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The Canoe Theory: A Business Success Strategy

Think of your business like a canoe: Everyone plays a role and must “paddle together” to achieve a common goal.

  • The canoe has a direction – the company requires a vision and strategy.
  • Everyone has a seat and a paddle, and everyone is expected to paddle.
  • Those who won’t paddle have to get out of the canoe.
  • Those who paddle well, but prevent others from paddling have to adjust or get out of the canoe.
  • Be understanding if someone in the canoe has a personal crisis. We will all paddle harder for a reasonable period of time while you deal with this.
  • You have the right to be happy. If you aren’t happy in this canoe, let’s help you find a different canoe to be in.
  • If you are going to be in this canoe, then support the canoe or have the integrity to leave, rather than stay and undermine the canoe.




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