Business Intelligence Lowdown has browsed the childhood experiences of a number of successful entrepreneurs and extrapolated from their stories some common themes about the lessons they learned as young children "from the lemonade stand". Even though most of the lessons are common sense, they bear repeating. After all, it IS the season for starting afresh with the best intentions.
The 101 lessons are categorized as:
Self before service is the key here – Manage yourself first…
Time and tide wait for no man – Manage each moment …
The human side of resources – Master the art of managing men…
Make every penny count – Managing money pays…
Just do it – Managing tasks takes talent…
Sourcing sources – Manage resources resourcefully…
They are the reason your business exists – Manage customers confidently…
Change is inevitable – Manage critical and chaotic crises…
Aims and aspirations – Manage objectives objectively…
Here are a few of my favorites:
3. Ignore the naysayers. Remember the story of the frogs in the well? If you don’t…Two frogs fell into a dry well and the other frogs took it for granted that they would die in there. When both attempted to jump their way out, the frogs outside discouraged from expending their energy on a hopeless task. Listening to them, one frog gave up his attempts. But the other made it out through his determination and single-mindedness. When asked how he made it in spite of the negative attitude of his fellow frogs, the survivor replied that he was deaf, and that he had thought the other frogs were cheering him on as he tried to get out of the well. Shows what a profound effect a positive outlook can have.
34. Keep your eyes and ears attuned to the sight and sound of creative and innovative ideas; you never know when the mail-room boy might have a brainwave that could revolutionize the way you conduct your business.
57. Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish – save costs where they matter the most. Look at the far horizon rather than just the immediate savings realized. When you compromise on the quality of tools and resources used, you end up paying more in the long run.
58. A dollar saved is a dollar earned – spend only when it’s really necessary.
63. Make quality a top priority, even in the smallest and most insignificant operations. You don’t want to be faced with the snowball effect. Remember the "For the want of a nail" lesson? A whole country is lost because a simple nail was not available in the right place at the right time.
74. Invest in technology, not the latest and most innovative, but the applications and machinery that suit your organization’s needs.
75. Update your tools as and when needed; don’t get stuck with obsolete stuff that’s good only for the junk pile.
77. Impress them (your customers) not just with goods and services, but with value added to your offerings. Differentiate your products from those of your competitors and watch your customers coming back for more.
93. Dream big, think mountains, only then can you achieve at least molehill success.
95. And it’s not sufficient to just plan and strategize, you have to implement your designs. Put that plan into action, it’s the daily grind that matters in the realization of the dream.
96. Know who matters and who does not, and what matters and what does not. Acquaint yourself with the right people who can assist you in achieving your target faster and more effectively.