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Reply To: My business is a small water filtration business out of the Hawkes Bay.  We are a father son business and have been operating for the last year and a half.  We are currently a part time business hoping to develop further to be full-time. We are looking for ways to work with councils and MSD to develop better sales and service for consumers. Is there a way we can work through these organizations that is reasonably clear?

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Good morning Cloudwater! Thank you for reaching out to Manaaki.

When you start out, often we have to target prospective customers who are comfortable with ambiguity and/or going on the ride of partnering with an early stage or startup. In technical terms we often think about this prospective customers as early adopters – they don’t mind the issues or challenges – they are not risk focused organisations or people, and really have a pain point they want solved, so will accept and like the fact that you are a new business.

What that can mean is larger and more risk oriented organisations can be difficult to work with when you start out – they like dependency, they like controls, they like risk actually they don’t like risk – so my question more for you would be why do you think the Council or MSD are the right organisations ‘now’ for you to work with them?

Sometimes you can find champions in large organisations who would ‘back you’ – you can build that personal relationship and rely on it to get going, show some value, understand their needs before you go ‘serious’.

Have a think about this and come back to me. Andy