Mar 12th, 2020

This Too Shall Pass

Heretics — it has been a little while since our last dispatch. We have been insanely busy building be radical — including the launch of a revamped version of our radical Briefing (for which you should sign up here; the radical Briefing is a monthly easy-to-read email digest on the future of business — covering ‘radical’ news, research, lessons, people, and ideas).

And then COVID-19 happened.

Much has been written about the virus, its spread and impact on lives, communities and businesses. I won’t pile on this already humongous stack of information and misinformation. Let me just offer some word of encouragement.

Our business is, as many of your businesses, affected. And even if your business is not directly affected, the likelihood that you are affect up or downstream is extremely high. The other day I spoke with a startup CEO here in Silicon Valley who is in the midst of raising his Series A financing and every single investor meeting either got canceled or moved. Meanwhile he needs to keep the lights on and make payroll.

It is hard. There is no way around.

As someone who has lived both through the first Dot-Com crash as well as the 2008/2009 financial crisis — the one thing I know is that it will get better eventually. This too shall pass. And you are not alone. Let’s be kind and in support to each other, hunker down, GyShiDo and, most of all, make sure we and our loved ones (and everyone else) is safe and healthy.

We are here for you. 🤗

Feb 13th, 2020

Are You Working on the Right Thing?

Together with many, many others I regularly put my finger on the pulse of ProductHunt to explore which products and services are new, hot and trending. Going through the list of “next favorite things,” one can only wonder what the rationale behind quite a few of the listed products is. Clearly some of them are meant to be a personal project or a side hustle — but quite a few seem to aspire to be...

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Feb 3rd, 2020

Should I Stay or Should I Go

On June 10th, 1982 the English punk rock band The Clash released their namesake No. 1 hit single asking the age-old question “Should I Stay or Should I Go”.

In many ways it is the same question startup founders all over the world ask themselves from time to time: Should I continue to work on my startup or should I give up?

The other day a founder posed this exact question to me. I...

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Jan 21st, 2020

What a Super Bowl Ad Can Teach You About Leadership

A little while ago I found myself on a conference panel with David Barett, founder of Expensify. There is a lot to be said and learned from David and his uber-successful company — anything from his leadership philosophy (parts of which we have discussed here already). But the thing which stuck with me was his story about Expensify’s Super Bowl ad.

If you know anything about the Super Bowl, you...

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Jan 9th, 2020

The One Percent-Rule

Today, my colleague Mafe sent me an excerpt from an article she read:

”We can call this The 1 Percent Rule. The 1 Percent Rule states that over time the majority of the rewards in a given field will accumulate to the people, teams, and organizations that maintain a 1 percent advantage over the alternatives. You don’t need to be twice as good to get twice the results. You just need to be slightly...

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Dec 3rd, 2019

Everybody Either Writes Code or Talks to Customers

Earlier this week I had a delightful conversation with Expensify’s founder and CEO David Barrett at the Digital CPA conference in rainy Seattle. We talked about all things culture, innovation and how to bridge those two spheres in front of a group of leaders and CEOs. When asked about his company (which is a/the leader in expense management software and a happy unicorn) and how he keeps people working on the right things (namely:...

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Dec 3rd, 2019

Know Everything There Is to Know

If you have seen my last post, you know that I recently read Blake Snyder’s excellent book on screenwriting “Save the Cat”. It is a great (and fun) read which made me think about storytelling in a different way (especially in the context of pitching a business and my specific craft: Storytelling from stage). Plus it makes you see movies through completely different eyes – the Blake Snyder Beat Sheet.

In the book, Blake...

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Dec 3rd, 2019

What Screenplay Writers and Startups Have in Common

In one of the best scenes of the 2001 documentary Startup.com (one of my favorite docus – watch it!), you watch as the founders of the staring startup govWorks pitch potential names for their company to random strangers in a döner kebap shop in NYC. It is a brilliant example of some of the best and most valuable things anyone who is building something new can do: Get out there and road test your stuff.

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Nov 22nd, 2019

Freedom in the System

As you scale your business, you start putting systems into place. They take the form of processes, procedures, rules and regulations. It is, in many ways, the only way you can scale beyond a handful of people. But if you are not careful, you create not only bureaucracy but will stand in your own way.

Take my recent experience with America’s beloved airline Southwest. For better or worse I have frequent flyer status on Southwest...

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Nov 16th, 2019

On Paradigm Shifts

I just returned from the Rise of the Rest Summit where I had the distinct privilege of meeting some of the most inspiring, hard-working and smartest entrepreneurs around. In the evening I had an inspired conversation with a blockchain/crypto-assets entrepreneur about public equity markets, why they evolved into their current state of affairs and how a future decentralized system might look like. In the midst of our discussion the entrepreneur tried to explain the...

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