Featured Product
This Week in Quality Digest Live
Quality Insider Features
Mike Figliuolo
No one needs recurring meetings, unnecessary reports, and thoughtless emails
David Suttle
What is breakthrough technology really capable of?
David Cantor
This article is 97.88% made by human/2.12% by AI
Daniel Marzullo
Think and plan more deeply with this exercise
Eric Whitley
Robotic efficiency coupled with human intuition yields a fast, accurate, adaptable manufacturing system

More Features

Quality Insider News
Pioneers new shape-memory alloys
A Heart for Science initiative brings STEM to young people
System could be used to aid monitoring climate and coastal change
A centralized platform and better visibility are key improvements
Greater accuracy in under 3 seconds of inspection time
Simplify shop floor training through dynamic skills management
Oct. 17–18, 2023, in Sterling Heights, Michigan
Enables scanning electron microscopes to perform in situ Raman spectroscopy
For current and incoming students in manufacturing, engineering, or related field

More News

Matthew E. May

Quality Insider

Getting Unstuck

How many of these sticking points have skewered you?

Published: Thursday, April 24, 2014 - 15:40

Everyone, in any endeavor, gets stuck at some point. All of a sudden, or so it seems, things aren’t going right. Or even going anywhere.

Writers get writer’s block. Athletes suffer from losing streaks. Running a business is no different; what was working well yesterday isn’t working today. You try many things, but nothing works. You’re at a loss about how to get moving forward again.

The first thing you need to do—after admitting to yourself you’re stuck—is to pinpoint why. The reasons come in many different flavors. Scan the list below. Be honest, and check any that have you nodding yes.

1. You treat your business like it’s a job.
2. You think your latest successful windfall will last forever.
3. You think someone is coming to save you.
4. You let today’s emergencies dictate your plan.
5. You never take a break or a vacation from work.
6. You take dangerous risks instead of calculated actions.
7. You think the only alternative to success is failure.
8. Your customers can’t find you.
9. Your fear of rejection stops you from selling.
10. You keep calling people who don’t respond.
11. You stop marketing as soon as your revenue increases.
12. You are always selling product features.
13. You are selling a product that can be purchased cheaper elsewhere.
14. You go on social media sites without a strategy.
15. You hate your customers (and maybe even your employees or vendors).
16. You only hire employees who are weaker than you.
17. You allow lousy employees (and customers) to overstay their welcome.
18. You hire for skills, not attitude.
19. You are always telling employees what to do because you’re the boss.
20. You think customer service is a cost center.
21. You never ask for help.
22. You allow personal use of smartphones on the job.
23. You don’t know how to read your financial statements.
24. You think business is about growing sales.
25. Your fixed overhead costs are too high.

These are the 25 most common reasons we get stuck when it comes to operating our businesses, according to small-business consultant Barry Moltz, and make up the 25 chapters in his new book, How To Get Unstuck (Motivational Press, 2014).

How to Get Unstuck is a practical reference guide in which Moltz unwraps each of these sticking points, and delivers a no-nonsense, real-world look into the underlying cause(s) of your stuck-ness, and then offers several tried-and-true action items to get you going again.

You may not be stuck just yet, but picking up How to Get Unstuck will help you stay that way.

First published April 2, 2014, on Edit Innovation.


About The Author

Matthew E. May’s picture

Matthew E. May

Matthew E. May counsels executives and teams through custom designed facilitation, coaching, and training using four basic ingredients: strategy, ideation, experimentation, and lean. He’s been counseling for 30 years, a third of it as a full-time advisor to Toyota. He is the author of four books, the latest The Laws of Subtraction (McGraw-Hill, 2013), and is working on his fifth book. His work has been appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, and many other publications. May holds an MBA from The Wharton School and a bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University.