The Critical Client Services Function

Scaling your business requires having strong cross-organizational functions including, sales, marketing, finance, product development and client services.  The client service function is often over-looked by early stage companies for several reasons.  These include assuming that your product can be used by anyone without significant training…it can’t. Or, early-stage companies lack resources  to properly staff this [...]

The Critical Client Services Function2019-07-08T11:39:17+00:00

Using the Blue Ocean Buyer Utility Map

Many entrepreneurs believe that they have Blue Ocean companies and opportunities.  Yet, most have actually never read either of the books “Blue Ocean Strategy” or "Blue Ocean Shift”.  (BTW, I recommend “Blue Ocean Shift” for personal reasons).  And even fewer have properly applied some of the key principles of the books that would better ensure [...]

Using the Blue Ocean Buyer Utility Map2019-06-30T14:48:39+00:00

Arbor Dakota Helps Shopwindow Achieve 300% Growth

Working through an Ann Arbor SPARK EIR grant, Arbor Dakota helped shopwindow, a SaaS retail company blow out its revenues. https://annarborusa.org/news/executive-in-residence-program-helps-ann-arbor-startups-excel/  

Arbor Dakota Helps Shopwindow Achieve 300% Growth2019-03-13T12:29:53+00:00

21 Things That Stunt Your Ability to Scale Your Business

Anyone who really knows me knows two things about me.  I am all about start-up growth and scale and I understand that there are no simple answers to complex issues. And scaling a startup is not simple.  There are many things that can seriously impede growth.  So, this post is about the many things that [...]

21 Things That Stunt Your Ability to Scale Your Business2019-02-28T14:29:36+00:00

Creating A Blue Ocean Sales Approach

Many startup companies invent new markets or approaches to solving existing problems.  In doing so, they need to convince their markets to think differently about this brand-new approach to industry problems.  This is very difficult and requires a non-traditional sales approach.  These opportunities are Blue Ocean opportunities and they require Blue Ocean knowledge, a Blue [...]

Creating A Blue Ocean Sales Approach2019-02-12T13:02:32+00:00

Implementing Blue Ocean Strategy

So, you are a Blue Ocean Strategy company, huh?  Where is your ERRC grid? Where is your Four Action Framework?  Where is your Strategy Canvas?  Where are your known Objections from the market, competitors, investors and even employees?  Where is your 5 Step Blue Ocean Process plan?  Where are the many questions that need to [...]

Implementing Blue Ocean Strategy2019-01-14T16:21:11+00:00

Using OKRs to Drive Results

What do Andy Grove, John Doer and Eric Schmitt (among others) know that you don’t know?  Probably a great deal.  But one of the most important factors is how to set objectives and then accomplish those objectives through OKRs, which stands for Objectives and Key Results.  OKRs have been around a while and have been [...]

Using OKRs to Drive Results2019-02-05T12:35:02+00:00

When Only the Founder/CEO Can Sell the Product

"Only I can sell my product" Early-stage company growth stalls for many reasons. Many companies falter at the scale stage of development (going from 4-5 customers to 100).   Many founder/CEOs tend to blame lack of funding, slow market acceptance and other factors on lack of growth or inability to scale.  However, a main [...]

When Only the Founder/CEO Can Sell the Product2019-01-02T12:29:43+00:00

10 New Year’s Resolutions to Improve Performance in 2019

The New Year is approaching.  It’s time for New Year’s resolutions.  This applies to personal as well as company resolutions.  Here are 10 New Year’s resolutions that will definitively positively impact your company in 2019.  It’s up to you. Repeat after me. I will commit to: Continuous learning.  Be a better leader and be a better [...]

10 New Year’s Resolutions to Improve Performance in 20192018-12-16T16:23:26+00:00

Conducting a Sales Audit To Improve Sales Performance

Entrepreneurs who lack a sales background (most entrepreneurs) often do not fully appreciate all of the things that need to be in place before a company can commercially succeed and grow.  As the saying goes: “If you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there”. A structured and comprehensive sales audit, [...]

Conducting a Sales Audit To Improve Sales Performance2018-12-16T16:06:07+00:00