Monday, December 21, 2009

Having the reality check

Not long ago I had this real but harsh reality check. I always believed in our youth to be our next entrepreneurs. I had this dream to preach them to venture into the road of entrepreneurs. Until I was challenged by a couple of VCs when they asked me this very strange question, "Do you really believe that entrepreneurs are fresh graduates who are enthusiastic and want to take the challenge? you are wrong" Yes it came to me as a shock. They explained then to me how that most successful entrepreneurs are experienced people, who worked for a time, detected a problem, thought of a solution and decided to start their startup over it. Mostly there former employers are their first client.

Experience, nothing weighs the experience. I had a flashback then, of how a tough ride I had learning by trial and error. And I was almost that close to believe them, until I came back to my senses. It does not matter if you are a fresh Grad or Business Veteran.. It all boils down to the simple fact of living the thrill, and more important, to believe. Believing is the main ingredient here.

It is the role of the experienced people to offer their help to the young entrepreneurs, so they won't live the hard times we lived to manage. don't condemn the entrepreneurs and say they will fail for not having the experience, empower the energy and bring it to action. Tame their flame and direct them. It is their job to be enthusiastic, energetic and wild, and it is the job of the VCs to be wise, and experienced.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Win-Win or no deal

It is your fear from killing your pet project, or finalizing a client relation, or even leaving for a new job. How many times have you feared from moving on but you get stuburn thinking that you can turn the situation to a better state, if you just gave some in some compromises. My advise, DON'T.

You always need to assess the situation, to know what you are giving and what you are taking in return, and you always make sure that both parties are in a win-win situation.

A client we had, started to face problems working with us. I personally grew attached to this account as it was one of eSpace's first success story. I started to throw resources into the problem hoping that it could fix the problem and we can get back on track. Then I started to offer lower rates to compensate the client. and at all the time we have failed to win his 100% satisfaction. The problem was that our compromises started to be the natural tren, and loosing money became a habbit for this account. We never looked at it this way, we always tried to keep this client on board, hoping that we could regain some money at the end.

The problem grew bigger when the client started to run out of cash, and under the current economical situation maintaining his work became a big problem. and the situation just continued to get ugglier and the relation went from worse to worst.

Thinking of it again, we turned this situation to a problem the moment we accepted our first compromisation. The day I pushed the first resource into the problem, is the day when we lost the account. We should stopped at this moment, saw what the client needs and what we need and make sure that we can both deliver each others needs. If we don't have what he wants, and vice versa, then it is sure the time to end the realtion and get out with respect to each others. Maybe then you could work again together later. By this you will end your losses and his.

This is called WIN-WIN or NO Deal.