Showing posts from July, 2011

Don't believe your hype

In today's world of constant self-promotion, it's pretty easy to fall into the trap of thinking that -- to steal an old saying -- your shit don't stink. For individuals (and startups) trying to get noticed in an ever-crowded landscape, a little overt promotion never hurt. In fact, it is required in order to get access to the air, water, and sunlight the nascent enterprise needs to succeed. The point here is that it's ok to exude confidence or even braggadocio as conditions merit; just don't let things get to the point where you believe your own hype.

Throughout my career, I've been in roles where I was the purveyor of reality. In short, this has meant that I have had to tell people "NO!" or at least tell them that their baby was ugly. I don't enjoy doing this, but it is a necessary evil when people start to drink too much of their own Kool-Aid.

Let's say that there is a startup company that launches a successful product. After a while they end…