Living up to Your (Business) Ideals

by Geoff DiMasi

14 Reader Comments

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  1. Thanks for the article! I’m new to the industry, so I might steal some of these questions myself.

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  2. This is a truly inspiring article. Thank you for sharing your experiences Geoff, I’ll definitely remember this as my career grows.

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  3. Incredible article! As someone in business development, it really spoke to me on so many levels.

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  4. This article resonated so much with me, I had to share it twice.

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  5. I love this. I’ve done something sort of like this, but only intuitively. (Well, my values are among the first words on my site, but only in a very general way.) That means that when I’ve turned down some clients, it’s with a mixture of relief and occasional self-doubt. Having a list like this will give me something to not only evaluate a potential client, but to affirm my decision later.

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  6. I really loved this article and just had to share it with my colleagues. Great stuff!

    I don’t know if it could help people out, but I made a Google Spreadsheet-version of the AMP Score here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1s09C-IUg9pogRVxqXugcY35Ls3o6OyGtr0IZ3EOiWZY/edit?usp=sharing

    To alter the calculations you need to select “Conditonal Formatting” on cell G3.

    It should be public and available for copy / editing (I’m not a Google Spreadsheet Wizard, so let me know if something doesn’t work)

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  7. I agree wholeheartedly. It’s not always easy at first, but always well worth it in the end.

    AMP is invaluable for everyone, not just beginners. Compromising our values for money (or more money) is wrong.

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  8. My favorite one: “Will they give us the space to bring our experience and knowledge to impact the project positively?”. Never understood those who hire us only to tell us everything to do.

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  9. Thanks for sharing this, it’s the kind of information that’s hard to come by. I will use AMP from now on to navigate around the clients who are not a match for my company and to get the most out of the clients who do.

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  10. I will probably try to bring more values-guided intentionality into my project selection as a sole proprietor electrician—especially as my business has recently evolved to the point where I do have to say no with some frequency due to work load.

    I am aware of various reports (and presumably studies that prompt reports) that U.S. culture is becoming measurably more polarized (politically and perhaps culturally). Although I much prefer working for and with people who share my values and goals, I wonder how we can make these kinds of choices in a way that educates or bridges gaps, and avoids group-think that could result from insulating oneself from others’ diverging or opposing views.

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  12. Thanks for positive feedback on the article. I am glad this approach made sense and that many of you will use it.

    @Robert Monk, I think you raise a very important point. It is something we think about and we try not to get ourselves caught in an echo chamber. We will put some thought into ways to further one of our goals of working with a diverse group of thinkers and actors when applying the AMP Score. Polarization is definitely not the end game.

    Building bridges and finding common ground are aspirations of our work. One of our projects is the Junto and the stated goal is to work “towards a more thoughtful world.” Hopefully that includes bringing people together, listening to each other, and sharing what we learn as we go. It is the focus of the Junto Retreat that is coming up in September.

    Hopefully we can continue the conversation in person then!

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  13. Thank you very much for the great insights and ideas. I totally agree that by carefully selecting the respective and trustworthy partners through the AMP system will have more positive impact on our and their businesses in the long run. This will also create a very positive ripple effect throughout our company. A project is more likely to be successful when both parties are fully committed to the same goal.

    The question is how easy is it for start-ups and financially struggling companies to live up to their ideals? I personally think it will be fairly difficult because these companies are at the risk of running out of business if they keep turning down “unqualified” clients. Therefore, like the author, I strongly believe that people should clearly establish their business values and framework before they start their business. A good beginning is half the success. A good start and clear focus allow us to build long-term relationship with the respective and trustworthy business partners. By providing outstanding services to clients each time, they will spread the word out for you and bring you more opportunities.

    In addition, the article is focusing on using the AMP system to select business clients. I think it may also be a good idea to create another version of this system for selecting employees. Some of the criteria could be “do you understand the purpose of our business” or “what kind of impact will you have on our business?” Employees also play a vital role in the business, as they have the interaction with clients most of the time. Happier employees will lead to happier clients, which will generates more business for your company.

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  14. That is a really good idea, Chen.

    We do use the AMP framework when bringing on new team members, but in more of a fluid way. We try to make sure they are thoughtful and purposeful people first. If that is the case, we dig down and try to determine if they are people that can operate in an environment where they will have a lot of autonomy. And lastly, we try to evaluate their current level of skill mastery for the role.

    We are doing some hiring right now, so I will experiment further with this. Great insight!

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