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June 28, 2007

Put Your Money Where Your Money Is

Let me get this out of the way right now:

I will not be at Symposium or WPC in Denver.

And for one simple reason…

That’s not where my money is.

To me...those look more like warheads than trees.

Before Schrag, V or anyone else start doing their respective happy-dances…

I’m not talking about an issue with the price. I budgeted for WPC long ago. Heck, from day 1 of being in business. And yes, I’m talking about the true cost. Flight, lodging, incidentals…and the all-important time away from my business.

The reason: I know how much value both Symposium 2.0 and WPC07 can offer. Not disputing that.

But guess what?

For my business, where it is and the way it has been growing, attending in Denver will actually cost me about 4 times what I budgeted.

And I know this…because I make it a point to know.

You see, the second Tuesday of every month, our local Chamber holds after-hours networking events. And they have been fantastic!

Over 75% of our business has come as a result of our attendance at those events. In fact, we’re averaging $5K–10K in new client billable work per month, just from those little “Hey how are you doing?” events.

I know this because we have a system for tracking where and who our opportunities come from. Not just the clients themselves, but who put that client on to us. Basically, I know which contacts (clients or not) are the virtual rainmakers for Black Warrior Technology, and which ones aren’t.

And I’ll tell ya…

Microsoft?

They are not where our money is.

In fact, MS doesn’t even make our list as a standalone line entry. MS, at most, shows up lumped in the “Other” category. And for most of you, if you took a long hard look at where your money really is, I’d bet it’s the same way. Sure, MS offers some great tools. They might have a framework or 3 you can use. And they do have some great folks on their team, no doubt about it.

But at the end of the day, no matter who you are or what you are doing…

Unless your paycheck has the mothership’s logo on it…

MS isn’t really where your money is.

|| posted by chris under business, thumbs down, travel || comments (7) || ||

7 comments »

  1. Why would I be doing a happy dance? I think that one went over my head.

    FWIW, I won’t be going to Denver either, and not just because you won’t be there.

    comment by David Schrag — June 28, 2007 @ 1:17 pm

  2. You know, it’s not about the money for me. It’s about community. I could put the time and money into growing my business but this is one of those times I’ve diecide to invest in the community instead. Maybe it’s a waste but I hope otherwise. I’m going strictly for the SB Symposium. A few of the one-man-shop IT companies here in Charlotte are going out just for that day too. To them, it’s also about community. We feel the more that we contibute individually, the more we all win. Chris, you will be noticably missed…

    comment by Mark Crall — June 28, 2007 @ 1:24 pm

  3. …but, but, but what happened to http://www.chrisrue.com/funcave/2007/05/remember-what-happened-with-that-tea.html and http://www.chrisrue.com/funcave/2007/06/wpc-95-sold-out.html

    I don’t understand, was it something we said? Well, I do understand (seeing as I’m not having to pay my own way!) but it’s a real shame. I was hoping to catch up with you over a few beers or something!

    Doesn’t it say something in the MVP code of conduct or the American Constitution that you must go?

    What if we promise to give you loads of mobile application development work?

    I’m off to console myself somehow – I might be some time!

    Cheers mate

    comment by Vijay Singh Riyait — June 28, 2007 @ 2:00 pm

  4. [...] Rue has pulled out of the WPC and Small Business Symposium. I have to say I was shocked and [...]

    pingback by » We lost a leader! — June 28, 2007 @ 6:41 pm

  5. Darn, you had to set off Vlad!

    I will miss you. Was looking forward to talking about expanding my mobile practice. Yep, its all about me.

    comment by Ken Edwards — June 28, 2007 @ 9:33 pm

  6. @ Schrag

    I figured since you and V are usually so diametrically opposed, one of you would react to the news. :)

    @ Mark:

    I did think about coming out just for the 9th (well, the 8th and 9th). But if I’m gonna risk a body cavity search (travelling), I’d like to be there for the whole enchilada. I’m a big proponent of the community. Heck man, I’ve nearly worn out my Photoshopping arm. But I’m already pals with Marie McFadden. What other contacts at MS do you need? :)

    @ Vijay:

    Thanks man. I was really looking forward to meeting you in person, and the other folks from overseas. WPC is one of the few places/events you can count on to make international connections.

    @ Ken:

    Haha. Be honest. You really wanted to commiserate about how much it sucks that Season 4 of BSG will be the last one.

    comment by chris — June 29, 2007 @ 8:37 am

  7. What? Its the last one?

    Now I will have to work on my business as I will have lots of time. No more sitting in my PJs watching BSG episodes from iTunes all day long.

    Maybe I could start running some Microsoft Mobile Seminars…. What an idea!

    Vijay! I’ll take that work!

    comment by Ken Edwards — June 29, 2007 @ 10:58 pm

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