Mistake Number One: Misplaced confidence in what you know. AKA flying by the seat of your pants.
I’ve been in hundreds of conferences in which the presenter referred to the “classic mistake General Motors made when they introduced the Chevy Nova into Spain.” The word “nova” in Spanish, we’re told, translates to “no go.”
Ironically, the whole “nova” story is a “no go.” It never happened. People who repeat this myth are doing the very thing they rail against: promoting a fact that is wrong—let’s call that a “fake facting.”
This could be an amusing anecdote if companies didn’t frequently premise spending serious amounts of capital on bad information. Failing to fail to file a flight plan when you’re risking only a couple of grand might be OK. But when you get into five-digit territory, no flight plan is just plain risky.
Mistake Number Two: The Band Wagon Effect
This refers to Company A assuming if Company B, often a competitor, is doing some thing, it must be right for their company, too. That’s why the first words out of a vendor’s mouth is often “Company B is using my product.”
The fact that it may not be working at Company B is rarely considered. There is an alarming (at least to me) amount of me-too spending everywhere you look. This happens so often because, almost never is there accountability, let alone a pre-purchase suitability study or a risk assessment.
The lesson is clear: be sure whatever it is you are spending money on will turn out to be truly worth it.