Tag Archives: Entrepreneurship

Lindsay’s In Business: PART 58: Knocking on 1,000 Doors

 

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

I’ve worked it out. It’s not difficult. And you don’t need to get panicked about it.

If you believe in your product and you are absolutely committed to getting it off the ground then prepare to knock on 1,000 doors don’t expect anything that makes sense.

Some doors will be gold-plated and encrusted with rubies and emeralds. A porter will open the door and ask you to wait on a chair with a velvet seat. And there you will wait, for months on end, in the politest possible way.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 57: PUSH!!

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds… 

Right COME ON YOU SALES!!

Great conversation with the new business development director (4 hours a week to the year-end). We’ve shaped up an intro story in slides that he likes and he’s now getting around to approaching his best contacts.

We discussed our concerns – and were fairly direct and confrontative at times – as we should be to really address the elephants in the room:

  • Why haven’t more people been approached by now?
  • Why is the emphasis almost entirely on me to bring in business?

It was a constructive, respectful exchange. We got on to squaring up a lead generation plan that looks like this:

  • New sales funnel – Take the Team Test – just launched.

Just so you know this is a free, automated tool that assesses team effectiveness.  The tool is based on research that learning behaviours in teams lead to better alignment – and that both determine team effectiveness.  The test helps people see where the gaps are, so they can be addressed. The Team Test report includes:

  • top 5 behavioural strengths and weaknesses
  • a breakdown of scores for each behaviour
  • a comparison of how each team member sees the team purpose
  • group perception on alignment, positivity, and preparedness
  • a guide on what to do about the results.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 56. Is history repeating itself? 

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds… 

Here’s how I see the journey has gone so far:

I launched a business selling a new approachto team communications / team effectiveness. The market is awash with stuff like this, but the process I have is, dare I say, revolutionary. It took a while to find a way to articulate and present the concept, and reactions in general have been positive. Within 14 months of trading, I got 3 great case studies and the process was all up and running.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 55. An emotional journey

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

It’s getting so exciting because the idea I last blogged about, to launch a free online team effectiveness test, is going to happen and who knows where it will lead! We aim to launch it in October and run it for 10 months. I’m going to get it promoted ALL OVER social media and it will disrupt the ‘command and control’ leaders when their team members initiate this without their knowledge. It could just generate some interesting leads and data – it could catch on, become shared, and reach our goal of 1,000 participating teams. Great PR stories to come!

It’s getting exciting because a prestigious management school has asked me to run a short version of Mirror Mirror for 100 of their students to teach them about teamwork and leadership, and to help them in innovation challenges with leading global organizations.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 52:  OMG – a competitor

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

The business renovation is going great.  I’ve found someone to draft client terms and conditions, and two practicing lawyers to review them.  Actually, I’m on the train to Amsterdam right now (on one of the Netherland’s hottest days yet) to brief the second lawyer. I hope she might be our (informal) legal counsel going forwards.

By the way, I don’t expect ever to take anyone to court about this business – after all the IP, as I gather, is only worth its value to our clients.  It could be reproduced without much hope of any successful legal action, even if we did know it was happening.  And I don’t see any clear liabilities arising from alignment work. But terms and conditions can at least set the tone, set expectations, and set clear boundaries with potential clients and partners.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 51: Business renovation

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

And now the days are hot. A mid-July heatwave brings quieter streets, a hazy calm, and the world at work is out of office.  But that’s just great for me. My work life balance just seems to be getting better. A run in the cool early morning. A call with coffee at 10.00.  Think-work on the laptop in the cool inside while the sun bakes outside, and fruit smoothie breaks in the garden.

I’m still not making any money and its two years now since the Mirror Mirror concept formed, yet I’m on a good track. And isn’t this work-life balance – and the quality, creativity, and productivity it brings – one of the reasons why I chose to become self-employed?

Ahh.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 50: All change

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

Just on my way back from a one week trip to London – wow. It seems like everything is changing so fast!

Great response from a conference on Monday and Tuesday.  Wednesday morning’s intro meeting with a Strategy Implementation consultancy was very positive.  My new Director was able to join – I think it really gave him some confidence. The next steps agreed were:

  • let’s run a Quick Scan with his team
  • let’s produce a one-pager to share with a current client.

On Thursday, the leader of the conference I’d attended on Monday (who also runs a consultancy) got in contact to say he’d approached one of his clients who is potentially interested in running Mirror Mirror across multiple teams.

