Why I Use Gillette

I remember two pieces of mail that came when I turned 18. The first was a letter from the government telling me that I could go to jail if I did not register for the draft. The second was a razor from Gillette. On one of my recent birthdays I received another one from them.

I understand full well that Gillette sending the razor was not an act of sheer benevolence and birthday well-wishery. They obviously make their money with the expensive replacement heads. Nonetheless, I have to shave. So I use Gillette because they did for for me than any of the other guys did. I, like most people, love free. Even when it's just a hook.

Lessons Learned From Qlique

In June 2007, I was recruited to be a "campus president" for Qlique, an up-and-coming social network that sought to compete with the likes of Facebook and MySpace. As campus president, I was in charge of spreading the word about Qlique to all of BYU. I was supposed to recruit as many campus managers as possible. The managers would then get their friends to try using Qlique. For each person at BYU who logged into Qlique one time, I would earn a dollar. Qlique hired campus presidents all over the country in hopes to spark a nationwide movement rooted in America's colleges.

So did it work?

Tell me, have you ever heard of Qlique?

For me, it wasn't too bad. I ended up making about $400 for 20 hours worth of work. But Qlique failed miserably. As I've thought about what caused it to flop, I came up with few reasons.

1. Qlique's design was poor and it was difficult to use. This goes without much saying, if people can't figure out your product, sayonara.

2. Qlique was designed to be the new Facebook, but Facebook wasn't broken. Many examples in business tell us that you don't necessarily have to be the first in the market to be a successful brand. But if you're going to be a late-comer, you better be sure that you are filling a gap that the other guy hasn't covered.

3. Qlique's launch was a disaster. From their horrendous slogan "Where the Pros Crastinate" to the fact that my marketing materials didn't arrive until after the launch, this project was doomed from the get go. Seeing Qlique fizzle the way it did taught me that using a pilot program is essential when considering a nationwide launch. Try it in California first, and see if it takes. Or Ohio. Or Arkansas. It doesn't matter where, just start in one or a few places and then expand as necessary.

7 Habits on Treating Employees Right

"You can buy a person's hand, but you can't buy his heart. His heart is where his enthusiasm, his loyalty is. You can buy his back, but you can't buy his brain. That's where his creativity is, his ingenuity, his resourcefulness." - page 58

I see a backlash brewing for a lot of companies that have been stingy with their workforce during the current recession. As the job market strengthens and people start finding outside opportunities, I wouldn't be surprised to see some groveling and bribery on the part of employers in attempt to retain the people who only stuck around because there was nowhere else to go.