Business by Aristotle?

Roman copy in marble of a Greek bronze bust of Aristotle by Lysippus, c. 330 BCE.

Roman copy in marble of a Greek bronze bust of Aristotle by Lysippus, c. 330 BCE.

by Bud Cornwell

The Greek philosopher Aristotle divided the means of persuasion, appeals, into three categories–Ethos, Pathos, Logos.

Book I – Chapter 2 in “Aristotle’s Rhetoric”

Of the modes of persuasion furnished by the spoken word there are three kinds. The first kind depends on the personal character of the speaker; the second on putting the audience into a certain frame of mind; the third on the proof, or apparent proof, provided by the words of the speech itself. Persuasion is achieved by the speaker’s personal character when the speech is so spoken as to make us think him credible.

Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and scientist born in the Macedonian city of Stagirus, in 384 BCE. Aristotle’s “ingredients for persuasion” – otherwise known as “appeals” – are known by the names of ethos, pathos, and logos. They are all means of persuading others to take a particular point of view.

Ethos, pathos and logos each have a different meaning:

• Ethos is an appeal to ethics, and it is a means of convincing someone of the character or credibility of the persuader.

• Pathos is an appeal to emotion, and is a way of convincing an audience of an argument by creating an emotional response.

• Logos is an appeal to logic, and is a way of persuading an audience by reason.


What is a company ethos?

The ethos of a company is its core set of values or operating principles that are used to set the tone for the company’s overall operations. In general, the ethos expresses the way that a company wants to behave. Some companies include concepts like environmental awareness or a democratic structure of communication in their overall ethos.

jerk-pic-1Businesses that have compelling ethoses end up winning clients even when their prices are not the best in the market or their products or services might not be the most innovative available. Their ethoses may capture the attention of their niches, and their clients develop an emotional attachment.

Green Mountain Energy is an example of a company that has captured a larger market share than it might have otherwise because of its commitment to providing energy through means that are pollution free. The company’s ethos involves using power from sun, wind and hydroelectric sources so that its customers do not contribute to global pollution. The company’s marketing and outreach push this ethos, quantifying the energy use of its customers in terms of the number of trees saved or the number of cars taken off the road. These statistics make its ethos easy to understand,

11 tips for new consultants to hit the ground running

Tips for new business consultants and management consultantsAfter releasing a few big products last week, we’re back to regularly-scheduled programming. This week, we’ll focus on the consulting lifestyle.Today’s post is on practical tips to being successful as a new consultant. A former manager once said to me, “do well in your first project, and you can write your own ticket for the next few years.”

To that end, here’s a tactical list for getting off to a fast start on a new project. Follow the 11 steps below and you’ll be a management maven in no time:

1. Set up Google Alerts for your client and its competitors

This is an absolute must. Google Alerts feed you the latest online information (collected primarily from news sites and blogs) related to keywords that you specify.

Setup these alerts for your client and its top 3 competitors.

This will help you stay current on client and industry developments, which will come in handy through the project. Many people are too pre-occupied to do this regularly, and it’s a quick win for new consultants to add value.

Go here to get started. If you don’t know your client’s key competitors, use tools like Yahoo! Finance.





In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing and the next best thing is the wrong thing–the worst thing you can do is nothing.–Theodore Roosevelt

Today’s global economy is characterized by rapid and unpredictable change. The challenge of such turbulent times can only be met by employing an appropriate blend of the leadership and management mindsets.

Leaders in all sectors–industry, government, the military, academia, and non-profits–are being challenged to do more with less to better utilize their people’s time, physical assets, and budget. Your first response to a shrinking budget might be to do more yourself. An alternative is to delegate more to team members either proportionally or by getting your high potentials to take on extra work. In the first case, you are likely to burn out and have insufficient time to lead. In the latter two cases, you burn out either everyone or just the best people on your team. There is a better way: eliminate low-value tasks.

Stefan, an associate director in a government agency, received a constant stream of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, which by law must be addressed promptly. He lamented that answering the requests was making it virtually impossible for his people to perform their core mission; his thinking was rooted in ways that worked well for him in the past. Doing everything that was asked was one of Stefan’s core values and a source of pride for him. We asked him to consider other approaches he could use to process the FOIA requests. Stefan met with his boss and asked her to assign some of them to her staff. A few hours later, she agreed that her staff would handle the more controversial requests because they involved policy issues. The impossible became possible, and his team continued to excel at their core mission.


Top 10 Issues Small Businesses Will Face in 2014

The marketplace is constantly changing, and small businesses that stay abreast of contemporary trends and can anticipate the future will survive, while those that stubbornly rest on their laurels will be left behind. The ability to surmount small business challenges is critical to success, and it begins with a strategic plan to overcome market obstacles. To help you plan, the following lists the top 10 issues small business will face in 2014. Are you prepared

Top 10 Issues Small Businesses Will Face in 2014 image business issues

1. Healthcare

It’s still uncertain how the Affordable Care Act is going to affect small businesses, but it’s fair to say you’re going to spend a lot of time, money, or both dealing with it in 2014. How will you manage your healthcare program and expenses without jeopardizing your budget and work time?


