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Business Ideas – How to Build a Business the HP Way

Business Ideas – How to Build a Business the HP Way by Evan Carmichael

 

bill hewlett and dave packard

 

Evan Carmichael discusses how you can build a business like Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard, founders of one of the world’s largest information technology companies, Hewlett-Packard.

 

“Believe you can change the world.” — Bill Hewlett

 

Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard were university friends who graduated in electrical engineering from Stanford in 1935. Eager to become entrepreneurs, Packard and Hewlett established Hewlett-Packard (HP) in 1939 in Packard’s garage with all the startup money they could put together – a grand total of US$538. They then tossed a coin to decide whether the company would be called Hewlett-Packard or Packard-Hewlett.

 

60 years after its founding, HP has developed a reputation for innovative and reliable products and in 2009 had revenue of $115 billion, making it one of the largest companies in the world.

 

Action Item #1: Think About More Than Money

 

Hewlett and Packard believed that a business had a purpose beyond just making money. Businesses had responsibilities to employees, customers, and the community at large. It was a controversial viewpoint in the 1940s but many of the management practices that are now standard in many work environments were pioneered by Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard.

 

Some of the initiatives they launched included: worker bonuses based on productivity, profit sharing plans, flex-time schedules, companywide health-insurance, pay cuts and Fridays off instead of layoffs in hard times, addressing everybody in the company by their first names, having an open-door policy, and creating a wall-free environment to encourage teamwork and the flow of ideas.

 

As an entrepreneur you have to worry about money and making enough to first survive and then build a lasting company – but don’t make it your only priority. Remember to think about the people who work for you, the people who buy from you, and the rest of your community to make your business a force for good. Strangely enough when you focus on helping these people around you, the money comes in on its own.

 

Action Item #2: Adopt a Survival Mentality

 

The early days of a new business can be challenging. You may not be selling the right product or service and you rarely hit the targets that you set for yourself. This is where it’s crucial to adopt a survival mentality – listen to your customers until you find the product or service that will really solve their problems and in turn help you build a lasting business.

 

When Bill Hewlett talked about the early days of Hewlett-Packard he said: “We were just opportunistic. We made a bowling alley foul-line indicator, a clock drive for a telescope, a thing to make a urinal flush automatically, and a shock machine to make people lose weight. We did anything to bring in a nickel.”

 

The best way to build a business is around customers with problems who will pay you to solve them. Adopt a survival mentality like Hewlett and Packard and look for opportunities to help your customers. In the midst of solving their problems you’ll find a business idea that you can build into a successful and enduring company.

 

Action Item #3: Make Innovation a Part of Everything You Do

 

For a business to succeed today it needs to always be thinking about what’s next and how it can innovate. If you can offer a more innovative solution that your competitors don’t have yet it can be your chance to win new business and grow your company.

 

In HP’s early years, Hewlett and Packard had made one rule, above all the others, the golden rule: To encourage innovation, no parts bins or storerooms should ever be locked. To outsiders, this was a mind-boggling phenomenon. Visitors to the company’s headquarters would be shocked that millions of dollars worth of parts and equipment were lying around free for anyone to use, and nobody ever suspected anyone else of theft.

 

Are you innovating enough with your business? Do you take time every week to think about ways to make your product or service better? Follow Hewlett and Packard’s lead and stay on the cutting edge of technology and your customers and pocketbook will thank you for it!

 

Do you have a management philosophy that guides your business? What are the core beliefs that define your company beyond simply making money? As always, I’ve love to hear your thoughts if you leave a comment below!

 

Judy MacDonald Johnston: Prepare for a good end of life

Judy MacDonald Johnston: Prepare for a good end of life

[ted id=1744]

Thinking about death is frightening, but planning ahead is practical and leaves more room for peace of mind in our final days. In a solemn, thoughtful talk, Judy MacDonald Johnston shares 5 practices for planning for a good end of life.

By day, Judy MacDonald develops children’s reading programs. By night, she helps others maintain their quality of life as they near death.

WHY YOU SHOULD LISTEN TO HER?

Judy MacDonald Johnston is the Publisher and Cofounder of Blue Lake Children’s Publishing, which develops educational reading tools for preschoolers through a program called the Tessy and Tab Reading Club. Johnston’s credo, “love words early,” and her focus on the earliest years of life, is an interesting foil for her other passion: Planning for end of life. Johnston’s side project, Good [End of] Life, deals not with happy babies decoding symbols, but with a much more morbid topic: Death. Good [End of] Life is a set of online worksheets and practices that aim to help deal with difficult questions — like who should speak for you if you cannot speak, and whether to fill out a do-not-resuscitate form — before it’s too late.

In the past 15 years alone Johnston has founded two other companies in addition to Blue Lake Children’s Publishing: PrintPaks, a children’s software company, and Kibu, a social networking site for teenage girls. Previously Johnston was a Worldwide Project Marketing Manager at Hewlett Packard.

“[Johnston]’s leveraged every single advantage she’s been given into creating a hundred times that for others, never holding tight to wisdom or resources, but investing them where they’ll do the most good next.”  from 50-for-50

 

Mark Hurd, CEO, Hewlett-Packard – Haas School

Mark Hurd, CEO, Hewlett-Packard – Haas School

Mark Hurd, CEO, President, and Chair of Hewlett-Packard, speaks as part of the Deans Speaker Series at the Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley. Since taking the helm of HP in early 2005, Hurd has sharpened the company’s focus on key growth opportunities, increasing revenue from $80 billion in fiscal year 2004 to $118.4 billion in fiscal 2008. (October 8, 2009)

The University of California Berkeley Haas School of Business is one of the world’s leading producers of new ideas and knowledge in all areas of business – which includes the distinction of having two of its faculty members receive the Nobel Prize in Economics over the past 15 years. The school offers six degree-granting programs. Its mission is to develop innovative business leaders – individuals who redefine how we do business by putting new ideas into action, and who do so responsibly. The school’s distinctive culture is defined by four key principles – question the status quo; confidence without attitude; students always; and, beyond yourself.

