Founder and Chair – LMFC
Vice Chair – LMFC
President and CEO – LMFC
President & CEO – The Bank of Holland
SVP of Shared Services - LMFC

Hear from the founder of Lake Michigan Financial Corporation, Rich Lievense, and his insight on what this blog encompasses.

On several ‘blogging’ occasions, I have recommended books for reading. Here is another must-read for any growth company striving to make strategically sound decisions and keeping everyone aligned and accountable. Mastering the Rockefeller Habits by Vern Harnish builds on the very precise habits followed by John D. Rockefeller, one of the most successful and wealthiest business leaders in history.
Our senior management team read the book about a year ago and has since been implementing Harnish’s disciplined approach. Here’s what our past year has looked like: After our senior managers read and studied the books principles, they prepared their ‘one page’ strategic plan for their respective business or department. We met over the course of several days to thoroughly discuss the application of Rockefeller Habits concepts and review their draft plans. The process was challenging, refreshing, frustrating, stimulating, etc.  We needed to boil down our priorities, identify measurable metrics, and develop an effective rhythm to maintain alignment and drive accountability. Harnish suggested, “keeping it simple keeps it clear.” A single-paged, action-oriented strategic plan was the result of our intense discussions.  Each employee in the organization has the strategic plan pinned up ‘in plain view’ as a roadmap for the execution of our goals.
Mastering the Rockefeller Habits is a “how-to” book providing solutions to issues and challenges growth companies experience.  Below are a few of the key concepts the book outlines:
·   Rockefeller’s top habits:
       - Priorities – develop a “Top 5” list
       - Data – know your numbers really, really well
       - Rhythm – have daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly meetings

·    Build a powerful, usable and postable one-page strategic plan to strengthen execution.

·    Optimize your human capital through the “Right Things Right” model. This framework will outline what decisions need to be made and in what order.
On October 30, The Bank of Holland is hosting a discussion on the book Mastering the Rockefeller Habits with keynote speaker and CEO of Gazelles Systems, Patrick Thean.  Following Patrick’s presentation, a panel of local business leaders will share their insights into how they incorporated the Rockefeller Habits within their companies.  Join us and learn more about the Rockefeller Habits formula for business success.  Guests attending will receive a complimentary copy of Mastering the Rockefeller Habits as a gift, reserve your seat online.

October 30, 2013 | 4:00PM | The Pinnacle Center

The passing of Steve Jobs has caused much reflection in the popular press.  While not perfect or easy to be around, he clearly fundamentally changed many important things.  A couple important lessons are outlined in this short article. 

Read "Steve Jobs and Taking the Big Chance" from The New York Times.

Who says manufacturing in the United States is dead?  Some young entrepreneurs want to change the game. 

Read "The Kitchen-Table Industrialists" from The New York Times.

Andy Kessler is a columnist with the Wall Street Journal whose new book “Eat People and Other Unapologetic Rules for Game-Changing Entrepreneurs”  takes a different and somewhat irreverent view of entrepreneurship today.  The book is an easy read and combines a new spin on some classic economic theories along with different ideas for the “new” economy.  I do not agree with all of his theories or conclusions and I doubt you will either.  But the book is thought provoking and gives a person of my generation a different perspective.  It’s worth the time and a fun read.


Check out “Eat People and Other Unapologetic Rules for Game-Changing Entrepreneurs” at or visit author Andy Kessler's website.

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