One million copies sold

One million copies is a lot of anything, but should it influence your decision to buy a book? First thought: No it shouldn’t. Judging from the things that other people wear and watch and the ways they spend their time, a million people doing something should have no influence on whether I do it too. At best, they have totally…

DC goes exponential

Not really. But we did fly past six-thousand views in early June thanks to Tyler Cowen re-tweeting a link to this post about reading. The retweet (and subsequent RTs by a fraction of Cowen’s 160,000ish twitter followers) generated about 740 extra visits – so it’s a great little window into the power of well-connected nodes on a social network. It’s…

Portfolio

Not: “I worked at this company.” “I held this position,” or even “I performed this role.” But rather: “I helped these people.” (Please go and talk to them.) “I made this thing” (Have a look and try it out.) “I caused this to happen” (Let me tell you how.) And most importantly: “It made this difference.”

Seth Godin on authenticity

Here’s the authentic Seth Godin with one of his best riffs: Authenticity is a crock. Authenticity is overrated. Authenticity is a trap. Because the last time you were authentic you were three months old lying in diapers with poop in them, crying. Ever since then you have done things with intent. You’ve done things on purpose. You wake in the…

Overcoming barriers

With this in mind… How does what you offer reduce the barriers to people consuming something important to them? In other words, how do you make it easier (or even possible) for them to get the job done? How do you (dramatically) lower the price? How do you make it available in places where it hasn’t been before? How do…

Efosa Ojomo on market-creating innovation and overcoming barriers to consumption

This is a powerful lens for thinking about how to unlock possibilities and bring about change, drawing on the work of Clayton Christensen. Market creating innovations are innovations that transform complicated and expensive products into products that are simple and affordable so many more people can afford them. Those people who historically could not afford existing products on the market…

Bo Burlingham on Small Giants (3): special places to work

Fifth, the companies also had what struck me as unusually intimate workplaces. They were, in effect, functional little societies that strove to address a broad range of their employees’ needs as human beings – creative, emotional, spiritual and social needs as well as economic ones. … They were places where employees felt cared for in the totality of their lives,…

Bo Burlingham on Small Giants (2): key relationships

Third, each company had an extraordinarily intimate relationship with the local city, town or county in which it did business – a relationship that went well beyond the usual concept of “giving back”. That was part of it, to be sure, and all of these companies were model corporate citizens, but the relationship was very much a two-way street. The…

Bread and butter: unbundling complex products

There is a place (a big place!) for custom work – people pay more to get difficult jobs done well, and the craft required gives you an opportunity to do work that people will notice and “cross the street for.” But if everything you do is complex and nuanced, such that every quote is a custom quote, and every sale…

Crossing the street: Seth Godin on monopolies

Every successful business has a monopoly—a monopoly on what it makes that someone else can’t make the way they make it. That leaves out commodity businesses—people who bring coal out of the ground. I don’t think of those businesses as particularly successful. I think of them as useful. I’m glad if I need a bag of coal someone’s doing it,…