BI 218: Erik Greene On How He Launched His Wildly Successful Coffee Booster From Zero on Amazon

, ,

BI 216: Want to Play a Game? How We Are Starting to Implement the Great Game of Business In My eCommerce Company

, ,

BI 216: Want to Play a Game? How We Are Starting to Implement the Great Game of Business In My eCommerce Company

Now that my eCommerce company has hit the seven figure mark in annual revenue, and we have some staff on board, I thought it was important to start focusing on creating a culture of ownership and to accomplish this, I have decided that we are going to start playing the Great Game of Business.

The goal of the great game is to help a corporation to avoid many of the common challenges that a part of running a business in the traditional way (top-down autocratic leadership).

Instead, by using the Great Game, the goal is to teach employees about business so that they have a much better understanding of how the company makes money, how their job contributes to that, and how their contribution can lead to increased profits for the company – and bonuses for themselves!

If you have never heard of the Great Game, the back story is impressive. Just watch the video below.

If employees can learn how a business operates, and how it makes money, then they begin to think and act like business people themselves – and the results are absolutely astonishing.

How to Implement the Great Game of Business

Implementing the Great Game of Business (GGOB) is not something that is done over a weekend.

Instead, it requires a consistent effort over a 6 to 12 month period of time. Does that mean that you won’t see results before 12 months? Heck no!

According to the teachers of the GGOB, results can and should be expected within the first 90 days, so long as you follow their implementation guide – which we are definitely planning to do.

In our case, the implementation started with me reading the book (I actually listened to it on Audible at 2x speed on my drive to and from our office) and then starting the weekly huddle.

The GGOB Process

Much like playing a board game, the GGOB requires you to know the rules and keep score if you want to win.

If you want your employees to help you win, they also need to understand the rules of the game so that they can follow the action and keep score – and share in the winnings!

Great Game of Business Process

  1. Every employee should be given the measures of business success and taught to understand them: Know and Teach the Rules
  2. Every employee should be expected and enabled to act on his or her knowledge to improve performance: Follow the Action and Keep Score
  3. Every employee should have a direct stake in the company’s success and risk of failure: Provide a Stake in the Outcome

The Weekly Huddle

The weekly huddle is the heart of the GGOB. This is the once per week meeting where everyone shares their numbers, see the scoreboards, and understand how much progress has (or hasn’t) been made.

As of this writing, we have completed our first weekly huddle, and I’m happy to say that it went quite well.

The goal of our first weekly huddle was to review the findings from the GGOB input survey (provided when you buy the book), assess the greatest threats to our business, and then determine our Critical Number.

I’m going to write a lot more about our weekly huddles, so if you don’t want to miss out on future posts/podcasts, be sure to become a subscriber using the form at the bottom of this post.

The Critical Number

Selection of your Critical Number is critical! (as the name suggests, lol)

Fortunately, the book and associated resources made this reasonably easy for us to do.

In fact, it was downright simple because our “weakness” was the exact same weakness that was described in the practitioner’s story that is in the back of the book.

In case you are wondering, in our case, the “weakness” is that one of our suppliers represents 40% of our gross profits. I don’t want to disclose the name of this brand, so let’s just call them ABC Co.

While winning the ABC Co account has awesome, if we ever lost it, we’d immediately go from nicely profitable to losing money! (Trent’s rule #1: don’t lose the money)

As a result of agreeing (as a team) that losing ABC Co was the single greatest threat to our business, we quickly agreed that our critical number should be Non-ABC Co Gross Profit.

In other words, we needed to put all of our focus on increasing our gross profits from accounts (new and existing) that are not ABC Co.

Make sense?

Our Critical Numer

To make it measurable on a weekly basis, we came up with an actual dollar figure of Non-ABC Co Gross Profit that we needed to achieve within the next 90 days. That way, if we lost the account, we’d only go from wildly profitable back down to just nicely profitable.

We then created a mini-game so that each and every employee (via the weekly huddle and scorecards) would know exactly how much progress we have (or haven’t) made towards our goal.

Create Early Wins With the Mini-Game

Earlier in this post, I said that it will take us 6 to 12 months to fully implement the GGOB and I also said that you should expect to see results much sooner so that you keep everyone engaged.

The mini-game is how this is accomplished.

Just like the full game, the mini-game has a goal, rules, scorecards, and a reward for winning. Mini-games are usually focused on an operational or financial number that are “drivers” of the company-wide Critical Number.

In our case, we decided to design our mini game to focus on the Critical Number itself. Time will tell if this was the right decision of not.

Sidenote: I’m writing these posts as we go through our GGOB implementation experience, so, my beloved reader, you should expect that we are going to make mistakes!

For a mini-game to be successful, it needs to:

  1. Have a name
  2. Have a goal (X to Y by when)
  3. Estimate of the benefit ($14K in new Non-ABC Co Gross Profit)
  4. Identify the players (those who can impact the goal)
  5. Determine the time frame (long enough to change the desired behavior)
  6. Create a theme and build a scoreboard (be creative!)
  7. Decide on the reward (think low on cash, high on memorable fun)

West Paw Case Study

Recommended Links

Subscribe to the Bright Ideas Podcast

itunes-button100pxstitcher-logo100pxsoundcloud-logo100px

Never Miss an Episode

Welcome to the Bright Ideas Community of Entrenpreneurs

BI 215: How Dan Meadors and Eric Lambert Built a 7 Figure Business Selling Brand Name Products on Amazon

, ,

BI 213: How I Sourced 20 New Wholesale Products in My First 30 Days

, ,

Approximately a month ago, I decided to transition my eCommerce business from focusing on sourcing private label products to sourcing US brands wholesale and since then, the grow of my revenue has been incredible.

