Stick to the core of your vision’s core, but stay flexible with the details
Brian knew the type of product he wanted to create because he was in a situation where he needed that service and it wasn’t available. This kind of intimate knowledge of the problem you are trying to solve is extremely valuable when creating a business around the solution. He knew that the product the first developer created was not good enough and he was patient enough to keep looking for a person who could understand his requirements and deliver.
Flexibility with the details is where the learning happens, but it requires us to know exactly what kind of service we aim to deliver so we can channel our efforts into the right places. If it’s a furniture shop, commitment to deliver quality will guide us to be strict when selecting suppliers. If it’s a cleaning service, commitment to deliver timely and satisfactory service would guide us to master scheduling and have efficient transport plans. If it’s a jewelry shop, commitment to give customers unique pieces they love would guide you to spend the majority of your time designing those pieces and working closely with the artisans to ensure quality. You get the gist.
Keep your network alive
Brian’s run-in with his classmate echoes last week’s conversation around networking and just how important it is to be able to ask for help. Entrepreneurs are protective of their vision and trying to do everything gives a sense of control over the outcomes. However, this is unrealistic and leads to burn-out.
We need inputs from those who think differently from us and from those who have different skill-sets from us. It requires trust to be able to work with other people, but this becomes easy if you have been nurturing meaningful professional relationships throughout your career.
Aftersales and tribes - the new marketing strategy
One of the things Tubayo quickly learned was the centrality of customer experiences to their success based on their target market. In this case, customer experiences that made an impact went beyond customer satisfaction to address needs customers didn’t know they had. In short - Tubayo had to over-deliver by understanding exactly what the clients needed - even if it was beyond the businesses’ scope.
For Tubayo, a focus on delivering great quality experiences and a robust after-sales approach allowed them to create a tribe of clients who became an extension of their marketing function. It was difficult and it took time, but their openness to observe and learn client needs and developing products that were on target was a major lever of success.