Does your sales team sell your products (like, in exchange for money), or does it give them away as generous sweeteners to guarantee the sale of something else that will hit their targets? Or to put it in another way, does your salesforce truly understand the value of your products and can it articulate the benefits to the customer?

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While I was working at a former start-up called Zeus Technology (now doing rather well for itself, thank you), one of the investors was a chap called Nic Brisbourne. He is a perfectly pleasant chap, but at the time he scared the life out of me. I think that subconsciously I worried I might scare him and his venture capital away. One day I accidentally nicked his taxi and he was surprising forgiving.

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