CEO Blog

Need a bartender?
Need a bartender?
December 4, 2017

Last Thursday night, my wife and I hosted a holiday party at our house for a CEO group that I’m in. On the morning of the party, we learned that the person we asked to help with serving food and cleaning up wasn’t able to make it. So, we did what anyone else would do - we asked the kids to…

Five tips for prioritizing
Five tips for prioritizing
November 13, 2017

This past weekend, after finally completing the book I’ve been working on for more than 2 years (The Moral of the Story), I was looking forward to relaxing a bit with the family. However, it didn’t take long before thoughts of all the things still on my plate for the weeks ahead began causing anxiety. In addition to the typical workload,…

I don’t know
I don’t know
September 25, 2017

This past Sunday morning, after deciding to do a small home improvement project in my garage, I headed out to the hardware store to get the necessary materials. Not knowing what I needed, I asked a kind man wearing an orange apron for help. About 30 minutes and a cart full of materials later, I headed home excited to begin.  Using my new…

Look up!
Look up!
August 25, 2017

Lately, while the weather is nice, I’ve been trying to bike into work as often as possible. It is the one thing I can do that truly takes my mind off of everything except the task at hand. Even though the large majority of my ride is on a bike path (I cheat a bit and drive with my bike to the Charles…

Five surefire ways to increase frustration
Five surefire ways to increase frustration
August 7, 2017

As I sat down to write this blog post, I was realizing that I most often share stories and advice on how to make life or work a bit better. However, it struck me that those tips really depend upon your perspective. While many people, including myself, thrive on things like strong relationships, efficiency, productivity and rational thinking; others seem to thrive on chaos and…

What’s Guiding You?
What’s Guiding You?
July 23, 2017

My hands were clenched to the steering wheel of our rental car as I drove on the back roads of Puglia, Italy. The unpaved, winding roads up and down hills of olive trees allowed for two-way traffic; however, there was barely enough space for one car to drive between the stone walls on either side. I cautiously honked the horn as I approached blind turns, hoped that no cars were approaching, and anxiously awaited a…

Tug of War
Tug of War
July 3, 2017

A few nights ago, my family and I found ourselves in the medieval town of Ceglie Messapica in the Puglia region of Italy. The owner of the villa we're staying at suggested we head over there for their annual festival of games. Although his English was perfectly fine, I couldn't understand what the festival was all about, but he said he and his family were heading over…

Three Qualities for Success
Three Qualities for Success
June 5, 2017

Recently, we held our first town hall meeting at Small Army. Rather than doing the typical quarterly update where our leadership team shares what we believe the team would be most interested in (ie., financial info, new business updates, client successes, etc.), we encouraged everyone to anonymously submit questions that they would like to have answered.  Honestly, questions such as "Can we get more Yogibos (very comfy bean…

The Power of Confidence
The Power of Confidence
May 1, 2017

This weekend, as I was sitting in my living room thinking about what my next blog post would be, my daughter, Julia, came running inside the house screaming, “Dad! Come here! You have to see this!” At first, I figured that the dog had probably caught another rabbit - and was not very excited to get off the couch. But, after she assured me that…

I was wrong
I was wrong
April 9, 2017

Last week, I had the pleasure of working with my 9-year old son, Josh, on his science fair project. He built a projector, using a cardboard box, iPad and magnifying glass. Then, we conducted some experiments to determine how the distances between (1) the projector and the wall and (2) the iPad and the magnifying glass would impact the projection.  Josh’s hypothesis were: The image would get…

Comments from the judges
March 13, 2017

Two weeks ago, I made my annual trip to New York City to judge the final round of the North American Effie Awards. It’s an event I look forward to all year long, not only because I typically make a weekend out of it with my family, but it also provides a great lens into the state of the advertising industry. For those unfamiliar…

The power of nice
February 14, 2017

When I was younger, I was often told that nice guys finish last. However, after being in the service business for more than 25 years - and watching how people respond to nice vs. the alternative - I completely disagree. Nice is always the better approach. While the opposite may provide some short-term gains, being nice is definitely much better for the long-term…

