As the wise W Edwards Denning once said:

Profit in business comes from repeat customers, customers that boast about your project or service, and that bring friends with them.

Could it be this simple?

I actually think it can be.

The backside of business building which is the unsexy but just as important is making sure that you end up having more money in the bank than when you started, every month.

Fiscal management is nothing more than cleanliness and consistency. Ensuring that your “books are in order” and are as sanitized as possible ensures that you’re getting the right values.

This is difficult in the beginning of a new venture and startup as your expenses and the businesses expenses are almost all one-in-the-same.

But, cleaning things up earlier is always better.

On the much more interesting part of Denning’s quote is the idea of “bringing friends with them” and how hard that can be. There are so many reasons that you and I enjoy X, Y, and/or Z but do not want to share that with others, for whatever reason.

How do we correctly and enthusiastically incentivize folks to share the very things that they love in a way that overcomes any of those normal insecurities or anxieties of sharing?

I think that people overlook how complex this decision making really is and they just assume that if someone loves something intensely that they necessarily will share that love with others.

In my experience, it just doesn’t happen nearly as often as we think it does (or should). As company builders, we have to work just as hard to create an experience of sharing that is as good as the product itself.

And then you just have to wait for the profits to roll in.


Also published on Medium.