Nothing Beats Dirty Fingernails

June 17, 2010 at 7:38 AM 1 comment

We talk about a lot of big ideas on this blog – innovation, customer communities, strategic listening – all of which combine to make a pretty nice tag cloud.

But what really matters is how we take those big ideas and make use of them.

There are no shortage of consultants telling us all what to do. Not all of them have spent time in the trenches, applying those ideas themselves and relying on the market to make or break them.

In fact, it’s amazing how many consultants are in the business of defending ideas they’ve never tested on their own company. No wonder they get defensive.

The way to cut your teeth as a consultant is to engage and learn from your market. You do that by getting dirt under your fingernails: introducing products, marketing them, getting responses from your market, succeeding or losing your shirt, and starting over with what you’ve learned.

That’s what makes days like today particularly thrilling for me. My company is rolling out a new product that makes practical use of our technology. It’s a way to help companies initiate new customer conversations by establishing relationships, profiling, building trust, and allowing customers to signal when they’re ready to start the sales conversation.

Now it’s the market’s turn to speak. I’ll benefit immeasurably from what we learn as the weeks and months go by. If you read this blog, perhaps you will too. That’s certainly my intention.

Testing ideas in the market is the greatest teacher in business. It makes you smart. But it also makes you humble. And as I’ve noted, humility is important.

But a bit of success wouldn’t hurt, either. Whatever happens, you’ll read about it here.


Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Christer Edman  |  June 17, 2010 at 8:16 PM

    Great post and I agree completely! Innovation is about doing not talking.


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Thompson Morrison

Thompson Morrison

About Thompson

As CEO of FUSE Insight, Thompson Morrison uses powerful new web interviewing technologies to help businesses better align their brand with the needs and aspirations of their customers. Learn more at


"The single most significant strategic strength that an organization can have is not a good strategic plan, but a commitment to strategic listening on the part of every member of the organization." -- Tom Peters



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