I believe with every ounce of my heart and soul that I personally (and our company) can’t please everyone. We could try, but we would end up with a few happy people, some “sort of” happy people and a bunch of people who wish they had something else. If know if we focus 100% on people that we can please (and are already pleasing) and seek them out, specifically, with a laser focus – our company will be successful. A big part of this focus is being OK with people outgrowing us when their needs change. Rather than change our software and our strategy to grow (or possibly die) with them and ruin it for those who like us now and those who are about to find us, we must stand still. We must be here for those who are about to grow into us. Fortunately there are many more people growing into us than there are outgrowing us.
The reason I blogged this today was because I re-read a blog post (from 6 years ago) from the guys at 37signals. It’s about their philosophy on embracing the fact that customers will outgrow their software. Not many businesses have the leadership and the courage to embrace that eminent event – but these guys always have. Rather than claw and scratch and add features and drop prices and whatever else it takes to keep their business (only to make their products harder for new people to buy) they are happy to see them find a better solution.
Here is the post! http://37signals.com/svn/archives2/growing_in_vs_growing_out.php