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2018

As a Project/Program Manager during the growth stages of my subscription video startup--I often struggled with managing developers.  I've fallen victim to many of these transgressions, often feeling a palatable sigh of exasperation during stand-up meetings.  (Quick disclaimer--I've never done #2)

 

I've been that manager.  Here are a few pitfalls to avoid when working with any developer team.  Happy coders make for awesome code!

 

 

it take 25 min for developers to refocus after an interruption

 

1) Avoid interrupting your developer teams:

Dude (I'm saying this to the earlier version of me)--there's a reason the developers wear headphones--it's to block out the distractions.  And yeah, it looks cool, but they don't like their music any more that you like yours.  They just need space.  Here's a game changer to think about before you interrupt your developer team.  Studies show that it takes approximately 25 minutes for developers to get re-focused after a coding interruption.  So the next time you think about breaking their flow--consider that you're killing a half hour of production. Ouch!

 

2) Never ask a freelancer to work for free:

Never ask someone to use their hard-earned skills for free to make money for you. Like, never ever. And no, the opportunity for “exposure” or “portfolio additions” is often not worth the headache. Check out this facepalm-ending exchange from Clients from Hell.

 

 

 

3) Don’t expect your developer to work themselves to death to meet deadlines you also can’t meet:

If your project is dependent on images, copy, and resources that need to be created and sent to the developer, make sure those deliverables actually, you know, get to the developer on time. Otherwise, you’re looking at missed deadlines and it won’t be their fault. It’ll be yours. Check out a real world example of this in Jesie Castro’s Last Minute Luke entry on the TrackDuck blog.

 

4) Keep the meetings to a minimum:

When it comes to meetings.  Have an agenda, have a goal and have a timer.  If you can communicate via email--do it.  According to Scrum.com, they have a suggested breakdown of what the monthly sprint should look like in an agile environment.  Daily scrum meetings--15 minutes max.  They also suggest the following.

  • Sprint Planning - max 8 hours/mo.
  • Sprint Review - max 4 hours/mo.
  • Sprint Retrospective - max 3 hours/mo.

 

use unix philosophy to beat scope creep

 

5) Stop adding to the Feature Creep:

It's alive and growing at a rapid pace!  Stop adding more features into the software development queue.  Take a myopic look at your feature set and take a clue from an old developer axiom called--the Unix philosophy.  Simply stated, just do one thing really well.  The Unix philosophy emphasizes building simple, short, clear, modular, and extensible code that can be easily maintained and re-purposed by developers other than its creators.

 

6) Your site has 99 problems and lack of back-ups and source control is 98 of them:

Does your site code live in 3-5 different places? Do you not remember where the most recent site back-up files are stored? French chefs use mise en place to make meal prep easy and orderly. Give the same courtesy to your developers. Make sure you’ve consolidated and centralized what code you have, and have reliable back-ups stored away just in case something goes awry. Just read this horror story by Dan Pratt on what happens when disorder leads to chaos.

 

7) Bad Code - Stop spreading the madness:

If you're handing over code from one developer to another, understand that each developer writes code in their own style.  Have your original developer document, document, document.  And abide by this mantra--"Always code as if the person who ends up maintaining your code is a violent psychopath who knows how to find you."  Check out this story of a 9-page WordPress site that had over 900-thousand files on it due to a weird directory structure.

 

8) Time Trackers - Big Brother is not welcome here:

Tick Tock, Tick Tock.  Asking your Dev Teams to track their time on various projects could cause an outcry for revolution from the tyranny of Big Bother.  So skip the Orwellian developer landscape, stop lurking over their shoulders and break this coding flow killer.

 

time tracking software can save your dev team on average $18,000 per year

 

But if you have to initiate time tracking, beware of these perils.

 

What are some of your best Dev Horror stories?  We'd love to hear them in the comments below.

Get off the freelance hamster wheel.

