The other day I stumbled across the following headline on The Verge: “Stratos is not just another all-in-one smart card”.
The product described in the article is a “smart” credit card which allows you to combine any three cards (e.g. your personal and business credit card plus your Starbucks loyalty card) in one Stratos card which is hooked up to your phone and allows you to select, with the push of a button, the card you want to use.
The following post is a summary of a series of earlier Heretic posts on the subject compiled into one comprehensive list - compiled by the wonderful folks at Unreasonable.is
Your pitch deck MUST start with a description of what it is that you’re doing. Your second slide (after the cover slide) is titled “What is NAME-OF-YOUR-COMPANY” (e.g. “What is eBay”). Explain in simple English what you’re doing. This is not the place to be clever, show off your extraordinary grasp of the English language or think that your pitch deck is a novel where you build tension and excitement in the first half and surprise the reader in the end.
If I (or any investor for that matter) don’t understand what you are doing in the first 10-15 seconds you already lost me. I know investors who don’t go past slide two if they don’t grasp what the company does.
In my potentially never-ending quest to get on top of the ever-growing email onslaught, I came across Tony Hsieh’s Yesterbox method/manifesto. It’s a deceptively simple but effective way to deal with your inbox: You only answer the emails from yesterday (plus the very few emails which require immediate attention). That way you get a chance to be on top of your email (as the number of emails from yesterday is finite) instead of being caught in an endless game of whack-a-mole. Plus people will get a guaranteed response from you in less than 48 hours - whereas in the past I often skipped more complex emails for days as I was constantly dealing with new incoming mail.
For a while I toyed around with different setups. Until I settled on the following Gmail configuration which works beautifully for me:
Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up, it knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed.
Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a lion or a gazelle - when the sun comes up, you have to run.
~ African Proverb
Photo by Morkel Erasmus under a CC-BY-NC-ND License
I just had an amazing Facebook Messages exchange with someone who asked me to write for his startup newsletter/website. Guess he’s not quite as empathetic about entrepreneurs as I and many other are. But read for yourself:
Great to meet you Pascal
I am founder at —REDACTED—
I would love to learn about your work
How can I help?
I would like to invite you to write for —REDACTED—
A few weeks ago I had the privilege to deliver the closing keynote at GroupM’s What’s Next Illuminate conference in New York City. I gave a short introduction to exponential thinking (the stuff we teach at Singularity University) and then walked the audience through a whole bunch of examples (focussed on media).
Today I had the great honor and pleasure to teach a class on Building (Online) Communities at Electronic Arts’ internal leadership development program. For my presentation I took a trip down memory lane and pulled out the key insights and learnings from my time at Mozilla.
Here’s the deck: