Podcast 925: Aligning the Dots: The New Paradigm to Grow Any Business with Philippe Bouissou

It is my honor to be joined by a brilliant entrepreneur, CEO, venture capitalist and management consultant – Philippe Bouissou. Phillipe is also a co-founder and Managing Partner at Blue Dots Partners LLC, a management consulting firm focused on top-line revenue acceleration for companies or business units with revenues between $10 million and $1 billion.

For this podcast, we talk about his new book, Amazon’s Best Seller in Business – Aligning the Dots: The New Paradigm to Grow Any Business. This book provides a clear answer to entreprenuers’ questions such as “What do you do to outpace the market and grow faster than competitors?” With all of Philippe’s experiences and accomplishments, Aligning the Dots is a good guide to accelarate any business.

If you want to know more about Philippe and his amazing works, click here to visit his website.

I hope you enjoyed listening to this engaging interview with Philippe.

THE BOOK

Amazon Best Seller in Business and Amazon #1 New Release in Business. It’s eight o’clock Monday morning.What do you do to outpace the market and grow faster than your competitors? Aligning the Dots provides a clear answer to that deceptively simple question.
Aligning the Dots introduces a new paradigm. It’s a universal, data-driven and prescriptive methodology, called A4 Precision Alignment™, designed to accelerate any business. Based on the profound insight that the maximum top-line growth rate can only be achieved when a business and its target market are perfectly aligned, this methodology reveals how quantitative measurements of alignment form the base for the development a Growth Playbook.
That blueprint will guide any business to align the dots to outperform its target market and fly past its competitors.

THE AUTHOR

Philippe Bouissou, Ph.D. has spent three decades in Silicon Valley as an entrepreneur, a CEO, a venture capitalist and a management consultant. He is Managing Partner at Blue Dots Partners LLC, a firm he co-founded focused on top-line acceleration. He started his career as the founder and CEO of G2i, Inc. a Unix software company that was acquired by Matra. He then was Senior Vice President at Matra Hachette Multimedia, Inc., where he led US business development for electronic publishing for the $12 billion, high-tech and diversified media company before joining Apple as Director of the Worldwide Internet Commerce group, where he founded and managed the online Apple Store and grew its revenue from zero to $350 million.


You may also refer to the transcripts below for the full transcription (not edited) of the interview.

Philippe Bouissou Interview
Wed, 4/20 1:08AM • 44:38
SUMMARY KEYWORDS
apple, product, alignment, delight, aligned, buy, company, people, price, pricing, axis, segway, market, business, entrepreneur, sell, issue, claim, engineered, blue dots
SPEAKERS
Greg Voisen

Greg Voisen
Welcome back to Inside Personal Growth. This is Greg Voisen the host of Inside Personal Growth. And I don't want to mess up your last name Philippe, how do you say it?

Philippe Bouissou
Bouissou

Greg Voisen
PhD is joining us from Silicon Valley. And Philippe, we sue has a new book called in lining, aligning the dots, the new paradigm to grow any business. This is a book for people that want to grow their businesses and want to expand and do it with less effort, but more thought, that's what I'll say. I think a lot of people try and do it the hard way, Philippe can help you do it, the easier way by understanding what's going on your business, some of the analytics, so when he says the new paradigm to grow any business, he means that and I'm going to let him know a little bit about you, Philippe, he spent three decades in Silicon Valley as an entrepreneur, a CEO, a venture capitalist, and management consultant. He is the co-founder and managing partner at blue dots partner LLC, a management consulting firm focusing on top line revenue, acceleration for companies or business units, with revenues between 10 million and 1 billion. You have a fascinating background, and blue dots. Also for those of you who want to learn more about blue dots, just go to blue dots partners.com. He has a new produced video called the alignment zone. And I think that you guys can get some really good information from the Enlightenment zone. It's some interviews that he's done there. And from our interview, as well, which is going to be just fantastic. And we're going to cover as much ground as we can in the time we have. But again, there'll be a link to Amazon, to aligning the dots, willfully. Tell our listeners if you would a little bit about yourself, Blue Dot partners, and how you help startups and mature businesses grow and prosper.

