On a recent trip to Argentina I was reading through Inc. Magazine. It's a pretty amazing source of information for the entrepreneur. I was genuinely surprised by the breadth and applicability. I had been sure it would be a moderately useful Business-Bro publication. In fact I read it cover to cover. That could mean I'm a business-bro, but I doubt it.
While my brain was on fire with ideas, I did some work on narrowing down what drives the TMAP brand. Asimov was an inspiration.
We seek to carry products that satisfy these rules. The first two are inflexible requirements except in the complexity of their evaluation. The rest are merely goals to seek.
Although we understand the question of ethics is hazy, we stand against injustice. We sell products that do not unduly strain the world or the minds in it. This is the most important measure of work, and we need to hold each other accountable to this.
Products, like professionals, should do the jobs they set out to do. This is the second most important measure of work.
A product that lasts your lifetime often increases in value as time passes, and its cost per use falls. Longevity is a very attractive feature for a useful product, and should be a priority, so long as it does not interfere with a product's effectiveness.
A product that can be maintained over its lifetime serves its owner in many ways. Every time that product is repaired it is improved, like the callus that improves your hand. A scar on a good product reveals the story of that product, educates you, and establishes a relationship with it.
To sell a one-off, like an antique, undermines the idea of being a retailer.
The lowest priority, except when one of the problems being solved by the product is an aesthetic one.