59. Sean Ring: What Successful Entrepreneurs Understand About Iteration

Hunter Hastings asks Sean Ring, Finlingo Co-founder and CEO, for his number one secret for entrepreneurial success. His answer: Iteration.

Sean offers additional insights, as we’ll see below, but the power of iteration is his number one: doing things over and over, with a view to improving. Always learning, always changing, never getting tired of improving and tinkering, whether it’s with your life path, your self-knowledge, your skills, your code base or your business. You can never predict the future, but you can always monitor your felt uneasiness and take action to relieve it by doing better.

Key Takeaways and Actionable Insights

Sean navigated his lifepath through specialized areas of the financial services industry and through multiple locations around the globe, accumulating knowledge and insight at every step along the way.

Armed with degrees in finance, Sean found his way into banking, and into derivatives accounting with Lehman Brothers. Then to the “back office” (operations) at Credit Suisse, then the front office, then client management. It was a winding path, finding out what he was good at, where he needed to improve, and what he liked and disliked about corporate life. He worked in New York City and London got a taste of international travel and living that he enjoyed.

Blank Map of Sean's Iterations

Click to see the blank map filled in with Sean’s actual iterations.

He took a pause: time off and a self-assessment to organize his individual resources.

The corporate treadmill can be mesmerizing. Sean took a year off to take his bearings, including a measurement of his personality traits using the OCEAN model, as well as subjectively self-assessing his strengths and areas for improvement.

He began to focus on organization — both the entrepreneurial function and the personal skill. Not only was organization a way to self-improve, it was a step on the pathway to entrepreneurship, the role that Joe Salerno describes, from Mises, as supervising and organizing the various elements of productive property into a coherent structure of means, i.e. the firm.

He identified financial training as his professional field.

Sean found he was excellent in front of the class. His communications abilities enabled him to express complex topics so that young trainees would understand and absorb them. His hard work ensured no gaps or weaknesses in his training materials. His gregariousness helped him to learn from other experts. He found himself highly motivated by helping young people embark upon the path as he had followed, but armed by Sean with more knowledge.

At the same time, Sean himself never stopped accumulating certifications, qualification and badges.

Skills need continuous refreshment. In the financial services industry, there are complex technical issues to master, from financial instruments to trading techniques to compliance to ethics. Sean dedicated himself to accumulating a wide range of certifications, both to confirm his own levels of technical excellence in his field, and to communicate to others his rigorous pursuit of knowledge. He is a big believer in testing and its importance in maintaining quality and integrity in service industries like finance where technical complexity sometimes doesn’t combine well with transparent and high-trust relationship practices — what Sean calls the combination of hard skills and soft skills.

And he found a business partner with complementary skills and a shared mindset.

Between them, Sean and his business partner Andy Duncan combine marketing / sales / communications / finance expertise with coding, A.I., and cognitive psychology. They share founders’ ambitions, work together well, and both enjoy Austrian Economics. Entrepreneurial initiatives are more likely to succeed when two or more partners can combine relevant skills and experience in a collaborative relationship.

All these steps bring Sean to a logical milestone on his life path: co-founder and CEO of a tech start-up employing advanced technology to achieve new levels of testing integrity to his industry.

Finlingo employs AI and advanced coding to write exam questions for technically complex financial certifications and to infinitely replicate those questions, so that no two candidates get the same questions, no questions can be memorized, and the exams can’t be stolen or hacked. Instructors and institutions enjoy a write-once-and-relax experience in composing questions and setting exams, a significant relief of uneasiness.

Sean shares his 5 key learnings for a successful entrepreneur’s journey.