Philippe Bouissou
Yeah, well, first of all, thank you, Greg, for having me on your show. It's a real pleasure and a treat. I am an entrepreneur at heart, I really like to start things. And I like the transformational process of taking an idea in somebody's brain, and start to build a product or a service that to generate revenue, and make happy, you know, and make happy customers. And I don't really care if it's, you know, somebody trying to sell ice creams on a corner of a road, or somebody was trying to build the next Apple, the next Tesla. I think that entrepreneurs are amazing. It's they go after this very difficult quest and journey of building something real. I have tremendous respect for that. And it's really, really hard. I've been in Silicon Valley for over 30 years. As you mentioned, I am a software guy, I actually studied a Unix software company, when I moved here, I sold it to our largest customer then work for Hachette, one of the largest publishing companies in the world. Then I spent three years at Apple, where I studied and run the internet commerce group worked directly for Steve Jobs, which is, by the way, how I lost my hair, in case you ever wondered,

Greg Voisen
Okay, you said that.

Philippe Bouissou
And then I went to a VC almost by accident, and became a VC. So I was on the other side of the table, writing checks and investing in incredible entrepreneurs and helping them as much as I could. And then I've been in management consulting for I don't know, 1515 years now. And blue dots is a firm that John Orkut. And I started back in 2014. And we are focused on helping company grow that top line faster. It's all about growth, because growth is so critical to any business. And that's the focus we have. And that's

Greg Voisen
Where you work, like you say, with any organization in the book, you say, from 1 million to, you know, above. But you know, as somebody who's invested in all kinds of startups, meaning yourself, you have to look at lots of different variables and things. And you mentioned that one of the most painful and meaningful lessons is that when a business is not growing relative to its market, that it's on a declining path. How do you help business owners realize this death spiral they're in and how to get them out of it? Because, you know, I think sometimes businesses I'm working with run that right now. Is it 9.6 million, and there's this well, can it go beyond where it is with the current management another thing, right? Because there's issues. And sometimes the CEO has to wake up to that. And he needs somebody like you to wake him up to that. Besides intervention like that, how do you help these people see that drawn a trajectory? That's not going to create the growth that they'd like?

Philippe Bouissou
Yeah, I mean, growth, I think is one of the most vexing challenges all CEOs and entrepreneurs and business leaders have to face and the traditional way of growing, which is, you know, I need to generate more sales. So therefore, it's a sales issue. And then the sales guys typically say, well, we don't have the right leads. So it becomes a marketing issue. And then the marketing guy says, well, the product is not exactly what it should be. So then we become a product issue. And the poor product guy says, Well, I didn't have the budget, or you give me too short of a timing to build a real great product. And this secular conversation just doesn't lead anywhere, in my opinion. And it's just like, finger pointing, and it doesn't really address the issue of growth. Now, let's just step back for a second and understand some context. Growth is really critical. I was broken Darrell, the CEO of Logitech just a few years ago. And he was telling me that growth is really a matter of survival, you either growing a business or you die. Now, that's true for businesses that raise money and have investors and have shareholders. But it's also true for small businesses, because if you're not growing inflation is you know, making things more and more expensive. Therefore, you need to generate more dollars to be able to deal with that inflation. So if a business is not growing, then it becomes that means and by the way, when I talk about growth is always related to the market that the business is targeting. So there's always a context for that growth is not just growth as an arbitrary percentage number. But if you're not growing faster than you market, then your competition is and you're losing market share and you become irrelevant. And you're not creating shareholder value. In fact, I don't know any other way that growing faster than you market in order to generate real and sustainable shareholder value, and so forth is really, really critical. And that has to be addressed by any entrepreneur. And as you as

Greg Voisen
Well, I love your part in the book about your a skydiver. And I remember you talking about that and creating alignment. And this is really an important part. You mentioned that if you had to summarize your book in one word, it would be that it would be alignment, you state that alignment is the key to maximizing revenue and growth. Can you tell the great story about skydiving, your personal experience? And the three stories that exemplify alignment and great connection?

Philippe Bouissou
Yeah, so in on July 3 years, 30th 2016 in Simi Valley, California, not too far from where you're actually like, a guy named Luke Aikins, made history. So he jumped out of an airplane from an altitude of 25,000 feet. Now, jumping from an airplane, to me is not such a big deal, because I've done it over 1000 times. So I spent 20 hours of my life, literally falling, just falling at 120 miles per hour, just like you can see it on this caveat. And I'm sure some of you listening must think about me that this guy is nuts. Well, let me tell you, they're not alone. That's what my wife thinks as well.

