Advice from a Bootstrapper

Dr. Jeffrey R. Cornwall writes:

I just finished several weeks of teaching about bootstrapping to my students. I wrapped up the unit with a visit from Charles Hagood, co-founder of The Access Group, which was the feature of a recent Entrepreneurial Showcase at this site. Charles shared his advice on being a successful bootstrapper:

1. Cash is King. Enough said!

2. Sometimes Less is More. Having fewer resources can force a business to be more flexible and more resourceful. For example, Southwest Airline’s business model grew out of the limited number of planes that they had to work with during their start-up.

3. Keep Your Priorities in Order. Never compromise your ethical principles, even when money it tight.

4. Enjoy the Ride. Love what you do in your business and enjoy each day. That will make the lean times easier to take.

5. Cut Costs, Not Quality. Focus your money on customers when money is scarce.

6. Impress Your Customers, Not Yourselves. Don’t waste money competing internally over who has the best stuff. Invest it in your customers and in your product.

7. If You Have $1 Left in the Bank, Spend in on Marketing. Even when the market is not buying your product stay in front of them so they will remember you when things pick up.

8. Always Look Bigger and Tougher Than You Are. See my post from earlier today for ideas on this.

9. Continuously Reassess Your Business for Wasteful Spending.

Being an Entrepreneur is very rewarding when everything comes together, however getting to that point is quite a challenge. Even more so when you wear many different hats and have to juggle from one roll to the next; sales, marketing, product development, qa, web presence etc. We really do need all of the help we an get.

There is a lot of good information to be found on the web on Entrepreneurship, running a small business, marketing etc. and unfortunately also a lot of “me too” dross.

Jeff Cornwall’s, The Entrepreneurial Mind is well worth reading if you have the slightest interest in Entrepreneurship.

Information Organisation

David Weinberger writes:

We’ve organized knowledge into trees, from Aristotle to Linnaeus to Dewey. You get a tree by doing the basic thing of lumping and splitting, and then splitting the lumps until you get to a lump that is too unitary or miscellaneous to bear any more splitting. But lumping and splitting has been constrained by physical limitations. For example:

1. A thing has to go in one pile or another. For Aristotle, this was expressed as the Law of Identity (A is A and A is not not-A), a pretty basic rule. Continue reading “Information Organisation”

Supermarkets need to lift their game

I’ve just finished reading an article in yesterdays Melbourne Age Business section about how Australian retailers are way behind in their use of technology and how they need to lift their game to be competitive and keep customers coming back to their stores.

Well I can tell you one really simple thing that they can do that will greatly help retain me as a loyal customer and doesn’t require any high tech expenditure! Simply stop moving the damn goods around to different aisles every few months. Just when your mental map thinks it knows where everything is they go and move stuff. I don’t know, maybe this peculiar to Australia or even Melbourne but it drives me absolutely nuts and wastes my valuable time.

And who dreams up some of these product positioning strategies. I mean is it remotely logical to have toilet paper next to canned fruit. Arghhh! helps small-medium sized businesses strategically use technology to grow their businesses and provides news, articles, discussion boards, resources, analysis & events for the owners of small-medium sized businesses.

I’ve just discovered because, I’m pleased to say they’ve written a glowing review of Surfulater which you can see here.

I’ve not had much time to dig around here yet, but it looks like there is lots of good stuff to read.

Our Web hosting debacle

What a crappy week this has been. We’ve had a Web server with for going on 2 years. Overall they’ve been a great company to host with, but in the later part of last year some some strange things started showing up. Then we heard that Dinix had been either bought out our merged with Web Hosting Plus (WHP). The new owners assured as business would go on as usual and they had lots of experience in these takeovers and migrating our servers. So far so good. Continue reading “Our Web hosting debacle”

Welcome to my cantina

Ok here we go. The buzz these days is about blogs, so like so many who have come before me, I’ve finally stolen some time to start a blog.

I hope you’ll find something of interest here as time goes on and the blog develops. I don’t intend to push a strict regime of posting every day but I will post whenever I have something worthwhile to say.

I look forward to your contributions.