Add More Value to Your Customers with the Power of “No”


At Galvanize, we’re putting a whole new spin on Study Hall with monthly, members-only sessions. At every Study Hall, industry all-stars present on one of three topics –– growth, funding, or product –– and collaborate with Galvanizers to spur innovation, solve problems, and harness the power of our dynamic startup community.

Galvanize had the honor of hosting a Product Study Hall with John Weiss, CXO and Co-Founder, and Matt Null, CTO and Co-Founder at Human Design. Both John and Matt are serial entrepreneurs with a deep expertise in advising and investing in early stage startups.

The Study Hall began with John and Matt giving the background of Human Design and why they started the company. They explained that they wanted to “do well by doing good” by creating experiences that move the human race. To do that, as a company, Human Design has had to draw a line in the sand and learned how to say “no”.  

This concept manifests itself in everything they do – from the copy on their website to the clients they take on and how they create remarkable experiences. A member asked if they had a “secret sauce” in terms of their process to bring a higher quality result. The response was that they do not have a process but an approach which allows them to maintain flexibility and avoid prescriptive solutions ultimately resulting in higher-quality outcome. The Study Hall audience then discussed the power of “no” to add more value to their customers.

  1. By staying true to your core values, a founder is empowered to say no to things that don’t align – including advisors, investors, and customers.
  2. To deliver outstanding experiences, it’s critical to gain an understanding of the entire ecosystem and context. This includes a clear purpose, a defined story/narrative, a plan for how that narrative needs to be introduced in order to change the world in which it exists, and an articulation of the tension that should be addressed (i.e founders don’t get along, misalignment of vision).
  3. If entrepreneurs remember that the customer needs them more than they need the customer (even if that isn’t the case), ultimately it saves time and stress when dealing with customers.

Many attendees saw immense value in the power of saying “no” and manifesting high-quality results through process. From early-stage entrepreneurs to established founders, Galvanize Members at every stage of their careers will benefit from the insights shared at our Study Halls.


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