Archive | Build Your Business

Value Pricing and Stale Marketing

Pool noodles. You know those coloured foam round sticks that children play with in swimming pools? Two summers ago, I saw a gas station selling them in a rural area displaying a sign proclaiming their price. The sign said “Cheaper than Canadian Tire in Town”. Why, I thought would you advertise like that when you […]


In the 1990’s a children’s clothing business nearby to me in Vancouver BC suddenly collapsed. Revenues and profits had grown at a breakneck speed with a multi-location expansion project. But they did not take into account that expansion vacuums up a ton of immediate cash that can only be replaced by profits generated over time. […]

Estimating. Do you WAG, SWAG or use a Stick?

Originally published in Cast Polymer Connection, Fall 2017. In so many small businesses goods and services are priced based on guesswork – WAG method (the Wild Ass Guess) or add just a few numbers for SWAG (a Scientific Wild Ass Guess). Perhaps you use the STICK method where every stick and nail is costed out? […]


Warren Buffett, the billionaire chief executive officer of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., said he rates businesses on their ability to raise prices and sometimes doesn’t even consider the people in charge. “The single most important decision in evaluating a business is pricing power,” Buffett told the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission in an interview released by the […]

What is profit engineering? How to create pre-determined profits.

We believe that profit engineering is designing your company to produce a predictable, pre-determined profit. I owned a service company in Vancouver Canada that produced a 45% gross margin every month, steadily, for 13 years. So it can be done. And if you have predictable margins you stand a better chance of making a profit. […]

Busy But Not Winning

I have several clients and a number of friends and colleagues who equate busy time with productivity. But, being “busy” does not always equate to being effective. Ineffective people abound. From outside they are hard at work with paper, phone calls, emails, meetings and more meetings. Their desks are piled high. They look frazzled. They […]