Scale Business Quotes

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[She] knew there were women who worked successfully out of the home. They ran businesses, created empires and managed to raise happy, healthy, well-adjusted children who went on to graduate magna cum laude from Harvard or became world-renowned concert pianists. Possibly both. These women accomplished all this while cooking gourmet meals, furnishing their homes with Italian antiques, giving clever, intelligent interviews with Money magazine and People, and maintaining a brilliant marriage with an active enviable sex life and never tipping the scale at an ounce over their ideal weight... She knew those women were out there. If she'd had a gun, she'd have hunted every last one of them down and shot them like rabid dogs for the good of womankind.
Nora Roberts (Birthright)
His dream is to one day be a famous Broadway star, but he says he lacks the ability to sing or act, so he’s scaling down his dream and applying to business school, instead.
Colleen Hoover (Hopeless (Hopeless, #1))
A year of intense exercise and watching what you eat will likely change the trajectory of your life physically. You will melt away fat, tone up muscle, feel better, and change your habits, likely for life. But only ten days of that exercise program won’t move the needle on the scale. To create big-time success you have to stay focused and stay intense over an extended period of time.
Dave Ramsey (EntreLeadership: 20 Years of Practical Business Wisdom from the Trenches)
The trick of enjoying New York is not to be so busy grinding your way to the center of the earth that you fail to notice the sparkle of the place, a scale and a kind of wonder that puts all human endeavors in their proper place.
David Carr (The Night of the Gun)
There are no straight lines in nature or business.
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
In spite of what is studied in business schools concerning “economies of scale,” size hurts you at times of stress; it is not a good idea to be large during difficult times.
Nassim Nicholas Taleb (Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder)
In the United States, government regulations are estimated to cost about $7,800 per employee in large businesses and about $10,600 per employee in small businesses.{662} Among other things, this suggests that the existence of numerous government regulations tends to give competitive advantages to big business, since there are apparently economies of scale in complying with these regulations.
Thomas Sowell (Basic Economics)
Well, the Taco Bell burrito scale of immense magnitude returned an 'r' factor of point eight six. Then when I applied the nose-picking coefficient, I discovered a multivariate numeration of nine dot oh sixteen on the Richter scale.
Debra Dunbar (Devil's Paw (Imp, #4))
The business of procuring the necessities of life has been shifted from the wood lot, the garden, the kitchen and the family to the factory and the large-scale enterprise. In our case, we moved our center back to the land.
Helen Nearing (The Good Life: Helen and Scott Nearing's Sixty Years of Self-Sufficient Living) occurred to me, not for the first time, what a remarkably small world Britain is. That is its glory, you see--that it manages at once to be intimate and small scale, and at the same time packed to bursting with incident and interest. I am constantly filled with admiration at this--at the way you can wander through a town like Oxford and in the space of a few hundred yards pass the home of Christopher Wren, the buildings where Halley found his comet and Boyle his first law, the track where Roger Bannister ran the first sub-four-minute mile, the meadow where Lewis Carroll strolled; or how you can stand on Snow's Hill at Windsor and see, in a single sweep, Windsor Castle, the playing fields of Eton, the churchyard where Gray wrote his "Elegy," the site where The Merry Wives of Windsor was performed. Can there anywhere on earth be, in such a modest span, a landscape more packed with centuries of busy, productive attainment?
Bill Bryson (Notes from a Small Island)
After the sureties of youth there sets in a period of intense and intolerable complexity. With the soda-jerker this period is so short as to be almost negligible. Men higher in the scale hold out longer in the attempt to preserve the ultimate niceties of relationship, to retain "impractical" ideas of integrity. But by the late twenties the business has grown too intricate, and what has hitherto been imminent and confusing has become gradually remote and dim. Routine comes down like twilight on a harsh landscape, softening it until it is tolerable. The complexity is too subtle, too varied; the values are changing utterly with each lesion of vitality; it has begun to appear that we can learn nothing from the past with which to face the future - so we cease to be impulsive, convincible men, interested in what is ethically true by fine margins, we substitute rules of conduct for rules of integrity, we value safety above romance, we become, quite unconsciously, pragmatic. It is left to the few to be persistently concerned with the nuances of relationships - and even this few only in certain hours especially set aside for the task.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (The Beautiful and Damned)
At first they’d thought the guillotine would be a sweet, clean business, but when you have twenty, perhaps thirty heads to take off in a day, there are problems of scale.
