Archive for September, 2009
The more I do business. The more I live. The more convinced I am that other people cannot tell you how to run your business. Consultants that you go to, books that you read, tapes that you hear are done by people who have never run a business. They make money selling ideas. Making you think that they’re the intellectual thoughtful ones and you and I as operators of business are dumb but the problem is you and I are running to to these people and paying outrageous sums of of money because we really think they have got the silver bullet — they’ve got the magic They’ve gotten the genie out of the bottle that will give you the secret to have success. The secret to have success is very simple. The first thing you have to have and I’ve asked that question of 50, 60, 70 people and nobody’s gotten it right. The first thing you have got to have is a product that consumers want or that people will buy — not a product that you think is great that they think is great. You’ve got to have that first.
The second thing you’ve got to be able to do is to make a sale. How do you take that product to market and how do you get it in front of more people? Because the only way that anybody can grow their business, whether you’re Coca-Cola, Google or Mary Sue or Billy Bob, is to get your message in front of more people and some consultant is not going to figure that out for you. There’s a new book out that I’ve read called The Management Myth that really talks about this. And in The Management Myth, the author is a guy named Stewart — never heard of him before — but what he says he undermines the very basis of the science of management by revealing that the founding father of management and consulting, a guy name Frederick Winslow Taylor, basically fabricated his classic 1899 study of pig iron production at Bethlehem Steel. The calculations were pulled out of thin and when they seemed too good to be true they were reduced magically — just enough to make the results seem more plausible. More recently in 1982 the greatest selling business book in the history of the world - I think the greatest selling book other than the Bible — was by Tom Peters In Search of Excellence. He outlined 43 companies that were ideal perfect run companies that set the standards. Well one-third of those companies were in trouble within the next five years. Waterman and Peters became great gurus. They never ran a business. Academic. Pontificating. And what happens with all that the consultants and the authors that are trying to tell you how to run your business and have never done — they’re going to tell you what you want to hear. They’re going to bloviate to make their point with nothing to back it up.
So what does this mean to you entrepreneurs? Stop listening to all the loud noises of consultants, of gurus, of marketing experts because they are of little or no value to you. Most entrepreneurs don’t make it because you are bombarded with “use my methodology”, “use my lead generation,” “do my deal and I’ll double your income overnight”. You have chased that silver bullet time and time and time again because it sounds so good and you’ve lost. Most entrepreneurs don’t make it because of that. And I’m going to just plead with you. When you hear those loud voices barking at you, run as far as you can run. When you find people trying to put the hard sale on you and the hard close on you, they’re doing it for a reason. Run. Run. When it’s too good to be true run, run, run!
Bernie Madoff. $75 billion ponzi scheme. Why did people take their money out of safer investment strategies and put them with Bernie Madoff? Because he promised and guaranteed a minimum of 14% return and as much as 52% return and people were clamoring to put their money with Bernie Madoff and not even question. Question everything. Assume nothing and understand this: Nobody can make you successful. That has to come from you. Make sure you have the right partners. Make sure you have the right people that you’re talking to and asking questions of. People who you can trust. People who have your back. Not the people that are the silver bullets that are promising you gargantuan returns and doubling your business and all those things. You are the one that’s got to have the work ethic. You are the one who has to find the product that has value.You’re the one that’s gonna have to figure it out.
And these people that are selling this to you who have never run a business, who never had the experiences are not the answer to you. They are there to make money off of you with their slickness and pomposity but there’s no substance there. Beware!
This blog (post) is about football and it’s about defense. Last Sunday, I watched Tom Brady who some think is the greatest quarterback that ever lived. He’s certainly been a great one. He played against the New York Jets. and Tom Brady’s team did not score a touchdown. Tom Brady was reduced to an average player. And why was that?
It’s because the head coach of the NY Jets, Rex Ryan son of Buddy Ryan (who had the great Bear defense of the 1985-1986 when they won the World’s Championship), and they did it by pressuring the quarterback. Rex Ryan said we’re not going to let Tom Brady have time to throw. We’re going to rush 6, 7, even 8 people if we have to to put pressure on the quarterback because he knows and I know, as a quarterback, that if you pressure the quarterback and knock the quarterback down, he’s not going to complete passes and score touchdowns.
But most defenses don’t get it. They try to rush the quarterback with a 4-man rush or a 3-man rush and they don’t get there and quarterbacks eat them alive and throw for 300 and 400 and 500 yards a Sunday. And they wonder…well why didn’t we win? Because we didn’t’ pressure the quarterback. Because they did not commit enough people to the rush. Ryan did it all day long. 80% of his defenses were blitzing defenses but not just a 1-man blitz rushing 5 people. He rushed 6, 7 and sometimes 8 and here is really the defining moment of his defense. They’re ahead by 7 pts — 16 - 9 I think the score was. All the timeouts were gone by New England. Brady has the ball on his own 10 or 12 or 15 yard line with no time outs and one minute left.
Now you think about it. 99% of coaches in football college or pro would go to the prevent defense 2 man rush line, 3 man rush line and not pressure the quarterback and you’ve seen them lose games all the time doing that. Ryan went with blitzes: 6, 7, 8 man fronts, rushing and pressuring the quarterback. Brady tried to throw four times. He threw weak, wobbly passes 4 times because he was off balance.
I played the game for 18 years. Set all the passing records. If you didn’t rush me, if you didn’t put pressure on me, I’d kill you. But when they did and they knocked me down and rushed me I became very ordinary. Why don’t defensive coordinators understand this?
I watched the Georgia Bulldogs play Arkansas. Georgia with a quarterback that’s starting for his first year. Arkansas with a quarterback starting with his first year and they put up 90 something points on the board. I think the quarterbacks threw for 9 passes. Why? Because they didn’t put pressure on the quarterback. It’s almost impossible to put pressure with 3-man and 4-man fronts or even a 5-man rush. You’ve got to be be willing and courageous enough to have creative blitzing with 6 and 7 and 8-man rushes.
I will to tell you…I watched the game and Rex Ryan had very sound creative blitzes that confused Tom Brady and the New England offense coached by the guru of all coaches Bill Belichick http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Belichick. and what’s the end of this story. The end of this story is here. Defensive coaches around the world, if you want to keep points off the board and keep people from lighting you up for 300 and 400, 500 yards, you’ve got to be willing to go and have sound fundamental blitzes with 5, 6, 7 and even 8 people coming! When you do that you give yourself a chance to be able to win football games.