There is an irony with me writing about focus – the jury is out as to whether Clear Books is focused or not.

Cloud accounting software is our primary revenue generator at Clear Books. That should be our focus.

But when I took on my first employee I built a payroll application. When my growing team wanted to take holiday I built an HR system. When marketing needed to log notes on customers we built a CRM system. When we wanted to email customers we built an email campaign system. We used to use Zendesk and GetSatisfaction for customer support. Guess what? We ditched them and built our own help desk and customer community systems.

I have a vision that the tightly integrated business software we develop and use internally at Clear Books will eventually be made available to all of our business customers to benefit from.

However, too many projects detracts from what our customers pay us to work on today, accounting software.

The key to focus is striking a balance between the resources invested in core, related and unrelated products. This is where Google’s 70-20-10 rule makes a lot of sense.

  • 70% of your time on the key focus. In our case accounting software.
  • 20% on related products. In our case payroll and support software.
  • 10% on periphery products. In our case email campaigns and CRM software.

Posted by Tim Fouracre

Tim founded Clear Books in 2008. Like many small business owners he worked from home for 15 months to get his startup off the ground. Today Tim enjoys helping Clear Books, its customers and its growing team innovate and achieve. Tim did his GCE O Levels in Ghana.

One Comment

  1. Hi Bob – thanks for the comment. Pricing is a science all on its own! I will post on that in the future.

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