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Friday, October 19, 2012

The Difference

Twenty years ago, my advertising agent told me that the difference between cheap Chinese food and expensive Chinese food was the size of the bill. We had been discussing where to have lunch.

That has stayed with me, but yesterday I got a whole new perspective on what it means.

I was working with a software developer, talking about the shift from enterprise software to open source, which led to a discussion about how technology could expand his company’s marketing footprint at much less cost. We’ve built an excellent direct sales program (well, what would you expect?), and I was encouraging him to further leverage his current market position.

He told me that he severely limited the time he spent thinking about his website, and wasn’t even going near blogs or Google Plus. His experience in the past was that he had spent unlimited time improving the company website and had nothing to show for it.

So he hired people who wanted to do that work, but they didn’t understand what the company was offering, or where it was going. His web presence wasn’t helping.

I’m all for delegation, and understanding mission, vision and execution is a lot more important than a discussion about using tables or stock photos on a website.

I am sure there are diners who can appreciate and savor the differences in Chinese food, but when I didn’t know what to expect, there wasn’t any difference.

How do you become a wine expert? Drink a lot of wine. 

How important is becoming fluent in better use of new communication technologies? Not very important, if you don’t care to learn. Perhaps more important to your successor? 

Where ave you had to develop you sophistication to win?

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