  1. Iteration: Entrepreneurs learn that they’re wrong every day. Every fork can be re-taken. Every initiative can be improved. Every left turn can be re-thought as a right turn. Keep iterating.
  2. Humility: The mindset for iteration is humility – entrepreneurs know that they don’t know a lot, that every decision is based on imperfect knowledge, and every judgement is subject to uncertainty.
  3. Self-awareness: Deal with your own internal pressure; manage your own expectations – success does not necessarily come quickly and you don’t necessarily advance in a straight line at a constant pace.
  4. Lean cost discipline: Keep costs low, and don’t bankrupt yourself by spending too much too soon. Afford yourself the opportunity to make the mistakes you need to make.
  5. Family: Keep your spouse or partner supportive; communicate well.

Sean’s Principles of Austrian Economics

What are the principles of economics most useful for business success?

  1. Subjective value: Entrepreneurs can easily get wrapped up in their own (objective) beliefs about the importance and market impact of their product or service. The only thing that matters is how customers feel about it. Truly understanding subjective value and thinking and feeling like the customer is a key to success. Sean asks: what is the wish list inside the customer’s mind at any one given moment and where does your service stand on that list. Top of the list may be the pressing need to pick the kids up from school when you are trying to sell an annuity or insurance policy. Be aware, and empathetic.
  2. Customer sovereignty: “The market always asserts itself”, in Sean’s phrasing. It tells you what it wants. The market is the real boss. Listen to the market feedback and interpret it intelligently. The market may want features that you think are unimportant. The feedback may come to you as “not easy to use” when the right interpretation is “build me a better dashboard”.
  3. Unique assembly of assets: Entrepreneurial success is often a synthesis rather than the invention of a new-to-the-world idea. If a customer needs both A and B, and you can provide a service that integrates A with B, that might be enough to create a new business. No need to invent the wheel.
  4. Iterate, iterate, iterate.

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58. John Cox: Facilitating Value Through Skilled Orchestration

There’s a skill that can turn any individual entrepreneur or small business into a global powerhouse exhibiting the highest quality service levels to the most demanding customer base. That skill is orchestration. Listen to a master orchestrator, John Cox, share important lessons from his entrepreneurial journey on this week’s E4E Podcast.

Key Takeaways and Actionable Insights

Entrepreneurs make orchestration a value-producing service.

Entrepreneurs don’t necessarily need to own the capital and resources required to deliver value. What they do is organize capital in a new way to facilitate a new value experience for customers. They orchestrate capital, resources, people, skills and technologies. Their orchestration creates a unique combination of resources, uniquely applied for a highly valued customer experience.

First, the entrepreneur imagines the customer’s future experience and how they will value it.

Entrepreneurs create their own opportunities by imagining a future experience that customers will find valuable. John Cox, a tax accountant and lawyer, discovered in his client interactions that his customers had to deal with many different service providers when managing their own finances — investment advisors for stocks and bonds, investment funds for non-public investments, tax preparers, tax lawyers, contract lawyers, accountants, estate planners, and many more.

There were inefficiencies and frictions in these arrangements — time and money for the client to talk to the lawyer and accountant separately, and then for the lawyer to talk to the accountant before agreeing on a unified solution for the client. John imagined a future where there was a single point of contact with a better client experience at a faster speed and a lower cost.

Second, the entrepreneur orchestrates top providers in each field to efficiently channel their services through them as a single client contact point.

A single point of contact dedicated to the client’s needs can provide a singularly valuable benefit — quality, speed, efficiency, low cost and high trust all in one place. John’s deal with the provider orchestra was to bring customers, providing the players with a place to demonstrate their unique skills and contribution to the integrated offering, as well as a revenue stream at lower cost (no sales costs and lower overhead).

Relationship capital results in the customer getting an integrated, high-quality plan and good outcomes with an interface of both trust and convenience.

John brought relationship capital to the client solution in two ways. His clients knew him as a tax accountant and lawyer of high capability and trustworthiness, so that when he added new outside services to his offering, there were grounds for extending their trust. Second, he brought relationships with the outside service providers that the client did not have to develop and maintain themselves.

Better outcomes, lower cost and established trust — a valuable client experience.

