News Feature | September 30, 2016

Pre-INSPIRE Homework Shortcut: "Roadside MBA" Book Review

jim roddy

By Jim Roddy, VP of Marketing, RSPA


The Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA) INSPIRE Conference 2017 will feature the three authors of the business book Roadside MBA. Whether you’re attending or not, you’ll want to read the book in advance of the event.

But if you’re a busy channel executive – and I know you are – you might not have time to read all 260 pages before you board your flight to St. Kitts for the event. Good news for you! I transcribed my Roadside MBA book notes and can share with you 12 top quotes that are germane to solutions providers.

  1. “You have to be good to work with — you need to be happy in the 12th hour of a 12-hour day.”
  2. “You really need to develop your product in one industry, focus on that industry well, own it, and then expand into other industries.”
  3. Once you have identified your target customer, you must tweak your services in order to match the preferences of these customers as closely as possible.
  4. We searched long and hard for hiring solutions, but there’s really no silver bullet.
  5. Focus on what the big boys don’t do well.
  6. Provide services that don’t require large overhead investments.
  7. “When you’re in charge, anything that isn’t specifically somebody else’s job lands on you, and it’s easy to get bogged down.”
  8. “We build a personal relationship because we want the customer to come buy from us for 20 years.”
  9. “The difference between focused sales and stalking is a fine line.”
  10. It’s never enough to know that something worked; you need also to understand why it worked.
  11. Seize growth opportunities you can monitor remotely.
  12. There are no one-size-fits-all answers in business strategy. Effective strategy requires that you understand your markets, understand your employees, understand your organization, and then tailor your strategic choices to the particulars.

RSPA INSPIRE is scheduled for January 29 through February 1 at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort.

That was just my brief review of the book. For a complete summary of Roadside MBA, see my blog post at the Vantiv PaymentsEdge Advisory Services resource center On the Edge with Jim Roddy.