Monday, November 28, 2005

Exceptional advice

Evan Williams summarizes his business experience in Ten Rules for Web Startups:
#6: Be Self-Centered
Great products almost always come from someone scratching their own itch. Create something you want to exist in the world.
I would drop the word "Web" from the title. But that would be a violation of rule #1: Be Narrow.


Blogger brianh said...

Have been hooked on your blog for a couple weeks now - keep it going! The "self-centered" ie solve it for yourself first... and "narrow focus" points are repeated throughout many business books and echoes a recent project of mine

(end plug)

where I give quick summaries of business books I've read.

Usually one guru says something (more often than not it's Peter Drucker and/or Tom Peters) and the remedies are recycled with different marketing spin. Wonder who started talking about narrow focus first, and when? Well, one place is the 1982 book "In Search of Excellence" which featured the results of a study of 43 companies found to be "excellent" and concluded they had the following 8 points in common..

They are:

A bias for action — Do it. Try it. Don’t waste time studying it with multiple reports and committees.
Customer focus — Get close to the customer. Know your customer.

Entrepreneurship — Even big companies act and think small by giving people the authority to take initiatives.

Productivity through people — Treat your people with respect and they will reward you with productivity.

Value oriented CEOs — The CEO should actively propagate corporate values throughout the organization.

Stick to the knitting — Do what you know well. (focus anyone)

Keep things simple and lean — Complexity encourages waste and confusion.

Simultaneously centralized and decentralized — Have tight centralized control while also allowing maximum individual autonomy.

They are different and written in context of larger companies... but I don't think these points are very far away from Evan's points.

10:38 PM  

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