It’s a wonderful thing to be clever, and you should never think otherwise, and you should never stop being that way. But what you learn, as you get older, is that there are a few billion other people in the world all trying to be clever at the same time, and whatever you do with your life will certainly be lost-swallowed up in the ocean-unless you are doing it along with like-minded people who will remember your contributions and carry them forward.

The Diamond Age

Hiring is one of the hardest things to do at start-ups and without a strategy…


Negotiation is a difficult skill to learn, made even more so because the times that we need to call on it are typically time constrained with some meaningful stakes on the table. Good negotiation skills are relatively important in the early-stages of starting a company, made more so because of the perceived power imbalances in early relationships. Often when founders are negotiating their first sales, they will just be so focused on getting the contract over the line that they fail to take into consideration longer-term objectives that could leave you up the river without the proverbial paddle. What follows…


Sometimes the truth is what you make it

In politics, ideology and partisanship are highly correlated and only becoming more so over time. This is coming to bear in the US election, where an incumbent that has overseen thousands of unnecessary deaths at the hands of a global pandemic, almost 100 times the amount that died as a result of 9/11, is still favoured by broad swathes of the population. How can you reconcile right wing politics to reality? More importantly, is reality a construct that you have some control over? As an entrepreneur, how can you shape a narrative that reflects an emerging reality you’re exploiting?

RWA…


Why are organisations, everywhere, political, commercial, and social, increasingly unable to manage their affairs?

Why are individuals, everywhere, increasingly in conflict with and alienated from the organization of which that are part?

Why are society and the biosphere increasingly in disarray?

Dee Hock, CEO BankAmericard Inc

In 1970 when the Bank of America decided to cede control of the BankAmericard program to the franchise holders one of the greatest experiments in organizational design emerged. Through leading the National BankAmericard Inc, Dee Hock managed to create alignment across a number of license holders while at the same time encouraging each of…


In the pre-dawn hours of 20 May 1927, a custom-built, single engine, fixed wing plane was being prepared at Roosevelt Airfield in New York state. Four experienced pilots had recently died, although two were assumed missing, attempting what Charles Lindbergh was about to attempt. A nonstop transatlantic flight from Garden City, New York to Paris, France. This was well before the time of radar or GPS systems, the instruments included a temperature gauge, a clock, an altimeter, a tachometer, an airspeed indicator and a liquid magnetic compass — this was a very basic set-up. The weather had been patchy with…


Forward thinking countries are aware that they need to be focused on developing emerging technologies. Ever since Marc Andreessen coined the phrase “Software is eating the world,” we have seen an acceleration in technological developments that impact all of the areas of people’s lives. This was evident in Singapore, where the government has made extensive efforts to create a flourishing start-up ecosystem.

The policies in Singapore have been focused on developing an ecosystem from the “Bottom-up,” creating economic incentives for investors to focus on the early-stage space in the hopes that it will cause more high-growth technology companies to be…


It can be a maze finding the right investor

It’s hard for newly hatched founders to know what they should be looking for in an investor. While there will be some nuance in what is appropriate for each company depending on their industry and near-term goals, there are some over-arching principles that they should be thinking about. I’ve spent enough time working with start-ups to see that there can be issues further down the road if they don’t get the initial set-up right.

Corporate governance refers to the collection of “mechanisms, processes and relations by which corporations are controlled and operated.” The general take on this in relation to…


Probabilistic reasoning is the combination of probability theory with deductive logic to formulate solutions to uncertain situations. It’s one of the most important skills that you need in life, yet one that isn’t taught in the classroom (but might be taught in schools). Life is inherently uncertain, you need to be able to act confidently based on imperfect information and consistently update your beliefs as new information is presented (Bayesian inference). Failure to do so, could leave you paralyzed, afraid to act until you are absolutely certain about the future — by which point life will have left you behind.


Don’t be afraid to stand out

Every day, I’m presented with a range of new business ideas. When one of those ideas is something new, something that I hadn’t previously considered, something that makes me question my previously held beliefs, it’s exhilarating. It means that my previous paradigms are going to be shattered.

There have never been more opportunities for people to make a meaningful change in the world than we have today. However, for a numerous reasons, which couldn’t be comprehensively covered in this format, there is a gap in the potential as compared to the realised innovation that is coming out of Southeast Asia…


B2B or not 2B

There have been a number of well-known start-ups that initially started out as B2C and pivoted to B2B, including Plaid, Slack, and somewhat closer to home Xendit amongst others. The lure to consumer can be strong because founders are trying to solve problems that they’ve faced and there’s a perception of a large market of potential users (“Everyone could use this!”). However, the winds of popular perception change swiftly with consumer products. …

Sam Gibb

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