Being a freelance developer is a bit like sprinting on a hamster wheel.  Like most freelancers, you live for the autonomy of choosing your clients, working an 'all-nighter' (okay, maybe not that) or having the freedom of making your laptop be your office.  Your desk can be the beach, the couch or the local coffee joint.

 

Sounds idyllic, but for most freelancers that hamster wheel never stops once you jump on.  Which begs the question, "Why did I get into freelancing in the first place if all I'm ever doing is worrying about where the next job comes from?"

 

 

According to the Freelancers Union "53 Million" Report there are some interesting stats regarding the freelance industry:

  • 34% of the workforce are freelancers.
  • Freelancers contribute an estimated $715 Billion to the US economy.
  • 69% of freelancers said technology made it easier to find freelance work.
  • 77% of freelancers say their best days are ahead of them.

 

We talked with Jason Resnick, a freelance developer for over 20 years about his journey from the freelance hamster wheel to living in the 'Feast.'  Jason has developed an online learning program specifically geared for freelance developers and designers to help them find and keep continued recurring revenue.  His Feast program includes videos, downloads, templates and business development best practices for all factors in the freelance business and sales cycle.  But the free, 'Getting Clients' 5-part, email course walks you through a tutorial on leveraging Twitter and Craigslist.

 

Why did you build the 'Feast' training series for developers?

The Feast program is about building your business as a developer, designer and freelancer in general.  You don't work to live, but when you are a freelancer oftentimes you quit one job to leave one boss and you then get 20 bosses.  Feast is about defining your solution to your clients problems and building a business around that so that you have a proper sustainable business that can support your ultimate goal of why you became a freelancer in the first place.

 

 

Tell us about your free email campaign for visitors that specifically leverages Twitter and Craigslist.

This is my free, 'Getting Clients' 5-part, email course that details the exact process I put in place myself when I started freelancing to get clients."  Social interactions are not my strength, so I looked at myself as a developer and looked for ways to jump ahead of the line to get those opportunities to my phone and desk as soon as they get posted online.  The free, multi-part email course details a way to set up lead-gen channels on Twitter and Craigslist using a few free tools to get delivered the kinds of jobs that you want.  And since being first is often critical, these tips can bring you to the top of the list.

 

Click here to sign up for the Getting Clients email series and get all his detailed videos for leveraging IFTTT with Twitter and Craigslist.  After signing up for free, Jason's video does a great job of walking you through the entire process, but here's a brief outline of what you'll learn there.

 

Twitter hack:  Finding prospects that need help with overflow work.

  1. Have your email outreach template ready to go for when you find leads.  (Jason has a sample on his site you can download for free)
  2. Use the advanced search in Twitter.
  3. Put in your search terms.  (Example:  web development agency, development team, etc.)
  4. Follow any prospect in a private list.  This is your reference for the next step in the process where you can automate updates from each prospect.  (Note:  Remember that when you add Twitter accounts to a private list, they do not get notified)
  5. After making your private list, go the the profile page of each prospect and turn on mobile notifications for that user.  This is critical because you will now get a mobile notification every time this prospect Tweets.
  6. When you find a prospect Tweeting about a job, have your email outreach template handy for an immediate reply.  (Note:  The key is here is to be one of the first respondents.  And have a killer email outreach template.)

 

 

 

You describe Twitter as a 'firehose of information."  How can developers leverage it to get new clients?

Twitter is my home away from home.  I built my business using Twitter.  It's search tool is very powerful.  Just like Google.  So learning the nuances and jumping into the cocktail party that is the Twitter firehose is important.  You need to get in there and engage. Tweets lasts 8 seconds, and you want to be the first to respond.

 

Craigslist hack:  Automate job searches and notifications for multiple locations.

Jason's video on using automation tools gives you a visual breakdown of the entire process, but this is a brief outline of what you'll learn there.

