What I’ve heard
Masters of scale the podcast by Reid Hoffman (founder of LinkedIn) - Keep it simple while scaling big – This episode is with Kevin Systrom, the founder of Instagram on his story about how they developed Instagram and how it evolved from an initial check-in app with a gaming focus for users and went on to develop and scale whilst maintaining a workforce of just 6!
Sometimes, no scrap that most of the time the ideas that make the biggest difference and those which transform a business come form places that you hadn't anticipated, this is certainly the case with Instagram. But its the willingness to take the decisions and follow through, whilst being flexible enough to move away form the initial concepts and idealistic approaches which are often the hardest for any founder to cope with, that's the key take-away and lesson for me in this talk.
What I’ve seen
The BBC documentary the horizon guide to AI. This coincides with me reading the new Yuval Noah Harari (writer of Sapiens and Homo Deus) book 21 Lessons for the 21st century which looks closely at the many possibilities for AI and automation as well as the ethical and societal impacts of adopting new AI technologies. This horizons programme looks at both the optimism and suspicion of what AI could mean or will they take over….????
What I’ve read
Book Description from Amazon - In Essentialism, Greg McKeown, CEO of a Leadership and Strategy agency in Silicon Valley who has run courses at Apple, Google and Facebook, shows you how to achieve what he calls the disciplined pursuit of less. Being an Essentialist is about a disciplined way of thinking. It means challenging the core assumption of ‘We can have it all’ and ‘I have to do everything’ and replacing it with the pursuit of ‘the right thing, in the right way, at the right time'.
The difference between an essentialist and non-essentialist: The same amount of energy is exerted, one is divided across many activities whilst that of an essentialist is directed into fewer things making significant progress in the things that matter most…
By applying a more selective criteria for what is essential, the pursuit of less allows us to regain control of our own choices so we can channel our time, energy and effort into making the highest possible contribution toward the goals and activities that matter.
Something that I have been working on recently is protecting my time to focus on my agenda. I particularly found chapters 11 & 12 (How to say no gracefully and uncommit) really valuable.
The quote from the book that I keep close by: “If you don’t prioritise your life, someone else will”