Five things I hate hearing

I’m a bit tired and cranky this week from competing deadlines. This generally brings out my more caustic side, so I thought I would share lines I hate hearing and which instantly kill any meeting for me. Most of which I’ve heard more than once in the last month.

We hope to…

There is a management text by Ted Gee that I will never buy. It’s called Hope is not a Strategy. If you hope to do something, it means you have no plan, perhaps don’t value research or planning or are simply just too lazy to plan. Lack of planning almost always equals lack of success.

Just getting the message out…

This means you haven’t really put much thought into what exactly your product or service is, who exactly will buy it and why they will buy it. Lack of marketing plan = lack of marketing success.

You’ve got to dress for success…

Idiot! Of course it’s beneficial to present well, but people that mouth this off almost always have no substance. They believe in magic success buttons that they can press. Success in any venture is always a mixture of intelligence, hard work, passion, persistence and a bit of luck.

We are doing everything right, why isn’t it working…?

This means that you perceive yourself as a dynamic, successful entrepreneur. Unfortunately you can’t see reality too well. You are closed-minded and refusing to adapt to market conditions while your venture dies a slow death. If you find yourself saying this, take a deep breath, slap yourself and embrace change, not more of the same.

We are a boutique but full service…

Boutique means small, full service means you do everything. Therefore by being full service you must be pretty much crap at everything because you don’t have the resources to be good. Really, some people think this is a good statement.

I hope you hear none of these in the coming weeks, but unfortunately they seem all too common.

Brendan Lewis is a serial technology entrepreneur having founded: Ideas Lighting, Carradale Media, Edion, Verve IT, The Churchill ClubFlinders Pacific and L2i Technology Advisory. He has set up businesses for others in Romania, Indonesia and Vietnam. Qualified in IT and Accounting, he has also spent time running an Advertising agency and as a Cavalry Officer with the Australian Army Reserve.


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