By k | June 24, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

When I first started
my Romance Novel Business,
I thought,
for certain,
there were things
I would NEVER do.

These NEVERs
were part of my branding.
I told readers (customers)
I DIDN’T do these things
and that was a selling point.

I was tempted to
go one step farther
and tell readers (customers)
they could count on me
to NEVER do these things.

Thank goodness
I resisted that temptation.
Because years later,
the market changed
and I am now doing
those things
I thought I would NEVER do.

My readers (customers)
would have remembered that vow.
It would have decreased
their trust in me
and my words.

Use NEVER very sparingly.
Your customers WILL remember
and hold you to it.

By k | June 22, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I like having
the TV blasting
in the background
when I complete menial tasks.

Some people listen
to music.
I listen to the business channel.

Do I become
an expert
on all things business
by doing this?

No.

But I know more
than I would have
if I hadn’t listened to it.

While I’m filing
or shredding paper,
some of the information
seeps into my brain.

Every little bit helps.
Consider having useful information
as background noise.

By k | June 21, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I look at two things
when I price products.
The first is
the current market price.
The second is
my costs to produce
the product.

When I first start
my business building,
I am usually
a one-woman business.
I’m producing the product.

It is tempting to price
my labor costs at zero.
Do NOT do this!
Why?
Because your time
is worth something
and
pricing it at zero
means you’ll never grow
your business
past a one woman shop.
You are limiting your business.

I cost my time,
at the minimum,
at the living wage
for my city.
Thankfully,
there are plenty
of resources
to tell us the living wage.

Why a living wage
and not minimum wage?

Because
the possible negative press
over paying less
isn’t worth the savings.

Ensure your pricing
can cover
employees making a living wage.

By k | June 20, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Wonder Woman is a game changer
in the movie industry.
I watched it
and now I REALLY notice
the treatment of women
in other movies.

The close up of breasts.
The lack of action
taken by female characters.
The lack of female characters
at all
except for the stereotypical ‘love interest.’

It makes these other movies
challenging to watch
and to enjoy.

Some savvy people
have realized this
(that is why
there have been
a flurry of reshoots).
They will likely survive.

Some people
haven’t realized this
or they are resisting this change.
They will likely lose
the female audience.

Because once the game changes,
it is difficult to change it back.

The Romance Novel Industry
couldn’t do it
after Fifty Shades Of Grey
changed expectations.
The Orange Juice Industry
couldn’t do it
after Not From Concentrate
changed expectations.

It is MUCH easier
simply to play the new game.

Watch for game changers.
Change your business
accordingly.

By k | June 19, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Whenever I am stuck
in a story
I’m writing,
I look at the assumptions
I’ve made
and challenge them.

Because
we all make assumptions
about the world.

A work week starts
on a Monday, for example.

Or a phone call
is better than an email.

Or Generation X
isn’t a large enough market
to cater to.

These assumptions
can lead to illogical
and no longer relevant solutions.

Seth Godin
shares

“Cars have two headlights
because horse-drawn carriages
had two lanterns.
Of course you couldn’t
put a lantern in the middle,
that’s where the horse goes.
Now, it’s easy to make a bar of light,
one that illuminates from edge to edge.

And jobs used to be done by men,
because statistically,
it’s easier to find people
who can lift heavy objects
among the males in the population.
But now, most lifting isn’t heavy,
it requires insight and care instead.”

When we challenge
our assumptions,
we’ll often see opportunities.

These opportunities
can be gold.

By k | June 17, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Yesterday,
Amazon announced
they were buying
Whole Foods
.

Some analysts
talked about how
Amazon didn’t have
much knowledge about
bricks and mortar grocery stores.

That’s bullshit.

Amazon has been supplying
cloud services
to many
bricks and mortar grocery stores
for years.
They had access
to ALL of the data
these stores were producing.

I suspect Amazon knows more
about the grocery business
than their former customers,
now competition does.

When looking at prospective partners,
look at more than
merely costs.

You don’t want to teach
a future competitor
how to run the business.

By k | June 16, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Business building
requires hundreds, perhaps thousands
of decisions a day.

Making decisions is exhausting.
Why?
Because we have to imagine
all of the possible outcomes,
especially the negative outcomes.

Seth Godin
shares

“It turns out that
the mental load of management
is primarily around
experiencing failure.

Actual failure, sure,
but mostly potential failure.
Imagining failure in advance.
All the current things
that could go wrong.
And more important,
the things you’re not doing
that will be obvious oversights later.
Our brains work overtime
to cycle through these,
to learn to see around corners,
to have the guts to delegate
without doing the work ourselves
(even though that creates
more imagined points of failure).
Scan, touch, consider,
analyze, repeat.”

If you reach the end
of your work day
and you’re exhausted,
even though you’ve physically
not done much,
this is why.

Making decisions is exhausting.
Prepare for that level
of tiredness.

By k | June 15, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I’ve been watching
a show on hoarding.

Hoarders obtain
more and more items
without letting any items go.
Even trash is kept.

When loved ones
finally see the state
of the hoarder’s home,
they can’t believe
he/she let it get to that state.

The thing is…
it didn’t get to that state
overnight.
One day,
one empty can was left
on a table.
The next day,
a second empty can
was left.
Eventually all of the space
was filled with stuff.

This is the same way
business building happens.
In the movies,
businesses are built
overnight.
In real life,
they are built
one small decision,
one small action
or lack of action,
at a time.

These decisions matter.
We might think
we’re not doing much,
not moving far forward,
but the small decisions,
the small actions
add up.

Keep building.

By k | June 13, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

It takes me
two months of 12 hour days
to write a 200 page novel.

It takes a critic
five minutes
to rip it apart.

Everyone,
even a five year old,
can destroy.
It is exciting,
dramatic,
violent.

Building, on the other hand,
can only be done
by a rare few.
Building takes thought,
effort,
resources,
time, so much time.

Building is a thousand times
tougher
than destroying
but it is worth it.
It is how we build a better world.

Ignore the destroyers.
Concentrate on building.

By k | June 12, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

We, business builders,
have to hustle
often for years
before we see success.
That can be challenging.

But that hustle should pay off.

Chris Pratt
shares

“I am doing what I love.
It doesn’t feel like work.
Even though it is.
I’m having fun.
I’m overcome with joy and gratitude.

“I felt like posting this
to say to anyone out there
chasing your dream,
fifteen years ago
I felt the same passion
I feel today,
but I had very little opportunity.
I had to hustle hard
and go hungry.
I had to eat sardines
and figure out
how to get gas money.
And I never had a plan B.

I never stopped believing.
Ever.
Don’t give up.
Apply constant pressure
for as long as it takes.
It will break before you do.
Go get it.”

Keep hustling!