Entries Tagged 'General' ↓

Don’t give the hole away

You hear this a lot if you’re out on the golf course for an “easy” round of 18.  It’s meant for the short to medium length putts that have just enough break that you can’t just aim straight for the hole.  Typically you’ll over estimate the break and you’ll miss the putt badly because you played it outside of the hole.  Instead, you need to focus on how hard you hit it and aim just inside the edge of the hole, so that the ball can USE the gentle break and ease into the hole for your routine birdie.

It’s a simple reminder of a simple concept. Don’t overestimate the break and aim for the freaking hole.

It’s been a while since I’ve reminded myself to quit being stupid.  This is one of those moments.  You’re constantly facing small and medium sized decisions that aren’t going to have an exact clear path to an answer.  Of course this is especially true if your trying to build a business and your resources are extremely limited.  Your trying to maximize effort so that you’re hopefully adding value to the biz.  So when you’re a bit unsure of an answer to the current problem, or whether the problem even makes sense in the current context, go back to the ultimate goal and aim in that direction with your solution.

Go get it, and don’t give the hole away.

Choose Wisely

Market is going either up or down today, how should I play it?
Which direction should I turn for lunch, left, right, or straight?
What color should I paint my walls, blue, red, orange, or magenta?

More than anytime in your life, possibly in history, you are presented with choices in almost everything you do.  Its no different in business.  Customers are more squirrely than ever.  They want the latest thing yesterday and fads pass in an instant.

So how do you mitigate this choice risk?  Make small, marked decisions and don’t anticipate wildly far off into the future.  This sort of goes along with my views on  “Happy Path” development, but I think it goes deeper into business fundamentals.

Lay the groundwork for future business growth, but don’t build it out fully until the need is there. If you THINK you are going to have a nice niche in another space with what you’re doing now, great. Get revenue first, analyze your business metrics and whether it still makes sense, THEN start to tap into what might be in that other space.

Customers have choice, and its tough to forecast what they will choose tomorrow, much less next year.  Choice is also a behavior., and behavior’s are hard to change. So swim downstream by building incrementally and don’t anticipate years into the future. Whether your involved in a startup or work for a company, lay the groundwork for accomplishing the future, but be patient, smart and incremental in tackling things you think might be successful.

Skills, and Perceived Limitations

“What do you do?”

Nothing wrong with the question at all, but I immediately find it irrelevant to the overall make up of who I am.  Not to mention what I can accomplish. You should too.

Corporations, heck even smaller companies, all do one thing to you immediately.  Place a skill set label on you and immediately draw up what you CANNOT do. You write software? Well, you sure as sh@# can’t talk to customers or perspective clients. You handle customer issues/account problems, no WAY you have enough intellect to know how AWESOME and MAGICAL writing software is. You manage projects? It is physically impossible to understand the sheer VELOCITY of accrual-based accounting.  The list goes on and on.

This is no good. Its a fundamental flaw.  Lets all agree to throw these perceived limitations out the door.

My reasoning is simple. They’re silly.  For example, I understand how to read a balance sheet.  I invest my money in the market diligently. I network in the local community. I follow local and national companies to see where and how they are gaining ground in the market.  I look at business models to see if there is something there that is interesting or different. Yet by day, all I can do is write software and manage the technical side of a product.

My point here is not to brag at all about what I can do.  Not at all.  Hell, that’s really hard to do because I’m not all that smart. It’s to start looking at yourself with the ridiculous skill set that you bring to the table.  Just because you haven’t sold products doesn’t mean you can’t.  Not having tried something is not equal to not being able to do it.  STOP FOLLOWING ALONG WITH THESE PERCEIVED LIMITATIONS ON WHAT YOU CAN DO.

The faster we start to dispel these limitations, the quicker we all become more competitive in the marketplace.  I want to work with an army of skill-diverse, smart, empowered, employees working WITH me. Not ones with super specific skill set worried more about office politics than the end goals of the business.

So start believing in yourself and your skill set.  There is more there than you think.

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Brand Spanking New…

Yes, yes, I know I missed this whole “blogging” boat. I actually have attempted several times at various interests of mine, but as is with all hobbies interests wain. Instead I have decided to focus my blog on building on my online presence. If at some point in the future someone wants to know something about me or read about what I am all about, this might be a good place to start. So you are going to see posts that reflect my thinking as it pertains to a lot of different topics.