Sales, Lies and Manipulation

When I am in the middle of buying something, sometimes I back up and look at the experience from an existential perspective. I enjoy looking at the process that is taking place to see how the different parties are interacting and their overall posture in the exchange. While there are exceptions, I have been disappointed to see how often the process involves lies and manipulation just to get the sale. It sometimes leaves me wondering if there is such a thing as ethical sales. Then, however, I remember good sales…ones where both parties were looking out for each other and were collectively trying to create a positive outcome for each party.

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Here’s to the Crazy Ones

There is something amazing about the people and things that aren’t normal in our world. Consistently, we find that great dreamers, innovators and inspirations aren’t normal. We can even take that further to say that quite a few people that have done amazing things in our world were labeled as highly abnormal. If this is the case, maybe it is worthwhile to evaluate how normal we actually want to be.

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Delegation vs Abdication

As we added team members, many other business leaders and friends counseled me that I needed to make sure that I didn’t hamstring them. I was counseled to be sure that I actually delegated well and empowered my team members to run with things and, also, fail. Because I don’t tend to do things halfway, I set out to make sure I properly and fully delegated. While failing to delegate is damaging to a team, I found something that is similarly, if not more, damaging…abdication.

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Engineering Vacuums

When I first started my career, I ran into a problem as the organizations I worked for were content to keep me in a specific position indefinitely. I sought out my managers to find out how I could build a career path but was met with blank stares. I wasn’t content with this setup so I began looking around for what I call vacuums, places where there was a need and an absence of appropriate skills to fill that need.

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Cost vs Reward Valuation

When we engage with new clients, one of the top issues is that their technology spending is not aligned with their business needs. While it is also common to see technology that isn’t working right, we find that this is usually an indicator that an organization’s technology spending is not tied to business needs. This misalignment results in money being wasted because it is spent in the wrong places or spending is held back until there’s an emergency, at which time, the solution is usually a patch and more expensive. When we work with clients, we seek to start with a solid understanding of business objectives and drivers. From those drivers, we factor cost vs reward to figure out if various solutions are justified or will be a waste of money. The beauty of this is that we avoid wasting money and, if we determine to move forward with a solution, we have a clear understanding of exactly why we are doing it and what we are getting out of the solution.

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Growth

Growth is a really interesting concept. On one hand, you could call this one of the most obvious values to have. On the other hand, it is a value that many organizations easily overlook but spend a lot of time figuring out how to achieve.

For us, growth is not a goal in and of itself as much as it is an outcome. We believe that when we are doing the right things for the right people and for the right reasons our actions will help them grow which will cause us to grow as well. To this end, growth is an outcome but a very necessary outcome.

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Impact

When we sat down to write out our core values, we had a long list. As we worked to whittle it down, we found that a number of values were distillates of other values. As an example, we see honesty as a distillate of integrity. Because of this, we wanted to narrow our values down to those things that were root values and were causative of the other values we have. That is where we came up with Impact.

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Valuable Values

We all have things that are important to us but it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle of everyday life and forget what’s important. We can either completely forget our values or, at the very least, end up making small compromises that end up getting us far off of our path. I struggle with this as well.

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