Professional summary

Dr. Malcolm Upton is an educator, consultant, and coach with more than two decades of experience helping people get more out of their business with less effort and fewer headaches. Even more importantly, he is a business owner/operator himself. He’s been there and done that - sometimes is there and is doing that - and knows that, sometimes, Bubba has been the guy staring back at him from mirror. Let Malcolm help you learn from Bubba’s mistakes - we don’t have time to make them all ourselves.

He has been teaching for more than 30 years and was recognized as an Air Force Master Instructor, putting him in the top 1% of Air Force Instructors. He has coached hundreds of business people in analyzing and improving their business for more than

Engagement overview

Duration and cost of an engagement depends on the scope of work, identified during the initial consultation.


Most of the difference will be due to the difference in the people.

Without knowing you better, chances are that one of two things will be your greatest challenge. Either you won't be decisive enough for your board, or they will believe you don't listen to them enough. You need to take a good hard look at yourself and decide which is more likely.

If you are also Chairman of the Board, your ... Read more

I'm assuming you aren't a C-officer and don't have any formal power to impact overall company direction. Otherwise you probably wouldn't be asking this question, you'd be asking about details on the implementation plan you were putting in place.

As I see it your options are:

1) Be a petunia in an onion patch. This is also known as the voice crying in the wilderness strategy. Keep letting people ... Read more

Take the advice from "Wisdom of Teams" - I'm not going to beat that horse any more.

Coach K pointed out that Rules are imposed from above, Standards are enforced by the team. Have the team develop their standards. Give them a number of examples and let them set their own (blank sheet of paper).

Be sure that the team understands and uses the change equation.

C = R < DxVxF

C is the chang... Read more

I'm reminded of what our professor said at the start of my "Information Systems Enabled Change" class

"There has never been a fully successful IT implementation..."

I think that is an exaggeration, but it does point out that the key to effective change and the mindset of effective IT system development might not be highly compatible.

I'm assuming all of the technical issues for the ERP im... Read more

Most corporations 10-100x your size have just such an internal job board and policy. But they also tend to have 10-100 likely internal candidates...

What is your intent in implementing this policy? What benefits, monetary, and otherwise, would the organization realize? What benefits would management realize? What benefits would employees realize?

Balanced against that are the negatives. What... Read more

One thing to always keep in mind when you are using psychometric, aptitude, personality, communication style, or any other "soft skill/characteristic" tests is that they have VERY fuzzy boundaries...

Using them as a guide to inform decisions is fine, but never, ever let a test make the decision for you.

Second, great hires are great, not because of their skills, aptitudes, or personalities, but ... Read more


If you are experiencing high turnover, you have a very serious, systemic, problem that needs to be addressed in a more fundamental manner that the three ideas you have here.

Hiring a bench will only increase the number of disaffected employees you have and increase costs. I suspect you would be very disappointed with the results of this option.

Cross-training works very well in a culture of ... Read more

Performance appraisal can be part of a cultural change effort, but there are a lot of other things that will provide greater leverage (for good or ill) in changing culture.

That being said, they way you can use your performance appraisal system to drive behavior change is straight-forward. Maybe not easy, but straight-forward.

1. Define as clearly as you can what behavior you want. What does... Read more

There are a few pieces of critical information missing that I would need to give you an answer. You might be able to get the answer yourself if you answer them, however.

1. Do you want employees, or team members? Employees are recruited primarily for their skills and retained by their compensation package. They make decisions primarily based on what the impact would be on their compensation packa... Read more