"...keeping you great" Ten Minutes with the Growth Guy
HEADLINES: (Emergence vs. Divergence vs. Convergence)
Laura Ries/Seth Godin "Smackdown" -- the "iPhone failure" piece last week generated a lot of response, including a note from Seth Godin, the world's top marketing guru. He's made a prediction, including number of units sold, that the iPhone will be a success and has challenged other marketing gurus to a wager -- he specifically highlights Laura Ries' comments. Here's a link to Seth's blog and Laura's counter blog
iPhone will end up being an excellent PDA -- but you'll still need to carry at least two devices! -- In the "for what it's worth" category, my response to the iPhone debate is under DETAILS below -- convergence loses once again. And I share my prediction on which company I think might be the real winner in all this iPhone mania.
YouTube -- 1-800-GOT-JUNK's Daily Standup Meeting video -- if you want to see a successful daily huddle, here's a link. It's been a key tool for driving their rapid growth. "If you want to move faster, pulse faster."
"If the answers are yes, don't ask...just do it!!" -- Randy Nelson, co-founder of NSTAR Global Services (www.nstarglobalservices.com), which provides staffing solutions to the semiconductor industry, has empowered employees to makes decisions based on "if the answers are yes" to five questions:
- Is it right for the customer?
- Is it right for NSTAR?
- Is it ethical?
- Is it something for which you're willing to be accountable?
- Is it consistent with NSTAR's basic beliefs and values?
BTW, this is the kind of rules-based approach that creates "Emergent Systems" of management -- more about this breakthrough approach to managing a company at the Growth Summit in Vegas -- thus Emergence wins over Convergence and Divergence!
Multi-tasking debate -- Michael Caito, CEO, Restaurants-on-the-Run, encouraged me to look at this recent Inc. article that seems to contradict the assertion that we can't multi-task.
Multi-tasking surgeons! -- My response: "It's not that we don't have to multi-task a lot of the time, it's just that we also all need some focus time. I know people that essentially get no uninterrupted time -- that's what is bad. Give your priorities 30 -- 60 minutes per day of uninterrupted time (hey, you don't want your surgeon multi-tasking on the job!) and then you can multi-task your heart out the rest of the time." FYI, Michael let me know that he's implemented a "15-30 minute ‘most important thing first' routine himself."
Rockin' 2007 -- Mark Lancaster, CEO of Employment Group, sent me some photos of their latest quarterly theme, where the executive team is representing a different band each quarter. Check out these "KISS" photos. The key to a successful quarterly theme is having a question you pose to the organization every day. Notes Lancaster "we accomplished our 5 priorities for Q1, achieved 105 percent of our Critical Number and continue to recruit and develop ‘A' players with the focus of our daily question ‘How many ‘A' players have you hung out with or talked to this week?'"
Here are my thoughts on the iPhone debate:
- I was having drinks with Bert Quigg in Vancouver last night (Quigg has become THE premier high-end residential builder in Canada with his latest billion dollar plus project just underway) and discussing the Godin/Ries Smackdown when he pulled out both his Trio and Motorola Razor. I asked him why he carried both and he said because the PDA phone is just too hard to dial (as I found), isn't as good a phone to hear and be heard, etc. -- and his contacts are in both. At our Sales Summit, several companies acknowledged that their sales people carry both as well for the same reasons.
- The PDA really needs a bigger screen which the iPhone has but the phone needs to be smaller -- that's the divergence. Therefore, I think the iPhone will actually be a just a smaller computer while the phone functions are moving more to the Plantronic-type ear devices which will communicate with the PDA (yes, I've adopted the Cyborg-look myself courtesy of a gift from Mike Faith, CEO of Headsets.com) -- so we'll still have two devices requiring two chargers, not one! That's Laura Ries' point!
- Most PDA/phone people find the Bluetooth devices necessary so they can be looking things up on the PDA (and doing email) while talking on the phone. And these Bluetooth headsets are becoming as inexpensive and feature rich as phones.
- Thus, two devices -- phone and PDA!!!
- BTW, same with camera phones -- just a fad. Laura Ries pointed out that fads are typified by rabid and rapid sales that then fall off, whereas solid technologies have more of a traditional exponential ramping in sales. Case in point, Mike Faith, CEO of Headsets.com, wanted to take a photo with Laura Ries -- now this is one of the most high tech guys I know and he has a camera phone -- but he brought out his small digital camera to take the photo. Each device does its job the best and what makes for a great phone by definition doesn't make a great camera -- in fact, my wife has a camera PDA yet LOVES her high end, full size Canon M20 -- she takes 500 times (literally) the photos than she does from even her small digital camera.
- Conclusion: iPhone is poorly named, it will do well initially and morph quickly into a handheld Mac, and the Headsets.com and Plantronics of the world will be the "phone" distributor and manufacturers of choice. And like high end stereo equipment, we'll own and use a separate camera, PDA, and phone -- three devices from three separate companies to do three distinct jobs.