How To Choose Your Suppliers

  1. A vendor gives you a great presentation.
  2. You hire them on the spot.

Then, you start working with them and suddenly you realize:


You selected the supplier based on a great presentation; why in the $@"&&"&&@$$@&$$ did that happen?

It's because of this psychological phenomenon that warps your brain into thinking: "X is good at Y, so X must be good at Z."

The Halo Effect

You see Tiger Woods, the golf legend.

How would do you think of him as a businessman?

  • "Top notch."
  • "Crazy awsome."
  • "The best negotiator in town."
  • "One of this generation's greatest businessman."

But then BAM, you dig a little further, and there's a frickin golden agency that got him those crazy deals (IMG, who's represented elite stars/models/athletes for several decades).

The Beautiful People

The Halo Effect makes you think a crazy-beautiful person is also a nice/sweet/caring person, regardless if you've met them.

The Halo Effect makes you think if someone interviews well, then that person must also be a great employee/partner/contractor.


Because one person/group does something well (interviewing), that shouldn't mean that person/group does the other thing well too (working) -- despite your cognitive biases to think otherwise.

When choosing your suppliers, focus on past work/accomplishments/client-satisfaction:

  • Get testimonials/references/feedback (tons) from as many sources as you can (including ones that are no longer clients)
  • Freakishly analyze previous work/results.
  • Understand their weaknesses ("OH OUR BIGGEST WEAKNESS IS THAT WE'RE PERFECTIONISTS HI FIVE" suck stuff don't count).

And if you're still concerned, consider a bit-sized, short-term, arrangement so you cam assess their SKILLZ.

The Good Stuff

Focus on the work -- not the presentation; you'll combat your brain biases to start think objectively, and doing what's best for your ridiculously good business.


The Work.

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Posted on February 05

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