A Letter to President Trump
January 23, 2017

Dear President Trump, Congratulations on becoming the 45th President of the United States. I know that you worked very hard to win and I’m certain that you'll continue to work hard in the days, months and years ahead. Admittedly, I didn’t vote for you. But I believe in the democratic system and, regardless of that whole popular vote and Russia thing that everyone is talking…

The Power of Purpose
The Power of Purpose
January 3, 2017

Early this morning, my family and I arrived back from Israel, where we had the opportunity to celebrate my daughter Julia’s Bat Mitzvah. For me and everyone else in my family, it was our first time to the Holy land, and was an experience I will never forget. Aside from the obvious pride and joy from my daughter’s achievement, it was the opportunity to meet…

Face Time vs. Screen Time
Face Time vs. Screen Time
December 12, 2016

A few weekends ago, after celebrating Thanksgiving with my family, I headed to my hometown of Peabody, MA for my 30th year high school reunion. Although I was excited to catch up with old friends, there was also a part of me that was skeptical of the whole thing. Even though there were almost 600 kids in my class, I felt like I was already…

Angry Fire vs. Angry Hearts
November 9, 2016

Well, the results are in. And, from the looks of my social media feeds, I’m fairly certain that it is not the outcome that most of my friends and colleagues were hoping for. However, as I wrote in my previous post, regardless of the outcome, we need to find a way to move forward. Today, I am writing to provide a glimmer of hope and…

Whatever happens…
November 8, 2016

Today is bound to be an interesting one, as our eyes and ears are glued to the news outlets to see who will be our next leader. Regardless of the outcome of the vote, many people across the country may be upset, scared, frustrated and, at some level, feeling helpless. However, without taking any political sides, I am writing to provide encouragement,…

What’s your weird?
What’s your weird?
October 11, 2016

A few years ago, when we started working with the MA Free Masons, I had the privilege of attending a ceremony at one of their lodges where they were inducting new leadership for the next term. I watched with great curiosity as these men in full Mason regalia marched single file into the room. They ceremoniously exchanged squares, compasses and…

What’s In A Name?
What’s In A Name?
September 6, 2016

Last weekend, my daughter invited a few friends over to our house for a belated birthday sleep-over party (her birthday is in December, but she much prefers Summer parties). Somehow, during the stay, I found myself in a conversation with them about names. The real surprising thing here is not actually the content of the conversation, but the fact that four…

How to stop data madness
How to stop data madness
August 15, 2016

Lately, I feel like I’ve been looking at lots of data. And, to be honest, I like it. Coming from a media and research background in my early days in this business, I grew a deep affection for numbers.  I enjoyed spending endless hours studying reach and frequency calculations, analyzing  research reports, and comparing indexes on everything from buying behaviors…

That cost what?!
That cost what?!
July 11, 2016

After my last blog post reflecting upon my recent visit to Poland and challenging the virtues of hope, I thought it would be nice to share a slightly lighter perspective from the second part of that trip.  When my wife and I left Poland, we flew to Lviv, Ukraine, where she was to give another lecture on US corporate law. Upon settling in…

Is hope always a good thing?
Is hope always a good thing?
June 20, 2016

Last week, my wife had the opportunity to teach a class about US Corporate Law in Poland and Ukraine. So, being the good husband I am, I tagged along for moral (and technical) support. Even though my grandfather was from Poland, I had never thought much about traveling to this part of the world. But now, I am forever thankful that I…

Stop wasting time!
May 25, 2016

We are all busy people. In fact, I’m sure you have many things to do today beyond reading this blog post. So, first, thank you! That said, our time is limited.  And, if you’re anything like me, you don’t like when it is unnecessarily wasted. That can be frustrating. The quicker we can get things done, the quicker we can…

Are you humbly confident?
May 4, 2016

Before most big presentations at Small Army, I remind my team to present their work with confidence. I tell them that, if they don’t show excitement for the work, they can’t expect others to show it back. In fact, one of our “20 Principles for Building Stronger Relationships” addresses this specific topic - The Picasso Principle: Treat every piece of work…

20 Principles for Building Stronger Relationships
20 Principles for Building Stronger Relationships
March 29, 2016

At Small Army, I have one simple goal in running the agency:  make sure that everyone who works here looks forward to coming to work every day and leaves with a smile on their face. If I can succeed at this one thing, the business will thrive.  Our team will do work that they are proud of (making clients happy). They…