Benefits of Small Business Consulting


No two businesses are the same. The challenges, opportunities, and structure of each company are in one way or another unique from its competitors and others. Since each business is different, a unique approach is required when any given business is trying to deal with a current problem or assess their viability in the future. The consulting industry exists to help businesses tackle these issues, but not every consulting job is going to be the same. Small business consulting is going to require a different approach and frame of mind compared to working with big businesses.

What is consulting? Well, consulting is the process of offering expert advice or facilitative assistance to help businesses examine the problems that are holding them back now as well as the opportunities they may have in the near future. The concept behind small business consulting is no different; however the approach may vary from that used with big businesses. A typical consulting approach looks like this:

  • Getting to know the business
  • Assessing problems and opportunities
  • Perform an analysis
  • Develop a plan to conquer issues
  • Implement, track, and adjust the plan


Beware The Power of the Business Consultant…

Erika Andersen

Erika Andersen

Let me start by saying that I am not a fan of some of the most highly regarded business thinkers of our time.  I read what they say – carefully, and with an open mind – and I think, What?  That is simply not my experience. I can’t imagine that’s the best way to think/act/respond.

I have an especially hard time with folks who propose complex systems of approaching business based on what I perceive to be faulty assumptions about the nature of human beings.  In my early years as a consultant and business coach, I would often sit in rooms where a highly paid guru from Bain or McKinsey or Accenture would pontificate to a group of execs about their business and how they should run it. And even though some of the managers were clearly skeptical (and would voice their skepticism afterwards in private), they would follow the consultants’ advice…too often to their detriment. Because the guy (pretty much always a guy) was highly paid, had multiple degrees, sounded smart, implied (or stated outright) that he knew more than they did.  It always reminded me of the story of the Emperor’s new clothes:  nobody wanted to say anything about the Emperor’s nakedness, because everyone else was talking about how wonderful the clothes were…


20 Years Later: The Internet Revolution & Small Business

‘It was 20 years ago today’… In 1994 the economy was coming out of recession. Our fledgling business consulting firm was just getting going while we were all facing an incoming technological tsunami that would forever change the way we communicated.

We were being introduced to new words: “Internet”. “World Wide Web”. “Email”. “Information SuperHighway”.

We were learning how to log on, send messages via our 386 computers while shoving 5.25″ floppy disks into drives to see data on screen. We already had the ability to print out spreadsheets on dot matrix printers, and now, without a fax or telex, miraculously we could send them as attachments to the next office, next state, or around the world.

1994 Time: The Strange New World of the Internet

Through our squawking, beeping 14.4 modems, we would hear “You Got Mail”. Communication would never be the same.

We registered domain names and spent thousands of dollars hiring web designers. We rushed to the ‘PC Superstores’ CompUSA and Circuit City to buy the fastest machines, newest operating systems, soundcards, CD Roms, software, etc.

We adopted this new technology quickly and adapted just as fast.


When a business needs help

When a small to medium business needs help, they call Ozark CG

Offer business restructuring, debt mediation, fundraising & moreOzark CG’s consultants have provided alternatives to help small businesses remain viable, including

  • Business restructuring
  • Debt mediation
  • Capital acquisition

As the global marketplace continues to experience economic contractions, it’s the local small business that feels the pressure. Suppliers, vendors and creditors alike are resorting to litigation and a ‘scorched earth’ policy when it comes to collecting business debts.

Creditors have representation to assist them to collect debts, but troubled small business owners typically can’t afford representation and have nowhere to turn. With slowing cash flow and difficult credit restrictions, many small business owners are now facing few options to remain viable, beyond employee layoffs or complete shutdown.

Ozark CG Consultants can help!


Valcor Named 2013 Champion – Small Business Influencer Awards


  • Valcor Named a Top 100 Champion in the 2013 Small Business Influencer Awards

New York, NY, October 27, 2013 – Valcor has been named a Top 100 Champion in the 2013 Small Business Influencer Awards.

The Small Business Influencer Awards honor those who are influential to small businesses in North America, through the products, services, knowledge, information or support they provide to the small business market.

The Awards are designed to recognize the unsung heroes of small businesses – those who support and encourage entrepreneurs and small business owners, and help them achieve success and stay successful. The Champions are chosen based on a combination of voting by the small business community and a panel of judges steeped in the small business market, who considered the contributions of the nominees over the past year toward:

  • advocating on behalf of small businesses,
  • providing products or services that address the unique challenges faced by small businesses,
  • revolutionizing how small businesses do business or how they solve business challenges,
  • helping small businesses grow,
  • or otherwise impacting small businesses in a significant way.