Sunday, July 31, 2005

So what are you looking at

In the world of enterprise there are not a lot of answers.

The only one I can put on my list with any certainty is this: When something REALLY works, keep doing it. Then keep doing it better every day. When something doesn't work, well, you get the idea.

Unfortunately, all the rest seems to fall in between. Things work and you push them. You find limits. You work the limits to the best of your ability and finances. When you beat those limits down to a manageable size, you're getting within reach of REALLY works territory.

That's when you get to switch from working hard and smart to working harder and smarter. However, you get to do it on your terms, not those dictated by the problem.

There are certainly guidelines, if not answers, to how good sustainable enterprises get welded together and stay afloat. That's what I've been trying to talk about in these posts. My general point is, if you want answers, you'd better like the looking.

That's the temperament I'd recommend in approaching any start up or start up type project, even when it's within a big outfit.

Look for answers, but look very carefully at how you look. Think about what you should look at and how you look at what you find. How are you going to measure what you find? If you're smart, you'll be doing this a bit differently, and hopefully, a bit smarter all the time.

Data is key, but picking what you look at, and how you look at it is much more important. Then, my friend, learn to enjoy that process. Because, if you don't control the data, you're not going to enjoy your enterprise very much.

Answers are never readily available. Your role as a start up or a sustainable enterprise is to ask better and better questions all the time.

You can do that by controlling as much of the data as you can regarding your enterprise. Then, as you think of better questions, you can use your ability to get at all your information immediately. The success of your enterprise depends on your ability to reshuffle your data to get increasingly meaningful answers to your increasingly better questions.

If you want to move the blue sky stuff forward, you've got to capture the details. As I've said before, paper and pencil work, but digital databases are easy and much more helpful. You get to set them up any way you want to look at your data. When you think of better questions, you can quickly make newer and better windows into the data.

Before I drift off into database design, I'll stop and get back on point.

I don't know many answers. I just really like the looking for 'em. If you’re looking for sustainable work, you should too.

1 comment:

Todd McKenzie said...

One of the things I learned from a mentor of mine was to always ask the question, "Why?" Why are they buying this product? Why are they not buying THIS product? Why do they shop here? Why do they shop there? Why did they put the building there?

Somewhere in the question why is a direct connection to what you wrote in this post.

Do it better everyday. Words to live by.