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I am in the early stages of starting a small business with a partner, who is probably more technically skilled than I but less skilled business-wise. I wanted to implement some system whereby I would report to him on my meetings with potential clients etc so he could start to get a better understanding of how that operates. So, I would prepare some document that contains information about what was discussed, how I plan to follow up, and links to any emails I plan to send so he could take a look at them and give his input. I am not super ultra familiar with CRM systems, I guess they might do what I need, but I feel that at this point they are overspecified and besides we don't have the money. Is there a formal format/system for this stuff I could implement, say with google docs?

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    I wouldn't use Google Docs. Customer contact data is one of a company's "crown jewel" databases; you want it on a server with much more stringent commitments to security and reliability and availability. That doesn't mean it can't be in the cloud, just that I wouldn't trust something that's essentially an at-your-own-risk toy. – keshlam Apr 29 '15 at 12:22
  • Have there been many recent data leaks from there? Can you cite one? That said, I don't plan to store actual contact info there. Just text from emails etc. – jamesson Apr 29 '15 at 14:04
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    No, this is applied paranoia, which is a basic debug tool. Don't expect features that you have not paid for, contracted for, and that will accept no responsibility, to deliver bet-your-business support. It's a fine tool, but there is some data that deserves more care. – keshlam Apr 29 '15 at 14:10
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    This depends on the number of clients and how much contact you expect to have with them. – blankip Apr 29 '15 at 15:06
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    If you want to go the way of a simple (and maybe free) CRM, the specific place to ask for that is Software Recommendations – user8036 May 24 '15 at 8:45
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It might be worth investing the time/effort/money now to set up the CRM system you ultimately want to use - this will save having to transition from a less than ideal solution later on. Often we start with an imperfect system and say we will come back when we "have more time later", but it keeps getting put off due to mounting responsibilities. Then when you finally have to bite the bullet and change systems it can be painful and very confusing - better to be set up right the first time (I assume that cost is not the limiting factor in this case).

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I wanted to implement some system whereby I would report to him on my meetings with potential clients etc so he could start to get a better understanding of how that operates.

In a two-person company, it might make more sense to have your partner attend the meetings with you.

You can concentrate on the business aspects while he concentrates on the more technical aspects - while you are talking with potential clients.

That way, he learns more about the business end, you learn more about the technical end, and the clients get the best of both.

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  • -1: Non-business savvy partner may add negative value attending these meetings and potentially high opportunity cost of pulling them away from the technical aspects of the job. – Myles May 27 '15 at 20:43

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