  1. Timing is everything when it comes to Craigslist, so the first thing you need to do is setup an IFTTT account.
  2. On Craigslist, pick the hotbed locations for developer opportunities.  You'll repeat these steps for every location and keyword combination that you choose to use in your searches.
  3. Copy the URL from any searches.  You'll need that URL later in the process.
  4. In IFTTT, you'll setup an alert from Craigslist to your phone using a recipe.
  5. Jason suggests using an app within IFTTT, called 'Pushover' for phone notifications.  He says this allows you to separate these notifications from email or SMS messages.
    1. In IFTTT, to create a recipe, choose a trigger channel.  In this case it is Craigslist.
    2. Paste the Craigslist URL that you saved earlier as your source.
    3. Then choose an 'Action' channel.  This notification could be SMS, email or as Jason suggests, using 'Pushover.'
      1. Within the action you can choose to select the ingredients, or attributes you'd like to have forwarded to your phone.  These attributes are the common fields that show up in any Craigslist ad.
      2. After you make this action, you can title it for easier recognition when the alerts come to your phone.
  6. Create notifications for every city and keyword you wish to automatically track.
  7. Use an outreach email template to respond the moment you see a new opportunity.  Remember, being first, or close to first in responding is key.
  8. You've now automated a very laborious process.  The days of going to Craigslist to scour multiple locations are over!

 

 

Developers view Craigslist as a source of "bottom-feeder" jobs, but what's your message for pundits?

Craigslist is usually the wasteland for jobs, but I've got jobs from major corporations that posted on Craigslist.  Oftentimes they'll take the first few respondents and then they'll remove their ad.  My video walks you through use of another free tool to send you alerts when a job posting happens on Craigslist.  The other opportunity is that Craigslist is very local orientated.  So if you're not in the same town as a job posting, it's a way to have that digital face-to-face with a large corporation.  The automation that I detail takes away the need to always hit refresh.  You just set up the search and it pings you when a hit happens.

 

But there's more to it than engaging in the right manner on social media.  What else do you need for success?

Tuesday night is my lead-gen night.  There has to be some accountability to go through all my alerts and review them and reply back with an email I had already crafted.  It's virtually the same paragraph formula but for a sentence or two crafted to the specific job.  You need the accountability to set the time aside to reach out and then more importantly to follow-up.  A lot of companies find freelancers flaky, so follow-up.  To be able to have some professionalism through the sales process, here's the outreach and then here's the follow-up, that's a level of professionalism that they're not always expecting.

 

What can others take away from signing up for your email program?

I've had major brands come through Craigslist.  And I still use Twitter on a daily basis to network and jump into conversations.  I've made my business off of what you can learn in this Getting Clients email series--we would not be having this conversation around my six module "Feast" training program were it not for me setting up these social media tools to automate some lead generation tasks.

 

Our next conversation with Jason covers the first three modules in his online series. Topics covered include setting a framework for your freelance business, discovering your unique pitch, positioning your business, organization, learning how to podcast, lead generation and setting up support and payment tools.

 

Click here to sign up for the Getting Clients email series.  Jason walks you through the entire process of using Twitter, Craigslist and IFTTT (If This Then That) to automate your social media freelance search process.  Let us know in the comments below what your key takeaway was after going through the program.

Payment partner spotlight: Jeremy Julian

Jeremy Julian has payments in his blood. He’s worked in nearly every aspect of the business his father founded 23 years ago—Custom Business Solutions, Inc. (CBS) — and has been instrumental in the company’s growth. As CBS’s Chief Operating Officer, his current focus lies in customer acquisition and successful product deployment. Julian is an optimist but also a realist and it is this blend of qualities that has contributed to CBS’s success over the years.

 

From day one, CBS has pushed the boundaries of the typical responsibilities of a value added reseller (VAR). Early on, the company began customizing the POSitouch software they resell to better meet the demands of their customers. It didn’t take long for CBS to eventually develop their own add-on POS software solutions, essentially becoming both an integrated software vender (ISV) and a VAR.

