UPDATE: In the past, Forbes.com has anointed Jeffrey Hayzlet, “The Celebrity CMO.” So when they wanted their readers to learn about “Friendsourcing” (“like crowdsourcing but better!”), Hayzlett was the first person they turned to. Forbes.com’s Brandon Gutman sat down with Hayzlett to ask him to explain this new approach that is “building buzz with many brand leaders.”  Click to learn more about friendsourcing, and why it’s every marketer’s new BFF for product innovation, retooling, and launches.

 

Jeffrey Hayzlett wants you to answer a couple of questions that will help increase the likelihood of success for your startup: “Do you know your company’s biggest rival? Can you describe your unique selling proposition?” Sounds pretty basic, right? But stop and think, because knowing the answers BEFORE you go into battle will determine whether you win or lose.

Hayzlett, a successful entrepreneur and bestselling author of Running the Gauntlet: Essential Business Lessons to Lead, Drive Change, and Grow Profits, has learned a few lessons about the value of preparation — many of them the hard way. This experience, however, has yielded essential knowledge to make him more focused and successful as a business-owner and as a leader, including that

“it’s better to battle the competition than your customers and yourself … Take the time to measure what you truly know by asking yourself some questions. It makes no difference if you work for a multibillion-dollar company or a shoestring startup or anything in between, taking the time in the beginning will prevent you from kicking yourself down the track when you say, ‘Why didn’t we think of that?’”

In a Portfolio.com article, Hayzlett helps you to define the challenges that lay ahead — and explains how to master these challenges with a proven formula for beating the competition. Read it now to learn more about how you will build a battle plan for success.