Business Tip Image by Pete Linforth from PixabayThis is the 69th in a series of business tips from industry leaders. Enterprise Times recently interviewed John Furneaux, CEO and Founder of HIVE. Furneaux has built Hive, a PPM solution that he believes is the first democratically products project management platform. He revealed how the company has evolved, his vision for AI, and a very interesting take on the death of email. I asked Furneaux to give a tip that he has learnt during his career which he could share.

John Furneaux, founder and CEO of Hive
John Furneaux, Founder and CEO of Hive

“The rule of one, I’m realising I have this about a variety of things. It’s an even simpler version of – do things that don’t scale. Whatever problem you’re trying to solve, solve it for one thing first.

“So an example would be if you’re trying to make paid software, try and get $1. If you’re trying to make a product, get one user. If you are building a new feature, get one user who wants to use it. That is amazingly difficult. You think it’ll be easy, and it’s really hard, and it focuses your mind on the hardest piece of all, which is, getting to your first user, or your first dollar, or your first annual contract, or your first conversion on a Google ad. Everybody’s thinking about how to get a hundred. And it’s difficult to get one, to start with.”

Is it the right one?

How do you determine what the right user is?

“That’s an excellent question. I don’t think I know the answer. But I can give you an example in practical terms. At Hive, to my employee’s confusion, I was asked what the partnership team’s first revenue goal was. And I was true to my words, $1 of revenue through our partners. Now, that sounds ridiculous. It sounds like I have no ambition. The point is, it’s damn difficult.

“There are so many pieces you have to get in place for that first dollar. You’ll have seen on your entrepreneurial journey that maybe it was easy for you. I didn’t find it easy to get the first dollar, I would have done better on my journey. I would have done it faster had I thought about that first dollar from the very beginning.”

When I say about getting the right user, it is possible to get the first user because they are friendly and want to help you out. They may say, here is your first dollar, but they may not use your product, just buy it.

“I think you’re right. What’s even more scary is that quite a few people don’t get a single user, whether they’re good or bad. The problem is so bad for how people sometimes go or things that they have zero people who will pay a dollar. They have lots of people saying, “Oh, it’s wonderful, Steve,” but nobody will put their hand in their pocket.

“I think you’re right. It’s just that’s even harder. Okay, you’ve got your first user. Well done. You’ve got your first dollar. Now let’s hone in on our ICP (Ideal Customer Profile) and get the best dollar we can.”

A tip about selling, always ask the question again






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