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Simplicity that leads to success…

A few months ago I was chatting with a very successful friend and I asked her about her strategy for success. She only took a few seconds to answer. When she takes over a new group she figures out the one or two things that they can maximize that will drive success. Just two things that they can do well. Samuel J. Palmisano, IBM’s CEO, is retiring and as he tells the NY Times, he developed four questions to ask his senior managers to drive them:

  1. “Why would someone spend their money with you — so what is unique about you?”
  2. “Why would somebody work for you?”
  3. “Why would society allow you to operate in their defined geography — their country?”
  4. “And why would somebody invest their money with you?”

So what are your questions? What are the one or two things that you can always do to a perfection? I like Sam’s questions from IBM. I’m not certain that number 3 applies to the vast majority of small to mid-sized companies. However, they aren’t the questions that I’m going with for myself…

I’m going with:

  1. What is the problem that you solve? What is your single differentiator?
  2. What is the thing one thing you do better than anyone else?
  3. How do you make a profit and how does your profit relate to your customer’s ROI?
My goal with these questions is increase the chances of success in profit, hiring, marketing, sales and customer retention. I think that if you answer these questions with confidence, then you are on the right path.

Posted in Business.

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