company’s ability to grow and prosper. Alliance member Manuel Gonzalez of Rabobank International, advocates for a frank conversation.

Read More

Insight categories include: Culture   Human Resources   Leadership   Strategy & Planning   

Member Jim Harrison Speaks: Rip the Band-Aid Off Now.

Behavioral problems from employees are not something to ignore. Alliance Member, Jim Harrison, President & CEO of MLSListings, describes the need for a direct approach.

Read More

Insight categories include: Culture   Human Resources   Leadership   Strategy & Planning   

Member Ittai Bareket Speaks: The CEO Should Be the Best Salesperson in the Company

Is your staff excited about a new product, but it just isn’t selling? Alliance Member, Ittai Bareket, CEO of Netformx, explains how to jump in proactively and quickly distill what’s the matter.

Read More

Insight categories include: Marketing   Sales   Strategy & Planning   

Member Sudhir Aggarwal Speaks: Go for the Gold, But Fall Back on Silver and Bronze

Embrace a spirit of achieving excellence. Alliance Member, Sudhir Aggarwal, Managing Partner at Transition Management, discusses ways to set ambitious goals and hedge risk to company reputation and team morale.

Read More

Insight categories include: Leadership   Sales   Strategy & Planning   

Member Paul Finkle Speaks: How to Get to a Recurring Revenue Model

The golden goose of most service-based firms is to attain predictable, recurring revenue. Alliance Member Paul Finkle of ABD SharedHR gives some insight into how it can be done.

Read More

Insight categories include: Operations   Organizational Design   Sales   Strategy & Planning   Technology   

Member Ted Christianson Speaks: 3 Basics to Remember as You Grow a Startup

The excitement of driving growth in a startup can all too often distract from critical business basics. Member Ted Christianson, Chairman of Christianson Systems, discusses key business ideas that are precursors to any sustainable growth.

Read More

Insight categories include: Marketing   Sales   Strategy & Planning   Technology   

Member Jen Munkner Speaks: Combing Through Exit Interviews? You’re Already Too Late.

Exit interviews are only one piece of the puzzle. Alliance Member, Jen Munkner, Vice President Talent Management for MedAmerica, discusses how good recruitment starts with understanding retention and uncovering your company's unique cultural DNA.

Read More

Insight categories include: Culture   Human Resources   

Member Keith Matasci Speaks: Focus on Bench Strength

Got an all-star player on your team? Alliance Member, Keith Matasci, Vice President of Operations for Bentek, recommends building up alternative human resources who hold the same knowledge. A good coach doesn't neglect his or her bench.

Read More

Insight categories include: Human Resources   M&A   Strategy & Planning   

Member Kevin Chance Speaks: Breakneck Growth Demands Strong Processes

Here's a great problem to have: your business is growing at breakneck speed. Alliance Member Kevin Chance, President of Products & Services at Beckman Coulter, counsels the importance of building process within a dynamic business undergoing explosive growth.

Read More

Insight categories include: Leadership   Operations   Sales   Strategy & Planning   

Member John Spottiswood Speaks: Use the Cloud to Improve — Not Repeat — Your Core Business

Instead of building specific, custom pieces of software to aide your client’s business processes, build up a common code base that can be deployed throughout your clientele. Member John Spottiswood, former EVP of Business & Corporate Development for Inflection, suggests using the cloud as an instigator to change one's core business model.

Read More

Insight categories include: Leadership   Operations   Sales   Strategy & Planning   Technology   

Member Stuart Latta Speaks: Forget the Org Chart. Own Processes For Which You’re Accountable

Alliance Top Team Member, Stuart Latta, Vice President of Supply Chain & CDS for Nestle Dreyer's Ice Cream, shared his insights with the CFO of a large, multinational corporation who felt a lack of control over what he was ultimately accountable for. He was fully accountable for the financials of the company, but the regional CFOs reported to a market head who reported directly to the CEO.

Read More

Insight categories include: Executive Development   Finance   International Business   Leadership   Operations   Strategy & Planning   

Member Joe Budelli Speaks: For Strong Partnerships, Engage Your Tactical Players!

Here's what Alliance Top Team Member, Joe Budelli, Senior Vice President, Sales for ABBYY USA, shared with his Alliance peers during a discussion brought by a CEO looking to establish a channel partner with a bigger player, nominally in the same space. Read the insights Joe provided, including incentivizing the tactical players involved.

Read More

Insight categories include: Entrepreneurship   Sales   Strategy & Planning   

Member Peter Bailey Speaks: Be the White Knight, Not a Kamikaze

Alliance Member, Peter Bailey, President & CEO of Vertical Communications, shares his insights on a case brought by the CEO of a technology company that was disrupting a traditional market by replacing hardware with a much cheaper software solution.

Read More

Insight categories include: M&A   Marketing   Sales   Strategy & Planning   Technology   Trends   

Member Rob Conant Speaks: External Skills Solving Internal Problems

Alliance Member, Rob Conant, CEO of Cirrent, shares his insights on a case brought by the CEO of a recently purchased company, whose parent seemed unwilling to loosen the purse strings and invest in growing his company.

Read More

Insight categories include: Leadership   M&A   Strategy & Planning   

Member Burt Cummings Speaks: Sell Yourself Through the Pain You Solve

Read what member Burt Cummings, CEO of Versaic, shared with his Alliance peers during a brainstorming session with a CEO who was challenged to more clearly explain his company’s value proposition.

Read More

Insight categories include: Marketing   Sales   Strategy & Planning   Technology   

Member Brad Freitag Speaks: Go Direct, Go Small, Learn Lots

Alliance Top Team Member, Brad Freitag of FileMaker, shared his thoughts on a case brought by an SVP whose company was reinventing itself as a cloud provider offering SaaS in place of their current hardware/software package.

Read More

Insight categories include: Boards   Leadership   Marketing   Operations   Sales   Strategy & Planning   Technology   

Member John Maydonovitch Speaks: Inspire with Breakthrough Objectives and Stretch Goals

Here’s what member John Maydonovitch, CEO of MCE, shared with his Alliance peers following a case presented by a CEO who had prepared a very detailed business plan to guide his management team through the next fiscal year.

Read More

Insight categories include: Entrepreneurship   Leadership   Strategy & Planning