Hilary Mantel (A Place of Greater Safety)
What you want is a business that is positioned to scale to the point where you are managing people and constantly improving internal systems – not working to serve customers.
Mike Michalowicz (The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur)
Sadly but, perhaps, not altogether unexpectedly this society has had very limited success in achieving what is supposed to be the justification for its existence-- the greatest amount of happiness for the greatest possible number of people. In so far as its citizens are saved from the major anxieties and responsibilities which normally surround the business of being a man, they transfer what appears to be an unvarying human capacity for worry to the most trivial things, making mountains out of molehills on a vast scale; and they have 'nervous breakdowns' over problems which men and women living under sterner conditions would hardly find time to notice.
Charles Le Gai Eaton (King of the Castle: Choice and Responsibility in the Modern World)
This is a world in which those living on the edges of society, at the very bottom of the social scale, are being brought to the limits of what they can endure. When they reach this point, their shadows rise up, startling sudden, and start calling them away from their lives. It is a world in which, however they choose to deal with these shadows,which seem to offer death an invitation, they find themselves only just barely able to go on with the business of living.
Hwang Jungeun (One Hundred Shadows)
You keep pressing me,” he said, “to say that the attacks start with this symptom or that symptom, this phenomenon or that phenomenon, but this is not the way I experience them. It doesn’t start with one symptom, it starts as a whole. You feel the whole thing, quite tiny at first, right from the start.… It’s like glimpsing a point, a familiar point, on the horizon, and gradually getting nearer, seeing it get larger and larger; or glimpsing your destination from far off, in a plane, having it get clearer and clearer as you descend through the clouds.” “The migraine looms,” he added, “but it’s just a change of scale—everything is already there from the start.” This business of “looming,” of huge changes of
Oliver Sacks (Migraine)
And I am proud, but mostly, I’m angry. I’m angry, because when I look around, I’m still alone. I’m still the only black woman in the room. And when I look at what I’ve fought so hard to accomplish next to those who will never know that struggle I wonder, “How many were left behind?” I think about my first-grade class and wonder how many black and brown kids weren’t identified as “talented” because their parents were too busy trying to pay bills to pester the school the way my mom did. Surely there were more than two, me and the brown boy who sat next to me in the hall each day. I think about my brother and wonder how many black boys were similarly labeled as “trouble” and were unable to claw out of the dark abyss that my brother had spent so many years in. I think about the boys and girls playing at recess who were dragged to the principal’s office because their dark skin made their play look like fight. I think about my friend who became disillusioned with a budding teaching career, when she worked at the alternative school and found that it was almost entirely populated with black and brown kids who had been sent away from the general school population for minor infractions. From there would only be expulsions or juvenile detention. I think about every black and brown person, every queer person, every disabled person, who could be in the room with me, but isn’t, and I’m not proud. I’m heartbroken. We should not have a society where the value of marginalized people is determined by how well they can scale often impossible obstacles that others will never know. I have been exceptional, and I shouldn’t have to be exceptional to be just barely getting by. But we live in a society where if you are a person of color, a disabled person, a single mother, or an LGBT person you have to be exceptional. And if you are exceptional by the standards put forth by white supremacist patriarchy, and you are lucky, you will most likely just barely get by. There’s nothing inspirational about that.
Ijeoma Oluo (So You Want to Talk About Race)
Take all those things that would propose to be important, and weigh them upon the scale of your soul. Asking how much each thing actually impacts, not just the moment, but the years ahead. Discard all that is trivial masquerading as significant, and reserve your days for those things that truly matter.