Technology brings higher levels of integration to the orchestra.

In the earliest days of his orchestration of services, John was a leading edge user of technology. At the beginning, it was the new Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) mini-computers and peripherals, of which John’s firm was one of the earliest users. Later, he networked many lawyers together on an Apple network — again, as one of the earliest such users. Today it’s the internet that provides the technical backbone for orchestration. Orchestrators are adept at employing the latest technology for managing distributed resources.

Customer value is enhanced even further when the orchestrator has skin in the game.

When John expanded his orchestrated offering to include private investments in apartment buildings he purchased, his client relationships were strengthened further by the “skin in the game” effect. Clients believe that when a provider’s own capital is at risk as well as theirs, there is an even greater focus on shared value.

Skin in the game is not mandatory for orchestrators, but it can be relationship-reinforcing in appropriate cases.

Entrepreneurs who excel at orchestration are systems thinkers.

Orchestrators assemble a system of services to deliver a unified client experience. Systems thinking requires understanding of what the client wants from the system (safe asset value growth, for example), how they want to interact with the system (one point of contact, unified reports, etc.) as well as which external services to include in the orchestration and how to be the conductor who gets them all working together in harmony.

In addition to assembling the orchestra, the orchestrator must be skilled in higher-level ecosystem thinking about the larger systems into which the orchestra must fit: prevailing financial systems, compliance systems, regulatory and reporting systems and so on.

Learn more about John’s Californians for Honest and Non-Partisan Government Effectiveness: Change-CA.org

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57. Per Bylund on Coronapreneurs: How Austrian Entrepreneurs Manage An Exogenous Shock To The System

The coronavirus panic is an exogenous shock to the economic system. For entrepreneurs, the pathway to dealing with its consequences starts with systems thinking.

What’s the ecosystem in which you operate? How does your business fit in? How can you systematically adapt to the changes going on upstream, downstream and laterally? How can you contribute to system resilience? How can you tap your resources of adaptability, agility, and imagination? We talk with expert systems thinker Per Bylund on E4EPod.

Key Takeaways and Actionable Insights

Two methods of applying reason to the analysis of changing circumstances can be particularly helpful during cases of external, or exogenous, economic shock, such as the current coronavirus panic.

The first is thinking in terms of economic output. The second is systems thinking.

Applying these methods can help Austrian entrepreneurs to make sound decisions amidst the high-speed rate of change of economic conditions.

Coronapreneurship Cover Photo

1) Identify the ecosystem in which you operate and analyze expected changes in output. If you operate in the health care ecosystem, output can be expected to rise. More hospital beds in use, more cleaning services utilized, more deliveries to hospitals, additional workers hired. If you operate in the food and beverage ecosystem, output may stay the same but the location of consumption may shift, for example from bars and restaurants and company cafeterias to homes. If you work in the physical mobility ecosystem of cars, buses and planes, output can be expected to decline. In the digital mobility ecosystem of Slack and Zoom and webinars, it can be expected to increase.

Try to approximate the output potential of your ecosystem over the next few weeks.

2) Next, review the conditions in your own micro-system of suppliers, customers and support services (such as banks). Dr. Bylund advises us first to look upstream to suppliers and vendors. The key economic tools here are communication and information. They will not know your business needs in these changed circumstances unless you reach out to tell them. Call them on the phone, talk person-to-person, let them know what you expect and what you need. You’ll be reducing uncertainty for them and you’ll be strengthening your relationship and building trust, with beneficial long term consequences.

If supply might be interrupted, you will benefit from contingency planning which looks at all possible scenarios, which is a characteristic of the Austrian view of uncertainty. Dr. Bylund suggests we look at a worst-case scenario, a best-case scenario and one in the middle. This will narrow your uncertainty and the range of possible actions and make them more manageable.

