BUSINESSWEEK ONLINE : OCTOBER 23, 2000 ISSUE
BUSINESS WEEK E.BIZ -- PERSONALITIES

Geoffrey Alexander Moore


Born: July 31, 1946, in Portland, Ore., second of two sons.

Education: Bachelor's degree in 1967 from Stanford University; PhD in 1973 from the University of Washington -- both in literature.

Career: In 1974, he was an English professor at Olivet College in Michigan. Moved to Palo Alto, Calif., in 1978 where he worked in training, sales, and marketing at three software outfits: Rand Information, Enhansys, and Mitem. Joined consulting firm Regis McKenna in 1987. Formed his own consultancy, Chasm Group, in 1992, after writing the book Crossing the Chasm, which spelled out how techies need to think mainstream. Also a partner with venture-capital firm Mohr Davidow Ventures.

Major influences: Failure. Two of the three software companies where he worked went out of business. He saw that they had failed to cross the chasm between techdom and the rest of the world. Second influence: Literary critic Kenneth Burke, who considered literature a laboratory for examining strategies for living. Moore draws on literature--especially works that size up how clashing cultural values can be explored to guide compromises in business.

Why he joined, then left, academia: He thought the business world was full of philistines and charlatans. ''Then I realized I was one, too,'' he quips.

Personality: Never met a microphone he didn't like. Loves to teach, give speeches, and kid around--often at his own expense. Grandfather's name was Malarkey. It rubbed off.

His tech style: Practically a Luddite. Keeps his cell phone turned off most of the time: ''I don't like being pinged and buzzed.'' Carries a pager to communicate with his wife only. Finally bought his first CD--Bob Dylan's Biograph--in 1998.

Daily consulting fee: $15,000, more than his annual salary as an English professor 22 years ago.

Why clients are willing to pay: ''He brings to the table examples of companies you know. It's so relevant that it's easy to see how what he's saying is going to be true,'' says Rod Randall, chief marketing officer at Lucent Technologies.

Family: Married, three children ages 25 to 31.

Leisure: He spends a lot of time with Marie, his wife of 32 years, shopping and eating out. He still reads Renaissance literature but also reads ''trash,'' mainly thrillers and adventure novels set in earlier times. ''I spend all day with techies, and I can't wait to get away from them,'' he says.



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EBIZ Cover Image, link to ebiz table of contents
EBIZ Contents for issue dated Oct. 23, 2000


Geoff Moore Goes Mainstream

RESUME: Geoffrey Alexander Moore

TABLE: Geoffrey Moore's Laws

ONLINE EXTRA: Q&A with Tech-Marketing Guru Geoffrey Moore



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