Assume nothing. Repeat everything.

Do you think your team knows how your company makes money? Do you think your team knows how many people’s lives your company impacts positively? Do you think your team knows what your company rules are for dealing with colleagues and customers? Think again. Most people don’t have your history. Most people don’t know what you…

Read More

Don’t stress about stuff that hasn’t happened yet

Worried your customer will cancel the contract? Worried you won’t raise sufficient funds? Worried your product won’t work? Worried interest rates will rocket? Don’t worry about stuff that hasn’t happened. You’ll only stress yourself twice. First when you worry about it. Second when it actually happens. By all means, plan for negative scenarios. But don’t dwell…

Read More

Use price as a strategy, not a differentiator

Competing on price is a race to the bottom. Don’t do it. The only times you should apply lower pricing are: a) Hooking customers for other products that are more profitable (cross-subsidization) b) Driving competition out the market with the intention of pushing prices up once you have a monopoly. In other words, discounted pricing is a…

Read More

Be humble

When you’re tasting a little bit of success, it’s easy to start letting arrogance creep in.Beware.Arrogance kills. It blinds you to learning from other people.It alienates partners, staff and customers.It attracts the wrong kind of people, ie: arrogant people.It masks insecurity.It makes enemies.No matter how successful you become, always remind yourself of how lucky you’ve been, and how many…

Read More

Don’t be a loser

Success is not about winning. It’s about not losing.In other words, its not about increasing your odds of winning. It’s about reducing your odds of losing.There is one simple way to reduce the probability of failure.Go the extra mile.In everything you do, do a little more than expected.Need to prepare a proposal? Format it, add page numbers, spellcheck,…

Read More

Don’t hide your mistakes

In the Japanese tradition of ceramics, broken pottery is mended using lacquer mixed with powdered gold.The idea is to treat breakage and repair as part of the history of the object, turning the cracks into beautiful golden threads rather than something to disguise.For centuries, kintsugi (golden joinery) was such a celebrated art form that some…

Read More

Show no fear

When it comes to our basic instincts, we are no different to animals. Animals can smell fear. If you show fear, you’ll be ignored (by impala) or attacked (by lions). That’s why, no matter how afraid you are, you can never show fear. Showing fear will at best result in you losing the crowd (investors, staff,…

Read More

You know you’re right when everyone says you’re wrong

Find the path that everyone disagrees with, but that the customer loves. You want incumbents, pundits, experts, and competitors to be sniggering behind your back. That’s when you can be sure you’ve found a possible path to success. Why? Because you won’t have any competition on the path. Whilst everyone is criticizing you, you’ll be plucking customers with gleeful abandon….

Read More

Don’t aim for the finish line

Aim 10% past the finish line. Deadline for Friday? Aim for Thursday. Target of R10million profit? Aim for R11million. Want to wake up 6am every day? Wake up 5am. Need to 50% to pass your exam? Study for 60%. Whatever the goal is, add 10%. That way you don’t slack off before the finish line. Instead, cross the…

Read More

Only pay attention to things that affect YOU

Something has gone wrong. You’re stressed.Are you stressed because of the actual impact on you? Or because of how you think someone else will perceive the setback?Are you stressed about your world? Or about the rest of the world?Forget about perceptions. Forget about the rest of the world.You can’t control that stuff.Only pay attention to things…

Read More

A bird in hand is worth two in the bush

Whether you’re trying to close a deal, or recruit a star, or launch a product, don’t get caught with your hands empty just because you were chasing more than one thing. Closing a deal? Focus all energy on the most likely prospect. Recruiting a star? Focus all energy on your preferred person. Launching a product?…

Read More

The secret to international sales

Selling internationally is no different to selling locally. It’s all about growing your network, sweating your network, putting yourself out there.Chase all potential channels to market. Tell all your family and friends. Ask your existing clients for references or leads. Don’t forget the magic of Google Adwords and LinkedIn Premium.Make it easy for your potential…

Read More