Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Growing Businesses .... The Tree Analogy / Metaphor

This post is in response to Kathy Sierra's blog post: (Read her post first... so this will make more sense). http://headrush.typepad.com/creating_passionate_users/2006/01/death_by_riskav.html

I liked the "tree" analogy (or is it a metaphor, I always get those mixed up) and I would even take it a couple steps further.

I recently "read" (on audio CD) a book called "The Innovators Solution" by Clayton M. Christensen. In the book, he talks about Disruptive versus Sustaining Innovations and this can extend your tree idea.

Big companies (if they are any good) typically build their "tree" or systems around Sustaining innovations. These are Incremental improvements to existing products in existing markets. These are easy to see and, to use the analogy, are like the leaves collecting water and sunlight to feed the branches and trunk of the tree.

Disruptive innovations are usually for new markets (which "the branches" find hard to quantify or understand due to a lack of history in the markets) and often are for new (breakthrough?) products.

The "Solution" (as I interpret Clayton's book) is to plant the seeds separate from the main tree (spin them off?) and run them differently from the main business.

Clayton's overall suggestion is that to sustain overall growth you need to be planting seeds and protecting their growth because eventually the main tree is not going to be able to adapt and it will die!

Back to the tree analogy ... Leaves are workers supporting the operation of the tree. SEEDS are the innovations or ideas that can be grown into new trees (businesses). What do you think?

Good to have Kathy back on her blog!
Keep up the good work !

Dave Wheeler
Founder, NoteWordy.com

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Public Speaking tips ... from Guy Kawasaki & Steve Jobs

Below is a link to Guy Kawasaki's blog post which features some of his tips for public speaking!


Guy is one of my favorite authors (Art of the Start is his most recent effort) and I highly recommend him for people interested in marketing or business in general.

He references another source (click here) which describes Steve Job's keynote addresses and all the preparation that goes into them. There are plenty of lessons that we can learn from this article as well as some more that you can get by joining a Toastmasters club.

Speak UP!

Dave Wheeler

Friday, January 13, 2006

The benefits of Hindsight ...

Guy Kawasaki has only been blogging for 10 days and he is already one of my favorite blogs ...

This post has the full text of his "graduation / keynote speech". Check it out !

Friday, January 06, 2006

New Year's Resolutions . . . . Learn from 2005, Apply in 2006

Scott Ginsberg has a post (see link below) that has so many great quotes that you just need to check it out !

HELLO, my name is BLOG: Life isn't about finding yourself, it's about creating yourself

After reading Scott's post, I would summarize it like this ...

Learn from what you did in 2005. What worked? What didn't? What did you try for the first time? What did you intend to try, but did not?

Once you learned.... How are you going to apply your learning in 2006? Now is the time to make plans and MAKE YOUR DREAMS HAPPEN !


Tuesday, January 03, 2006

New Year's Resolutions . . . .

New Year's Resolutions.....

The beginning of the year always seems like a good time for reflection on where you are and where you want to go.

The cold hard truth? If you do the same in 2005, you will probably get the same results in 2006 as you did in 2005. (see this blog entry by Seth Godin)

So . . . . What do you want to change in 2006? What challenges do you want to tackle?

Will you improve your speaking skills through Toastmasters? How about your leadership skills? (Did you know that Toastmasters also has a leadership skills program?) Check out their web site at www.Toastmasters.org to find a club near you!

We would love to hear what you think ! Please leave a comment here !

Happy New Year !

Dave Wheeler
Founder of http://www.notewordy.com/