Greg Voisen
I've been out but I haven't done as much as you have. But my point is, this guy who jumped from 25,500 feet, also jumped into a net. Right? So that's, that's the biggest price

Philippe Bouissou
Difference between us. And all my drums are that he did it without a parachute. Yeah. And no, he didn't. I actually safely landed in 100 by 100 foot net. And now you tell me who is not you know, that is crazy. That's pretty. And the one critical thing that he has to do from the beginning to the end of his skydive. By the way to skydive lasted two minutes and eight seconds, and it took him over two years to prepare it. This is not this not something interesting. Wake up one day, so I'm going to try to jump without a parachute. But the one really critical thing to is survival and to his success is that he had to realize and maintain a perfect alignment between the body's body and the net. And that alignment was a matter of death, you know, if you didn't realize it, and to grow any business faster than the market faster than the market that the business is in is really a function of creating and maintaining a perfect alignment between the business and his target market exactly the same way as look into how to create and maintain a perfect alignment between his body and the net. And so that remarkable story. And by the way, there's the video on YouTube. If you look, if you do a search on Luke Aikins AI, K en s, you will find the video. And you can see the scale, which is really remarkable. And that is a very good example of something that's really hard to do. But it's critical. And that's in a way that what CEOs and entrepreneurs and business leaders have to do, they have to understand what it means to be aligned with their market, and how to maintain that alignment.

Greg Voisen
Now, I've watched a couple of those videos, but I've watched the ones that Red Bull did about the guy at 100. And something but there was also I watched the whole not to sidetrack us here. But the one of the executives at Google was trying to master this as well. Right. And he was in his late 50s, early 60s. And he jumped from a higher altitude than the guy at Red Bull. Yeah. And the preparation to get it right was just, you know, when you look at all of the elements that went into it, the weather conditions and this and that, the suit that he was wearing, and I found the whole thing, just fascinating, I think that's the same thing you're talking about. And in your example, about a four precision alignment, you tell a wonderful story to exemplify pain versus claim and perception versus message. Can you tell the story and speak with the listeners about the power of the four alignment? Including? Hang on, we're gonna have to edit? Can you tell the story and speak with our listeners about the power of the four alignment, including purchase versus sale and delight versus offering and use the Apple computer case, which was kind of a great study?

Philippe Bouissou
So if you know, the question is okay, I need to align my business with my target market. What does that really mean? And how do I do that. And they are four universal axes of alignment between any business and his target market. And the stunning fact is that those four axes of alignment are truly universal. So I can take a cafe on the left neck of Paris, I can take Tesla, Boeing, American Airlines, or a small, you know, mom and pop shops selling clothing, they apply the exact the exact same way. So the first axis of alignment is between the pain and the claim. So the pain that the customer has, and the claim that the business makes to address that pain has to be aligned. So if you come to me, Greg, and you say I have a headache, and I show you a stomachache, he'll, obviously your pain and my claim, which is solving stomach issues, and underline, you will never buy my appeal. The second axis is the expiration of the claim, which is really the messaging, which is how I express my claim to prospects and customers. And the understanding of that claim, which is the perception have to be aligned. So imagine I have a pill for your headache, and I describe it to you in Korean or language you don't speak, you will never buy the pill, even though it would be the perfect job for your headache, because you're like, What the heck's this guy talking about, you will not understand what I'm talking about. That's the second axis. The third one is the way customers want to buy. And the way the company's sales have to be aligned. So if I say great, you can get my peer, but you have to fly here in Palo Alto to get informasi against a wall in a minute, there is a pharmacy just down the street from where I live, why do I need to take your plan to buy your pill. So the purchase and the sale have to be aligned. And then the last axis of lemon is my favorite one color stole it out of the apple playbook. Which is by working with Steve Jobs, I realized that there is one and only one universal business on this entire planet. And so everybody is in the same single unique universal business. And that business is the manufacturing and delivery of delight. When somebody buys a product or a service, that person has a certain delight expectation in the head. And as the product or the service is consumed, that expectation has to be met, there cannot be an impedance mismatch between what I expect and what's delivered. So that's the last axis. So the four axis is the pain of the customer and the claim the business makes have to be aligned. The perception which is the understanding of the claim, and the messaging, which is the expression of the claim, have to be aligned, and then the way customers want to buy and the way the product or the service is sold in the marketplace have to be aligned. And finally the expected delight and the delivery what's delivered to that customer have to be aligned. And I really