L.M. Browning (Seasons of Contemplation: A Book of Midnight Meditations)
Bernard was to remember this moment for the rest of his life. As they drank from their water bottles he was struck by the recently concluded war not as a historical, geopolitical fact but as a multiplicity, a near-infinity of private sorrows, as a boundless grief minutely subdivided without diminishment among individuals who covered the continent like dust, like spores whose separate identities would remain unknown, and whose totality showed more sadness than anyone could ever begin to comprehend; a weight borne in silence by hundreds of thousands, millions, like the woman in black for a husband and two brothers, each grief a particular, intricate, keening love story that might have been otherwise. It seemed as though he had never thought about the war before, not about its cost. He had been so busy with the details of his work, of doing it well, and his widest view had been of war aims, of winning, of statistical deaths, statistical destruction, and of post-war reconstruction. For the first time he sensed the scale of the catastrophe in terms of feeling; all those unique and solitary deaths, all that consequent sorrow, unique and solitary too, which had no place in conferences, headlines, history, and which had quietly retired to houses, kitchens, unshared beds, and anguished memories. This came upon Bernard by a pine tree in the Languedoc in 1946 not as an observation he could share with June but as a deep apprehension, a recognition of a truth that dismayed him into silence and, later, a question: what possible good could come of a Europe covered in this dust, these spores, when forgetting would be inhuman and dangerous, and remembering a constant torture?
Ian McEwan (Black Dogs)
As Paul Saffo, a forecaster of large-scale change at Discern Analytics, observes wisely, 'Change is never linear. Our expectations are linear, but new technologies come in S curves, so we routinely overestimate short-term change and underestimate long-term change.' Never mistake a clear view for a short distance, he adds.
Vijay V. Vaitheeswaran (Need, Speed, and Greed: How the New Rules of Innovation Can Transform Businesses, Propel Nations to Greatness, and Tame the World's Most Wicked Problems)
Traditional corporations, particularly large-scale service and manufacturing businesses are organized for efficiency. Or consistency. But not joy. Joy comes from surprise and connection and humanity and transparency and new...If you fear special requests, if you staff with cogs, if you have to put it all in a manual, then the chances of amazing someone are really quite low. These organizations have people who will try to patch problems over after the fact, instead of motivated people eager to delight on the spot. The alternative, it seems, is to organize for joy. These are the companies that give their people the freedom (and the expectation) that they will create, connect and surprise. These are the organizations that embrace someone who make a difference, as opposed to searching the employee handbook for a rule that was violated.
Seth Godin (Poke the Box)
Providing value in Product form is valuable because Products can be Duplicated . This book was only written once, but individual copies can be printed and delivered millions of times to readers all around the world. As a result, products tend to Scale better than other forms of value, since they can be Duplicated and/or Multiplied (all discussed later).
Josh Kaufman (The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business)
And I hope that all my readers are acquainted with an old English Cathedral town or I fear the significance of Mr Norrell’s chusing that particular place will be lost upon them. They must understand that in an old Cathedral town the great old church is not one building among many; it is the building - different from all others in scale, beauty, and solemnity. Even in modern times when an old Cathedral town may have provided itself with all the elegant appurtenances of civic buildings, assembly and meeting rooms (and York was well-stocked with these) the Cathedral rises above them - a witness to the devotion of our forefathers. It is as if the town contains within itself something larger than itself. When going about ones business in the muddle of narrow streets one is sure to lose sight of the Cathedral, but then the town will open out and suddenly it is there, many times taller and many times larger than any other building, and one realizes that one has reached the heart of the town and that all streets and lanes have in some way led here, to a place of mysteries much deeper than any Mr Norrell knew of. Such were Mr Segundus’s thoughts as he entered the Close and stood before the great brooding blue shadow of the Cathedral’s west face.
Susanna Clarke (Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell)
Companies that pivot—that is, switch business models or products—while on the upswing tend to perform much better than those that stay on a single course. The 2011 Startup Genome Report of new technology companies states that, “Startups that pivot once or twice raise 2.5x more money, have 3.6x better user growth, and are 52% less likely to scale prematurely.
Shane Snow (Smartcuts: How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success)
Pursuing a rapid experiment and finding out you were wrong and changing directions isn’t failure. That is the road to success.
Nathan Furr (Nail It then Scale It: The Entrepreneur's Guide to Creating and Managing Breakthrough Innovation: The lean startup book to help entrepreneurs launch a high-growth business)
The key to human-centric digital transformation is knowing your business purpose so you can fulfill it more meaningfully at scale.
Kate O'Neill (Tech Humanist: How You Can Make Technology Better for Business and Better for Humans)
Remember, the goal of customer discovery is to refine a business model enough to test it on a larger scale in the next step, customer validation. So
Steve Blank (The Startup Owner's Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company)
As the cat said to Alice, ‘if you don’t know where you are going – all roads will take you there.