3) Next, look downstream to customers and consumers. If you are a B2B entrepreneur, your customers are in the same position as you relative to your upstream suppliers. Talk to them, build relationships and find out their needs. How can you facilitate new value for them? Offer assistance. If you are able to help them with their cash flow or their inventory management or other aspects of their business, it’s an opportunity for long term business building. Extended terms, discounts and bonuses, if you can extend them, have the potential to pay back in the long term via loyalty and extended relationships.

For B2C businesses, the same mindset applies: how can you facilitate new value experiences under changed circumstances. Some of the same tools might apply, such as extended terms, discounts and savings. Or the answer might lie in new distribution methods, such as home delivery or curbside pick-up outside restaurants. Always keep the value process in mind: consumers still want value from you, but the way they experience that value may change.

Of course, in both cases, you must carefully manage your own cash flow, and this is a critical metric under these circumstances. Weak cash flows are the biggest small business killer.

4) Therefore, it also makes sense to look laterally across your ecosystem to collaborators and enablers like banks. Be clear with them what your requirements are, and make sure they communicate clearly to you what new facilities they are able to extend, both of their own volition and in response to new legislation coming from the Federal government. We Austrians are skeptical about government intervention in the economy at any time. However, it behooves all business owners and manages to be up-to-date in their knowledge of available assistance.

Read Dr. Bylund’s entrepreneur.com article on this subject here.

And download our knowledge graphic as a guide to your system thinking here.

Let us have your comments, suggestions and ideas on our Mises For Business LinkedIn page here.

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We Need More Entrepreneurs To Encourage More Entrepreneurship And A More Dynamic Economy.

Most of the market activities in which entrepreneurs are engaged are readily seen. People buy and sell things or provide services at locations to paying customers. But if we examine the unseen activities, we will learn how entrepreneurship is a perpetuating market process. More entrepreneurs tend to create more entrepreneurship, both among themselves and by setting the stage for the creation of new entrepreneurs. That is, a population with few entrepreneurs produces few entrepreneurs. A population with more entrepreneurs produces even more entrepreneurs.

Real-world experience matters. Becoming an entrepreneur requires the knowledge and insight that come from being aware of previous market errors—the errors made in the trial and error of entrepreneurs who came before. Errors and missed opportunities generate market knowledge and information for future entrepreneurs. This is good news! If past entrepreneurs had not served their customers, made mistakes, combined inventions, transformed innovations into usable products, and finally become a success, then others would probably not consider pursuing entrepreneurship. There would be no such path to self-ownership.

It takes entrepreneurs to produce entrepreneurs. We cannot imagine a world without them. Therefore, it is not just the immediate consequences of hampering markets which makes self-ownership difficult for entrepreneurs. We must also examine the secondary effects on potential entrepreneurs of eliminating paths to entrepreneurship in the long run. Up-and-coming entrepreneurs must do three things: (a) choose an entrepreneurial path that already exists, (b) be mindful that there are market errors waiting to be made, and (c) find insights made by previous entrepreneurs.

Choose an Entrepreneurial Path That Already Exists

Where there is an economic climate for entrepreneurship, where one can “hit the ground running,” entrepreneurship naturally flourishes and prospers. A rise in propensity for entrepreneurship and self-ownership results in more business model imitation and makes the market ripe for one to follow in others’ footsteps. The saying “the greatest form of flattery is imitation” rings true for aspiring entrepreneurs who may hesitate in pursuing profitable market opportunities due to a lack of insight.

In a recent article, Alexander Hammonds discussed this topic. In many cases entrepreneurship has been suppressed or smothered by interventionist and antimarket policies, which makes it extremely difficult for many would-be entrepreneurs to identify a starting point to enter the market. This creates disincentives for new entrepreneurs to enter the market and pick up where others have left off. Thus, innovation and self-ownership are more likely to prosper in an environment where there is a history of entrepreneurship.

