Everyone Says They Want the Big Order

22 Aug 2005

Rich Sloan

Rich Sloan is chief startupologist and co-founder of StartupNation and host of StartupNation podcasts. He is also co-author of the acclaimed how-to book, StartupNation: America's Leading Entrepreneurial Experts Reveal the Secrets to Building a Blockbuster Business. Rich encourages you to make a comment under his blog posts or send him a personal message at member nickname, "Rich," here at StartupNation.

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Everyone says they want the big order.

But beyond all the techniques and tricks of the trade you’ve heard about how to crank up your sales, here’s an ever-looming challenge entrepreneurs have to deal with:

Would you take an order–sell, basically–a product or service only once it’s clearly developed, locked, loaded, and ready to go?

Or, would you sell, sell, sell, regardless of whether you’ve got everything buttoned up and just focus on drumming up business? Heck you’d rather figure out the "details" later on!

This comes down to your tolerance for risk. It’s always a gutsy move to make a promise when you’re not absolutely sure whether or not you can really deliver.

If you’re going to take the aggressive route, you’ve got to be strident, trusting in your ability to move quickly to take advantage of whatever opportunities you generate.

You’ve heard the stories about how a "big order" has submarined an overly ambitious small business. But what’s an entrepreneur to do? Say, "No" to a huge opportunity?

Not us.

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