Martin Norbury (I Don't Work Fridays - Proven strategies to scale your business and not be a slave to it)
all design decisions should ensure the repeatability and sustainability of the core interaction that the platform enables.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
Goals without routines are wishes; routines without goals are aimless. The most successful business leaders have a clear vision and the disciplines (routines) to make it a reality.
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
Large-scale change is grounded in small steps toward a big idea
Stewart Friedman
Digitalization implies the full-scale changes in the way business is conducted so that it’s a multi-dimensional planning and orchestration.
Pearl Zhu (Digital Capability: Building Lego Like Capability Into Business Competency)
But for those that have not already attained mastery, structure and doctrine are needed because formlessness is useless to the beginner.
Gereon Hermkes (Scaling Done Right: How to Achieve Business Agility with [email protected] and Make the Competition Irrelevant)
No one funds a mere idea, especially if you are looking at venture capital. Funding is made to something that has proven a small part of a business model or proven a business model on a small scale.
Rudrajeet Desai (Breaking Out and Making Big: A No-Nonsense Book on New Age Start-Ups andEntrepreneurship)
You’ve probably heard about “first mover advantage”: if you’re the first entrant into a market, you can capture significant market share while competitors scramble to get started. But moving first is a tactic, not a goal. What really matters is generating cash flows in the future, so being the first mover doesn’t do you any good if someone else comes along and unseats you. It’s much better to be the last mover—that is, to make the last great development in a specific market and enjoy years or even decades of monopoly profits. The way to do that is to dominate a small niche and scale up from there, toward your ambitious long-term vision. In this one particular at least, business is like chess. Grandmaster José Raúl Capablanca put it well: to succeed, “you must study the endgame before everything else.
Peter Thiel (Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future)
A life coach? What does that mean? It doesn’t mean anything, does it? So they ‘coach’ people on how to live their lives? Why don’t they mind their own fucking business? They only call themselves life coaches because they can’t get a job. Because they’re unemployable. And they haven’t got any qualifications either. Do you think they went to Uni to study life coaching? Of course they didn’t. And who do they coach anyway? Do people go to them and ask to be coached on their lives? I hardly think so. They’d see a psychiatrist or a psychologist or someone with a bit of clout, wouldn’t they? They don’t coach anybody at all, do they? They’ve made it all up. So, there you have it. At the bottom end of the otherworldly, metaphysical scale, even less developed spiritually than Orphans or Horace, are Life Coaches.
Karl Wiggins (Wrong Planet - Searching for your Tribe)
All communities require sustainable ways to make a living. Economic sustainability involves: Small-scale business, crafts, and services that create maximum diversity of economic base and a rich ecology of financial, income and job opportunities. Possibilities include cottage industries, local services, education, printing and publishing, trading, small-scale manufacturing, consulting, shops and cooperatives.
Christine Connelly (Sustainable Communities: Lessons from Aspiring Eco-Villages)
Thou shalt not invest in a needless business. Thou shalt not trade time for money. Thou shalt not operate on a limited scale. Thou shalt not relinquish control. Thou shalt not let a business startup be an event over process.
M.J. DeMarco
Look at the evolution of the price of a kilogram of the drug, as it makes its way from the Andes to Los Angeles. To make that much cocaine, one needs somewhere in the neighborhood of 350 kilograms of dried coca leaves. Based on price data from Colombia obtained by Gallego and Rico, that would cost about $385. Once this is converted into a kilo of cocaine, it can sell in Colombia for $800. According to figures pulled together by Beau Kilmer and Peter Reuter at the RAND Corporation, an American think tank, that same kilo is worth $2,200 by the time it is exported from Colombia, and it has climbed to $14,500 by the time it is imported to the United States. After being transferred to a midlevel dealer, its price climbs to $19,500. Finally, it is sold by street-level dealers for $78,000.10 Even these soaring figures do not quite get across the scale of the markups involved in the cocaine business. At each of these stages, the drug is diluted, as traffickers and dealers “cut” the drug with other substances, to make it go further. Take this into account, and the price of a pure kilogram of cocaine at the retail end is in fact about $122,000.