The market economy will always possess one relationship—the one between entrepreneurs and consumers. One will serve the other—the entrepreneur will serve the customer. The consumer will look for the entrepreneur who does it better. Just because it’s been done before does not mean you can’t do it over again or imitate it. Don’t just think outside the box, make the box bigger! The pizza restaurant has been replicated for centuries, but because of previous entrepreneurs’ mistakes, others have started pizza restaurants with their own spin. The restaurants down the street from you saw someone else do it and decided to do it differently.

Be Mindful That There Are Market Errors Waiting to Be Made

Randall Holcombe said, “The connection between entrepreneurship and economic growth is that these previously unnoticed profit opportunities must come from somewhere.” There will always be entrepreneurs who make errors in the market that produce insights for others to discover. The beauty of a free market system is that it creates opportunity for others. When a business misses an opportunity, another one can close the gap by making the product or service better. The critical question is: will there ever be a time when the market produces no errors? No.

Find Insights Made By Previous Entrepreneurs

Holcombe explained the critical role of entrepreneurial insights—insights that manifest themselves in the actions and thoughts of future entrepreneurs. F.A. Hayek advised that entrepreneurs must be able to act on these insights to continue in entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurs pick up market insights and pursue improvement through awareness, discovery, and knowledge. Future entrepreneurs must understand that even though it has been done before, it can be done again. I hear it all the time from people who say, “I had a good business idea. But it’s already been done.” Don’t let this stop you. Market insights provide other entrepreneurs the opportunity to close the market gap by creating a product or performing a service better than the entrepreneur before them. Insights are learned and market gaps are closed because of a favorable economic climate and a long history of entrepreneurial insights scattered like bits of pieces across populations.

If you are thinking about becoming an entrepreneur, know that your entrepreneurial predecessors have left behind insights that are waiting for you to notice and grasp them. Glean from the errors, mistakes, and missed market opportunities of others to create a better product or service for the consumer.

56. Steven Phelan on Building Trust and Exerting Control in Collaborative Business Relationships

All business relationships have downside risk: your counterparty / partner / vendor / customer / investor may not perform as you expect or require. In today’s interconnected economy, more and more elements of your business model are provided by relationship partners. It’s wise to recognize downside risk potential and to know how to mitigate it.

Key Takeaways and Actionable Insights

There are two relevant types of risk to consider:

  1. Relational risk, sometimes thought of as character risk: that your business partner may not perform as you’ve agreed to because they are taking advantage of you in some way.
  2. Performance risk, sometimes thought of as competence risk: your business partner intends to perform as agreed, but is incapable of doing so for competence, capability or resource reasons.

For entrepreneurs, there are two levers for risk mitigation: trust and control.

Trust includes Goodwill Trust and Competence Trust — trusting your partner’s character and capabilities respectively.

Control includes output control, behavior control and social control.

Output control is generally thought of as setting measurable targets and monitoring performance relative to those targets. Did your partner meet the agreed-to sales targets in dollars or units? If they did not, they are not performing. This is a means of performance or output control.

Behavioral control focuses not on output but on behavioral inputs: did all the team members check in at 8am this morning as agreed? There is no guarantee that the desired behavior will lead to the desired output performance, but you think they are correlated and the behavioral commitment sends a signal of positive intent.

Social control is thought of as shared values and norms. If the collaborating teams or individuals have shared values and a highly-networked clan-like environment, they are more likely to have shared commitment to the goal.

Trust is much more positive for business relationships than control.

When people in business relationships exhibit integrity and good character, and perceive it and experience it in their collaborators, there is less need for output controls and behavioral controls. They’ll do the right thing without those controls in place.

From an economic point of view, trust reduces transaction costs — the cost of making sure that people are following agreements and doing what is expected of them.

Trust is a business competency.

Trust holds relationships together. For this reason, it is a business competency. It’s the kind of competency that fits well into the Austrian economics mindset: it’s a soft skill, not quantifiable, highly individualistic, with a significant moral component to it (doing the right thing).

