There are two Best Buy stores that are less than a 15 minute drive from my home. For the past several years, I've instinctively gone to the one that's "in town" because that's the general direction I went for most of my shopping. Unfortunately, I was often turned off by long lines, crowded parking lots, and indifferent service. I like Best Buy's selection of products, so recently I tried shopping at the other store near my home that was "out of town". This store was a whole new world. Every time I've been there I was greeted by a friendly, knowledgeable associate who helped me make a good purchase. And, there was always plenty of parking and rarely a line at the cash registers.
Same chain of stores. Different locations. World of difference.
Jim Collins, the Good to Great guru, wrote, "you can build a pocket of greatness without executive power, in the middle of an organization." He argues you can find ways to create a great team, department, or business unit regardless of your company's reputation, your boss's capabilities, or the resources at your disposal. Today's economic climate presents a perfect opportunity to stand out from the crowd and demonstrate your value.
Jim Collins has a great website with lots of tools. You can also check out my recent interview on NBC San Diego.