Tom Wainwright (Narconomics: How to Run a Drug Cartel)
reality, a businesslike approach to charity has been dominant within large-scale organized philanthropy for at least 120 years, ever since industrialists such as Carnegie and Rockefeller vowed to apply business techniques to the realm of philanthropy.
Linsey McGoey (No Such Thing as a Free Gift: The Gates Foundation and the Price of Philanthropy)
When I was born,” Niall Lynch told his middle son, “God broke the mold so hard the ground shook.” This was already a lie, because if God truly had broken the mold for Niall, He’d made Himself a knockoff twenty years later to craft Ronan and his two brothers, Declan and Matthew. The three brothers were nothing if not handsome copies of their father, although each flattered a different side of Niall. Declan had the same way of taking a room and shaking its hand. Matthew’s curls were netted with Niall’s charm and humor. And Ronan was everything that was left: molten eyes and a smile made for war. There was little to nothing of their mother in any of them. “It was a proper earthquake,” Niall clarified, as if anyone had asked him — and knowing Niall, they probably had. “Four point one on the Richter scale. Anything under four would’ve just cracked the mold, not broken it.” Back then, Ronan was not in the business of believing, but that was all right, because his father wanted adoration, not trust. “And you, Ronan,” Niall said. He always said Ronan differently from other words. As if he had meant to say another word entirely — something like knife or poison or revenge — and then swapped it out for Ronan’s name at the last moment. “When you were born, the rivers dried up and the cattle in Rockingham County wept blood.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
choose one segment with which you establish a “beachhead on the shores” of the early majority. Attempting to scale a business when forced to customize products, tailor marketing activities and execute sales processes for multiple segments is a difficult proposition. While
Brant Cooper (The Entrepreneur's Guide to Customer Development: A cheat sheet to The Four Steps to the Epiphany)
Aim at performance, and low cost will follow. Aim at low cost, and you will not achieve sufficient performance to have an enduring business. After a sufficient system is devised, demand will foster economies of scale and learning curves that bring the price down over time.
George Gilder (Life After Google: The Fall of Big Data and the Rise of the Blockchain Economy)
But psychology is passing into a less simple phase. Within a few years what one may call a microscopic psychology has arisen in Germany, carried on by experimental methods, asking of course every moment for introspective data, but eliminating their uncertainty by operating on a large scale and taking statistical means. This method taxes patience to the utmost, and could hardly have arisen in a country whose natives could be bored. Such Germans as Weber, Fechner, Vierordt, and Wundt obviously cannot ; and their success has brought into the field an array of younger experimental psychologists, bent on studying the elements of the mental life, dissecting them out from the gross results in which they are embedded, and as far as possible reducing them to quantitative scales. The simple and open method of attack having done what it can, the method of patience, starving out, and harassing to death is tried ; the Mind must submit to a regular siege, in which minute advantages gained night and day by the forces that hem her in must sum themselves up at last into her overthrow. There is little of the grand style about these new prism, pendulum, and chronograph-philosophers. They mean business, not chivalry. What generous divination, and that superiority in virtue which was thought by Cicero to give a man the best insight into nature, have failed to do, their spying and scraping, their deadly tenacity and almost diabolic cunning, will doubtless some day bring about. No general description of the methods of experimental psychology would be instructive to one unfamiliar with the instances of their application, so we will waste no words upon the attempt.
William James (The Principles of Psychology: Volume 1)
The the street was quiet again. Country quiet. That's partly what took city natives like the Whitlams by surprise, Falk thought: the quiet. He could understand them seeking out the idyllic country lifestyle, a lot of people did. The idea had an enticing, wholesome glow when it was weighed out from the back of a traffic jam, or while crammed into a gardenless apartment. They all had the same visions of breathing fresh clean air and knowing their neighbors. The kids would eat home-grown veggies and learn the value of an honest day's work. On arrival, as the empty moving truck disappeared form sight, they looked around and were always taken aback by the crushing vastness of the open land. The space was the thing that hit them first. There was so much of it. There was enough to drown in. To look out and see not another soul between you and the horizon could be a strange and disturbing sight. Soon, they discovered that the veggies didn't grow as willingly as they had in the city window box. That every single green shoot had to be coaxed and prized from the reluctant soil, and the neighbors were too busy doing the same on an industrial scale to muster much cheer in their greetings. There was no daily bumper-to-bumper commute, but there was also nowhere much to drive to. Falk didn't blame the Whitlams, he'd seen it many times before when he was a kid. The arrivals looked around at the barrenness and the scale and the sheer bloody hardness of the land, and before long their faces all said exactly the same thing. "I didn't know it was like this." He turned away, remembering how the rawness of local life had seeped into the kids' paintings at the school. Sad faces and brown landscapes.