Viewing trust as a business competency means that entrepreneurs are able to develop trust-building as a skill, one that can be reinforced and strengthened over time. It starts with an individual’s nature: you are someone who can be trusted. Such a nature attracts others who value it. Business speeds up, and runs more smoothly, with less need for high-litigation problem solving and more instances of viable handshake agreements. Start with your own character and seek to identify the same character type in those you deal with. There’s an element of Austrian subjectivism: there is no formula for “how I can trust someone”, but you can develop the skill over time, even learning from entrepreneurial error when you mistakenly trust someone who doesn’t deliver.

Trust is a value.

People want to feel trusted and seek relationships that feature trust. Trust is a business skill that’s as valuable to you as operational knowledge or financial expertise. Learn how to build and maintain trusted relationships with other stakeholders.

Trust is a resource.

Resource and competency are two sides of the same coin. Trust is a resource that fits into Austrian Capital Theory as an asset that generates revenue from customers. Think of relationship capital and social capital and the culture of the organization that generates trust as assets on the balance sheet, even if conventional accounting can not recognize them.

The 4 Cores Of Trust

In The Speed Of Trust: The One Thing That Changes Everything, Stephen M.R. Covey identified 4 cores of trust.

Integrity: Honesty — telling the truth and gaining credibility by doing so. Leaving no gap between what you say and what you do. Humility — being concerned about what is right and not just with being right. And the courage to do the right thing.

Intent: People judge you by your intent, which grows out of your character. If you “declare your intent” and your behaviors are consistent with your stated intent, people will trust you. Your motive is clear and honest, and your agenda is open.

Capabilities: Can you do what you say you intend to do? Do you exude confidence in your own capacity?

Results: What’s your track record? Do you take responsibility for results?

Integrity and Intent relate to character, capabilities and results relate to competence.

In a high trust relationship, everything speeds up. Trusting people give you the benefit of the doubt. Morale is high, people volunteer to go the extra mile, and they don’t resist changes you want to make. High trust liberates the relationship and its potential.

But don’t trust too much, or where it’s not justified.

In the long run, we all gain by trusting each other to give and not to take. But at the outset, you may not know if you are dealing with a taker or a giver. You should maintain a contingent element in your business relationships.

When you have many opportunities, you should be very intolerant of people who do not live up to their word. Do not be forgiving at all.

If you have fewer opportunities, maybe you have to be more tolerant of others doing the wrong thing and try to remedy the situation while maintaining the relationship. But giving people more than 2 or 3 chances to do the right thing is about the limit. Be willing to cut people off. Re-evaluate and measure the level of trust continuously. Be on guard especially at the earliest stages.

Trust-building Mechanisms

Trust in relationships is a business principle, and, as always, entrepreneurs need mechanisms to apply their principles effectively. Steve Phelan gave us the story of a large and successful General Contractor in the building industry. This GC put an enormous amount of time and effort into relationships with sub-contractors, so that there came to be tremendous trust between the parties. He would start them on small jobs, and gradually increase the size of the job in which they were invited to participate. At each escalation, the sub-contractor had the opportunity to prove that they could handle both the competence and character aspects of the relationship, as well as the capability and results aspects. Trust was built over time — a learning process for trust.

The same was true on the customer side. The General Contractor would decline to bid on very large jobs from a developer with whom he had not worked before. He would always start with a small commitment, and demonstrate mutual integrity and shared intent at that level, before proceeding to larger jobs.

Over time, as a result of this trust learning process, the General Contractor’s reputation and relationships became stronger and stronger, enabling smoother and more efficient operations in good times, and resiliency in downturns.


You can build trust in relationships and you can recover it. Don’t just think in terms of compliance, think about building a network of trust around you with customers, suppliers, employees, investors and partners. You can lower transaction costs and make your business run more efficiently. Make the investment to strengthen your capabilities in trust-building. Build a culture and a set of norms where people mange themselves and don’t have to be watched around the clock 24/7. Shape the organization you want to operate and live within for the rest of your life.