 

Meg Whitman: When 193 Million Speak, CEO Listens

Meg Whitman: When 193 Million Speak, CEO Listens

Passionate users of eBay give CEO Meg Whitman feedback; Whitman discusses acquisitions.

 

Former HP Boss Faced ‘Tough Choices’

Former HP Boss Faced ‘Tough Choices

Carly Fiorina tells audience to be hands-on: If you don’t understand people, you cannot influence them.

For five and a half years, Carly Fiorina led Hewlett-Packard through major internal changes, the worst technology slump in decades, and the most controversial merger in high-tech history. Yet just as things were about to turn around, she was abruptly fired, making front-page news around the world.

Fiorina has been the subject of endless debate and speculation. But she has never spoken publicly about crucial details of her time at HP, about the mysterious circumstances of her firing, or about many other aspects of her landmark career. Until now.

In this extraordinarily candid memoir, she reveals the private person behind the public persona. She shares her triumphs and failures, her deepest fears and most painful confrontations. She shows us what it was like to be an ambitious young woman at stodgy old AT&T and then a fast- track executive during the spin-off of Lucent Technologies. Above all, she describes how she drove the transformation of legendary but deeply troubled HP, in the face of fierce opposition.

One of Fiorina’s big themes is that in the end business isn’t just about numbers; it’s about people. This book goes beyond the caricature of the “powerful woman executive” to show who she really is and what the rest of us “male or female, in business or not” can learn from the tough choices she made along the way.

 

Impactful Communication

Greg Gillis and Lesly Higgins, experienced corporate coaches, will discuss and demonstrate various methods to effectively communicate; whether it is delivering a yearly review to a fellow Googler, developing your group’s strategic vision, or influencing others towards an idea. By learning about Advocacy and Inquiry, Appreciate Inquiry, and Effective Feedback/Feedforward, you will come away from this workshop with concrete examples and experiences to help you get your message across with impact.

Speaker: Lesly Higgins
I’ve been coaching since 1999. After my first career in software development, with roles that included VP Software Engineering at Commerce One and VP Information Technology at Charles Schwab, I returned to school to complete an MS in Organizational Behavior and Development and also a comprehensive coaching program. I’ve coached at all levels in organizations, most functions, and with both early stage and Fortune 500 companies. Most of my clients are in the tech space, and they include: Agile Software, America Online, Apple Computer, Autodesk, Charles Schwab, Coremetrics, CNET, Google, Hewlett-Packard, Peoplesoft, Pixar, SAP, Shutterfly, Taleo, TiVo, and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.

I believe everyone wants to be more effective and more fulfilled in life. Usually we don’t know HOW to achieve that. And often we don’t know what skills are important to develop to increase our overall effectiveness and satisfaction in work, and to position ourselves for greater responsibility. I help clients to understand WHAT they need to work on, and then HOW to achieve their developmental goals. I partner with clients as a guide, a mirror, a challenger, a support system, a sounding board—to name a few roles. I help them to develop new awarenesses, master new skills, assimilate new ways of seeing the world and shift their way of being in a way that not only meets their developmental goals but also creates the ability to continue growing—as a person and as a leader. I’ve been coaching at Google since 2003.

Speaker: Greg Gillis
I combine real-world wisdom, gathered through years of high technology corporate experience, with solid coaching expertise and training — to help successful people become even more successful. I help my client’s transition from manager to leader, enhance their leadership skills, better work within political infrastructures, delegate effectively, and collaborate wisely. I often increase their awareness of power in the organization, how it is acquired, manifested, held and diminished. I enhance their influence skills–critical to a leader’s growth in managing cross-functionally. I increase their awareness about emotional intelligence and interpersonal effectiveness while helping them shift to a more encompassing outlook resulting in more successful performance.

 

Mother Teresa, CEO: Unexpected Principles for Practical Leadership

To learn more about Mother Teresa, CEO, click here.

 

What organization, founded in 1948 by a passionate entrepreneur and twelve loyal team members, grew to become one of the largest enterprises in the world? Today it has operations in over 100 countries, includes over 1 million team members, has raised and deployed billions of dollars in capital, and is one of the most recognized brands in history.

 

Is it Hewlett-Packard? Coca-Cola? Disney?

 

No, it is the Missionaries of Charity. And Mother Teresa was its leader.

 

How did this nun with no formal business training create a global brand, become a powerful fund-raising and public relations magnet, and lead a worldwide organization through every phase of growth over the course of forty-seven years? What were her secrets?

 

When we shift our lens and view Mother Teresa from a leadership perspective, a wonderful success story emerges, one filled with inspiration, life lessons, and impact.

 

Ruma Bose spent time in Calcutta working as a volunteer with Mother Teresa and her Missionaries of Charity in 1992. Over time, she discovered that Mother Teresa’s success resulted from the careful application of eight simple and unexpected principles.

 

Through the pages of this book you will have the unique opportunity to learn these principles, share Bose’s experience with Mother Teresa, and discover how to apply Mother Teresa’s principles whether on a single project, throughout an organization, or in your life.

 

Modern, well-timed, and humane, Mother Teresa, CEO helps you discover how you don’t have to be a saint to be a great leader!