Greg Voisen
Believe that your delight is a very, very it's what so many companies miss. They don't get that now. I've had many people in advertising on and I've had, you know, hundreds of guests. But one of the things it's always sad about Apple is in between all these divisions. Now, Apple's a huge company, okay, I'm using as a gap, what doesn't matter, you can distill this down to a million dollar company, they have perfected to a large degree, the whole customer delight cycle in every phase from whether you're buying an iPhone, or you're buying an iMac, or you're doing whatever, and the customer service and the way in which they handle the customer. Whatever that culture is that they've created, they've been able to link that how is it used to work for Steve Jobs? Maybe it wasn't that way back then. But today, I personally think of all the companies I can think of that the customer delight experience, like Disney, Disney tries to do that, too. Right? It's like I go to Disneyland, I know what I can expect. Every time I get it's the same thing. But the reality is, there's something about that delight, which wants me to tell everybody else, let's go buy an Apple iPhone, go buy an iMac, go back an iPad, whatever it is, right? So how do you help smaller businesses make certain that all those stages in between and all that communication that has to occur between department can continually satisfy that delight of the customer?

Philippe Bouissou
Well, it has to be part of the culture, it has to be part of the DNA, it has to be part of the obsession, it has to be part of the reason and the why people get up in the morning because their mission is to deliver that delight. That's the way it is that's the way it is at Apple, we will never compromise on the quality of the delight. And he has to be engineered the same way you would think about manufacturing and distribution channels and packaging and pricing, he has to be engineered in the product consumption cycle. So if you really look at the amount of energy you spend using a product or a service, over time, you will find a kind of a bell curve. So the initial phase and the six phases, the first phase is the discovery, which is the very first time you open the iPhone box, or you sit in your new car, or you put your new watch on your wrist. And then you have to use and then you have the maintenance, the upgrade and the customer support. Those are the three after that. And then the last one is the disposal. What do you do when you decide you don't want to use the product now, for an apple, you can take any Apple product and bring it back to any Apple store, they will take it and they will recycle and they will protect the planet by doing so. So Apple has engineered the this obsessive nature of delivering delight for each of those six steps. So when you open a box and you open a new iPhone, the noise that it makes the way the little thing that you grabbed with your finger to pull the smell, there is actually all plastic engineers at Apple Care about the smell, which is a tricky problem, by the way, because women and men have very different sense of smell. And this whole idea of making sure you're not going to open the box and then drop the iPhone by accident. So there's a lot of engineering into the packaging. And that's just the first one of the six first steps, which is the discovery phase. So Apple by design is obsessed about each of those six steps. And they said, Okay, how do we maintain the products? One of the six steps? How do we dispose of the product when the customers decides to not use the product anymore? And it's really ingrained in the DNA of the company in everything we do. And it's not by accident. That's just the way Steve wanted the whole culture to be. And it will never compromise on the delight delivery phase of any of our products.

Greg Voisen
Well, it is so exceptional, as a company, that it's no wonder they're, you know, a two or $3 trillion company. Right? Yeah. So you mentioned that price is an important component of the claim. In fact, now here's the thing I tell people, I would pay 30% more to buy from Apple because of the delay. Right? I'll pay more. Right? And that's not true everywhere. You know that that might not be true with Samsung, because they're competing on price. Many of them are don't believe Apple is competing on price, which gives them not an unfair advantage. But they've figured out the formula that allows people to say I'll pay more. So in fact, no claim should be made without pricing, you say? Can you explain how pricing affects the volume purchased of an item and the effects on the profit ability of a company?

