#AskDeadgood - “What has been the biggest challenge Deadgood has faced to date and how did you overcome it?” @benjcapper

As a company we’re in a perpetual state of evolution, morphing and developing, ebbing and
flowing, continuously growing and trying new things in terms of promotion and product
development, people and planning. Always in pursuit of that little bit of something special that
sets us apart from our peers. A couple of years ago we created the Deadgood Manifesto, a mission statement set alongside a defining set of principles that we use as a reference point within the day to day running of our company. These values are ingrained within us, our directors and our team, the stories we tell and the products that we create…

The last of these five principles reads:

“Our ambition is to remain at the crest of the wave, challenging the status quo and experimenting with new ideas.”

It is these new ideas that offer the opportunity to keep growing, to constantly evolve whilst
sticking to our core values - those philosophies that ultimately set our brand apart and give us a
point of difference. It is however this continued mutability, the influx of new ideas, the varied output of our merry group of creative minds that has become our biggest challenge because with new ideas, comes more baggage and subsequently the harder it becomes to focus on the successful elements of the business.

In his million-copy best-seller ‘The 80/20 Principle’, author and entrepreneur Richard Koch
focuses on how to succeed personally as well as professionally, how to make a good life as well as a living while doing less. He pioneered the idea that we can achieve more if we relax, enjoy life
more and concentrate on the few things that matter uniquely to each individual.

In essence to simplify what it is that you do.

In Koch’s words.

“The way to create something great is to create something simple. Anyone who is serious about delivering better value to its customers can easily do so by reducing complexity. Any large business is stuffed full of passengers - unprofitable products, process, suppliers and customers. The passengers obstruct the evolution of commerce. Progress requires simplicity and simplicity requires ruthlessness, this helps to explain why simple is as rare as it is beautiful.”

So we might answer the question by thinking - how do we continue defining our unique selling proposition in an ever changing industry'. 

 

By focusing on the Pareto Principle or as Koch defines this, the ‘The 80/20 Principle’ - which states that for many events roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. So the more we hone in on what it is that stands our company out from the crowd, our key customers, key products, key messages, then in theory the simpler and ultimately more rewarding the journey will be.

This quote from Brewdog founder James Watt really resonates:

“Be passionate, carry that passion into everything you do, from the product to the marketing to the interaction with customers. You need to make sure your product is awesome. If you can’t get your staff to fall in love with your business, you haven’t got a chance in hell of a customer to even consider liking it.”

The very first chapter is his book ‘Business for Punks’ is headed 'Don’t Start a Business, Start a Crusade'. We like to think that’s a Deadgood philosophy too, as we’re exceptionally proud of our own crusaders, our 'Deadgood Family' - a lean, green and keen band of pirates without whom this business would be nothing more than a bright idea on the back of a beer mat. 

'Business for Punks' by James Watt - Image courtesy of BrewDog

'Business for Punks' by James Watt - Image courtesy of BrewDog

The concluding factor of all this is that over the last ten years we've continued to try new things in order to propel our business forward, we've focused in on those elements that have been successful and placed context to them with both the products we develop and the messages that we communicate.

In our minds at least it is our ambition to develop these philosophies that sets us apart and helps galvanise our biggest asset, our team. With their commitment and enthusiasm we can overcome any challenges and can continue developing the company that we all so believe in.