One day, I watched a sparrow from my office window. The bird would pick bread crumbs from the ground while anxiously hopping around and watching out for predators. Doing several things at the same time was its strategy to survive.
Birds do it; bees do it: they multitask.
But we humans got ahead of birds on this planet, right?
Like every young and ambitious entrepreneur, I wanted to be super productive. But like a sparrow, I was hopping from one meeting into another, while making customer calls and anxiously checking for new emails in my inbox.
I am busy, I…
To succeed, learn from those who have already succeeded, right?
Want to learn to invest? Read “The Essays of Warren Buffet.” Want to crack it in social media marketing? Listen to Gary Vee’s podcast. Want to skyrocket your sales? Ask a successful entrepreneur to be your mentor.
I raised millions for my start-up before eventually getting it acquired and landing a six-figure executive job. But does this mean you should blindly follow my advice?
As you devour books, seminars, and coaching sessions of successful entrepreneurs, investors, and salespeople, you may overlook that many of these people were just plain lucky.
We tech-founders and engineers get excited whenever we talk about our new products and features.
We can’t wait to publish yet another elaborate article on our optimized blockchain algorithm, improved manufacturing technology, or our new polymer for 3D printing.
But reading a detailed tech blog post can easily become an arduous task for an average reader — someone you want to turn into your paying customer.
In fact, studying product characteristics, understanding technical specifications, and following our rigorous explanations can be a mentally daunting task to any reader — even for an expert.
In our evolutionary past, whoever thought too…
Before the pandemic, working from home has always been a privilege in our company.
Remote employees wore a badge of honor because it showed that management trusted them to responsibly continue their duties from the tempting comfort of their homes.
Besides, you got to spend more time with your family. The boss is not watching, so you could leave your desk at any time, take a break, play with the dog or cuddle with your spouse or lover. And if you arrive late for the conference call, you can always blame the poor broadband.
But the best part: we don’t…
My former coach once told me the real meaning of my job title “CEO:” Customers, Employees, Owners. He said it was my duty to make all three happy.
But doing this is not that hard. Instead, it’s extremely hard.
Successful entrepreneurs must beat the odds and rise to the top among all the other start-ups that fail. We have incredible pressure to outperform our competitors — who are trying to outperform us. So we are going to push harder than ever to get what we want.
But in the end, we won’t make everyone happy.
People will disagree with us…
Never trust a salesperson.
When I was nine, I watched my mother yell at a salesman who knowingly sold her a broken washing machine and didn’t want to take it back. He grinned, and told her to piss off: “You broke it yourself.”
I just stood there sobbing as I saw my mother being treated with utmost injustice. That day, I promised myself never to get fooled by a salesman.
Fast-forward 20 years: with a Ph.D. in business and solid experience from a renowned management consulting firm, I became the founder and CEO of a growing multi-million-dollar-funded tech startup.
When I start a project, I feel like I have all the time in the world to finish it. Until one day I wake up to a terrorizing thought that the deadline is only three days away.
In the words of investor Marc Andreessen, you only ever experience two emotions running a start-up: euphoria and terror. And the lack of sleep enhances them both.
And hell, do I get terrified when we approach a deadline. In our team, we call time-critical projects the “trains of death.” …
In the movie “Who Am I,” Jackie Chan slides down a 24-story building in his death-defying scene. The craziest part? He did it completely unassisted.
The charismatic Hollywood actor Jackie Chan plans and performs his spectacular parkour moves, jump sequences, and mind-blowing fighting scenes by himself. He is his own stuntman.
Although he broke nearly every bone in his body throughout his movie career, he continues to risk his life just to keep his viewers on the edge of their seats.
The media calls him fearless.
But the legendary superstar was born neither privileged nor fearless. …
My heart trembled when I read the Forbes headline “3D Printing Company MakerBot Acquired in $604 Million Deal.” The founder and CEO of Makerbot, former primary school art teacher Bre Pettis from New York, left his company a wealthy man.
While Bre Pettis was packing his suitcase full of cash in 2013, I was still struggling to pay my office rent.
But Bre and I had one grand thing in common. We both worked in one of the most hyped tech industries since the invention of the hammer. …
It was a fantastic summer day in our corporate lawyer’s office. I had just signed an investment deal securing millions of dollars for my start-up. A heavy thousand-dollar Montblanc ballpen was still lingering in my hand.
“You can keep it,” said one of the investors, waving his palm at the pen: “get used to the good things now.”
For six years before signing the deal, I wore a budget business suit and drove to my shabby office in my wife’s screeching old Peugeot every day.
Now, with enough cash in my company’s bank account, the idea to upgrade my lifestyle…