Internalizing The Algorithm

by Michael on October 14, 2009

While in a client meeting today, we got into a discussion about if providing financial advice was an art or a science.  Which led me to say, “we essentially follow an algorithm to determine the bounds in which we should operate, which is then modified by the desires of the client.”  The interesting thing is that I no longer actively utilize any algorithm.  I just know the resulting bounds that the algorithm would typically shoot out at me.

So, what is the point?  If I have internalized the algorithm for what is appropriate in my field of expertise, then I can assume that there are other people who have internalized the algorithms of their industry.  The result of the internalized algorithm is that I quickly take into account the raw data and provide a response that takes into account a large number of factors that most people would not consider.  This is a powerful place to be in, and there is greater power in organizing a group of people who have interlocking internalized algorithms.

What Constitutes Interlocking Internalized Algorithms

In non-Mindesian English, I am talking about a group of people that each have particular expertise which adds to the goals of the group as a whole.  For example, Tasty Minstrel Games has the following internalized algorithms to tap for the publication of games.  This is not meant to be an exhaustive list.

  • Game Development – Seth Jaffee
  • Finance / Investment Risk / Basic Legal & Accounting - Michael Mindes
  • Graphic Design – Ariel Seoane / Josh Cappel / Gavan
  • Illustration / Animation - Thomas Leavitt
  • Distribution & Marketing to Distributors – Fred / PSI team
  • Marketing VIA Board Game Geek – Chad
  • Manufacturing – Tony & Julia
  • Breaking Games (Possible degenerate combos) – Tyler
  • Making Games Attractive To Retailers – Ron
  • Further Internet Based Marketing – various blogs and podcasts
  • Game Balance Checking – Wonderful Play Testers!

All of these people have internalized algorithms that allow for increased product quality, but only if you humble yourself sufficiently to listen to them or give them artistic freedom.  Unfortunately some of that same freedom can be used to slack off and/or produce an inferior quality product.  Since, sometimes as people know that you trust them, they will take that trust and see it as an excuse to be lazy.  On the other hand, they will also trust me not to waste their time, so it can be a delicate balance.

Expanding The Expertise You Have Access To

Two minds are certainly better than one.  There are many philosophies out there that will say that two minds working together to achieve the same goal are better than the same two minds separate.  These same philosophies will state that this relationship is exponential and that a group of 5 minds working together in harmony is better than 7 minds working separately.  I believe there is some merit to these ideas, so as a result I must ask myself…  How can I expand the expertise I have access to?

  1. Meet more people in industries related to my desired expertise expansion.
  2. Remember that everybody is capable.  Lacking humility will shoot this in the foot.
  3. Do not correct somebody in a confrontational way if you do not necessarily understand what they are saying.
  4. Praise in public…  Discuss potential issues in private.  [This is something I need to particularly work on]

I suppose the goal is to increase the pool of friends which have a desire for your success.  The best way in my experience to get people in your corner about your success, is to be in their corner rooting for their success.  There are a lot of gamers who would love to be able to make full time income through their gaming hobby.  There are certainly two people who would love to have Tasty Minstrel Games be so successful that it could support them.

Making Sure There Is Enough Pie For Everybody

I believe that at any point in time there is a finite amount of pie.  As a result, if you are competing for that pie and the only thing that matters to you is how much pie you get NOW, then helping those you are in competition with would clearly be a bad choice.  However, I also believe that over time there is an infinite capacity to make more pie.  Taking this view, helping others succeed leads to more total pie and over time will also lead to more pie for yourself.  So helping others succeed makes sense.

One caveat…  You cannot afford to help people succeed indiscriminately.  Every person that you support will eventually reflect on yourself.  If as a financial advisor I refer an accountant, and they turn out to be incapable or dishonest, then that shows a lack of proper judgment on my part.  Additionally, if you only have so much time in a day, it would benefit you more to support others who are willing to support you in return.

Related posts:

  1. Fact or Fiction… Publishing Board Games Is Good Finance?
  2. Co-Op Publishing – Thinking Out Loud – Please Comment!
  3. How The Allegory Of The Seed Relates To Sales And Marketing
  4. 21 Essential Posts about Board Games, Marketing, Business, and Efficiency
  5. 7 Tips For Making People Like You, If Only Superficially

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