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Day 1 Evening - Top10 Lessons Learned Serge Lafontaine
Day 1 Evening - Top10 Lessons Learned Serge Lafontaine
Day 1 Evening - Top10 Lessons Learned Serge Lafontaine
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Day 1 Evening - Top10 Lessons Learned Serge Lafontaine

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  • 1. Lead to Win Alumni 2002 – Top 10 Lessons Learned Summary July 28 th , 2009 Collaborators: Ahmed Metwally Chuck Colford Dave Vicary Jerry Everett Gordon Miller Serge Lafontaine
  • 2. Top 10 Lessons Learned Slide <ul><li>Invest in building points of difference </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What are your customers willing to pay for? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Engage customers to learn their points of pain and capability </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Adopt alternative solutions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be aware and careful of the single customer situation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Protect your advocates, customers are your best referrals </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Call on your customers first, then your investors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sales calls must far outnumber money raising calls. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Act your size, walk away from large clients pressures </li></ul><ul><li>Validate your business model early </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Many assumptions will be wrong, either good or bad for you </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Stay focused, don’t make major shifts and define your ideal customer </li></ul></ul>
  • 3. Top 10 Lessons Learned <ul><li>Validate your success with a paycheck </li></ul><ul><ul><li>If you work for free too long you have the wrong business model. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Build a strong team; if in doubt do not hire </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hire the next generation of leaders, not just employees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New hires HAVE TO believe in your company </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Stay away from venture capitalists. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Exhaust all other possible financing options before considering VC funding </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Start with a shareholder agreement </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Makes sure that everyone has skin in the game </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Define what success means to you and act accordingly </li></ul><ul><ul><li>You don’t have to be the next Microsoft </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Define your exit strategy </li></ul></ul>Slide

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