 

 

“We became an ISV about six years ago and have written our own POS software for restaurants, starting with iPad tableside ordering,” explains Julian. “Our decades of experience helped us design a POS solution that takes the best of other solutions and build it into one.” 

 

Over the years, CBS has expanded their territory by buying out other POSitouch VARs and winning business with big national franchises. As a result, CBS now supports customers across the western U.S. and overseas, with company offices in California, Colorado, and Texas.

 

Finding their niche

Based out of Irvine, CA, one hour south of Los Angeles, CBS made a point at the beginning to go after high-end, upscale, trendy restaurants – all of which require top shelf customer service. Landing these high profile accounts helped CBS develop a reputation for themselves. And it’s this reputation that led to their first wins in the national franchise space.

 

an early client helped land this payments ISV many national clients

 

“We focused on a different clientele—the restaurants everyone knows about, where Hollywood stars and movie producers dine, and we aggressively went after them and did whatever it took to get these accounts,” said Julian. “When your solutions are in these high profile accounts, everyone sees your products, and they want the same functionalities. These early wins helped open up a lot of opportunities for us to sell to local chains that often grew into national chains.”

 

CBS has always been committed to doing what’s right for the customer, customizing their solutions to better suit their customers’ needs and partnering with other solution providers when they need to. Whether joining forces with companies like Vantiv, now Worldpay, or other ISVs, this collaborative approach has made CBS successful.

“We are not rigid and insist on one way to do business,” says Julian. “Even in those cases where we can’t fulfil a client’s needs, we will go out of our way to find someone who can.”

 

“The client is the boss, they are the ones paying the bills. And if you don’t take care of them they’ll go find someone else that will.”

 

How do they keep growing?

Jeremy attributes CBS’s continued growth to being bold enough to take the risk to invest in whatever the client needs for their business.

 

the payment integration for this cruise line took over 6 months

 

For example, when the company pitched their solution to Norwegian Cruise Line, they weren’t entirely sure how they would deliver the same quality products on a cruise ship that are used in land based restaurants. But with the right team and the right attitude, CBS overcame challenges they didn’t even know existed.

 

In order to deliver a solution that would work on a Norwegian Cruise Line ship, CBS invested six months of development time to customize their iPad POS solution to handle payments that roll up to the cruise ship’s rooms. They sent staff to Germany to help install the solution on the ship while it was being built, and had employees on board during the inaugural sail.

 

It was a big initial investment, but it has paid off handsomely. The Norwegian Cruise Line connection led to business with an island resort in Belize, a cruise ship in China, and another cruise ship in Europe. The company is also engaged with three other cruise lines, as well as amusement parks and grocery stores.

 

It’s bets like these that made a big impact and opened up doors CBS did not even know existed.

 

Any parting advice for new VARs or ISVs?

“Take chances. Go after clients who have big reputations. You can ride on their coattails if you do a great job.”

Here are the top 5 pieces of advice Julian offers VARS and ISVs that want to expand their business:

  • Define yourself. Who do you want to be? What problems do you want to solve?
  • Be flexible. Understand that it’s going to change. Your vision today is not what you will deliver in the end.
  • Dig deep to meet your customer’s demands. This will differentiate your company from competition.
  • Understand how to operationalize what you are delivering to your clients.
  • Know your go to market strategy.

 

For more on Jeremy at the entire CBS team, visit Custom Business Solutions, Inc.

 

Do you have a Partner Spotlight story to share?

We'd like to hear from you if you have a unique story to share in our Partner Spotlight.  Leave a comment below and we'll get in touch.

integrating credit cards on your website

 

Are you planning on integrating credit card payments on your website? Before you code your payment form, think about the customer experience. Try these 5 easy tips to make payments easy and worry-free for your customers and you’ll be rewarded with more completed sales and less abandoned shopping carts.

