Archive for the ‘Business ideas’ tag
Foundation elements for modern businesses
When you sit down to dream up a new business, you can imagine a world without constraints. Or you can choose to build in fundamental pieces that will make it more likely your idea will pay off.
Here are some fundamental pieces of most new successful businesses. The goal is to build these elements into the very nature of the business itself, not just to tack them on. For example, the Scotch tape people at 3M can’t do #5, because of the structure of retail distribution and the way they mass produce and can’t track who is buying what.
You can live without some of these, but go in with your eyes open if you do:
- Build in virality. Consider: Groupon.
- Don’t sell a product that can be purchased cheaper at Amazon.
- Subscriptions beat one-off sales.
- Try to create an environment where your customers are happier when there are other customers doing business with you (see #1).
- Treat different customers differently.
- Generate joy, don’t just satisfy a need for a commodity.
- Rely on unique individuals, not an easily copyable system.
- Plan on remarkable experiences, not remarkable ads.
- Don’t build a fortress of secrets, bet on open.
- Unless there’s a differentiating business reason, use off the shelf software and cheap cloud storage.
- The asset of the future is the embrace of a tribe, not a cheaper widget.
- Match expenses to cash flow–don’t run out of money, because it’s no longer 1999.
- Create scarcity but act with abundance. Free samples create demand for the valuable (but not unlimited) tier you offer.
- Tell a story, erect a mythology, walk the walk.
- Plan on obsolescence (of your products, not your customers).
3. The cost of selling a subscription to your product or service is not a lot higher than the cost of selling just one, but you benefit by having sales you can count on at low cost. Your customers benefit because you depend on them more and they save time.
5. Everyone has different needs and expectations and resources. The internet lets you tell people apart and give them what they need.
7. AKA as Linchpins.
9. If you’re building a business on trade secrets or lack of information among your customers, you’re trying to fill a leaky bucket. Far easier to bet on the more people know, the better you do.
10. Because cheap software and the cloud are going to continue to get cheaper, and custom work that’s worth anything is going to continue to get more expensive.
12. The best people to fund your growth are your customers.
13. When the marginal cost of an interaction approaches zero, you benefit by creating plenty of them.
14. We can tell.
Posted by Seth Godin on August 12, 2010 | Permalink
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This is excellent information
I had several posting on my last few weeks at Nortel and the week after. Since my previous blog hosting got complicated. I will just do a quick update on what happen and looking to the future.
1. I have been with Nortel exactly 10 years, in fact today would make it 10 years exactly since I started March 15, 1999. With Vacation from my layoff date I can definitely count these days easily.
2. Early February, 2009, Nortel announce that they would discontinue the mobile WiMAX program which is where I was posted. We were all put on notice to find a job since there is very little room on the 3GPP/LTE project.
3. Consequently, Verizon, Nortel’s main customer for LTE decides they wanted to announce which vendors will build their LTE network. At this point for most employees, this was not optimistic as very unlikely a company would work with another company in bankruptcy. Eventually, the news was not good, so even the chances of getting a new job on that project was in more danger.
4. The afternoon of February 25th, we got the expected e-mail to meet with the WiMAX director in one of the bigger rooms the next morning. At that point, it was clear that things are basically done from my side at Nortel. Fortunately, with the usual pretending from management that they had a selection process, I could tell it was not working out for me so I had taken home all of my valuable items and clean my desk.
5. February 26, was finally my last day at Nortel. Based on the Bankrutpcy decisions that Nortel made. There would be no severance and your notice day is your last day totally. At the end of that day you are deleted from Nortel. Incidentally, I was leaving at about 3:30 or so to get home. I went to the main building to catch the bus home. Missed the first bus so I had to wait for the next one and I wanted to use the rest room but I did not have a badge anymore, so I ask the security to let me walk up to the rest room. He claimed I could not be allowed except with an escort. Of course, it was sad for a company you work with for 10 years, but you know I am bigger than that.
Its about 2 weeks now since I leave Nortel, and while there is the threat of economic challenge of no severance, a small Employment Insurance payment, I feel so relieved actually. I have accumulated very good skills in life and do believe that I will do well and much better than I was doing there.
The interesting thing is that the bad news continues for Nortel and instead of trying to renew management to re-build the company, they are fighting to pay bonuses to the same people that brought it down. It seem we are living in an era of real greed and selfishness. Its not just Nortel, you can see the behaviors on Wall Street which is why the world economy is not doing well.
I have to reflect and say that this is the point where one has to look forward to the messiah as we are going through a period of real rapid ethical and moral decay. Only the messiah will have the credibility to lead this world and restore some sense of love in society.
My prediction which is unfortunate is that Nortel will not come to much actually. I am hoping that the remaining employees will get some relief with a take over or something but the indications for the company is not looking very good.
I will still be a Nortel person in spirit as I really do not plan to work for anyone for 10 years again. The focus will be building a business and moving into a more independent approach to life with a plan of course.
More interesting post will be coming very soon…