By following the sourcing formula that I share in this episode, I’ve been able to add 20 new products to my product catalog in under 30 days, and assuming that my forecast share of the buy box on Amazon is accurate, that will translate into approximately $31,000 of revenue ($3,500 of profit) over the next month!

In addition to that, two of of these deals are such that the brand has given me exclusivity to sell their products on Amazon and the other major eCommerce channels – and I cover how I structured these deals to make it incredibly easy for each brand to quickly agree to my offer.

In This Episode, I Discuss:

  • What I learned while attending Retail Global in Las Vegas
  • My exact wholesale product sourcing strategy
  • How I have won two exclusive Amazon deals

Links Mentioned in this Episode

Never Miss an Episode

Welcome to the Bright Ideas Community of Entrenpreneurs

BI 212: The Future of Retail Arbitrage and How to Get Started in Wholesale the Smart Way with Ex-Amazonian Rachel Greer

, ,

My guest in today’s episode is an entrepreneur by the name of Rachel Greer. Rachel worked for Amazon for 7 years and is now the Founder of Think Cascadia; a consulting firm that supports brands and Amazon sellers.

Listen to the Audio

In This Episode, Rachel and I Discuss:

  • The future of Retail Arbitrage (RA)
  • The difference be RA, China Arbitrage (private label), wholesale, and building your own brand
  • How some recent and upcoming trends are going to impact Amazon sellers
  • The advantages of Amazon’s Vendor Central program
  • The types of companies to target to build a wholesale business
  • How using the “direct import” model can help you to land exclusive wholesale deals
  • And so much more…

If you liked this episode, you might also enjoy:

BI 211: Ask Trent Session #1 – Your Amazon FBA Questions

Have a Comment?

In an effort to make discussion more social, I’ve moved comments onto Facebook. If you have a comment or question, please click the button below to be taken directly to the Facebook post.

Subscribe to the Bright Ideas Podcast

itunes-button100pxstitcher-logo100pxsoundcloud-logo100px

Never Miss an Episode

Welcome to the Bright Ideas Community of Entrenpreneurs

BI 211: Ask Trent Session #1 – Your Amazon FBA Questions

, ,

 

Welcome to session #1 of Ask Trent. Today we have two questions from show listeners. The first is about running an FBA business when you don’t live in the USA, and the second is about how to best introduce yourself to potential wholesale suppliers.

Have a questions you’d like to ask? You can do so here.

Listen to the Audio

If you liked this episode, you might also enjoy:

BI 210: How Norman Crenshaw Failed His Way to a $40K per Month Amazon FBA Business

Have a Comment?

In an effort to make discussion more social, I’ve moved comments onto Facebook. If you have a comment or question, please click the button below to be taken directly to the Facebook post.

Subscribe to the Bright Ideas Podcast

itunes-button100pxstitcher-logo100pxsoundcloud-logo100px

Never Miss an Episode

Welcome to the Bright Ideas Community of Entrenpreneurs

BI 210: How Norman Crenshaw Failed His Way to a $40K per Month Amazon FBA Business

, ,

My guest in today’s episode is an entrepreneur by the name of Norman Crenshaw. Norman is employed full time as an IT professional and over the last few years, he’s been moonlighting as an Amazon seller.

In today’s interview, Norman and I had a very candid conversation about his journey on Amazon and what it has taken him to achieve the $40K per month in sales that he’s enjoying today…and let me assure you that his was not a straight line journey to success. In fact, as you are going to hear, Norman is just as good as yours truly at making mistakes early on!

My hope for you in this interview is to learn what it takes for a “regular guy” to build a business that can be started part time, for a small amount of capital, yet has the potential to grow into a 7 figure business in just a few short years…or less.

Listen to the Audio

In This Episode, Norman and I Discuss:

  • His first two failed products and what he learned
  • How he applied those lessons to his third product (his first success)
  • How Amazon’s PPC played a critical role in getting his product to rank
  • How he’s been able to charge a premium price
  • How he sourced the product
  • The major lesson’s he’s learned so far about selling on Amazon

Below is the JungleScout report for Norman’s top product. Notice that #1 product’s review count and price compared to Norman’s product in the second position. Simply by using photographs to highlight some subtle differences between Norman’s product and his competition, he was able to lift his sales by 30%!

Norman-Product

This is a perfect example of the importance of continually testing new ideas on your product listings!

If you liked this episode, you might also enjoy:

BI 209: How I Generated $18,763 In Sales In My First 90 Days On Amazon

Have a Comment?

In an effort to make discussion more social, I’ve moved comments onto Facebook. If you have a comment or question, please click the button below to be taken directly to the Facebook post.

Subscribe to the Bright Ideas Podcast

itunes-button100pxstitcher-logo100pxsoundcloud-logo100px

Never Miss an Episode

Welcome to the Bright Ideas Community of Entrenpreneurs