Dave Lindahl, CEO, RE Mentor
I have used Bob Norton as a CEO coach and consultant to implement his AirTight Management systems. Bob is one of the few people nationally I found who actually has "Been there and done that," growing multiple companies to over $100M in sales. In just six weeks, we were able to implement the first three systems of AirTight Management. They have moved our company to a new level of professionalism that will allow us to continue our rapid growth and succeed at a whole new level.
Craig Brenner, CEO, NEDS
I was skeptical regarding the value I might get from attending. I went and was extremely happy with the higher-level strategy information and its application to my business. Following my "2nd" time attending, I became a coaching client too. I gained insights, perspectives and a ton of value. I recommend it highly and with confidence.
Paul T., CEO, iFive Alliances
What I like the most is that it is real. There is no fluff. One example is using Competitive Landscape Maps. You explain the purpose and process of using the tools, and then you apply it, and people learn real things about their business.
John Edmond, President, Angel Data Networks
I thought this seminar was appropriate for any senior-level executive who wants to get on the same page strategically with their team and boost their business. I feel I greatly underpaid for the value delivered.
I get this question all the time and it is such a board question it says loudly the person asking it is not ready to launch any company yet.
I spent 5-10 years preparing myself to launch a company by reading hundreds of books, being a manager and Vice President, going to SBA and MIT Enterprise Forum meetings and other venues and far more.
The answer is my CEO Boot Camp and years of preparation to understand sales, marketing, operations, finance and product development (your domain/industry). I also created a book called The Startup Manual with a CD-ROM of digital tools to walk you through the entire process of design, launch and grow.
All that said basic service businesses are simple to run, while technology businesses that are meant to scale are far more complex and require lots of experience.
Some general things you need:
1. Clear target market or ideal customer profile
2. Clear value proposition and messaging that resonates with target customer - ideally a customer that understand the need and value, not one that needs lots of education, which is expensive in sales process.
3. Business model design (an art very few can do well that requires decades of experience)
4. Financial plan and/or capital to start
5. Team that compliments each other.
All of this together and more is called a "Vision" and I have an article on this here.
I hope these resources help answer this broad question. It cannot be answered well in a single article by anyone and the only satisfactory answer is to point you to many resources and recommend study, practice, and mentorship.
Anyone that needs to ask this question is not yet ready and should work for someone else for a few years before they lose their shirt trying to launch a company.