Philippe Bouissou
Yeah. So why so why is pricing part of a claim? Or in other words, why a claim doesn't exist without pricing? So Greg, imagine I tell you, you can fly from LAX from Los Angeles to Paris in two hours, instead of the eight hours or nine hours you would normally take. And if I say, are you interested, the first question you're gonna ask me says, Well, how much do I have to pay? So if I said, well, it cost $85,000. To do that site, you're probably gonna say, Fine, you know, as you know, played for nine hours, and I paid $1,500 that they typically charge. Now, if I said, you know, it costs 20% more than the AirFrance ticket. So instead of paying $1,500, use pay $1,500 plus 20%, then now you're interesting. And if I say it costs half of the price of the normal airfare for airfare, and you can say, well, I want to go to Paris tomorrow, because it only takes two hours. So you can see how pricing affects your decision to purchase in a very, very big way. Yes. And if I just made the claim without pricing, it's not a claim, because there's no pricing. So pricing is a very critical component of any claim. And again, a claim does not exist without pricing. Now, when I talk about pricing, it's a lot more than just dollars and cents, because it's like, what's the return? What if I get sick and I cannot fly? Can I use it as a credit, there's a lot of things. And when you sell to businesses, there are issues about procurements and terms. And this is a SAS, you know, software license is perpetual. There's all kinds of things. So first thing is complicated. Now, the tricky thing is that typically, as you increase pricing, your number of transaction, number of people willing to buy goes down. And if you decrease pricing, the number of people willing to buy goes up. But the problem is that the important number is the multiplication of the pricing by the number of people who are willing to buy. And that's why it's hard to optimize, because sometimes you will increase your top line by decreasing your price, because the volume increases and the trend goes down. But sometimes you can also increase your top line by 20%, by increasing your price of 20%. Because people will still make a 20% increase because they love the product so much. And they maybe think it's undervalued. So that's why pricing optimization is a really tricky equation to solve. But it's something that most businesses don't think hard about, you know about in terms of pricing, and pricing strategy, what kind of pricing model do I want to go to market with, and that's really critical.

Greg Voisen
You bring up an important point there. And I think when the delight is built into it, there's less a factor of what the price is. Right, right. And is initially on repeat purchases, repeat purchases, because you won't question the price as much. You may if it was absorbent, you'd say, hey, wait a second, something's wrong here. But if it's within a justification range of 20 to 30%, you're not going to question that. So if it was a Tesla, and you wanted to buy the Tesla car, you're gonna say, Hey, I'm willing to pay more, because I know, there's hundreds of 1000s of them out there with great customer service, like the car, speak about a case study. And I remember this because I'm going to be 68 in July, and I remember the Segway. And I remember game came in as well. And I remember the documentaries they did on 60 minutes. Yeah, it Dean and the founder of segway. And then segway was initially a kind of a financial disaster. You see the little carts that were running around in San Francisco down by the wharf and people would rent them and whatever. Tell us about the case study and about the subsequent purchase by Roger Brown, who bought the company from the estate of is it Jimmy is to listen and speak about the perception, price safety and convenience, because, you know, we see so many of these things out there now, right? It's everything from little kids going down the street on the little scooters to you know, it's everywhere, it's prolific, but at the time, the Segway was the only deal. He was the only game in town.

Philippe Bouissou
Right? So segway was introduced on December 3 2001, as a as a human transporter, which is a way to describe it, but it was two wheels and it was self balancing. The whole thing is that you could you could move forward by leaning forward, you would slow down by leaning backwards and you just tilt to turn. The problem is that he was very misaligned on the first axis to start with, which is again the pain and the claim and the pain. He was really thought, as you know, a dark factor and you know, bought by crazy people Well, money to buy toys. There was a safety issue. I mean, as you mentioned, Jimmy actually died. You know, from using one he went off, he went off a cliff on his property. There is a famous video on YouTube. That's quite funny, actually, about George W. Bush falling of a segway. So it was there was a safety issue. It's like, you know, I don't want to create more pain by hurting myself, that's the last thing I want to do. There was there was, you know, why would I buy one really, it's like, you know, I'm gonna look really weird. And this is socially acceptable. Now, there was a whole issue around this, there was issue about cities saying, Well, you have to wear a helmet. And some cities will say you cannot use it on the sidewalks. So then you use it on a road where cars are as dangerous. And then the price he was, you know, $4,590. And it's like, you know, very expensive for a mass market talking about price a little bit earlier. So, clearly, there was no well notified pain that was designed and that was thought by the company. And then the claim they were making with a very high price tag, just didn't match any pain. And basically, the company was then bought by Roger Brown for $9 million. He sold it a few years later for like $75 million. And he was bought by a company called Ninebot, which is now producing the, the motors and the electronic system for a scooter for burden line very successfully. And now if you think of a scooter, it cost a lot less money. Everybody knows what it is. It's pretty safe. And so suddenly, the technology was repackaged into a much better panel, Cayman Island, which a very successful ending. But the whole thing,

Greg Voisen
but even bird and lime got a problem with safety issues with the cities. And they had to they had to go before the city council's and they had to, you know, throw their case in there. And a lot of them got kicked out because those devices became nemesis for the sidewalks. Right? It was everybody was getting hurt. Now, not everybody, but a lot of people.