 

1. Pare down your form to the bare necessities using common sense logic.

Make it easy for your customers to breeze through checkout by shrinking the amount of data they need to enter. Save your users from a “credit card type” drop-down menu by coding the form to detect the card type automatically with the first 4 digits of the credit card. There’s a handy guide for this here. Same goes for the address field. All you need is a zip code to automatically populate city and state fields.

 

Don't forget mobile users when you integrate credit cards on your website.

 

2. Even better: include a card scanning option for mobile users.

When you’re integrating credit card payments on your website, keep your mobile users in mind. I’ve been super grateful for Apple’s new credit card scan feature on iOS every time I’ve bought podcast tickets on my mobile phone on one of those event apps that gives you a teeny amount of time to reserve event tickets.

 

3. Offer incentives and loyalty points.

You want your customers to come back, right? Rewarding customers for shopping at your store is a great way to encourage them to come back and spend. Try offering a free sample at checkout or points that are redeemable for a discount on their next order. The benefits can vary from larger sales to an increase in return business. When you’re integrating credit cards on your website, giving a reward in exchange for a sale is a great way to delight customers.

 

when integrating credit card payments on your website, make it easy to split payments

 

4. Allow customers to pay for purchases on more than 1 card.

Say you have a group of friends who want to pool their money to buy a giant dinosaur sculpture (a totally reasonable purchase). Sure, they can buy their new dino statue on one person’s card and reimburse each other through various cash sharing apps, OR you can provide a user experience that will surprise and delight these dinosaur aficionados by coding a checkout that will allow a customer to divide a purchase among many cards. When integrating credit cards on your website, convenience and ease of use will delight your customers. Particularly if you’re selling higher-priced items, something like this could make the difference between a customer completing the purchase on your site or somewhere else.

 

5. Keep in mind that design can reinforce perceptions of security (and perceptions of vulnerability).

If your payment form doesn’t look safe or secured, you’re going to scare your customers away (and drive them to a competitor). Little designed elements can make a big difference. Check out how Wave designed their payment form to give a sense of security: https://uxdesign.cc/the-anatomy-of-a-credit-card-payment-form-32ec0e5708bb#8

 

gjsissons

Google Pay

Posted by gjsissons Feb 9, 2018

An opportunity for increased sales and conversions


Mobile wallets have been in the news recently, with much of the focus on the relatively slow adoption of mobile wallets in North America. When looking at statistics though, the answer we get often depends on the question we ask. Rather focus on a few mobile wallets, we might instead ask, “What percentage of online purchases are made using stored credentials?”


According to Mckinsey, the answer to this question is a much bigger number - already around 50 percent. Every time we purchase an app or movie in the Play Store, buy something on Amazon Prime, or shop at our favorite web store, the chances are good that we’re using digitally-stored credentials. Mobile wallets represent just a slice of a broader set of digital payment options already accessible from mobile devices.


For online shoppers, convenience is king


Few customers have the patience to key in payment card and address details on a small screen device like a phone. Unlike the point of sale, where mobile wallets provide only minimal added convenience, for online purchases the difference in convenience is huge. For online merchants, providing access to stored credentials is essential. Consumers purchasing online would much prefer to authenticate themselves with a thumbprint or password than key in a hundred or more characters. This consumer behavior explains why according to the same Mckinsey study, total U.S. digital wallet transactions (broader than just mobile wallets) is forecast to grow to $1.2 trillion by 2020, representing approximately 18-20 percent of retail spending. For wallets, online commerce is where the action is.

 

About Google Pay


Google Pay is a new service offered by Google, implemented using the new Google Pay API.  Google is one of the world’s most recognized brands and Google users across the globe have hundreds of millions of credit and debit cards saved to various Google accounts. These users make purchases on Google properties like the Google Play, YouTube, Chrome and more.


