Every morning I looked at the analytics for the preceding week’s readership. It was a more primitive system back then whereby we counted footprints in the mud and the analytics were sometimes unavailable because of weather conditions.
Once, I wrote this really great article.
Actually, it was a pretty typical article, but it mentioned Tyrone, the famous Tire-o-saur. Tyrone has a huge fan base. My readership stats went up and up and up. I was excited. I didn’t yet know that it was all Tyrone fans and not my general readership.
Once Tyrone’s fans were gone, my readership started falling and ultimately returned to its usual growth patterns. I looked at the numbers each morning, even though I knew it was just a Tyrone artifact, as the numbers sank my heart sank. Knowing better did not protect me from seeing the graphs. (Frown.) Somehow a wrongly chosen KPI had gone from a business risk to a self-worth issue that might drive me to be distracted into doing something stupid.
I wasn’t able to come up with a way to legitimately leverage the Tyrone community. Perhaps I should give up blogging or else begin writing an expose about Tyrone’s re-tire-ment. Maybe write a piece about the Tyrone Trio Tribute Band (pictured above).
I didn’t do any of these things. I instead accepted that I had been looking at the wrong KPI’s. Of course, that company failed anyway — perhaps I would have done better making the first dinosaur tabloid.
Entrepreneur in residence at Founder Institute, he has mentored, performed due diligence on, and invested in numerous early-stage companies. Hundreds of these early stage companies have described Russell’s insights and advice as the most useful thing in the history of their companies. He has always had an inborn ability to find more valuable uses of new ideas and faster ways to achieve results.