News you can use… Week of April 15

Week of  April 15, 2013


“The world would not be in such a snarl,

 if Marx had been Groucho instead of Karl !”


Irving Thalberg

Co-found of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios





Bob Gibson is coming to Austin this week

“Spitballing Indy”

How Bad for Grads?

Econ Recon: “Corruption of Capitalism Revisited”….Vistage Confidence Index


Bob Gibson Workshop
“The Executive Negotiator” 3 hour workshop starting at 830am focuses on the mindset and abilities to negotiate effectively with those inside and outside the organization. Gibson’s 30 plus years of  experience and insight makes for a very interesting morning focusing on critical negotiating skills. We will make room for you either morning April 17th Wednesday (The Austin Country Club-Riverside Room) and/or April 18th Thursday (Barco Lighting). If you haven’t all ready, please RSVP

“Spitballing Indy”

Steven Spielberg and George Lucas are the cinematic icons of the baby boomers.  Spielberg achieved early fame through “Jaws” and Lucas brought us the “Star Wars” series; both were groundbreaking achievements in the film world.   Ultimately they teamed up to create the “Indiana Jones”  films. I encourage you to spend a few minutes with a fascinating article and some associated links that describing a brainstorming process called “spitballing” and how these creative geniuses used it to create the adventures of the bullwhip cracking archaeologist.  “Spitballing Indy” may be a process that you want to bring into your own business.

How Bad for Grads?


Within the month, college grads will be handed diplomas…will they be landing jobs?  Check out this interesting analysis of the market for the new grads.  It provides some interesting insights into the nuances of what’s happened over the past 30 years to the market for graduates and where we are today. Share it with a young person in your life in your life who’s about to leave college or one who’s about to go there.

Econ Recon:

Stockman Revisited: A couple of week ago, there was a lengthy article in the Sunday New York Times by Ronald Reagan’s Budget Director, David Stockman titled “Corruption of Capitalism” in which Stockman offers an analysis of the economic world warning that the worst is right around the corner and we should prepare for the worst. Vistage Staff Economist and ITR Economics Principal Alan Beaulieu,  who has long held that a Great Depression awaits us, but not until 2030, responds to Mr. Stockman’s article in his blog at the ITR website.  Check out his take on the David Stockman op-ed (with a promise of more commentary to come).

Vistage Q3 Confidence Index:  See what your CEO peers are saying about the economy ahead:

Below are some key highlights from the Q1 2013 Vistage CEO Confidence Index (all members surveyed):

  • 49% of CEOs think that economic conditions have improved compared with a year ago, up from 35% in Q4 2012.
  • 68% of CEOs anticipate their firm’s sales revenues will increase in the next 12 months.
  • Just 11% of CEOs found it easy to find people with the right skills to drive their business growth, while 75% found it difficult to find qualified talent.
  • 16% of CEOs believe the sequester will adversely impact their business.
  • 82% of CEOs expect U.S. fiscal uncertainty will continue throughout the year.

Download the Q1 2013 Vistage CEO Confidence Index flyer to view the full results, and view the info graphic here.

Below are some key highlights from the March WSJ/Vistage Small Business CEO Survey (members leading companies in the $1 million-$20 million range):

  • 49% of all small firms in March reported that the national economy had improved compared with a year ago; this was twice the number that reported improved economic conditions six months ago.
  • 53% of small firms plan to add employees to their payrolls in the year ahead.
  • 69% of small firms expect higher revenues in the coming year, and 53% expected higher profits.
  • 77% of small firms expect the new health law would raise their insurance premiums.

See the remainder of the Wall Street Journal/Vistage Small Business CEO Survey results with this interactive tool.

MAKE it a great week!

Ed Stillman

Group Chairman
Vistage International, Inc.

(Mobile) 512.422.6232



“The best way to predict your future is to create it” ~Abraham Lincoln


Chair Page

What Vistage is like in Austin Texas – Video

Is Vistage Worth the Time – Video

Published by edstillman

I grew up in Carlsbad, north San Diego County, lost my dad as a teenager, went into the USAF for four years and hired on with 3M in 1969. Received my AA from Santa Barbara City College, BA and Masters from Redlands University and after 33 plus years, I retired from 3M in 2002. As I look back on my life, I have been creating myself and developing my skill sets to be a business coach and a Vistage Chair. I am president of SEOT, a "personal improvement" consulting firm spending most of my time working with Central Texas executives running small to medium size for-profit companies who are focusing on improving their profitability greater than their competition. My area of interest is assisting senior executives in creating a better balance between business commitments and personal relationships. I also facilatate three leadership labs each consisting of a dozen owners, presidents and CEOs. We meet monthly both in a group setting as well as in a 1-to-1 coaching session. Our focus is to sharpen each others' skills in becoming better leaders, making better decisions and taking ourselves and companies to that next level. Who are we? My members are experienced top executives who recognize that they don’t have all the answers and who actively seek the company of successful peers—both to give and receive insights and ideas. My members mine the 200 plus years of chief executive experience that comes together in our monthly meetings and members are eager to offer their own experience and insights in the process. As a group, we spend our time exploring topics members can't discuss anywhere else. My members have many other places where they can engage in idle, "cocktail party" chatter. Our mission is to provide the setting for discussing the "undiscussable." Where or who can you go to for confidential, honest feedback to assist you in minimizing your personal "Worry List"?

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