Identity Verified Thinker in Business / Leadership / Leadership Principles
Dale Furtwengler
Dale Furtwengler
Over a half dozen people told me "I want your life." What they really wanted was to be free of fear, anxiety, and frustration. My trilogy, LEAD A LIFE OF CONFIDENCE, STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD and ONE WITH THE UNIVERSE will enable you to enjoy a life others' desire.


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Oct. 12, 2016 2:19 pm
During the first presidential debate both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton spoke about their negotiating skills. As I was listening to their exchange it reminded me of the one question I would ask all clients who sought my help with negotiations. That question was: Are you looking for the best deal or a fair deal? Best deal If they said “best deal” I’d tell them I wasn’t...  Read More
Jul. 26, 2016 8:14 am
Last week we discussed how people seeking a promotion could enhance the likelihood of getting that promotion by focusing on their ability to learn and adapt instead of their experience. This week we’re going to take this discovery and apply it to business, career and personal marketing. Whether you’re a business owner trying to attract new customers, an employee seeking a job or promotion, or...  Read More
Jun. 7, 2016 10:28 am
During a recent conference on confidence the primarily female audience bemoaned the fact that men are better at “faking it until they make it.” Based on my experience in working with both female and male clients for more than 25 years, I believe that the difference in confidence between men and women lies in where they place their confidence. Women tend to rely on their experiences for their...  Read More
Apr. 6, 2016 2:15 pm
Foremost on the minds of virtually everyone I meet these days is the U.S. presidential race. The fervor in their voices, whether for or against any given candidate, spells one thing...the end of complacency. And that’s a good thing. When times are good we tend to disengage, to allow things to continue as they are. That’s as true for “leaders” as the rest of us. Indeed, leaders are often afraid...  Read More
Mar. 10, 2016 10:55 am
I’ve long believed that the role of leadership is to elevate us—to help us become better people as well as more productive. It’s this belief that triggered pangs of disappointment upon hearing the Catholic Church’s leaders suggest that its members disassociate from the Girl Scouts. Intolerance This intolerance for the beliefs of others are the heart and soul of so much of the violence we see...  Read More
Sep. 14, 2015 11:30 am
Before I left on vacation, local sportscasters lamented the fact that the St. Louis Cardinals have so many close games. They hoped for the occasional blowout with the Cardinals dominating the action. This despite the fact that the Cardinals have the best record in either league for the 2015 season. Natural tendency The sportscasters’ wish is one that comes naturally to all of us. We’d all...  Read More
Nov. 17, 2014 8:39 am
The telecom industry is embarking upon a price war as noted in a recent Barron’s article, Verizon Offers Best Value to Investors Amid Telecom Price Wars . Typically price wars begin because the companies in an industry are experiencing slowing revenue growth. The question is ‘Why are those growth rates slowing?’ The presumption is that the market is saturated, but is that really the case? Or...  Read More
Nov. 4, 2014 8:55 am
An October 2, 2014 Barron’s blog cites Google’s aggressive price cutting strategy on its cloud computing services and the risk that poses for Amazon. The article brought to mind yet another reason why low-price strategies are ill-fated. There’s no margin left to cut. As has been reported in a variety of publications, including this blog, Amazon has been operating on razor-thin margins....  Read More
Oct. 7, 2014 8:38 am
ABC News reported that farmers in western Australia are branding their produce to avoid having them commoditized by supermarket chains. Damien Rigali, lettuce grower, said “If I had headed down the same path that most people head down, I would’ve found myself going backwards in the next five years’ time.” A milk producer used a recyclable flat pouch instead of the standard milk container to...  Read More
Sep. 22, 2014 3:06 pm
Target’s pricing gimmick brought to mind the Paul Simon song ’50 Ways to Leave Your Lover.’ The gimmick I had mentioned to my wife that I could use some new jeans. She received an email from Target announcing a sale on clothing - buy one, get 50% off the second. In fairness, there was an asterisk associated with the offer. Unfortunately, there was no explanation of the asterisk anywhere on...  Read More
Sep. 3, 2014 7:53 am
In my July 15, 2014 blog post, Pricing’s self-inflicted wounds , I talked about the risks Amazon was taking with the negotiating tactics it’s employing with Hachette. One of those risks comes in the form of inviting alternatives. Less than a month later (August 12th), Fortune magazine published an article entitled “ Google, Barnes & Noble team up to take on Amazon. ” Strong-arm negotiating...  Read More
Aug. 4, 2014 5:25 pm
Why do some innovations dominate the market while others collect dust? Why do we feel that we can’t live without products that aren’t essential, yet place little value on those that are? Hint: It’s not the quality of the product or service. It’s marketing and pricing. Marketing is how we create desire, effective pricing strengthens that desire. Here are some examples of how the...  Read More
Jul. 23, 2014 4:48 pm
“Pier 1 Imports’ profit fell 26% as discounting cut into margins” is the headline of a June 19, 2014 DallasNews Business article. According to the article CEO Smith isn’t sure whether this is a change in customer behavior or a temporary phenomenon. This chicken-and-egg question plagues business owners and CEOs in virtually every business in every industry. Is there an answer to this dilemma? ...  Read More
Jul. 7, 2014 9:32 am
A March 5, 2014 Forbes article, The Psychology and Philosophy of Branding, Marketing, Needs and Actions , says “Customers build brands, not companies.” Really? Flawed logic While I agree with the author’s premise that lessons learned from Maslow and Aristotle about human behavior can dramatically improve brand creation and development, I don’t believe that customers build brands. If that...  Read More
Jun. 30, 2014 8:05 am
