14 Thoughts From 14 Years

This month is StrataCore’s 14-year anniversary. That means I’ve been in the industry for 21 years. I don’t feel that old but my gray hair tells a different story. In honor of our milestone, I’ve comprised 14 key beliefs, earned over 14 years since founding StrataCore:

  1. It’s all about the customer. Give them what they want or someone else will.
  2. Only the very best employees can consistently satisfy clients. Always work to identify, attract, develop and retain the very best team members.
  3. IQ testing and EQ testing are an essential part of identifying top talent.
  4. In-depth reference checks are critical. Talk to at least 3 previous direct managers
    before hiring. Only hire candidates if the majority of their previous direct managers score them as a 9 or 10.
  5. Don’t tolerate toxic personalities in your company. Fire your “brilliant jerk” before great people leave. Brilliant jerks kill a company culture and cause others to disengage.
  6. Never let processes trump logic. I see this happen at big companies all the time. People are forced to defend a process that doesn’t fit all situations. Too many companies force a process because they don’t trust their employees to think for themselves.
  7. Tell the truth. Your team, suppliers, and clients can handle it. Be so transparent it hurts.
  8. Celebrate successes. Invite spouses and friends. Non-work activities help create better relationships and camaraderie. This helps everyone be more resilient when inevitable workplace stresses occur.
  9. Laughter is a magical reset button. When life gets stressful find something funny about the situation and laugh. Once the tension subsides, your mind can more clearly solve the problem.
  10. Don’t let someone else’s oversight become your mistake. We constantly receive incomplete or erroneous information from vendors, providers, teammates and clients. You must closely review all information with a critical eye to make sure it makes sense. Never turn off your
    BS detector.
  11. Help people grow personally and professionally. Everyone wants to get better. Lay out career paths for everyone on your team. Offer guidance and coach your clients, employees and suppliers. Help everyone increase awareness so they can grow in their professions.
  12. Decrease your avoidance. Withdrawing from challenges is the greatest form of
  13. Never send a negative message via email or text. All sensitive topics should be discussed in person or on the phone.
  14. Work hard to build a better life for your friends, family, co-workers, clients, and partners. Sincerely helping others will lead to your own success.

Those are my 14 key learned beliefs from 14 years of running a business – what are yours?


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