Philippe Bouissou
Yeah, there were a lot of issues around safety for sure. Yeah. Yeah.

Greg Voisen
So and how would you align that fleet at this massive movement right now, which I think rightfully so around electric bikes. You know, you look at RAD bike, which is probably one of the more recognized mass produced bikes around. And you see adults, kids, everybody riding him. I know, I live in a beach city. So it's like, they're, they're everywhere. But it's just in the last two years that you've seen this massive movement and price. You know, we prices vary from $1,500 to $6,000. Right. So any comment about that on price? And, and because I've just seen such a big movement in

Philippe Bouissou
It? Yeah, I mean, do alignment, they want to know, money is a much clearer situation. And then segue because everybody's used to bikes. And people say, you know, I cannot really bike 15 or 20 Miles is too hard for me. Let's say, you know, somebody might say I'm 55. And it's like, I'm not really in good shape. But electric bike really enabled that, you know, few miles to 10 miles ranch than a normal bicycle would not. And then of course, the inconvenience of having a car where you have to park in is a lot more expensive. So there is a very nice Awan depend on the claim alignment there. I think pricing will continue to go down. And the most expensive part is the battery, which is about 30% of the cost of the bike, you can start to see movement where the cost of battery goes down. And the charge became less of an issue because it charged pretty quickly. And I actually just recently joined the board of a company in India that is manufacturing and electronic motorcycles. So it's not a bike. It's a motorcycle, motorcycle and the battery is swappable. So the recharge of the battery takes about 30 seconds, you walk into a place you put your battery that discharge in Iraq, you take another battery in the rack that's charge, you put it on your bike and you go it takes 30 to 60 seconds. So that solves the issue of I have to wait an hour or two hours to recharge. And it's very, very modular. And of course in India and Southeast Asia, the market for electric motorcycle is huge, much bigger than the

Greg Voisen
US the pollution issue is a huge issue is Asia go to India got any of those places and it's just it's prolific the amount of pollution well that’s it. And I love your analogy there. Because I really think that it is important. And I believe environmentally, that electric bikes are going to have a huge place in society. I wish there are a few more restrictions on how people use them. But that's that would be my only thing. Now in your chapter on the third axis, you talk about purchase versus sale. Can you speak with the listeners about the second product launches for Apple? I think this is important. I just said that a minute ago. Second, product launches, and Tesla second product launches, and why it is all about how products are sold, and the go to market plan. Because when you buy the first one makes it easier to buy the second one, but there's a psychology behind that, that they've all kind of built into it. Right?

Philippe Bouissou
Yeah, I think that so the challenge is, companies tend to be good at building the first product. I mean, of course, there's ups and downs on issues. But by and large companies build the first product that's decent, and that tends that works. And then they start to rush about building the second product. And I always stopped them. And I said, your second product is not the product that you have in mind, which is the next version of the bike or whatever it is. Your second product, which you need to engineer from the ground up is your go to market strategy. And that is the cycle by which people will buy your product, and how you're going to make that flywheel spin so that more and more people buy your product. And in the go to market, which is all the way from generating the right leads all the way to closing and selling. That whole process itself is a product that I call the second product, because that's where the energy and the investment needs to be made, made. And a lot of companies shortcut that they don't really think it through, they don't really have a real solid go to market strategy. And they fail because of that not because of their product is not good, or people don't want to buy it. It's just because they don't know how to sell and they don't understand how people want to acquire that product. And so that alignment between sell and purchase is really critical. And again, I think it needs to be engineered, there has to be resources set aside for that in a way that's really predictable. And the way that that really works. And that's how the growth engine will start spinning.

