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Wyoming Idea Expo: Doug Hall, Founder & CEO of Eureka! Ranch Intl.

Oct 09, 2008

Opening Keynote: Doug Hall, founder & CEO of Eureka! Ranch


Eureka! Ranch has programs in 47 states.

They've identified 3 states "lead dogs" who had leadership, staff, vision who really get how to make things happen for small to mid-size companies.

Lead states for his program are:



Doug Hall took off his Birkenstocks before beginning his speech for "self-preservation."

Eureka! Ranch mission:

Find, filter and fast track innovations.
Win more, lose less & make more money.

He talked about the responsibility to give back and does so through his nonprofit organization Eureka! Winning Ways.

Take folks with a passion and give them the tools and resources to get going.

Don't take notes! Make connections!


1. Have your profit margins grown in last 5-10 years?
If NO, fire some customers.

2. If you lost your #1 customer would you survive?
If NO, you need to diversify.

3. Are you having FUN?
If NO, take action, "Life is too Short!"


Why focus on profitability?
Only 1 in 7 small businesses close leaving debt.
Over 80% close because it's "not worth the effort."


Total Quality Management principles - Dr. W. Edwards Deming

94% of failures are due to the SYSTEM. 6% are due to the worker."

Quality doesn't cost you money. Quality reduces costs.

94% of failures are due to the Management. Because only management can change the SYSTEM."


Change your Development System

If you're not meaningfully Unique, you better be Cheap.

The Code of the West
(from Cowboy Ethics by James Owen)

Live each day with courage.

Take pride in your work.

Do what has to be done.

When you make a promise keep it.

Know where to draw the line.

Wyoming Readiness to CREATE Growth Innovations

Today's Team versus World Class  

Agreement with need for growth        CONCERN
Urgency to take action                       CONCERN
Success with Innovation                     CONCERN
Courage to take action                      CONCERN
Balanced thinking style                     CONCERN
Creativity & Innovation rewarded      CONCERN
Optimistic about success                   CONCERN

Wyoming Readiness to EXECUTE Growth Innovations

Sufficient resources to get job done    CONCERN
People cooperate to get job done        CONCERN
Respect for senior leaders                   WARNING
Talents are used well                          CONCERN
Quality of work done by group            CONCERN

Wyoming needs to support small- and mid-sized businesses



Success Factors/Marketing Physics:

1. overt benefit
2. real reason to believe
3. dramatic difference

Think smarter & more creatively!

E = Eureka! the idea
S = Explore Stimulus
D = Leverage Diversity
F = Drive out Fear


Leveraging Diversity is not for WIMPS. (Tom Peters)

Individual EXPLORE stimulus.

Pratner helps leverage DIVERSITY.

Team helps drive out FEAR.

There is no "i" in TEAM but...

ALL start with "i."

Fundamental Truths:

Quality Reduces Cost. (Deming)

New Customers Increase Profits. (Doug Hall)

New customers drive growth!

CONFUSION is not a strategy for success!

You must communicate the Overt Benefit. What is in it for customers.


Where is the statement of Overt Benefit for the Customer?

Never let a customer say NO because they DON'T understand what you offer.

BE REAL, Tell the Truth, and Do What You Promise.

Don't take current capabilities to a new customer. You MUST adapt the product for the customer.


New Products Drive Growth!

Higher margin, higher valuation of your company.

A future focus was 10x more predictive of success than a "voice of the customer" approach.

Innovation does not come from the customers. Innovation comes from the producer...." (Deming)


Green Customers are Influencers.
They are the thought leaders.
They're Realists, not fanatics.
They push to understand new technologies.


Do One Thing Great!

Where is the best place to invest time and energy looking for innovation inspiration?



Develop like a start up:

  • Simultaneous Engineering - promise, product, profit
  • Fail Fast - Fail Cheap - "Get Smart" Cycles of Learning
  • Open Source Connections - Work Together. Developing USA National Innovation Marketplace.

The New Knowledge Economy has to happen in Wyoming.


The Biggest Fear Fighter? PASSION!


It is not necessary to change. SURVIVAL is not mandatory. (Deming)
Aliza Sherman


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