18 October 2005


I swung through a bookstore the other day... and I must admit, I got a little bit overwhelmed.

Now that I've published a book of my own, I've got a sense of how much effort, brainpower, emotion, energy, love, passion, creativity, anguish and self goes into making a book... and the sheer quantity of books in that store really took my breath away.

How can these books actually sell? What makes a book stand out? Each individual book is the product of painstaking care and tremendous effort. Each represents hope and optimism... and each one is a small blip in a sea of thousands and thousands of other books.

So that got me thinking - why do I buy a book? What makes me actually pick one up and fork over some $$?

Usually, it's because someone recommended it... and I usually have to hear the recommendation more than once. For example, I'd been hearing about Hairball for a year (from multiple sources) before I ran across it in a used bookstore... and even then, I almost didn't buy it. And it's perhaps the most remarkable book I've ever read (certainly in the top 5).

So... how does one generate persistent, sustained recommendations for one's product or service...? And yes, this has something to do with program management, technology development and general PBL-ish topics.

More to follow...

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