Greg Voisen
Yeah, and I believe everything you're saying there, you know, I see these young startups who raise anywhere from on crowdfunding, you know, from a million dollars to 10 million. And there's a new example. I don't know how it got my inbox, but it did. And it's probably because my wife and I are environmentally conscious called Lumi. And they make a composter that sits on your sink top. And literally turns everything you put it into dirt. Right? Okay, so they worked three years on this thing. And I'm making using this as an example. Because when I first looked at it, I didn't buy it because it was $500. Price. I now see that the demand has exceeded to August, to actually get one. So I'm more apt to buy the product now. Because the demand is so high. Is there anything in that that's that they're doing? To actually intentionally do that, because of the psychology thinking, Well, you gotta hurry and buy one because if you don't, you're gonna miss out or what's going on? Because it's all crowdfunded, you put $49 down for a $500 product, right? Right to save your spot. And I think crowdfunding, I have a friend down here in San Diego, who does a ton of crowd funding for these kinds of companies. Any comment on that?

Philippe Bouissou
Well, I mean, the technique they use is car study, which means that they cannot produce or manufacture enough of those products. And so they go back to you and say, Greg, you know, I know you're on the list, but you're Fourth on the list, because a lot of other people want the product and they haven't got it yet. Now, they may have a manufacturing and supply chain issue, which is why they don't manufacture those products fast enough. I doubt that it's intentional. In this particular case, some software company use that trick to say you have to go on the mailing list, and then we'll open the software only to the first 10,000 users. So but that's a marketing trick. I don't think this particular company would do that. I think they're just maybe underestimated the demand. There. Maybe they're not manufacturing, you know, they're not stocking up. Maybe there is a supply chain issue with China. I mean, who knows? But, you know, that's a problem that we wrestle with an apple for a long, long time. We were never really good at forecasting demand, and that's really hard. Now, the company does it much better. I mean, you know, if you know, if Tim Work announces an iPhone 14, then you can say it's going to be available on Friday, you know, April 14, then you go there, and then you'll have it yet sometimes it's a bit of delay. But Apple has become much, much better at forecasting. Now, of course, there are economies of scales, and they have this huge manufacturing process.

Greg Voisen
But their plan, but they're planning months or years. Answer that. Yeah. And they've already distributed and put them into the supply chain, whereas smaller companies don't have the resources Apple, it's really hard right to get in the supply chain. Right. Yeah. Yeah. So

Philippe Bouissou
in that case, you know, they it's okay that you wait, but you have to wait in a reasonable amount of time, because then you're gonna get frustrated. So it's a really a balancing act. And, and but again, in this particular example, I don't really know why they are not manufacturing and shipping fast enough.

Greg Voisen
This is an off the wall question. But you know, I see this happening now with Android devices, not Apple devices. But you know, the leader in all these foldable phones, and you see, the technology is getting really, really crazy. I mean, good, like, triple folds now, right? Do you think that Apple is going to go down that road? Because when you look at their product, I get that it's simple, I get that it does its job, I get that that's always been Apple's fundamental philosophy. But don't at some point, you have to try and compete against that other market, or do you just completely Allah,

Philippe Bouissou
Apple doesn't care about competition. And Apple never tries to be better than competition. Apple always strive to be different. So if Samsung and everybody else start to do those phones that you can fold, Apple may very well. And of course, I'm not in a secret of Tim Cook and the design. Even if I knew I would tell you, they, they like they're gonna look at this and say, that's an interesting thing. But we don't really care. And I think the reason is, if you think about size of screen, the smaller size being the iWatch. And then you have the phone, and then you have the tablet, the iPad, the iPad, and then you have the 24 inch iMac, and now you have the 27 inch display that they just announced. And I think Apple, my guess is, and again, this is purely speculation, because I do not know. But my guess is that Apple is comfortable in every one of those categories and say, there is no reason to fall don't fall to move from one category to another. Interesting. That's the way they would think. But again, I may be completely wrong.

Greg Voisen
You know, we none of us knows. But we know that there's a obviously with this device everybody in the world carries. There's a lot of competition, whether it's Android or it's iOS, now and your fourth axis is delight versus offering you state that every company, no matter what they sell is here to deliver delight. Can you tell us about some of the companies and how they have won over the consumers with delivering delight, and some of the examples you used was Harley Davidsons. McDonald's? I don't know about Farmers Insurance, Pixar and Ford, because, you know, I look at the insurance industry is kind of ubiquitous. It's like if you're delivering a product, this is what it is. I know farmers has more homeowners insurance customers than almost anybody know it's State Farm, actually.

Philippe Bouissou
Yeah, I think GEICO is probably better. But yeah, yeah.

Greg Voisen
So tell us about that. Because Harley Davidson, I get Pixar, I get four. Yeah. Tell us a little bit about it.