Jane Harper (The Dry (Aaron Falk, #1))
When out of the ordinary reports and studies come from individuals who seem to have their feet on the ground, more thoughtful people pay closer attention. To be open-minded means just that; to compare worldviews and philosophies without pre-judgment, to entertain singular and paradox phenomena, to efficaciously sift the gems of wisdom from common opinions in sacred texts and inspired writings, or even in newspapers or social media. What is true, and how do we know? - things to ponder. This all takes time and thought. The scales of discretion must weigh, over time, between hopeful thinking and prophecy, flights of fancy and common sense, a lucky guess and inspired revelation, and chance and destiny. This could keep one busy for a lifetime. As far as I'm concerned, this is the most important path for those who want to understand What This Is All About.
Stephen Poplin (Inner Journeys, Cosmic Sojourns: Life transforming stories, adventures and messages from a spiritual hypnotherapist's casebook)
First, how could I protect my team from the incessant demands of the business and achieve what the Agile community now refers to as a “sustainable pace”? And second, how could I successfully scale adoption of an Agile approach across an enterprise and overcome the inevitable resistance to change?
David J. Anderson (Kanban)
The Entrepreneurial Perspective adopts a wider, more expansive scale. It views the business as a network of seamlessly integrated components, each contributing to some larger pattern that comes together in such a way as to produce a specifically planned result, a systematic way of doing business.
Michael E. Gerber (The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It)
Perhaps a world where honest expression is more focal. More central. Less avoided by friends and families. Less pervaded by cheap, cash grab Hollywood projects. Less watered down and commodified by businesses that relentlessly pander to market themselves into scale. Could such a world exist? Who knows?
Robert Pantano (Notes from the End of Everything)
The conclusion of Dowell's narrative offers not a resolution, so much as a plangent confirmation of complexities. While Ford would certainly have agreed with Dowell that it is a novelist's business to make a reader 'see things clearly', his interest in clarity had little to do with simplicity. There is no 'getting to the bottom of things', no triumphant answers to the epistemological muddle offered in this beautiful, bleak story - only a finer appreciation of that confusion. We may remove the scales from our eyes, Ford suggests, but only the better to appreciate the glass through which we see darkly.
Zoë Heller (The Good Soldier)
The Social Security system is a $75 trillion problem. Again, just to give you a sense of scale: Let’s say you started a business the day Jesus Christ was born. Let’s say you weren’t exactly a good businessman, and your business lost a million dollars every day—right through yesterday. How much longer would it take before your losses added up to $1 trillion? About 718 more years should do it, give or take a few months. And that’s just one trillion. Multiply that by seventy-five, and you have the size of the Social Security problem. That’s the amount it would take to fully fund Social Security for all current workers and retirees. To realize the magnitude of the problem we’re facing, consider the fact that the total of all wealth in America is about $60 trillion. We could confiscate every item of value from every American household, including cash and investments, and apply the value to the problem—and still not have enough money to fund Social Security fully.
Neal Boortz (FairTax: The Truth: Answering the Critics)
In a lot of ways it is easier to do things on a large scale. It is easier to build a skyscraper in Manhattan than it is to buy a bungalow in the Bronx. For one thing, it takes just as much time to close a big deal as it does to close a small deal. You will endure as much stress and aggravation; you will have all the same headaches and problems. It is easier to finance a big deal. Bankers would much rather lend money for a big project than for a small one. They are more comfortable investing money in a big prestigious building than they are a rundown house in a bad section of town. If you succeed with the big project, you stand to gain a lot more money.