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55. Dr. Mark Packard On The Tools You Need To Make The Value Learning Process Work For Your Business

In this week’s Economics for Entrepreneurs podcast, Dr. Mark Packard tells us more about his research into the value learning process, and reveals two tools he has developed to help business teams to learn from customers and prospects.

Key Takeaways and Actionable Insights

The Austrian economic principle of subjective value – placing value entirely in the mind of the customer – helps Austrian entrepreneurs analyze value creation from a unique viewpoint. One of these is the value learning process, a new way of thinking about how to be a critical catalyst for a customer’s value experience.

Customers learn intentionally over time, endlessly looking for new and better ways to satisfy their various needs.

Mark’s research has identified 5 stages in this value learning process, depicted in the graphic below.

Value Is A Learning Process Knowledge Map Graphic

Click on the image to download the New PDF

The 5 stages are: Predicted Value, Relative Value, Exchange Value, Experience Value and Value Assessment. Mark describes each stage at the beginning of the podcast.

Because the customer’s value learning process is intentional, it’s one the entrepreneur can monitor, measure and influence.

It’s an example of entrepreneurs learning from their customers, as those customers are conducting their valuation.

The customer is intentional, but not necessarily paying attention, when engaging in valuation.

Entrepreneurs have some work to do to track the customer’s learning process. They’re not taking note as they go. Mark talks about representationalism: how experience is a mental representation that our minds create from the stimuli that senses pick up. That could be going on while the brain’s attention is elsewhere. We’re not thinking consciously about wearing clothes or sitting on a chair, but we are experiencing those activities and we might defer our learning from them to the future, when thinking about buying new clothes or chairs.

For the entrepreneur to learn from the customer, it’s important to listen to the customers who are paying the most attention.

Don’t do your market research with customers from whom you can’t learn because they’re not paying enough attention to your value proposition or to the value experience you are interested in. Find the customers with the most highly developed need, and who are most dissatisfied with the status quo.

Dissatisfaction is a feeling that draws attention away from other distractions. It’s important to customers because it’s disconcerting, unwanted. It’s a high-learning event. In dissatisfaction, customers are finding something new about their need and how to (not) satisfy it. It’s a good time to ask them.

Dissatisfied customers are motivated to share their learning because they are searching for a better solution.

Customers are in the learning process and, if they experience dissatisfaction, they know they need to search for an alternative. Sharing dissatisfaction might result in some new learning for them. They’re willing to talk to you because you are trying to solve their problem.

Focus your research on the highest need, high dissatisfaction customer.

They’ll yield the richest research results, most likely to help you develop an effective value proposition.

When talking to these customers, it’s critical to utilize mindfulness: ensuring customers are in full experiential mode and ignoring all other distractions.

You might think of mindfulness techniques as helping with meditation. But we are able to adapt them for use in our processes of Austrian entrepreneurship. Mark uses step-by-step instructions to talk customers through a mindfulness technique to get the best information and understanding of their needs and satisfaction/dissatisfaction experiences. Entrepreneurs can use the tool at many stages of the value learning process, both at the early development stage for new concepts, and at the marketplace learning stage to tap into their experience of competitive products and services that are making them dissatisfied. We’ve created a new graphic indicating a couple of stages where they could be employed.

With the High Knowledge Customers Tool and the Mindfulness Tool, we’re providing business teams with important equipment to harness the value learning process and reap the developmental benefits of new customer knowledge.

Here is an illustration of where these two tools can be applied in the Value Learning Process. We’ll release Dr. Packard’s teaching course in the coming months, as part of our resources platform for entrepreneurs. These tools and several more will be featured in full in Dr. Packard’s new course. Give us your email address if you’d like to receive information about its release.

Items Mentioned In This Episode

Waiting List Signup for Dr. Packard’s Tools –  Click Here
Austrian Entrepreneur’s Journey Course – Click Here

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