Alan GleesonAlan Gleeson

Alan Gleeson

Alan Gleeson was the general manager of Palo Alto Software UK, makers of Business Plan Pro and LivePlan. Alan has an MBA from Oxford and an MSc from University College, Cork, Ireland. You can follow Alan on Twitter @alangleeson.

Recent Articles Published by Alan Gleeson


4 Marketing Aces for your Tech Start-up

Marketing a Tech Start-up is challenging and costly. While using social media offers one route to generate some demand it represents but one piece of the jigsaw.  Instead, the following 4 strategies represent some of the more powerful demand-generation activities (aka Aces) that should be considered by new businesses: 1. Concentrate on Building a Really... Read more »


Are business exhibitions a waste of time?

Most businesses will be approached at some point to exhibit at an event. The initial appeal is considerable – getting out of the office, meeting real customers, selling your wares and handing out leaflets to lots of prospects. However, the reality is usually somewhat different. The recipe for running an exhibition has largely stayed the... Read more »


Attention Entrepreneurs: Walk Before You Run

Entrepreneurship continues to be a sexy topic for governments, with every country worth its salt trying to create its own tech hub, mimicking Silicon Valley. The appeal of promoting entrepreneurship is obvious. After all, entrepreneurs can do many good things, not least to create wealth and employment, pay taxes and help the balance of trade... Read more »


Focus on awareness and metrics are keys to success

In this guest post, Alan Gleeson, General Manager of Palo Alto Software, Ltd., gives a U.K. perspective on entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship in Britain continues to remain very much in vogue, ably assisted by heavy backing from most quarters (not least the media and government). Prime Minister David Cameron has put entrepreneurship to the forefront of his... Read more »


The Battle for our Wallets

The battle for our (digital) wallets is growing apace. Fueled by the phenomenal growth in smart phone adaption, married to an increase in the number of payment apps, it is predicted that the mobile payments industry will be worth $245 billion by 2014 . To date the growth has been predominantly driven on the supply... Read more »


Praise Where Praise is Due

It all started with a simple email exchange. The final mail was short and to the point ‘ thanks for the great customer service, sadly it is unusual.’  It got me thinking.For me the exchange was pretty straight forward. A customer had emailed in with a query. I was in early, before the customer service... Read more »


How to Negotiate with Prospective Investors

Raising finance is a time consuming process and can also be quite stressful (particularly as time progresses). There may be some date in the future where your current trading position is no longer sustainable (which has brought you to the table in the first place). It is worth remembering that you need to recognise that... Read more »


Troubling Times in Europe

Economic woes continue to dominate the headlines here in Europe (as in the US). Solutions to the problems are less forthcoming. One thing is certain, once the dust settles, the implications arising from the problems will be far reaching. The European Union is under significant stress (especially the members of the common currency) and it... Read more »


Different Views from Opposite Sides

Today is the first in a new series by Alan Gleeson, managing director of the Palo Alto Software UK offices. The series will focus on business issues and commentary from the EU perspective. John Dennehy is a serial entrepreneur based in Cork, Ireland. His latest venture is an impressive software-as-a-service application that makes it... Read more »


Time for a Plan B

One of the main challenges entrepreneurs face is gaining market acceptance or traction i.e. custom in sufficient volumes to transition to profitability. If they are not getting traction after one month of operations, entrepreneurs need to quickly assess what they need to do to fix matters. Increasingly this means they need to be extremely flexible... Read more »


What is a business model?

A business model is a description of how your business intends to operate and make money. Sounds simple, right? For most companies, the business model used to look like this: I buy X, add some value to it, and sell it as Y. If I sell it for more money than the cost of buying... Read more »


Black Swans and Strategic Business Planning

What are black swans and what have they got to do with planning? The term ‘back swan’ is a metaphor for a highly improbable event, and is derived from the previously held assumption that ‘all swans were white‘ until the discovery of black swans in Australia. The term ‘black swan’ then came to connote an... Read more »


Helping to Cut Costs for UK Based Businesses, a UK based business website which provides online services for UK entrepreneurs and SMEs, has just relaunched with a more diversified offering. While their original focus was predominantly on providing a video based platform for entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas, the new site has a much broader range of offerings. In part, I assume,... Read more »


The Business Pitch

Business pitches are growing in popularity here in the UK as well as in the US. However, as this article, The Business Pitch by Alan Gleeson illustrates, business pitches are no substitute for the real thing – a thorough business plan! This short article describes the concept of pitching in detail, and argues why pitches... Read more »


October 12, 2008 Despite all the doom and gloom, it was great to participate at FOWA in London last week. There was a great buzz around the place and plenty of people with fantastic business ideas in attendance. It is, of course, a real sign of true entrepreneurship that people continue to innovate and progress... Read more »

Future of Web Apps – London 2008

October 3, 2008 We’ll be showcasing our new Email Center Pro product at the forthcoming Future of Web Apps Expo, in London on October -10. The FOWA Expo will feature a number of well known speakers including Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, Mike Butcher of Techcrunch UK & Ireland, as well as Julie Meyer of Ariadne... Read more »


The Importance of Independent Endorsements

One of the great benefits of websites such as Amazon is the ability to read other peoples impartial reviews. Faced with what seems like an every growing array of choice, for an ever growing set of problems, real user reviews can help you reduce the option set so you can buy the best solution for... Read more »


Using Video to Pitch Your Business Plan

I met with Emmett Kilduff, Founder & CEO of London based [see my pitch]last week. is an online community for entrepreneurs and business owners. It has a focus on using video as a means for entrepreneurs to engage with prospective investors, and relevant service providers. This trend towards the use of video was... Read more »


Planning Ahead: Protecting Key Suppliers

While some people associate business planning narrowly with sales forecasting, or as a means to obtaining investment, it can also be used by companies to assess the impact of changes to the environmental context. This analysis of the future can help inform strategies and tactics in the present, which help to minimise the likelihood of... Read more »


How recession-proof is your business plan?

There is a lot of business uncertainty at the moment (May 9, 2008) with much talk in the media of an ‘impending economic downturn’. While the phrase ‘recession’ seems to be close to many people’s lips, it is being muttered in hushed tones rather than being shouted from the rafters. In the U.S. they are... Read more »