Gordon Bell, a prominent investor who funds start-ups, is very blunt with executives of firms in his portfolio. For instance, when someone makes predictions for company performance, Bell will zero in on one number and ask the CEO, â€œWanna bet? A side bet, you and me, for $1,000.â€ If the CEO gulps, Bell knows he or she has doubts. At least once, when an underperforming CEO didnâ€™t take the bet, Bell had him fired. You can take this notion up a notch to engage in prediction markets, set up like a stock market, where people can buy and sell shares reflecting their honest assessment of how a particular plan will play out.
Source: Seven Ways to Fail Big by Paul B. Carroll and Chunka Mui | Harvard Business Review, September 2008