Blaine Millet's Blog Posts

Seahawks logoWe had the opportunity back in the fall to have John Schneider, General Manager of the (SuperBowl bound) Seattle Seahawks speak to us at one of our CEOtoCEO breakfast meetings. What a treat…both from John being very entertaining with his dry sense of humor but the insights he shared with us about the Seahawks organization. We were honored to have him speak and now that the Seahawks are in the Superbowl (GO HAWKS!!) his comments provide some real background on why.

We want to share some different pieces of his speech with you over the next couple of weeks to give you some more insight into not only John, but about Pete Carroll and how they worked together to create what has surely been a historical season.

To start, we wanted to share an interesting segment from his speech where he talked about Pete Carroll’s background as well as his and how they ended up at the Seahawks and creating this amazing partnership that has had such incredible success. I will let you know this is about 7 minutes long so I would encourage you to watch when you have the time so you can hear all of it at once.

As you can see, they both failed…in many people’s eyes. But if you know anything about failure, it is simply the next step to success or as the famous Thomas Edison put it, it simply tells you what doesn’t work so you don’t have to try that again and can move onto finding what does work. They both figured this out, were motivated beyond their “failures” and came together to create an incredible machine called the “Legion of Boom” and the best team in the NFC division of the NFL…not bad for a couple of guys that failed a few times!

During our CEOtoCEO breakfast in late November, we had the privilege of having Pat Chestnut, CEO of AAOA Healthcare speak to us about the Healthcare Reform Act. As you saw from an earlier post, he talked about a variety of aspects relating to business owners and top executives of small to middle market companies in the State of Washington. We wanted to share a small portion of the speech where Pat talked about the "Three Acts" as he called it. These are taking us from the beginnings to today and what each of these acts represent. Let us know what [more]
Whether you were busy building a budget or strategy in the fourth quarter last year or you put it off until the first quarter of this year, one thing is for certain…this is the time of year to “execute” that strategy! When I ran a consulting practice at Arthur Andersen in the late ‘90s one thing was for certain. Those that used us to help build AND execute their strategy accomplished considerably more than those who just had us help them build their strategy. Why? Because when you have a million things going on in your business…and we [more]
We had a great group of panelists at our February 7th CEOtoCEO breakfast event and as we promised, we want to share some of the video highlights as well as some of the answers to certain questions. One question that came from the audience and got lots of attention was in regard to CULTURE - that elusive, yet powerful force in all our companies. The question was simple, albeit the answers more difficult. The question was, "Where is the Culture established from inside your organization, from the top down or from the bottom up?" Great question and one that received [more]
During our CEOtoCEO breakfast this past week we had the opportunity to have a larger than normal crowd - all focused on learning some insights and tidbits from some of the many well-known and respected leaders in the room. The event didn't disappoint - we heard some great insights and thoughts. We will be sharing these over the next month or two with you on a regular basis on our site and also asking some key questions on our CEOtoCEO Discussion Group on LinkedIn - be sure to join if you haven't already. Starting out the breakfast John Hartman asked [more]
Bill Gates Reading List – 2012 & 2013 – Do you Agree?
While this is the time of year when resolutions abound, one that usually makes the list for most people is to “READ MORE” than they did last year. While it might be on a Kindle or iPad or even a real book, it really doesn’t matter. So we thought we would give you a head start and share with you the reading list from Bill Gates – what he read last year and what he recommends this year. Whether you are a Bill Gates fan or not, there are some interesting books on this reading list. We want to thank [more]
The word “STRATEGY” is bantered and thrown around in many of the conversations today among top executives, especially CEOs. But what does it really mean? And are they actually talking about the same thing? I don’t think so… Years ago when I first started doing “Strategic Planning” as part of my consulting role at Arthur Andersen, it was pretty straight forward and I feel for the most part executives were on the same page when you talked about Strategy. Today the lines have gotten fuzzier and less clear for many – primarily due to the “speed of business” that is [more]
During one of our CEO Innovation Team meetings we talked about differentiation. Not what most think about just having a product or service that is slightly different or better than the competition, but truly differentiated – both in product/service and experience. The concept of “Being Remarkable” was introduced by a well-known thought leader in both business and Marketing, Seth Godin. Seth wrote a book a few years back, The Purple Cow, where he introduced this concept of “Being Remarkable.” Only it isn’t exactly what you think. It isn’t just being special, it is “having people ‘remark’ about your [more]
Insight into Why Companies Can’t Innovate
As we begin to kick off our CEOtoCEO Innovation Teams, John and I are totally immersed into seeing how successful companies are innovating and on the flip side, what is keeping companies from innovating - or at least why they aren't being as successful as they would like.  Sometimes figuring out why something doesn't work gives you better insight into how to get it to work...that is the story I want to share today. One of our Innovation Team members, Rick Smith, CEO of EJ Bartells in Renton, WA co-authors a blog on innovation called "Simplivative" - which is [more]