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Archive for March, 2016
Someone recently sent an E-mail began “At the risk of sounding like an infomercial…” to a list several thousand subscribers that I am a member of and I was moved to write down a list of phrases to think twice before saying (or writing).
In 2006 Eben Moglen gave the keynote address at the Plone Conference 2006 that traced the evolution of economies from steel to software to collaboration. Here are some key excerpts with commentary.
P.T. Barnum wrote “The Art of Money Getting: The Golden Rules for Making Money” in 1880 at the age of 70 when he was already an accomplished businessman, politician, philanthropist, and author–after his hugely successful 1855 autobiography “The Life of P.T. Barnum: Written By Himself.” Barnum’s 21 golden rules for making money was a codification of his rules for business. Here are key excepts from the introduction and 20 chapters.
You can only capture a share of the value that you create if you want to create a sustainable business. While you need to assess the likely return on investment from your efforts and your probability of success, you also need to look at any deal from the other side of the table. It’s as important to minimize risk for you and your customer as it is to maximize value.
Each interaction with a business prospect or a customer has to promise an exchange of value: their time or money for at least the strong possibility of benefit. Many of the startup fantasy camp customer development training models neglect this and teach beginning entrepreneurs to rely on the kindness of strangers. This may work in certain consumer verticals but it rarely works in B2B markets.
You may have been the smartest person in the room for a long time, but getting into a room with a customer changes that because a key knowledge domain of interest is the customer’s situation and needs. Here are some suggestions for how to keep learning instead of acting like the smartest person in the room.
A recent question from an office hours session on how to handle a prospect asking you to critique a competitor when both of you have new offerings in a new application area.