Saturday, June 13, 2009

Things a startup founder will never tell you...

I just loved this little slideshow from Chris Yeh on things a startup founder will never tell you. I can't tell you how many times I've asked some of the entrepreneurs that approach me questions like these and gotten a ton of prevaricating..... If your startup can't answer these questions honestly - you should consider whether it's a valid idea in the first place...

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

If we treated everything in life like consultants and developers are treated

Give this excellent video a watch:

... then ask yourself - is this the way I treat my vendors and development partners? Is there a lesson to be learned here? If we go into a grocery store to buy something we don't dicker over the price, try to delay payment or anything else. We go, we buy an item, we pay for it and we leave. Why then do people feel compelled to dicker over the prices offered by resellers of professional services like software development, or computer tech support? What is different about the product they offer from the product the other service professionals in this video offer?

My guess is - they really aren't that much different. We don't ask our hairdresser to "wait 30 days" till we can pay them. We don't try to talk our waiter or waitress down in price so we can get our meal cheaper. We just decide - is their product or service worth the price I'm paying and then we either do - or do not - do business with them.

In a great software development effort, both parties are working to maximize return on investment and minimize cost of development. This is what long term relationships are built on. Not a "sell it to you once and then soak you for everything you've got" attitude, but a sell it to you once and work together so that the product continually improves until it's delivered, and continues to improve after that.

So the next time you feel tempted to "dicker over price" think about it. Is the product or service worth it to you? If it is you might want to consider just paying that amount then. Your vendor with thank you for it and you'll be developing a long-term partner relationship that may last forever!