Author Archives: Joel Trammell

How CEOs Make Great Executive Hires

I was recently talking to an executive recruiter friend of mine who was complaining about his work: “All these CEOs want me to bring them an executive, but they don’t really know what they want from the person. They just want me to … Read More

What CEOs Get Wrong About Growth

It recently occurred to me that most CEOs think about growth backwards. Whenever I’m talking to a CEO about growth, what they usually mean by “growth” is “more sales.” Sales is both their goal and their means of achieving that … Read More

Motivation vs. Engagement — Is There a Difference?

Someone recently asked me if I thought there was a difference between employee “motivation” and “engagement.” In a world overrun with mushy buzzwords, we don’t ask questions like this enough. In this case, there is a big difference between a motivated employee and … Read More

The 3 Levels of Company Goal Setting

When I bring up the concept of “goal setting” with an executive—especially if it’s the CEO—the reaction is rarely enthusiastic. The term sounds so tactical. It contrasts with the strategic orientation of most high-level leaders. To the executive’s ear, “goal … Read More

The Confidence Trap: When Data Leads Us Astray

Knowledge is power, but information is not —David Lewis   There’s a certain type of leader I think of as the “metric maniac.” They are quite common in the age of Big Data, AI, and the Internet of Things. The … Read More

The Top 7 Traits of a Data-Driven Organization

We are drowned in oceans of data; nevertheless, it seems as if we seldom have sufficient information.  —Eli Goldratt Today, companies are generating more and more data—but more data doesn’t necessarily translate into better performance. In fact, as various functions … Read More

Get the Most Out of Experts with These Two Questions

At this stage of my career—after more than twenty-five years as an entrepreneur and CEO—one of the most fulfilling parts of my week is meeting with other entrepreneurs. Whether it’s through office hours at Capital Factory or meetings in my … Read More

What’s Better Than AI?

Artificial intelligence promises to be one of the most disruptive forces of the next ten years. It’s already a prominent talking point among 2020 presidential candidates. Google CEO Sundar Pichai has said that AI is more important than fire or … Read More

The Basics of an Effective Employee Compensation Plan

Every manager worries about whether their top performers are happy with their jobs. It’s an understandable concern when reports find that about 71 percent of US employees are actively looking for their next opportunity. The first solution that occurs to many managers … Read More

The 4 Levels of Employee Motivation

What motivates the employees at your organization to do their best work? Are they working just for a paycheck, or do they feel that they are making a positive impact in the organization—and on its customers? Over the past few … Read More