By k | July 23, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I worked with a publisher.
I thought they were legit
(and they were… for a while)
but I had my agent look at the contract.
Closely.
Some clauses were changed.
Other than that,
it was a great contract.

Then the publisher stopped paying
all of the writers.
They continued selling our books
in huge quantities.
They merely pocketed that money.

So I talked to my agent.
She told me
I could get my books back
IF I went to court.

Other writers did this.
They went to court.
The publisher paid them
the day before the court appearance,
AFTER the writers incurred all of the legal fees.

The writers had no case.

Then the publisher stopped paying them again.

This is when I found out
a contract isn’t worth anything.
Only the ethics of the people/company
you’re doing the deal with
protects you.

Seth Godin
shares

“Specific contracts
don’t completely protect you
from dishonorable people.
What they do
is make it really clear
about what it takes
to do what you said
you were going to do.

Start with a good agreement.
But your future depends on
doing agreements with good people.”

Don’t do business
with people/companies
you don’t trust.

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

I can’t believe
I have to write a post
about this
but it seems I do.

If you make a product
or offer a service,
allow your customers
to use that product/service
around you.

If, for example,
you make fancy tights,
don’t forbid attendees
to wear those fancy tights
at your conference.

Yes, this means
if you make underwear,
you should expect
and embrace
that your customers will wear
that underwear
as outerwear
at events you host.

If seeing people,
all types of people,
in underwear upsets you,
you shouldn’t be making underwear.
You should be in a business
you CAN love.

Be the number one supporter
of your product or service.
Celebrate when your customers use it.

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

I’m Canadian.
In our culture,
we say ‘Thank you.’
Not saying it
is one of the gravest of sins.

In my Romance Novel Business,
I work with quite a few Americans.
It isn’t as normal
in American culture
to say ‘Thank you.’

This has given me
a strategic advantage
because,
shocker,
people like to be thanked.
They like to be appreciated.

Thanking business partners
often gets me the star treatment
the next time I work with them.

Joseph Sherren,
in the July/August 2017
The Costco Connection,
shares

“[A Study completed
at Wichita State University]
reported that employees
rated a manager’s thanks
as the most motivational incentive
of all.

Unfortunately,
more than 58 per cent of employees
say they rarely receive
a personal thank you.”

Thanking people is free
and it is easy.
Do it.

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

My Romance Writing Business
is technically a one woman business.
Yes, I outsource
editing, formatting and cover art.
Yes, I partner
with booksellers.
But there is only one employee
- me.

Last year,
I wrote and published six novels
and 1 short story.
I made a six figure income,
over 50,000 sales.
I reached quite a few readers.

And I’m one person.

Thomas Friedman
shares

“One person can now
help so many more people.
One person can educate millions
with an Internet learning platform;
one person can entertain
or inspire millions;
one person can now communicate
a new idea, a new vaccine,
or a new application
to the whole world
at once.”

One person can change the world.
That person could be you.

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

I spent last weekend
with a loved one.
The entire time,
he reminisced about
‘the good ol’ days.’

He was in his forties.
But his age
isn’t that important.
I’ve met people
in their twenties
who talk constantly
about the past.

It’s a sign.

If you are stuck
in the past,
either you don’t have goals
for the future
or you aren’t working toward
these goals.

Fix this.

Live life
looking forward,
not back.

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

I had planned to release
a book (product)
in September.
I have pushed back that release
to October.

Why?

The book is flawed
but all books are flawed.
There is no such thing
as a perfect product.

The issue is…
it is so flawed;
it doesn’t yet meet
customer expectations.
I would disappoint readers (customers).
Disappointed readers
will never read another book
written by me.
I would prefer a month delay
than lose readers (customers)
forever.

In this competitive market
(and the market in EVERY industry
is competitive),
we MUST, at the minimum,
meet customer expectations.
Don’t release a product
unless it does this.

By k | July 11, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I’ve talked in the past
about starting now,
about how we shouldn’t wait
to build our businesses.

Starting a business
and opening a business
are two different things, however.

I plan to finish a book
this month.
To maximize sales,
I won’t release that book
until September.

How long to wait
and when
to open a business
depends on the business.

I talked to the owner
of a toy store
yesterday.
Sales in his industry
are concentrated in December.
He opened his store in May.
That means he has to survive
SEVEN months
without half-decent sales.

Work on your business today.
There are a gazillion things
to be done before a business opens.

Open your business
when it makes the most sense
sales-wise.

By k | July 8, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I officially run
a one-woman business.
I’m the only full-time employee.

But the only reason
I can do that
and be successful
is by delegating some tasks
to other business partners.

As I grow,
I suspect I will delegate
even more tasks.

Kevin Kruse
shares

“Ultra-productive people don’t ask,
“How can I do this task?”
Instead they ask,
“How can this task get done?”
They take the “I” out of it
as much as possible.

Ultra-productive people don’t have control issues
and they are not micro-managers.
In many cases good enough is,
well, good enough.”

Delegate tasks.

By k | July 7, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Every once in a while,
I take a cyber vacation.
I take a break from social media.
I only check email once a day.

Why?

Because this trains me
to dial back
responding to messages.
I concentrate on the tasks
I have to complete.

Kevin Kruse
shares

“Ultra-productive people
don’t “check” email
throughout the day.
They don’t respond
to each vibration or ding
to see who has intruded their inbox.

Instead,
like everything else,
they schedule time
to process their email
quickly and efficiently.

For some
that’s only once a day,
for me,
it’s morning, noon and night.”

Consider limiting
your access to email and other messages.

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

When I worked
in New Business Development
for a major beverage company,
we would spend time
every year
with the customer.

Not to sell them anything.
Not to talk about our products.

We would spend time
following our customer around
as she went through her normal day.

We would do this
with our immediate customers,
the stores we sold into,
following,
for example,
the employee who stocked
the shelves.

And we would do this
with our final customers,
following,
for example,
the mom of two
as she went through
a typical shopping trip.

Knowing our customers
allowed us
to better design our products
to make them happy.

Consider living
like your customer
for a day.