Bootstrapping Rule 5 of 9 

In 1998, author Seth Godin published the book, “The Bootstrapper’s Bible.” A few years later, he posted a manifesto based on the book. Here are the takeaway lessons I picked up from reading the book.

Associate with Winners 

Four groups of people will dramatically influence how your business evolves. They are your customers, employees, vendors, and peers. 

Some customers are demanding, focused, responsive bellwethers for the market. Short of the generous and supportive dream customer, this is the category of customers to go after. 

After creating something for these customers, you might discover lots of other customers wanting to buy something just like that. 

Hiring the right employee can make a massive difference to any organization, and the wrong hires can create an even more significant impact. 

To hire right, write a precise description of both what the person is to accomplish and the attitudes and behaviors to exhibit. If the hiring is not adding value, terminate the relationship quickly with dignity. 

A smart supplier knows that, by helping its customers’ business, they both would be better off in the long run. Similarly, if the vendors you work with are responsive, high-quality organizations focused on your success, you are much more likely to succeed. 

Peers also can have a considerable impact on a bootstrapper’s business, but building productive peer relationship takes effort. 

The best way to find peers is to devote several hours a week to doing favors for people. Favors with no intent of being repaid, they are gifts. 

One example of such gifts can be referring business to another company that can handle it better than you. Another example is to refer a good interview candidate to a peer. There are plenty of ways to foster productive peer working relationships. 

The bottom line is to avoid lining yourself up with the wrong people in each category.