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From the Practitioner's Corner


Many entrepreneurs are enthralled with their company’s technologies, products and potential markets. Invariably these emerging ventures present bedazzling business plans with industry-wise vernacular, detailed market research, and sophisticated financial spreadsheets. They often flaunt their “optimized business models.” Investors, however, typically want to know when and how the sales will start meeting the Plan. “Where’s the purchase order?” is the refrain. In this article, our “Practitioner’s Corner” associate editor Joe Levangie collaborates with a long-time colleague, Deaver Brown, to address how businesses should “make sales happen.” Levangie warns that Brown’s elitist education (Choate, Harvard College, Harvard Business School) should not be interpreted as a lack of “street smarts”; Brown’s more entrepreneurially friendly credentials include winning Golden Gloves boxing medals and selling Fuller Brush products door-to-door! To ascertain how the entrepreneur can wrest an order from a prospective customer, read on.