Coopitition

You know how things seem to make more sense as you talk them out?  That is why councilors are trained to have their patients “talk things out”, and why job seekers are told to find some one and “talk it out” after an interview.  Your thoughts and ideas are planted more firmly and you gain better understanding of what you are thinking by talking things out.

Well, that is exactly what happened (quite by accident, I must admit.)  I was discussing my business with [Old Bit Collector] ([OBC]) over on his forum at PropellerPowered.com and found that one of my posts (http://propellerpowered.com/forum/index.php?topic=525.msg3103#msg3103) expressed some of my thoughts very well.  I would like to copy the main ideas from that post here for your edification (and maybe entertainment, too.)

[OBC] had mentioned that he was starting up a Hackerspace type organization in his local area (about 2 hours west of Pittsburgh) and asked for help from any of his readers in the area (PLUG – if you live in, or near, East/Central Ohio, check it out; it will be pretty cool, working with this.)  I mentioned that I am willing to offer assistance (check out my tag line at the top-right of this page.)  And, [OBC]’s response was:

“You are welcome to participate as much or as little as it suits you.   I know you are working toward some similar goals in your neck of the woods.   Anything I can do to help, don’t hesitate to ask.”  A true gentleman, and smart businessman.

My response to his acceptance and counter-offer was:

“Thanks for the offer – I believe that coopetition, rather than competition, is good for business growth.  That is the idea of coopetitors continually working to provide the best product to their customers, thus raising the level of both sets of products, as well as the customer’s satisfaction.  (Yeah, yeah, I know, I live in a dream world.)

I think that this may have come from my time in the military: Jeff, you are the squadron Commanding Officer (CO) for the Propeller Powered Sqdn, Chris is the CO of the Savage///Circuits Sqdn and I am the CO of Granzeier Consulting Sqdn.  We each provide our own way of supporting the mission (providing the best products that our customers can get.)  Even though we each run our own squadron in our own way, the mission is best served when we provide support for each other’s squadrons.  (Does that make any sense, or are y’all just nodding at what you think are appropriate times? :P)

Anyway, that is why I like to put effort into my colleague’s sites.  I believe that working together, we can both build our income (like I said, sort of like different squadrons of the same Air Force.)  However, I do want to keep in mind that PP is your squadron, and not interfere with your command. That is why I try to check with you on so much (although, as I get to know you better, I can make better judgements about your likes – don’t hesitate to stop me if I over-reach, though.)

“Staff Sergeant Granzeier Looks at Business Through the Eyes of a Vet” – my next book??? ;D

Anyway, what do you think about coopetition, rather than competition?  Let me know in the comments section below.

Takin’ Care of Business

Whew, it’s been a long time.  Sorry about that, but I’ve been pretty busy with the business end of this business.  There is a lot of work involved in setting up a new business.  Even though I have been doing “business” for several years, now I am starting a new phase of my business – up until now, I have been doing service work only; service work is not subject to sales tax in Pennsylvania.  This is my first experience with selling products to consumers.  I have gotten my store “up and running”, I have selected most of my board of directors and my infrastructure and I have started my market research and have started my Business Plan.  I just filled out the PA-100, Application for Pennsylvania Enterprise.  My accountant will be coming over tomorrow for Easter (he is also my son) and he will be reviewing my application.  If the PA-100 is filled out correctly, I will submit the application on Monday, and should be a legitimate business enterprise in the State of Pennsylvania.

Twitter is one of the premier social networking sites on the web.  I have heard of people who use it, successfully, to build their business.  Time to look into that as a way to boost my business.  Anyone have any ideas on this?  What about Facebook?  I have seen a tool for Twitter which will use my Twitter posts (Tweets) and cross-post them to my Facebook page.  Also, my web site (this project blog as well as my store) has tools to integrate my site with those social networking sites.  Maybe it’s time to look into those.

TI LaunchPad Booster Packs

The samples of the 10-pin pass-through female headers have finally arrived.  They look great, and now I have a supplier for these items.  That makes the last item that I was waiting for to start selling the Prototyping Booster Pack (http://projects.granzeier.com/2011/12/30/launchpad-booster-protoboard/).  The PCBs have been ordered and on Monday, I should be able to order the pass-through headers.  Stay tuned for more information about these Prototyping packs.