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I don’t get it

Friday, April 20th, 2012 | Posted by Jonathan Lewis

While Ben is busy building version one of the Feast for Days product, I’m trying to meet with anyone who will listen and get feedback on our business idea. I reason that if I can make enough people fall in love with me (and our idea) prior to having a product, we’ll have the beginnings of a solid community of participants and advisors by our launch.

Even though I’ve given the Feast for Days speil a million times, I’m always terrified of hearing those four words that feel like a flaming arrow straight into my esophagus.

“I don’t get it.”

 

This past week I met with a chef who had successfully started and sold several restaurants. Because of some last minute shifts in schedules, we only had 15 minutes to talk. As I’m sitting there waiting for him to show up, I’m going over how to structure the conversation.

1. He tells me about what he does.

2. I tell him what I am doing and ask him three specific questions

3. He answers my questions.

4. I compliment and thank him

5. We shake hands and leave

Feeling confident, I sip on my espresso. The chef soon sits down next to me. He has tattoos and an edgy buddhist prayer necklace, I’m wearing pleated light blue slacks and a polo.

Me: “Thank you so much for meeting with me! To make the most of our time, I’d love to first learn about what you do, so I don’t go into detail about things that do not matter.”

Chef: “You tell me what you do first.”

Me: “Uhh…”

Being thrown off my plan, I launch into a quick explanation of AC4D and our business. When I finished, I look at him waiting for some sort of response.

Chef: “I don’t get it.”

I quickly try to gain an understanding of the aspects of our idea that he did not understand, but sure enough he had to leave and I sat there alone in my light blue khaki pants sipping on a cold espresso.

Lessons learned:

1. Always have a one sentence business objective or goal.

2. Always have a bulleted list of no more than three tactics your business employs to accomplish that objective or goal.

3. In order to mitigate the effect of discouraging experiences always have a discreet list of no more than 3 hypothesis that you are trying to prove or disprove. When feeling discouraged, look at those hypothesis. If you still do not have answers to them do one of three things.

-Continue doing what you are doing

-Change what you are doing to get answers faster

-Change the hypothesis you are testing

4. For times when looking at hypothesis do not help. Beer is always good :)

-Jonathan

@jtomylew

 

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