Both consultancies were talking about delivering the whole customer facing process themselves. This means we would effectively then just ‘license’ the use of Mirror Mirror. Taking on that business model – to sell licenses and mainly, or fully, work with consultancies to deliver – has a number of refreshing advantages. It isn’t a million miles from the way we’d been thinking before, but if we move away from being consultants ourselves and can scale up that way, it makes our job much more focused, lean, and simple.

Then to top it all off, Friday, a Head of Comms in an international European organization sent me a meeting request.  That wasn’t unexpected, but it felt new.  Normally I’m the one doing the polite chasing – but here we are – I’m being chased! It felt like we were on a whole new flow.

But back to the license-sales model.  Thinking more on that, immediately, 2 new priorities go straight to the top:

  1. We need to train the trainer – to get that design and content ready – not too difficult.
  2. We need to upgrade our software – the black box that could now be our main revenue stream – needs to upgrade. That’s a major cost and I’ve got some ideas about the funding for that.

Now, instead of losing sleep because I’m worried about the future of the business, I’m losing sleep because my mind is whirring with excitement about the future of the business!

And new challenges come up with every new era. With two new team members joining, how to strike a deal with them that balances an offer of ownership / revenue shares with what they will provide in return, and that is also fair to the two of us who have already been working at this for 2 years. Tricky stuff.  The answer isn’t obvious and I discuss it 1-1 with each team member.

With the new wave of confidence being generated by all of this good news, I pick up hints of guardedness among what the other three may be ok with in a new configuration of arrangements that I haven’t felt before in the business. I realise that I’m feeling nervous about handling this issue properly. I’m not great with interpersonal conflict and fear this topic may jeopardise the goodwill and harmony we need to move forward as a team of four.

But I have to pick myself up and get out of fear-mode. I can’t solve this immediately and there must be a good solution at hand.  Relax – this is inevitable.  My goal is to be transparent with all four of us so that we understand and are happy with the various arrangements among us. The skill now is to mediate towards that understanding and come up with something that has been properly thought through instead of acting impulsively.

Then it crosses my mind that maybe I am being completely naïve – maybe it won’t be possible to find a win-win for all.  Was transparency a mistake here? I hadn’t even considered NOT being transparent because the values of the business are grounded in openness, respect, and inclusivity.

But I’ll press on with finding a solution that fits. I don’t want to lose anyone and I want those values to be real.

 

Mirror Mirroris a proprietary organizational effectiveness process. It is the quickest and most cost-efficient way to accelerate shared understanding and ownership within teams as a means of improving strategy implementation.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 49: Status today

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…Down to brass tacks. What’s the status as at June 2018?

  • It’s been 21 months since I registered Mirror Mirror as a business and got started.
  • It’s been 18 months since Mirror Mirror went to market.
  • Countless contacts have been approached.
  • 3 excellent case studies have been completed.
  • I dedicated Masters’ thesis (University internship) is nearly complete.
  • I’ve written lots of articles and blogs, done 3 speaking events, and presented 1 webinar.
  • I have now 3 fantastic people are on the core driving team.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 48: More epiphanies and hot developments 

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

 I’m just going to list all of the amazing developments that have happened in the past week – it seems like so much!!

A guy I used to work with – very senior, very credible, very well-connected and an EXCELLENT leader – has taken an interest in a role with Mirror Mirror. He loves the idea and wants to get involved in a start-up – I’m so flattered! We had a one-day workshop and talked through a load of stuff: he’ll get involved in providing advice, sales prep & activity, commercial housekeeping, and business development.  That’s so massive. He will change the game here. Our workshop was so inspiring and much of the list items below came out of the discussion I had with him.  Let’s call him my Director.

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Lindsay’s In Business: PART 47: Epiphany

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What happens when you realise your path is entrepreneurship rather than employment? Lindsay takes up the challenge and shares an account of her journey as it unfolds…

In the last post I gave you a link to my first Mirror Mirror webinar.  Whether you watched it or not, I can tell you that it went well, I got a reasonably-sized audience, some compliments afterwards – and in it, I must have mentioned ‘alignment’ around 200 times.

In a blog a few weeks earlier, I talked about the mountain range. How just when you think you’ve reached the top to land something concrete, (like pricing, positioning, strategy) you see another range in sight – a better way forwards: things keep morphing and changing.  And that’s more than ok because at least you can see where you need to go next to suceed.

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