Butterfly, Customer Development, Innovation

Planting Seeds, Customer Development, and Patience


“making ideas happen” by @gapingvoid

“The key to everything is patience. You get the chicken by hatching the egg, not by smashing it.” – Arnold Glasow

This new and exciting idea may be amazing to you, and likely to some others close to you, but it’s important to keep in mind that the rest of humanity is already busy doing their thing and may not be able to provide you with the praise and admiration you require at this time, never mind any money. So, what can you do? (For more information on what I’m working on, click here.)


population from @gapingvoid

When you are building on your idea and trying to get customers engaged in order to create a business, one of the biggest challenges is to be patient. Of course, there are many other issues you are facing (doubt, fear, money, sleeplessness), but having patience with both yourself and your customers is one of the toughest.

One of the worst things you can do while trying to be patient is to wait. I know this sounds counter-intuitive, but please bear with me.

So here’s a few tips.

Keep Talking

This works for me anyway. Keep talking about your idea to potential customers – face to face, email, phone, social media, etc. Not in a “why aren’t you buying from me yet?” fashion; rather, in a way that seeks to understand what may be missing from your value proposition, or what other features you need to provide before they are ready to use your service.

Also, keep talking with colleagues, mentors, and your support network – they may have avenues for you to explore. In short, while waiting you should be learning.

(more on getting talking with people here)

Get Involved In Other Things

If you don’t have a distraction, create one for yourself. Get involved in another initiative, help out somebody with their own passion. You will be energized, you will be giving back, and you will possibly uncover new opportunities. Also, while working on the other initiative you will meet more people and they in turn get to meet you. Share and be open with these people, it’s a good unto itself.


Remember why you started your new thing in the first place, how far you’ve come, and what you’ve learned. You made a conscious choice to carve a new path, and you will be lonely at times. But you cannot fall into boredom – keep busy and keep talking. Get out of the office, and keep planting and watering your seeds – they have their own way of growing that you can somewhat influence but cannot control. So long as the plants are healthy and growing, you have a good chance of making it through.

More on “musing” here.

Also, write a blog post about being impatient, like I just did!

ws0904 jpeg

boredom vs. loneliness from @gapingvoid



Butterfly Website here.


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