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“Only three things happen naturally in organizations: friction, confusion and under performance. Everything else requires leadership.”

-Peter Drucker

One of the tests of leadership is the ability to recognize a problem before it becomes an emergency.

Arnold H. Glasow


The weakness of a leader is proportionate to the number of truths that must be kept from them.

Eric Hoffer

Longshoreman and Philosopher

Organizational Strategy for New C-Suite Leadership Roles

Fractional CMO Strategy for International Medical Companies

Digital Strategy for Nationwide Inner City School Network

Senior Partner of Management Consultancy Firm

“Courage is the only virtue you cannot fake.”

-Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Author of the Black Swan

For business strategy to succeed, leaders must not “fake” courage. Leaders must have courage to say what they REALLY think. Courage to say what they REALLY believe. Courage to disagree with members of their team, their boss—even their CEO.

But in many companies, courage is severely lacking. Why? One reason is that people don’t want to make waves. They are timid. They are risk averse. And in Minnesota where we’re located, many put on the veneer of “Minnesota Nice” which muddles the waters greatly.

Political correctness in business is the elevation of sensitivity over truth. And you need truth spoken in your strategy room so you can execute realistic Big Ideas in order to scale your business against your competitors. Most of the time in business you only get in trouble for telling the truth. When you do people tend to lose their minds—at Mars Hill Media we tell the truth anyway. If you want that kind of honest strategic leadership, we should talk.

Today, courageous leaders are in high demand and in short supply. And so are courageous strategists.

Tim Finley is the Chief Marketing Strategist at Mars Hill Media. Finley is a sales and marketing leader with experience as a CEO and CMO in direct response, digital, brand performance media. He has led business strategies for Pizza Hut, Lifetime Fitness, Southwest Airlines, Direct TV, Life Lock, Select Comfort, Cirrus Aircraft, Children’s Cancer Research Fund, Fairmont Hotels and many others. His e-mail is

Executive Deliverables:

Business Growth Strategy | Big Idea Creative Frameworks | New Business Ideation | Performance Marketing Platforms | Sales Enablement | Account Based Marketing (ABM) | Narratives & Storytelling | Creative Account Planning | Consultative Platform Selling | Writing Commercial Insights | Customer Experience (CX) | Digital CEO | Direct Response CMO | Non-Profit ED | B2B | B2C | New Business Development | Leadership Transitions


Southwest Airlines | Life Time Fitness | Pizza Hut | Cirrus Aircraft | Renewal by Anderson | Life Lock | RF Technologies | Hemablock | Children’s Cancer Research Fund | U.S. Olympic Committee | Bose | Select Comfort | Fairmont Hotels | Spreading Hope Network | Vet Pharmaceuticals | Direct TV | Pinnacle Forum | North American Mission Board (NAMB) | Free Wheelchair Mission | Buell Consulting | Zimmerman Reed | Mercy Ships | Acton Institute.

Five levels of intellect in ascending order: Smart, Intelligent, Brilliant, Genius, Simple.

- Albert Einstein

The weakness of a leader is proportionate to the number of truths that must be kept from them

– Eric Hoffer

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