Slaying Dragons

February 23rd, 2010 by | Print


Almost a year ago to the day, I made mention of one of my favorite TV shows, Dragon’s Den , a UK predecessor to ABC’s Shark Tank. If you’re not familiar with the format, cash-strapped, struggling contestants pitch their business ideas to successful, multi-millionaire, serial entrepreneurs in hopes of securing funding in exchange for an ownership stake in their venture.
I use the term contestants because it is the only appropriate catch-all catch phrase to encompass the spectrum of participants from the truly entrepreneurial to the self-delusional bush leaguers.

I recently caught this episode from last season on YouTube and wanted to share it with you. This segment documents Sharon Wright not only secure the funding she required, but actually received more. Why did she do so well?

Before you read my quick list, watch the video linked above followed by this second half of the segment which you can view by clicking on the link here.

OK, so my quick list:

  • Sharon knew her business and the market she served
  • She created an excellent barrier for entry (with patents)
  • She provided detailed answers about all past revenues and future orders and designs
  • She had future orders secured
  • She knew exactly what she would do with any and all investment money
  • She dedicated herself to making the business a success through personal sacrifice
  • She was humble yet resolute

Congratulations, Sharon, you deserve it.

I recommend you take a view of this dismal pitch to get a pronounced sense of the difference between Sharon Wright’s professional image, her knowledge of her business and where she wanted to grow as compared to a couple that have a passion for a non-scalable, dead in the water idea. It starts roughly at the three and a half minute mark. Look for the big bloke in a skirt and a bright red mohawk.

Even if you aren’t seeking an injection of funds from investors, Sharon’s successful traits still apply. How can you slay your dragons daily to bring in the business if you don’t have a firm grasp of the bullet points above?

All the Best,

Doug Dolan
The Solopreneur’s Guide


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