Occupy The Grateful Dead

Grateful Dead

Photo by Wally GobetzCreative Commons License Some Rights Reserved

Forget the drugs. Forget the trips. Remember the music. And, focus on the business.

While the OccupyWallSt protestors tell us what’s wrong with our system, Grateful Dead fan and professor Dr. Barry Barnes is teaching us what can be right.

Barnes, a Professor of Management at NOVA Southeastern University, has pulled his business analysis together in a new book, Everything I Know About Business I Learned from the Grateful Dead.

Yes. The business world should learn to Occupy The Dead.

Previously we looked at The Dead’s business approach to understand how to drive audiences to live events: “What Would The Grateful Dead Do?” Barnes takes The Dead model further to explore how businesses can succeed through customer integration.

With 194 Dead shows to his credit, Barnes’ analysis is not just from the academic point of view. He highlighted his Dead inspired business lessons in a recent Huffington Post column. So what are Barnes’ top Grateful Dead lessons?

–Improvise: Plan but be prepared to make adjustments, including changing your revenue model.

–It’s All About the Customer: Focus on turning a one-time customer into a lifelong fan.

–Invest in Innovation: The more money you put back into company the more the company will be worth at the end. It’s not about creating a business that will be a quick cash cow for your own vacations. It’s about doing a better job for your customers.

–Create a community: Collaborate with your customers to not only expand the brand, but help create it.

–Control Your Flow: Keep as much work as you can in-house. The do-it-yourself approach keeps you in touch with customers and gives your colleagues a shared stake in the growth.

–Lead: The more creative and fun the leadership is, the more the company communicates a culture of engagement.

–Authentic Experience: Learn from the Dead and from Festivals. After all, the key to life, love, friendships, and experiences is to experience something authentic.

Now, that’s good music and good business. Don’t you think?

- Bill Reichblum

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