Welcome to 2020. In this second issue of Product Negotiations, we talk about a Founder story and hope to shed some light on the question Do founders negotiate?
What you can expect in today’s issue
- New Year and a new [insert here]
- Do founders negotiate? [Founder Story]
- A Senior member of the team lashes out
⏳ This issue of Product Negotiations will take you five minutes or less to read.
New Year and a new [insert here]
it’s a New Year and a new [insert here]. Here’s what I mean. Generally speaking people during December and January are motivated and many are setting new years resolutions for 2020.
Above all, decide what kind of person you want to be this year. Certainly, be someone that listens and supports their friends, family, and colleagues. Help others grow personally and professionally. Therefore, be someone that takes a *real* interest in other people. Importantly, be the person that helps others achieve their dreams and goals in life.
So, don’t be the person that starts every conversation with I want or I or me me me. Similarly, your success depends on the people around you. Everyone starts at 0. No matter where you are in your journey support and help build others up.
Be nice to people on your way up because you’ll meet them on your way down.
What’s your New Year and a new [insert here]
Reply to this email and let me know. I don’t really have any new years resolutions I tend to create a high-level roadmap of what I’d like to accomplish. Then throughout the year, I take actions that help me achieve what is in the roadmap.
New Year new [Founder Story]
Do founders negotiate?
Over the holidays I recall a conversation I had with a founder that I’d like to share with you. He was a founder of a SaaS company and I introduced and showed him The Product Angle.
From looking at the homepage he immediately understood that we are a community of Product People and he immediately understood the line “become a better Product Person” and asked me what we offer.
After explaining how The Product Angle can help him become a better Product Person, the next question puzzled me.
Why do I need to negotiate?
After taking a second to re-group I asked the founder several questions about user acquisition.
He confidently told me that he has been sharing his SaaS with PH, IH, and HN. I asked how many paying customers he has gotten from these channels.
He spoke about the number of views, email captures, number of trials, etc. Meanwhile, I pushed a little more and found out that he had zero paying customers at that time. He told me only shared his SaaS with the world recently.
To be clear I have the utmost respect for this founder (and founders in general), creating a SaaS product alone shows great skills, talent, and determination.
Next, I explained to him that I would consider re-evaluating his user acquisition strategy. While, posting to PH, IH, HN, and other similar sites is a great way to get exposure. In short, they make not be the best way to acquire users or validate your idea. Others have written about this so I do not plan to go there.
Sales is a negotiation
I suggested that he reach out directly to his target user base and;
- First of all, talk to them
- Get them interested in your product
- Communicate and help them understand your product solves their problem
- Explain why your product or the story behind it
- Getting them to use/ try your product
- Show them the value your product can provide in solving their problem
- Help them with overcoming an learning barriers
- Get them to the Ah-ha moment
- Offer assistance along the way or check in if they stopped using and understand why
- Turn them into paying customer
- Turn them into customers that love your product
What I explained there was effectively an example of a sales process. Furthermore, all of these things are things that don’t scale. In the beginning you need to do things that don’t scale for the first 10 – 20 – 50 – or even 100 customers.
The sales process is effectively a negotiation. Therefore, in our opinion Founders do need to negotiate, the above is just one example of when founders negotiate.
To take this a step further everyone negotiates everyday.
Practice Problem #2
senior member of the team lashes out
Practice Problem: During a meeting, a senior member of the team lashes out and throws a fit directed towards another senior member of the team. You called for the meeting. How do you handle this?
Bonus: Explore having a public or private conversation with the senior team member’s behavior.
Timed: In 15 mins or less
Our response will be shared in the next newsletter. Meanwhile, I’d love to learn how you would handle this situation. Let me know in the comments section here Team member lashes out on The Product Angle.
Have any questions or comments, I’d love to hear them. Hit reply and let me know.
Wishing everyone a healthy, happy, and successful 2020.
Product Negotiations Issue #2. Jan 07, 2020.
Product Negotiations is The Product Angle’s newsletter. Every two weeks we send out curated articles in the Product space.
In addition, we explore how to Communicate, Negotiate & Evangelize effectively while building trust and confidence in Product teams.
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