With the new Google Pay API, merchants can reach these same customers by letting them use their cards on file with Google to make quick, easy purchases from mobile apps and websites when they’re shopping from mobile devices or using the Chrome browser.

 

pay_with_google.PNG

For mobile users, this offers a new level of convenience. Even if I’ve never visited a merchant before, as a consumer, I can select “Google Pay” as an alternative to keying in payment card details. Google will look up any payment cards I have on file, present them to me, and allow me to choose the credential to use as shown above.


Google Pay extends Android Pay functionality, however unlike Android Pay which can be used at the point of sale (tapping your phone in a store or restaurant) Google Pay is designed for online purchases only. Consumers that have already activated their Android Pay wallet can continue to use their Android Pay credentials, providing a seamless transition for users and merchants already supporting Android Pay. The main difference when users Google Pay is that they can access any payment card on file with Google, even if they’ve never activated a mobile wallet.

 

Lowering the barriers to online commerce


For merchants, Google Pay is an important innovation. Juniper Research estimates approximately 24 million Android Pay users in 2017, and Google already has hundreds of millions of cards on file across its various platforms. By removing the need for consumers to pre-load a payment card into a wallet, merchants can benefit from faster checkouts, more conversions, and increased sales.


While Google Pay is significant for all merchants, it may be especially important for small merchants competing with larger online retailers. Google Pay helps level the playing field, providing all merchants with the opportunity to offer the same streamlined purchase experience that users expect from tier-one retailers. Consumers can enjoy a seamless checkout experience even if they’re visiting a merchant’s website for the first time making it easier to attract new customers.

 

Google Pay and Vantiv


Vantiv is presently one of just a few payment providers able to offer Google Pay functionality for merchants. Vantiv’s Google Pay integration utilizes an existing server-to-server connection between Vantiv and Google that facilitates the secure and efficient transfer of payment credentials and provides developers and merchants with a straightforward integration experience.


Whether merchants are already using Android Pay with Vantiv, or are just getting started with digital wallets, Vantiv can help merchants get up and running quickly.


Developer resources for Google Pay will be available at Vantiv’s developer portal, Vantiv O.N.E., in the Mobile & Digital Wallets section once Google officially unveils the Google Pay API. Extensive documentation and code examples on Vantiv O.N.E explain how developers can add Google Pay functionality to their Android App or their website.


If you have questions or comments about Google Pay or any other digital wallet, we’d love to get your thoughts and comments.

My favorite story about one of my favorite topics (execution) comes from my favorite NFL team (the Tampa Bay Buccaneers) during my least-favorite era of theirs (a 26-game losing streak from 1976-77). Bucs head coach John McKay, who used his dry sense of humor as a coping mechanism, was asked after yet another loss what he thought of his team’s execution. He replied, “I’m in favor of it.”

 

 

That’s funny, but let me now give you a serious execution-related quote that I’ve repeated dozens of times since reading the book Execution – The Discipline of Getting Things Done: “Execution is the missing link between aspirations and results.” When I talk with software developer executives, they all have plans and ideas, but the ones who are actually winning are the ones who are actually executing.

 

developer meeting hack

 

Execution addresses this important topic on both macro and micro levels. Since reading this book in 2006, I’ve tried to follow the best practice Execution shares about former Chrysler, Home Depot, and GE executive Robert Nardelli. The book says, “Nardelli never finishes a conversation without summarizing the actions to be taken. He made his vision credible by breaking it down into bite-size successes. … Never finish a meeting without clarifying what the follow-through will be, who will do it, when and how they will do it, what resources they will use, and how and when the next review will take place with and with whom.” I figured if that tactic worked for a guy with a net worth measured in the hundreds of millions, it could work for little old me.

