“Don’t try to be original, just try to be good.” —Paul Rand, Graphic Designer
One of the biggest mistakes you can make as an entrepreneur is constantly reinventing your product, in an effort to try being an original. Instead, focus on making your product the best of its kind. If you are the best at what you do, you will bring in business your competitors can’t because of their own limitations. So don’t try so hard to always be original, instead strive to be the best.
Often, startups will have trouble and fail more if the idea is completely new when compared to an idea already invented. Although Friendster and Myspace were already created first, Facebook came along and did it better and look at them now. So remember, competition shouldn’t keep you from starting, but it should motivate you to excel.
“Simplicity is not the goal. It is the by-product of a good idea and modest expectations.” –Paul Rand, Graphic Designer
Although this is not applicable to all areas of business, one brand that follows this rule successfully is Apple. From the iPhone to the Macintosh, Apple has always been focused around simplicity. While the Android user cringes at the simplicity behind Apple products, tens of millions of Americans enjoy this by-product every day.
Another great example of the success of simplicity is the business model behind the brand, TOMS. TOMS’s business model is focused around the motto “one for one.” Other brands have similar models to this, which focus on giving a certain percentage of profits to an organization or people in need. However, TOMS makes people aware in the simplest of ways; if you buy a pair, they will give a pair to someone in need. For that reason, they have been a leader in the industry of not only charitable acts, but footwear as well.
Born in 1914, Paul Rand was an American graphic designer best known for his corporate logo designs. Rand attended the Parsons School of Design and the Art Students League, followed by teaching design at Yale University. He also created the logos for ABC, UPS, IBM and many more. Originally known as Peretz Rosenbaum, he changed his name to Paul Rand to disguise his Jewish identity.
Some of his other quotes include:
“Originality is a product, not an intention.”
“A cigar is almost as commonplace as an apple, but if I fail to make ads for cigars that are lively and original, it will not be the cigar that is at fault.”
“Innovation leads one to see the new in the old and distinguishes the ingenious from the ingenuous.”
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