Saturday, January 26, 2008

Slow, but moving forward...

I can't believe I haven't updated my blog since the 15th! Terrible. I have been consumed with work for my employer, our existing biz and one of the new businesses discussed in this blog. I have also made minimal progress on the original business idea that started this whole thing.

I think it is time to go back and re-read the 4HWW. My time is less and less and I really need more and more! :-)

It's amazing to me how quickly things can get started and then, as the details hit, start to slow down. Simple things, like getting corporate ID kits can take a while to get right. To this end, I no longer will support my positive endorsement of LogoDesignPro's. To be fair, I wish to expand.

We hired them to create a logo and corporate ID kit for my existing company about 2.5 years ago. Things went very smoothly and timely. The quality of work was impeccable. So I recommeneded them to my partners for our current startup. The result? We got a very beautiful logo - high quality, great design work. But when it came time to start the corp ID kit, well, they simply got lazy. Getting revisions was time consuming and the revised efforts were just as sloppy as the original presentation.

In an effort to save time, we went elsewhere. The design and turn-around time from the other company we selected was fantastic. After three revisions, mostly text related, we received the original graphic files. Now, for the fun!

Thank goodness one of our partners works in the graphics industry. Turns out, what we see on screen isn't necessarily what will be reflective of what ends up on the stationary, envelopes and business cards. This is because the design color selection was for presentation over the computer. The printers use a different color scheme. Can you imagine the frustration we would have felt after paying for and receiving 5,000 pieces of stationary, 5,000 envelopes and 5,000 business cards - just to see that they don't look the way we expected? This is possibly avoided if you use a local printer, but we are bargain shoppers and found one online. That introduces some risk.

How did we avoid this frustration? Thanks to a little research and pre-existing knowledge, we submitted our graphics to Costco for very limited prints. This allowed us to see what the end result should look like. Can you believe it took 3 trial runs and changes to the graphics before we got it right? This easy and relatively inexpensive step saved us a great deal of expense and frustration. We have now submitted everything to the actual printing company and cross your fingers that what we get back matches up with what Costco produced.

On another front, I'm growing impatient with some of my Rent-A-Coders! One very trivial task was assigned over two weeks ago. I still don't have my code and need it for part of this project. I check in every two or three days, and each time I check in, I'm told I'll have something in two days time. Bug here, downed internet there; oh, the excuses amaze me. On my first few projects I got very timely and proper results - as previously posted on this blog. My last few projects don't share the same excitement. But, alas, I have time and am not too worried. If anything, my own lack of time is going to cause bigger delays and the launch then these little efforts.

All the groundwork is in place. Now, it's about launching this thing. I have significant work yet to achieve on our website, but most other aspects are near completion. Bank Accounts, Corp Creation, Marketing Material, trademarking, phone system, fax system, email, etc... - all in place or very near completion. But....can't do much without a website, huh? I better start burning the midnight oil for a week or two so that I don't upset my partners who are eager and excited to get moving forward.

It will be interesting to see what happens after we actually launch. It took me about 3 months to get our first business up and running, but that was with me working nearly full-time on it. Once we launched, we started making money from day one. The nature of that business is a little different from this one, so we'll see if the same holds true. Time will tell - stay tuned!

3 comments:

id_bob said...

You know you mentioned going back and rereading the book. I only got 6 chapters in when I decided I should take the book much more seriously than I had been. I had been reading it more as a motivational book than a true-to-life plan for achievement.

I've now started over, reading each page slowly, rereading parts and quotes I didnt fully understand. And the most important thing I'm doing this time: using a highlighter to focus on the key points. I literally learned 2-3 times more than last time by reading slowly, highlighting, and just pausing frequently to let a statement settle in properly.

Keep up the good work on your blog. Looks like you need an update! Btw, I don't do jiujitsu, but I do train in Wing Chun Kung fu... Not like Kung fu theatre stuff but in-your-face short range attacks with elbows, fists, knees, etc. Fighting can be fun stuff.

Check out my own 4hww blog at http://fourhoursupport.blogspot.com

The Four Hour Trial said...

Thanks for the comment! Yes, I need to go buy a highlighter so I can do the same! Highlighting important principles and ideas/quotes/etc... is very useful when you want a quick "pick-me-up." Plus, as you mentioned, it helps reinforce the concepts in your brain!

Wing Chun - Is not that the Bruce Lee style? I'm not an expert in all the various arts but was thinking this to be his style. If so, are you working on lightning fast reflexes too? :-) Man, he was fast! I'm just starting in the BJJ but love it already. I am a bit surprised at how easy it is for some of these guys to roll me and choke me out. I'm a very good wrestler (so I thought), but the guys who have been around for a bit can kick my butt in an instant - turning me, choking me out, etc... during the fundamentals training. Seriously, I can't believe how quickly they can win position when I thought I was good at holding me own! :-) I WISH I would have taken some BJJ back when I wrestled because it definitely could have helped.

I need to for sure update my blog - will do so over the weekend or tomorrow. I am failing miserably at achieving my 4HWW! Instead, as I try to get my "muse" - I find I'm working way too much and being very inefficient because of too many things going on at the same time. I'll write about this challenge in the update I do over the weekend because it's worth noting!

-M

id_bob said...

Yeah Wing Chun (or, Wing Tsun) was Bruce Lee's initial art. He went on to create Jeet Kune Do which is heavily based on Wing Chun.

I've been toying with the idea of getting some BJJ in as well. I had this crazy idea of competing in some amateur no holds barred competition, but I don't think it's a feasible of reachable goal at this point. WHEN the 4HWW mentality pays off and I'm living on automated income, then maybe I'll pursue it.