 

Here are 30 more of my favorite passages and concepts from the book:

 

  1. Putting an execution environment in place is hard, but losing it is easy.
  2. Execution is not just tactics – it is a discipline and a system. It has to be built into a company’s strategy, its goals, and its culture. And the leader of the organization must be deeply engaged in it.
  3. Leading for execution is not rocket science. The main requirement is that you as a leader have to be deeply and passionately engaged in your organization and honest about its realities with others and yourself.
  4. The problem with many so-called strategies is that they’re too abstract and shallow, or else they’re really operations plans, not strategies.
  5. No strategy delivers results unless it’s converted into specific actions.
  6. To understand execution, you have to keep three key points in mind: (1) execution is discipline, and integral to strategy; (2) execution is the major job of the business leader; (3) execution must be a core element of an organization’s culture.
  7. Execution is a systematic process of rigorously discussing hows and whats, questioning, tenaciously following through, and ensuring accountability.
  8. Execution is a systematic way of exposing reality and acting on it.
  9. People leave with no commitments to the action plans they’ve helped create. This is a formula for failure.
  10. Shaping a plan: (1) involve all the people responsible for the plan’s outcome in shaping the plan; (2) ask specific hows of execution; (3) set milestones for the progress of the plan.
  11. If you’re really executing, and you have the resources, you are listening to tomorrow’s customers as well as today’s and planning for their needs.
  12. The Building Blocks of Execution – 7 Essential Behaviors
    1. Know your people and your business
    2. Insist on realism
    3. Set clear goals and priorities
    4. Follow through
    5. Reward the doers
    6. Expand people’s capabilities
    7. Know yourself
  13. Cultural change gets real when your aim is execution.
  14. We don’t think ourselves into a new way of acting. We act ourselves into a new way of thinking.
  15. You get what you measure for.
  16. A good motto to observe is “truth over harmony.” Candor helps wipe out the silent lies and pocket vetoes, and it prevents the stalled initiatives and rework that drain energy.
  17. An organization’s human beings are its most reliable resource for generating excellent results year after year.
  18. Why people aren’t in the right jobs: The leaders aren’t personally committed to the people processes and deeply engaged in it.
  19. The foundation of a great company is the way it develops people.
  20. Ask this important question in the hiring process: How good is this person at getting things done?
  21. If a strategy does not address the hows, it is a candidate for failure.
  22. A good strategic plan is a set of directions you want to take. It’s a roadmap, lightly filled in, so that it gives you plenty of room to maneuver. You get specific when you’re deciding the action part of the plan, where you link it with people and operations.
  23. Milestones bring reality to a strategic plan.
  24. A good strategic plan is adaptable. Once-a-year planning can be dangerous.
  25. A strategic plan contains ideas that are specific and clear. Numbers are obviously needed, but those that are detailed line by line and are mechanically extrapolated over five years offer little in the way of insight.
  26. Watch out for taking on too many projects.
  27. One powerful technique is to send each person a memo outlining the details of the agreements.
  28. Quarterly reviews help keep plans up to date and reinforce synchronization.
  29. A stretch goal has basically two purposes: (1) it can force you to think about doing things in a radically different way; (2) it can help you to execute exceptionally well.
  30. The heart of a business is how the three processes of people, strategy, and operations link together. Leaders need to master the individual processes and the way they work together as a whole. They are the differentiation between you and your competitors.

 

If you’d like to talk more about how to instill more discipline in your ISV organization, please reach out to me. My job as a Reseller & ISV Business Advisor for Vantiv’s PaymentsEdge Advisory Services is to work with Vantiv partners to help them clarify their vision, hire the best team, develop staff, establish best practice systems, improve customer service, and more.

 

 

For more On the Edge content, please visit the Vantiv Partner Advantage website.

 

Jim Roddy is a Reseller & ISV Business Advisor for Vantiv’s PaymentsEdge Advisory Services. He has been active in the POS channel since 1998, including 11 years as the President of Business Solutions Magazine, six years as a Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA) board member, and one term as RSPA Chairman of the Board. Jim is regularly requested to speak at industry conferences and he is author of the book Hire Like You Just Beat Cancer.