Philippe Bouissou
Well, I think again, the question is, is what is delight for my customer or for my product, and at the price point, I'm going to sell it. So you can compare McDonnell to a three star Michelin restaurant. And I would argue that they're selling the same product, you're putting food in your stomach at the end of the day, there is really no difference. Now, the delight that you expect from a three star Michelin restaurant, paying hundreds and hundreds of dollars for dinner, even though it's the same product or similar product is very different from the delight you're going to expect for paying 99 cents for a McDonald product. And McDonald's has been very good at developing a product at the price point that people believe that they receive delight from it. But of course, it's a very different delight than a three star Michelin restaurant. So it's all a

Greg Voisen
Matter of no longer at 99 cents.

Philippe Bouissou
I cannot go to $1.49

Greg Voisen
No, I don't go to McDonald's at all, but I know there's nothing for 99 cents.

Philippe Bouissou
Okay. But I mean, the point that I'm making is that the light has to be in the context of the target market. And the product that you're selling at the right price point, it's this whole, you know, three things. You know, if you fly southwest, you're not gonna be delighted, there's no, it's not the same delight, as you know, first class ticket and Singapore airline, but you pay a lot less than is very convenient. So a lot of companies are very successful and growing very fast, because they understand the sandbox in which they're gonna play and what kind of delight they're gonna deliver on the message or on the delight, and they stick to that. And that's why they are very successful, even though the product or the product quality that they deliver may be completely different from the opposite side of the market, which is very expensive, very premium, and you know, for reserved, you know, segment of the market,

Greg Voisen
good points you make. Now, hopefully, you've written this book, and we're wrap up our interview here that informs and educates readers, and our listeners about how to create alignment. That's what we're talking about, so that they can succeed at delivering the best customer experience when someone purchased their product or their service. Right? What are the three important takeaways that you would want the listeners to know about on how to achieve this alignment, if they're sitting there now with a million dollar business trying to grow it, and they're struggling? Or they're sitting with a $10 million business, and they have the same struggles, struggles as a million dollar business? What are the three important takeaways that you'd like to leave our listeners.

Philippe Bouissou
With? Yeah, and by the way, it also applies to, you know, we work with businesses that are a billion dollars or $10 billion, they have the same, you know, challenges. So I think the three takeaways are, you know, are the following, its alignment, and then alignment, and then alignment. And then we explain what I mean. The first alignment is the alignment between the business and its target market along the four axes that we described earlier, that's really critical. Because if you're not aligned with your market, you're not gonna grow. The second alignment is what I call the internal alignment. If the team within the business is not internally aligned to execute that those four external alignments, then the company is not going to grow, because they won't execute the growth strategy. And they're just not going to grow anywhere. So it's really important that the team is fundamentally aligned internally so that they can successfully execute the external alignment. And in fact, it's the last chapter of my book is dedicated to that internal alignment. So it's really four plus one. And then the third alignment is the I would say the alignment with ourselves. I think, as an entrepreneur, as a business owner, as a CEO, you have to know who you are, and why you're doing this, this is crazy, to start and run a business is really, really hard. And if you're not aligned with your own self, then it's really hard to land people on the line with the market and be successful. So that's the third alignment that I would invite people to think about and think about making sure they are aligned with themselves, otherwise, they will not be as successful as they can.

Greg Voisen
Well, your book is fantastic. Align the dots. For any business, no matter what size, you can read this and take something away. Blue dots is the website that will send it blue dots partners.com, we'll put a link to that. We'll put a link to Amazon to the book, as well. And fleet thanks for being on and spending a little bit of time with our listeners, sharing your wisdom and knowledge that you've acquired from working for companies like Apple, and being an entrepreneur and being an investor and doing the actual things. In other words, you're just not somebody who's like speaking from I went to university, and I learned a lot you are you're somebody who's actually been in the trenches, gotten into all this and you understand it remarkably well. And I want to thank you for sharing that wisdom and knowledge with our listeners. Well, thank

Philippe Bouissou
You so much for having me on your show, Greg. It's a real pleasure and I hope that you listen or we think about growth. You did have a different way of thinking about alignment, which is really the key to success.

Greg Voisen
I will think about it jumping out of that plane to that 100 square foot thing that we have to get to that. That's alignment. Thanks so much. Really.

Philippe Bouissou
Thank you, Greg. Really a pleasure.

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