Wednesday, February 03, 2010

From Start To Finish

Okay, so here's today's cash call question: As you look over the list below, what do the numbers at in front of each statement have in common?

#59 Should you jump in and save every sales situation?
#39 Do you have to know everything that's happening?
#38 What is the one thing that makes people join your new company?
#6 Is having fun at work over-rated?
#7 Why is firing someone at your startup extra hard?
#96 Why do you have to be an energy-creator?
#82 Why you don't want your people to worry like you are worrying.
#66 Why the "new guy" could be doing more harm than good.
#67 Why you shouldn't trust those who say they can help you raise money.
#54 What is the biggest sign of a culture that is developing badly?

Here's a clue...they represent just 10% of the subjects covered in StartUp, 100 Tips to Get Your Business Going.

Some may recall a quip attributed to Mark Twain in which he said to a friend to whom he had written a letter something like "I would have made this shorter, but I didn't have the time."

To be honest, I don't know if Twain was the one who first came up with this truism or not, but it makes a very important point. Specifically, being able to deliver meaningful and powerful information in confined space is an art form. Few have done it, and fewer still can do it in a way that is truly memorable.

Exactly what the genes are that allow these few word wizards to do what they do I don't know; just wish they could be beamed into my Blackberry.

One thing I do believe, however, is that those who can do it have at least one characteristic in common and that is that they are super busy individuals.

By way of example, I offer up GL Hoffman, who among others things, describes himself as a serial entrepreneur. "Certifiable" is more like it.

If you know of GL then no further proof is needed. If you don't, you are missing something, and you check out everything that he is and has been involved in, and stand back amazed like the rest of us.

So what does all this have to do with a book that measures 4 x 5.5? Answer: If you ever wanted to see how much truly important management advice can be crammed into one place, set your cyber GPS right here, right now.

Here's why:

There is almost no executive I have ever met who isn't always looking for advice and counsel on those myriad of situations that confront leaders on a daily if not hourly basis. Most of us see all the well-publicized business books written by the gurus of managing that promise upon finishing their latest tome you will have the universal solvent for every management challenge known to man.

Unfortunately, most of us are way too busy fighting our way through the day to get much beyond the list of the best sellers in the NY Times and feeling depressed because we haven't gotten to any of them.

Well, here's a book you can not only have time to read but much more importantly you can't afford NOT to read. Better still, it is small enough to carry around with you so that you can very likely find the issue and the answer to almost any issue that stands between you and moving your enterprise forward.

If you are a type "A" personality like me, you may remember the satisfaction you felt when back in the day you got turned on to Ken Blanchard and the One Minute Manager. StartUp deserves similar standing.

With praise, however, also comes some criticism, and to that end I would say to GL that with the title he has sold himself short. This book goes way beyond great "learnings" for startups.

Anyone from first time supervisor to CEO would not only love this book, they will treasure it.

I gave copies to our management team and they are still cheering.

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