Decision making principles we use to run Sticker Mule

Posted by Anthony Constantino on Jun 2nd, 2016

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Not only is our team remote, but we also tend to work independently. Generally, after a 2 - 4 week onboarding period, new team members at Sticker Mule are able to independently decide what makes the most sense for them to pursue. To keep us aligned, we manage via mutually agreed upon principles that guide our decision making.

As our team grows and we add new areas of responsibility to our organization, we decided to codify the decision principles we have followed to get us to this point. I thought it helpful to share these for the benefit of prospective team members as well as anyone else that’s curious how we operate Sticker Mule.

The 10 principles that guide all of our decisions at Sticker Mule

1. Do not waste time.

"A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week.” - George Patton. Time is finite and the rate at which we complete projects drives growth and profitability.

2. Saving time > saving money.

Since time is finite and fixed, it’s more important than money. We cannot make more time, and fast execution makes us more money.

3. Recurring savings > 1 time savings.

Do not fret about 1 time savings or expenses. Recurring costs are what matter.

4. Revenue = traffic * conversion rate * avg. order size.

There are only 3 ways to increase revenue: 1) increase traffic, 2) improve conversion, and 3) raise the avg. order size.

5. Process improvements > capital investment > adding staff.

It’s better to fix a broken process than to make capital investments and better to make capital investments than increase headcount.

6. Prioritize based on benefit and time to implement.

Pursue quick wins with high return before difficult projects with moderate return.

7. Delegate when possible.

If a subordinate can do a task let them do it, but don’t push work onto people that are already busy or unable to do the work you are delegating.

8. Avoid ideas that do not scale.

If you find yourself saying “well as long as this doesn’t become too popular we should be okay” then you’re probably discussing something that’s not worth doing.

9. Do not undercut competition.

Let competition win on price to avoid a race to the bottom. Our aim is to win on service & experience.

10. Do not be dogmatic.

At times, it makes sense to ignore these principles but we should do so knowingly.

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