Successful failure

Marketing, Methodologies, Product Management, Testing

I read this term today while I was reading the book The Bezos Letters by Steve Anders.

I just finished reading the 1997 letter to the shareholders and started reading the first chapter of the book. I was astonished by the amount of emphasis Jeff Bezos places on successful failure.

I keep writing about testing everything because only the market has the right to decide what will succeed. You may have the best product, the most expensive and elaborate media roll out, but if you don’t first test and see, it can bomb.

But Bezos takes it further, he’s talking of billions of dollars that he’s spent on failures, learnt from them and made other things successful and made many more billions.

In marketing and product management, especially when you are a small company , you need to be very agile at testing continuously, learning and adapting to make your product more attractive in the market.

When you do testing ensure you only do with one variable at a time, to keep reducing the risk of a complete disaster. Never try multi variable testing because you will never be able to figure out the interplay between two variables which could create an indeterminate third variable.

Everything that you do has risk. You mitigate it by testing, identifying the failures and then converting into success.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Persistence trumps Genius

Great People, Habits, History, persistence

I didn’t know what to write today. I was way too exhausted, having had a long day at work.

This word persistence was playing in my mind for a long time today. So I just started writing. As I started writing more and more examples started coming in my mind of whether great people in history were geniuses as we attribute them to be or were they persistent.

Was Michaelangelo persistent or a genius – was David a master piece because Michaelangelo had a vision for David – if he had not kept chipping away at the stone consistently day-in and day-out, he would have not realized his vision.

The Sistine Chapel ceiling would not be so amazing if he had not persisted in doing those paintings.

Look at Edison or Einstein in the scientific arena, they were persistent in their work. No doubt they were brilliant in their own right but that brilliance would not have seen the light of day, if they did not put in the work.

Having said this, identifying the leverage points and then doing the work will anyway give much better results than just doing “donkey”. Persistence does not mean wasting energy in entropy.

If you focus your energy on the key points and then work, chances are you will trump genius any day.

Till next time.

Carpe Diem!!!

A helper’s high – 2

charity, Habits, Happiness, History, Karma

Just a few days back I wrote on this topic.  When you help somebody,  the universe tends to give back more than 10 times over. It’s all about Karma.

Today I happened to be reading Chanakya Neeti. A little bit about Indian history. Chanakya lived almost 2500 years ago in India and was the advisor to two generations of kings Vikramanditya clan, the kings of Patliputra (now Patna the capital of the state of  Bihar in India).

Vikramanditya was among the people who stopped the movement of Alexander the Great and his army, east of the Indus River. Alexander who had been unbeaten till then from Greece to India couldn’t continue on his dream to conquer the world and eventually died at a  very young age

Chanakya authored some of the most elaborate thinking related to politics ,economics and general rules for living in a society. Chanakya Neeti is about the rules for the society to live a decent life.  It was written in Sanskrit. I was reading the English translation since I haven’t learnt Sanskrit.

Now in this book in the 12th chapter, 2nd stanza,  Chanakya wrote that if one does charity then God rewards that person ten times over. Even two and half thousand years back, he wrote that in a civilized society people should be giving or doing charity.

It’s so good to know that an idea that you believe today was also suggested more than 2500 years back.

Till next time then get a helper’s high by helping someone.

Carpe Diem!!!

Prioritizing the top 2-3 in sales

B2B, ideal customer, Methodologies, prioritizing, Sales

The 80/20 rule works even in sales. As I have said before the best thing about this rule is that its fractal, which means there’s always an 80/20 within the 80/20 also.

So within all your customers 80% of the complaints about you or your product or your service would come from 20% of the customers. However you could go one step further and identify 4% of the customers who are actually responsible for 64% of the problems. If you eliminated these 4% your life would be much more easier.

Similarly there will be few customers who would be responsible for more than 64% of your business. You need to ensure that you are constantly doing everything possible to not only keep these customers happy but to also ensure that you are growing your business with them.

As a sales person you also need to analyze which 20% of the products get you 80% of your incentives or commissions and then analyze which 20% of your customers account for 80% of the sales of those products. That will give you a clear indication of where you have to spend your time and prioritize your day.

While you’re supposed to sell all the products that are assigned to you, by following this mechanism to prioritize your day, you will also hit your financial goals faster. The only constraint for a sales person is time. If you can focus 80%of your time on these 20% customers you would get a massive boost to your achievements.

Its always how you can leverage your time for the most productive use. After all small hinges move big doors.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!