These words strike fear into the hearts of CEOs and salespeople like no others. The reality is that this is the one statement we should long to hear. Why? Because it opens the door to negotiation. Now if you’re not an experienced negotiator I suggest that you take some classes, read some books, do whatever you need to do to develop this skill. It’s one that will serve you well, not only in your...  Read More
Jun. 18, 2014 7:20 am
A group of small to mid-sized business owners were in the audience seated at tables of eight. I assigned one exercise. I gave each of them two minutes to tell their table mates something they did for their customers for which they didn’t charge. Their colleagues were charged with telling them what value they saw in that giveaway. The participants were astounded to learn how much value they were...  Read More
Jun. 3, 2014 7:46 am
Many of the most successful people I know attribute a great deal of their success to their ability to focus their time, effort and energy. The question is ‘How do they decide where to place that focus?’ We’ll be answering that question today. The question brings to mind an old, made-for-TV serial, Noble House, in which Pierce Brosnan takes control of a family empire on the verge of collapse....  Read More
May 27, 2014 9:26 am
On May 8, 2014 ABC News reported that online shoppers are being charged different prices for the same product. The reporters were astonished and dismayed at the apparent lack of fairness in this practice. Should they be? Value pricing The simple answer is ‘No.’ Value pricing has long recognized that products and services have different utilities and, consequently, different values for...  Read More
May 5, 2014 9:42 am
I recently had a truly unusual, memorable experience facilitating a discussion about pricing. What made it unusual? There wasn’t one question about pricing. Yet every person there described their ‘problem’ as a pricing problem. What were the real issues? Sales issues One person indicated that the prospect had said “If I had that much money in my budget I’d spend it on [something other than...  Read More
Apr. 21, 2014 4:22 pm
A friend of mine who is also a very savvy pricing guy, Anshu Jalora, posed the following question on LinkedIn: What pricing strategy would you propose for extended warranty products (auto, electronic items, etc) in a market where unorganized repair channel dominates & extended warranties are not very popular? The thing I loved about his question (they’re always intriguing) is that it...  Read More
Apr. 15, 2014 8:12 am
Many business owners believe that low prices increase demand. Then how do you explain this announcement in Torque News, GM Raises 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Pricing to Ease Demand ? The demand is so great that there’s a year-long waiting list. How can that be? The base price of the 2014 Corvette Stingray is $51,995? While most business leaders lament the ‘fact’ that customers only care...  Read More
Apr. 7, 2014 10:18 am
Within a matter of days I heard of two companies whose customers requested a cheaper alternative. One was Microsoft. It reported that “Lot of people asked for better deals on our digital marketplace [Xbox One games].” The second, a colleague, who said that his customers had asked for a less expensive alternative to his services. My colleague created a lower-cost alternative; Microsoft is testing...  Read More
Apr. 1, 2014 8:58 am
The following quote appeared in an Andrew Frye and Dakin Campbell, February 17, 2011 Bloomberg article ‘Buffett Says Pricing Power More Important Than Good Management.’ “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 panel last week. “If you’ve got the power to raise prices...  Read More
Mar. 24, 2014 11:19 am
In my December 16, 2013 post, Amazon: Pricing to Extinction? , I predicted that Amazon would be raising prices. I have to admit that the increase occurred earlier than I anticipated. I would love to say that it was genius on my part, but the reality is that anyone looking at the numbers would have reached the same conclusion. A company cannot continue to: Lose money on billions of dollars...  Read More
Mar. 17, 2014 4:30 pm
I wonder whether I’ll ever cease to be amazed at the pricing strategies companies employ. The latest example comes from our local grocery chain. It’s the 2013 holiday season. I’m walking down the aisle when I spot AA batteries on sale at a whopping 30% off. It’s the HOLIDAY SEASON! Kids are going to be getting toys and games that require batteries. Why in the world would you put batteries on...  Read More
Mar. 12, 2014 5:38 pm
“We’re the dumbest business people in the world. We post our prices in two foot high numbers atop 20 foot high posts.” said the executive of a local oil distributor who owned and operated a number of service stations. He’s right! Can you imagine a better way to focus your customers’ attention on price? So how should you go about communicating your price increases? Raising prices Before we...  Read More
Mar. 3, 2014 3:57 pm
We’re required to have safety inspections in order to renew vehicle licenses. My wife’s vehicle passed inspection, but the battery test indicated that the battery needed to be replaced. Since the battery was under warranty, the price of the replacement was only going to be $46. Then the service rep said “Cleaning the terminals will be $20, the total will be $66 plus tax.” How would you have...  Read More
Feb. 26, 2014 2:36 pm
A September 11, 2013 Reuters article, iPhone 5c: Apple picks profit over market share yet again , provides an opportunity to make a distinction between market share, pricing and profit strategies. In the Reuters article we’re finally seeing the financial press acknowledge that their is a trade-off between profit and market share. Generally the financial press is critical of companies that lose...  Read More
Feb. 18, 2014 9:51 am
Imagine two companies. One touts the results the customer can expect and charges premium prices, the other touts its low prices. Which one wins? The two companies are Verizon and Sprint. Verizon’s premium prices allowed it to build one of the broadest, most reliable networks in telecommunications history. In addition to its customer-centric network, Verizon continues to show solid growth in...  Read More
Feb. 10, 2014 4:47 pm
A recent study cited in The Australian suggests that charging fees for road usage would not only improve traffic flow, it would improve labor productivity. This raises a couple of questions: Is pricing an effective tool for modifying human behavior? If so, should it be a part of public policy? Decades ago, Alfred Kahn, noted economist, said that basing landing fees on the size...  Read More
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