The Launch Sequence: How We Used It To Start Our Business

The Launch Sequence: How We Used It To Start Our Business

Launch Youniversity was born on the Atlanta Beltline on May 21, 2015.  I remember because it was my birthday and I was spending the morning with Jeff and Shane to talk about our goals and development plans. 

In these conversations, we often talked about opportunities to invest in others.  As we walked off our breakfast, I suggested we find a way to make a difference in a way that would scale.  We sensed that some might find this valuable, but we really had no idea how to go about it.  So, we decided to take an innovation process that Shane and I had used at Chick-fil-A and apply it to this opportunity.  Here's how it played out… 

5 Questions to Ask Your Mentor

5 Questions to Ask Your Mentor

You got the courage to ask someone to mentor you, and they agreed.

But now, you might have fears of wasting their time, or having awkward patches of silence, or not getting anything out of the conversation. Those fears are normal, but you can put them to rest by preparing for meeting with your mentor by coming up with a plan to maximize your time and theirs. 

20 Simple, Practical and Powerful Business Principles to Live By

20 Simple, Practical and Powerful Business Principles to Live By

Over the past year on The Launch Youniversity Podcast we've had some incredible conversations with intrapreneurs, entrepreneurs and solopreneurs. We've talked to business professionals in every stage of life and career... from leaders in Fortune 500 companies to people who just launched their first side business. Today, we've rounded up the top 20 pieces of advice from our conversations with our guests. 

The 5 Elements of the Launch Sequence

The 5 Elements of the Launch Sequence

Around 2008, Chick-fil-A decided to launch an innovative practice.  We wanted to learn how to do it a responsible manner, so we began visiting companies that were thought leaders in their respective industries.

It became clear that we needed a new process that could be replicated and taught to folks throughout our organization.  This process could help us launch new menu items, service procedures, restaurant designs and forward-thinking ideas in virtually every area of the business.

To find what we were looking for, we connected with Stanford's d.school and the design firm IDEO (both based in the heart of Silicon Valley), and learned about "design thinking." 

How Your Leadership Climate Impacts Your Team Forecast

How Your Leadership Climate Impacts Your Team Forecast

Leaders who are more emotionally aware will always outpace those who aren’t. 

Every time a leader walks into the room they bring their leadership climate with them.  Every leader has an emotional climate. Just in the way that a weather climate dictates the forecast, a leader’s emotional climate dictates the their team's forecast.  The leader is the thermostat, they set the temperature. The team is the thermometer, they reflect the climate.    

How to Change Roles Within An Organization

How to Change Roles Within An Organization

Considering a new role within your organization?  If so, take some time to perform a "readiness" audit before you charge ahead. Here are 8 things you need to do:

1. Assess your personal brand.  

The assessment may be similar to a scouting report for an athlete.  What are you known for? What are your strengths and weaknesses?  Do you have a reputation for managing projects well, for leading teams well, or for having deep subject matter expertise?  Is your personal brand strong enough to merit a change at this time?  If not, your focus needs to be on strengthening your brand first.

3 Ways to Get a Promotion This Year

3 Ways to Get a Promotion This Year

I received some great advice early in my career. I will never forget the conversation. I was fortunate to be traveling with our Vice President of Operations. We happened to be good friends and when you combine that with a two day trip, we were given the opportunity to engage in lots of conversations, one of which was how to get promoted. I simply asked him his thoughts on how to get promoted and I'll never forget the answer he gave me. I have shared his advice with most of the folks I have had the opportunity to lead over the years. He stated that there were three things that anyone needed to do to get a promoted: 

Build a Network of Peers: Why and How to Start

Build a Network of Peers: Why and How to Start

Steven Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People said:

"Interdependent people combine their own efforts with the efforts of others to achieve their greatest success.”

From the small but effective teamwork of a basketball team, to the interdependent collaboration of a massive business to achieve a common goal... examples of teamwork and community are everywhere. The true value of this collaboration is sometimes missed. It's easy to forget, particularly in the busyness of launching something new, that we need teamwork and community to succeed and even more importantly, sustain that success. 

How to Launch: The Final Step

How to Launch: The Final Step

f you've made it this far in the launch sequence, congratulations! You've done the hard part of making sure your idea, project or business isn't simply adding to the noise of the marketplace, but truly fulfilling a need. Brush up on the first four steps here. 

If the understanding phase was the difficult part and the imagine phase was the fun part, the final step, the launch phase, is the most rewarding. You finally get the chance to experience the impact your product, service or business has on others. It's an awesome feeling.

But before you set sail to your big idea, there's one thing I want you to always remember. Always. Ready for it?

The Best Leadership Advice I've Ever Received

The Best Leadership Advice I've Ever Received

When I worked for an organization as its event marketer, I was flattered when I was invited to give my input in important meetings, honored when asked to create departmental organization charts and proud to be known as the guy with the creative solutions.  

But after years of fielding questions and giving advice to everyone from the sales team to event producers to my supervisor, I started feeling undervalued and underappreciated. I was still called a “marketer,” yet I was doing so much more than what my title said I did.

At the peak of my frustration, I received John C. Maxwell’s book, The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, and in it is a quote that changed everything: