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The Top 20 Takeaways from the 12th Annual Pathway to Platinum Business Conference

by Andrew Lutts - November, 2023

Larry Siff is a dynamic well-known Boston-area management consultant, and CEO of Neptune Advisors. He and his team recently held their twelfth annual Pathway to Platinum Conference in New Castle, New Hampshire.

Larry consults with mid-market companies of all kinds, helping them run better, more profitably, and with superior strategy. No matter what kind of business or organization you are involved with, Larry can help with his sage advice and years of experience helping organizations of all kinds grow and scale up to the next level. We've attended the conference many times, and find them to be a great investment of our time and attention.

Here are our Top 10+ takeaways from our conference notes:

1) Never drink your own Kool-Aid. Translation: get out of the office, meet with your clients, be close to your clients, listen to your clients. Don’t sit in your ivory tower away from the action.

2) Each year, choose just three things for you or your company to focus on and achieve. Not 5. Not 10.

3) Decide what business areas you want to win at, and be hyper-focused on achieving those results.

4) Take calculated risks to move the company forward.

5) As your business grows, spend more time working “on” the business, not “in” the business. As a business leader, focus your efforts on your highest value work. Delegate lower value work to others.

6) If you are able to, spend almost half of your work time on future-focused projects that will help shape the future of your organization.

7) Do testing when trying out new products and markets. No need to bet the company on it, but you need feedback.

8) Both Steve Jobs and Jeff Bezos were and are hyper-focused on the customer user experience in order to improve.

9) Use post-mortem meetings to gain insights from both successes and failures. Be honest with yourself, learn from the past, and move on. You can do post mortems on products, projects, marketing efforts, and more.

10) Leaders should be making decisions with 40 – 70% of the information needed. You will never have full, complete information. Source: Colin Powell

11) Dare to enter your personal discomfort zone, whatever that may be. Example: Visit clients, attend trade shows, visit key vendors and partners, and conduct customer focus groups.

12) Know which of your products and customers are your most profitable. Focus on them.

13) You can execute far faster than your large competitors can.

14) Revisit your Annual Strategic Plan often throughout the year: monthly, quarterly. Revise as needed.

15) Train people well enough so they can leave your company. Treat them well enough so they don’t have to. Source: Sir Richard Branson

16) Reorient your focus during meetings to be external. Focus on your customers, clients, competition and not your own internal issues.

17) Figure out the most pressing needs of your business or organization, and invite people with those skills and experience onto your Advisory Board.

18) Retaining employees is critical. Losing them is costly. Turnover costs are 30 to 150% of an annual salary. Treat your best employees well. In fact, treat all your employees well.

19) Take feedback seriously, especially social media and be proactive in responding and managing it.

20) Partner with educational intuitions to identify and involve talent early (interns, graduates, etc.)


 Neptune Advisors - Leading Boston area management consulting firm

C Level Community - Boston, Massachusetts organization connecting middle market C-Level leaders across industries to transform their businesses