Over the past couple of years, I’ve been reading up on business principles, trying to gather as much information as possible so I can make the best decisions for my company. Surprisingly, what I’ve discovered is not what I’ve expected at all.
Copying is OK
Before you get upset or start pulling out copyright law, let me explain. There’s a difference between copying and stealing.
In this case, copying is seeing what someone else is doing, thinking “I can do this better”, taking the good pieces, and making it your own.
You might still be scowling, but in the United States, we have anti-monopoly policies. Meaning, the government actually encourages this kind of behavior! A competitor is only going to make businesses better and stronger. It’s why you have SquareSpace and WordPress. Flickr and Picassa. Google and Bing. These are all successful businesses, but they’re all (essentially) doing the same thing.
First isn't best
First is the worst. Second is the best. Third is the one with the hairy chest?
Just because you’re not first, doesn’t mean you’re not the best. Take Facebook and MySpace. MySpace was first, launching their services in August 2003. Facebook followed, two months later. But, look who’s still going strong.
Just because you’re not first doesn’t mean you’re too late.
Quitting is Good
There’s a popular phrase: “winner’s never quit.” It’s a lie. Winners do quit. In fact, they quit all the time. They quit all the things they’re not good at and focus on the things they are. Maximize your strengths.
If you’re not good at something. Quit. Let the people that are good at it, do it. You do the things you are good at.
The most important thing you can do in business is ship (unfinished)
It is better to send out a product at 90% complete, then it is to wait until it’s at 100%. How do you figure? How much difference is that final 10% going to make? 90 is still an A. Besides, it gives you room for feedback, to make sure that final 10% is actually moving in the the right direction.
What other business rules have you learned?