I also believe that every person in tech should visit Walmart at least once a year, and spend time in their technology section. It’s good to understand and see how people who don’t live for technology every day interact with it.
You’re better off trying something and having it not work and learning from that than not doing anything at all.
– Mark Zuckerberg
¾th value comes from business 10 years down the line – DCF
Guess who gets you to that pot 10 years down?
Records are set to be broken, medals are forever.
– Linford Christie
Solve hard technical problem for ONE obvious business opportunity (e.g. image recognition solution for construction industry). Better than solving an easy technical problem in a crowded marketplace (a messenger app).
Quite an insightful statement from Matt at a recent Google event at Campus London. Reminded me of a quote by someone else:
The wise warrior avoids the battle.
It also reminded me of couple of other sayings.
Fight to your strength, defend your weaknesses – anonymous
So in war, the way is to avoid what is strong, and strike at what is weak. – Someone
What Matt and that someone are saying are perfectly in sync.
Matt, via Entrepreneur First, recruits young technical wizards, and equips them with business skills and support to help them launch exciting startups. By the definition of their recruitment filter, they attract people whose strength lies in solving hard technical problems, and who may have weaknesses in other areas – marketing skills to fight for growth and traction in crowded markets, for instance. For such teams, it makes obvious business sense to go after problems that are hard to solve technically, but (relatively) easy to sell to market. And thus, the insightful, powerful statement by Matt.
However. The statement isn’t the final truth for everyone. Following the second set of quotes above, you need to fight on ground that enhances your strengths, and hides your weaknesses, best. If you’re an excellent
marketing & sales driver growth hacker, with possibly a good designer and an adequate developer for company, you might want to pick problems that are easy to solve technically, but in a big, vibrant (likely crowded) market – diametrically opposite to what Matt suggested.
And if you start succeeding, you’ll be well advised to acquire/acquihire/poach some of the graduates of Matt’s EF program :)
Based on 2 recent power lists – as many as you can get in!
Both the lists are packed with white males, with little to no representation from many minority-gender groups. I’m not criticising the lists here, but taking them as a reflection of the state of our tech ecosystem. We have far to go…
Considering this list is more about thinkers and influencers – it has David Cameron at #1 – than about do-ers, the lack of diversity surprises me even more. I’m sure there are lots of non-white women and men leading, encouraging, and influencing fresh business thought in the UK tech and business communities.
I may be wrong. In which case, there simply need to be more. A lot more. In my humble opinion.
Courage is in shorter supply than genius.
– Peter Thiel, at LSE
They wouldn’t think of preventing many statistically riskier parenting decisions so long as those decisions jive comfortably with social norms.
This problem is everywhere – social behaviour decisions, government policy implementations, day-to-day corporate decision-making. The reason, hinted at in the quote above, is two-fold:
Other potential reasons, I guess, are:
What can (should) be done to overcome these hurdles? (Other than defining regulation more rigidly to take decisions out of hands of people, and/or ‘educating’ people)
Many startups tend to keep the employees (usually devs & designers) focussed too narrow, never letting them expand to other roles, or keep them doing everything (usually non-tech employees/founders), without giving them time, resources or backing to develop expertise in one area.
I believe that there are no strict job descriptions or siloed roles in a startup – everyone does everything, at least some of their time. And it’s all for the better – of both the enterprise and the individuals. Everyone learns & grows, faster.
However, experience tells me that starting your stint with a specific role or project greatly improves the chances of a successful on-boarding. A specific project lets the new joiner do a deep dive and learn quickly about one specific area (become go-to person for that small, specific area), show some deliverables (thus earn cred in the new team), while also learning about rest of the roles (to get an idea of where they want to grow/expand).
Once a bit settled, more roles and responsibilities can, and should, be added. Not letting employees expand beyond their early roles, is just as bad as getting them to work on *everything* from the moment they step on-board. You never know, that backend dev could have evolved to become the best product manager or business development manager money could ever hire.