Archive for April, 2009

Burgers = Software

A comment made by Rob Antulov (3eep CEO) via Phil Morle’s blog really stood out to me because of the point it was making. That is, your next great feature probably isn’t going to mean success for your business if you just aren’t getting the basics right.

I really like the use of the burger shop in the analogy:

“We want to make great burgers before we try to open McDonalds”

However, I think it could also be:

In software we try and develop a new sauce for our burger thinking it will increase our customers. However, we miss the fact that we built our burger shop in the middle of the desert.

Don’t hide why you want something

When you want something and you explain to people why you want it you’d be surprised at how easy it is to start getting what you are after. When people are aware of what motivates you and what you want it is easy for them to point you in the right direction or help you achieve what you’re after.

Just recently I’ve decided that I want to do research in the fields of management, leadership and technology to gain a deep understanding of the fields and build a name for myself. So, when I explained what I wanted and why I wanted it to someone straight away they pointed me to the right person and now things are looking great.

Don’t hide what you want and don’t hide why you want it.

Is your problem really a problem?

I just recently finished reading The Te of Piglet by Benjamin Hoff and I came across a great view of problems and dealing with problems.

Compounding any problem (or nonproblem) is the traditional Western response to difficulties real or imagined: the tendency to see them emotionally, perceiving them as threats to one’s personal survival – threats that must be fought tooth-and-nail to the bitter end. In the East, such an approach to life is considered rather immature. Overdoing it, you know; wasting energy. Or, as the Chinese saying puts it, “Painting legs on the snake.”

So in solving problems, one needs to know if they are problems. Is what appears at first to be bad truly bad?

Interview with Vishal Sharma

I recently did an interview with Vishal Sharma for his blog that follows Aussie startups and tech trends.

Today we showcase story of an exciting venture, from Sydeny, Australia, infome - Find Anything Nearby from your Mobile, co-founded by Scott Middleton, Andrew Lowe and Brett McDowall.

Read the rest of the interview…

Google AdVertisers get cheeky

You aren’t allowed to create AdWords with the text “iPhone” in them – very frustrating when you’re trying to advertise a service for the iPhone.

Some cheeky buggers have managed to get around that – I wonder how long it will last:

Cheeky Google Advertisers

The image is a bit dodgy, but if you look closely see that they’ve changed “iPhone” to “1Phone”.

What Vodafone Australia looks for in mobile offerings

I was at Mobile Monday Sydney last week and listened to a presentation from Hanno Blankenstein, Vodafone Australia’s Head of Innovation.

The interesting slide that stuck out was the one discussing what Vodafone looks for in mobile (and non-mobile) opportunities. Here is what I picked up about what Vodafone is looking for:

  • Appealing service offering
  • Market access – strong distribution partner(s), cross platform, cross operator
  • Optimized architecture – cloud
  • Commercial – mobile marketing from day one, users and usage as a foundation

Whilst nothing above is earth shattering, they’re great points to keep in mind.

The coolest business in the world – Smash Shack

What is better than smashing things?

Nothing.

Smash Shack is just a fantastic idea, I wish there was one nearby because I would sign up straight away. This business also has that X factor that makes you want to tell people about it.

Really cool.

Smash Shack.

I hate the word compromise

I hate the word compromise.

Compromising brings up pictures of not chasing what you want from life or settling for something that isn’t completely what you’re after. When ever I’ve compromised on something in the past it has always come with unhappiness and resentment. Those that are uncompromising seem happier and are achieving what they are after.

Maybe it is the idealist in me, but isn’t an agreement reached between two people without compromise the best possible agreement they could reach? And if they need to compromise, why don’t they both find others that they can agree with, without compromise?

There are going to be times when compromise is necessary, but why not search for solution without compromise first?

Innovation – Organisational vs Technical

At the Asia Pacific Symposium on Entrepreneurship and Innovation the general theme of the day leant towards organisational innovation rather than technical innovation. In particular, some of the business leaders – like a former Microsoft Australia CEO and the ING Direct Australia CEO – put emphasis on the fact that anyone can invent a new product, or algorithm (e.g. the current financial situation) but it is the complete, integrated service that provides the real value.

Providing that integrated service comes about through organisational innovation.

When I spoke with the former Microsoft Australia CEO afterwards he urged me to focus on people and the organisation rather than on the technology because, I guess he thought, that is what would make infome the most successful.

Naturally persuasive people naturally start with the why

The most persuasive people I know, not necessarily from a business context, all begin any request they make of you with the “why” – the vision.

I’m much more likely to respond positively to “I need to go pick up some groceries, can I please borrow your car?” then “can I please borrow your car?”

All because I know the why. Maybe it’s just me or maybe it’s people in general.


Scott Middleton
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