V1 innovation within a V+1 org

Startups are optimized towards launching version 1.0 offerings, identifying product-market fit, and putting in place the best go-to-market organization to attract new customers. Once the “magic” happens (or should I say the challenging work pays off), when users and products find each other in a happy place, the growth loops evolve towards retention in addition to the original focus purely on acquisition. As the company matures, there is a natural tendency to increasingly drive the business towards delivering incremental products, focusing on the existing target audiences. After all, that’s where the revenue has come from historically, so why not concentrate the R&D and go-to-market investments on what we know best and minimize financial risks? Larger companies sometimes have a hard time going after something unproven that will take investing multiple years to become a meaningful part of the revenue. It could even take market share away from existing offerings!

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Where in the org is Product Marketing?

As companies evolve, they (sometimes) take the time to reflect on the best teams’ structure to achieve their strategies and goals. For most groups, the roles and responsibilities are self-contained within that function. For example, while the sales team organization to deliver the expected results might change significantly over time, from an inside-sales structure to heavy OEM or direct-to-consumer focus, the boundaries remain within “sales” – I can’t name any examples of companies beyond the Seed stage where the R&D leader manages the enterprise sales team. Yet, for one role, defining its location in the org-chart is not as clear… and that challenge is fundamentally described in the function name: Product Marketing.

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Freedom and Responsibility

This podcast episode is by a Guest speaker, Marielle Métrailler and she looks at the relationship between freedom and responsibility.

My wife Marielle is a Leadership and Life-Balance Coach. She founded Clarivia in 2016 with the clear vision of enabling people to achieve their full potential, one conversation at a time. She has worked throughout Europe and North America, applying her skill-set to industries as varied as luxury goods and biotech, as well as to pharmaceutical advocacy organizations. Marielle combines proven methodologies with her strong natural aptitudes: listening, empowering, guiding, facilitating, and change management. With care and precision, she enables individuals and groups to achieve their best and to meet and surpass their personal and professional goals.

This episode is based on the article Marielle published recently on Linkedin.

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It’s not your opinion, it’s your expertise that matters

Everyone has plenty of them, and sadly, many of us are not afraid of sharing them regularly. Not only that, but they often have absolutely no relation with reality. Problematically, the more authoritative your position, the more significant their effect. Yes, I’m referring to opinions. Yet ultimately, what matters is expertise, not opinions.

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Business Lessons from the Aviation World

In the aviation world, safety is given a lot of attention—and rightfully so. Redundancy and checklists are everywhere and there is very strict regulation where everything is codified. As importantly, there are aviation-related organizations whose main focus is on learning from past mistakes. The business world could certainly learn a thing or two from the aviation industry.

This episode is based on a corresponding blog post.

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Getting the pricing right is harder than it seems

Setting pricing seems easy. You understand the value you provide to your users and how much they are willing to pay. Armed with that information, you set the price. But if you sell in more than one country or through partners, you very quickly add a whole new level of complexity that makes the whole exercise, well, fun.

This podcast episode is based on a corresponding blog post.

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Santa, Inc. – The amazing business model of a reindeer pilot

When the success of your organization depends on global delivery within a window of just 24 hours, it’s imperative for your logistics and delivery systems to be flawless. Add to that a strict focus on delighting the customers using processes that rely heavily on outsourcing and you can see just what a challenge it would be. Wait a minute! There’s also that whole “deliver significant shareholder value and growth, year after year” thing. Daunting? Yes. But not for Santa, Inc. How does the company do it?

That’s what I look at in this podcast episode, using one of the great tools available to understand products, businesses, and other opportunities: the Business Model Canvas. A while back, I played around an applied the BMC to a holiday-season centric subject.

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