Donald J. Trump (Think BIG and Kick Ass in Business and Life)
20th Century 21st Century Scale and Scope Speed and Fluidity Predictability Agility Rigid Organization Boundaries Fluid Organization Boundaries Command and Control Creative Empowerment Reactive and Risk Averse Intrapreneur Strategic Intent Profit and Purpose Competitive Advantage Comparative Advantage Data and Analytics Synthesizing Big Data
Idris Mootee (Design Thinking for Strategic Innovation: What They Can't Teach You at Business or Design School)
You don’t get rewarded for creating great technology, not anymore,” says a friend of mine who has worked in tech since the 1980s, a former investment banker who now advises start-ups. “It’s all about the business model. The market pays you to have a company that scales quickly. It’s all about getting big fast. Don’t be profitable, just get big.
Dan Lyons (Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble)
Since tech became a consumer phenomenon, thousands of nontech people have come up with great ideas that use technology. But if their startups outsource their engineering, they almost always fail. Why? It turns out that it’s easy to build an app or a website that meets the specification of some initial idea, but far more difficult to build something that will scale, evolve, handle edge cases gracefully, etc. A great engineer will only invest the time and effort to do all those things, to build a product that will grow with the company, if she has ownership in the company—literally as well as figuratively. Bob Noyce understood that, created the culture to support it, and changed the world.
Ben Horowitz (What You Do Is Who You Are: How to Create Your Business Culture)
But if we look a little deeper we shall find there is a pathetic, one might almost say a tragic, side to the picture. A shy man means a lonely man—a man cut off from all companionship, all sociability. He moves about the world, but does not mix with it. Between him and his fellow-men there runs ever an impassable barrier—a strong, invisible wall that, trying in vain to scale, he but bruises himself against. He sees the pleasant faces and hears the pleasant voices on the other side, but he cannot stretch his hand across to grasp another hand. He stands watching the merry groups, and he longs to speak and to claim kindred with them. But they pass him by, chatting gayly to one another, and he cannot stay them. He tries to reach them, but his prison walls move with him and hem him in on every side. In the busy street, in the crowded room, in the grind of work, in the whirl of pleasure, amid the many or amid the few—wherever men congregate together, wherever the music of human speech is heard and human thought is flashed from human eyes, there, shunned and solitary, the shy man, like a leper, stands apart. His soul is full of love and longing, but the world knows it not. The iron mask of shyness is riveted before his face, and the man beneath is never seen. Genial words and hearty greetings are ever rising to his lips, but they die away in unheard whispers behind the steel clamps. His heart aches for the weary brother, but his sympathy is dumb. Contempt and indignation against wrong choke up his throat, and finding no safety-valve whence in passionate utterance they may burst forth, they only turn in again and harm him. All the hate and scorn and love of a deep nature such as the shy man is ever cursed by fester and corrupt within, instead of spending themselves abroad, and sour him into a misanthrope and cynic.
Jerome K. Jerome (Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow)
Cixi’s lack of formal education was more than made up for by her intuitive intelligence, which she liked to use from her earliest years. In 1843, when she was seven, the empire had just finished its first war with the West, the Opium War, which had been started by Britain in reaction to Beijing clamping down on the illegal opium trade conducted by British merchants. China was defeated and had to pay a hefty indemnity. Desperate for funds, Emperor Daoguang (father of Cixi’s future husband) held back the traditional presents for his sons’ brides – gold necklaces with corals and pearls – and vetoed elaborate banquets for their weddings. New Year and birthday celebrations were scaled down, even cancelled, and minor royal concubines had to subsidise their reduced allowances by selling their embroidery on the market through eunuchs. The emperor himself even went on surprise raids of his concubines’ wardrobes, to check whether they were hiding extravagant clothes against his orders. As part of a determined drive to stamp out theft by officials, an investigation was conducted of the state coffer, which revealed that more “than nine million taels of silver had gone missing. Furious, the emperor ordered all the senior keepers and inspectors of the silver reserve for the previous forty-four years to pay fines to make up the loss – whether or not they were guilty. Cixi’s great-grandfather had served as one of the keepers and his share of the fine amounted to 43,200 taels – a colossal sum, next to which his official salary had been a pittance. As he had died a long time ago, his son, Cixi’s grandfather, was obliged to pay half the sum, even though he worked in the Ministry of Punishments and had nothing to do with the state coffer. After three years of futile struggle to raise money, he only managed to hand over 1,800 taels, and an edict signed by the emperor confined him to prison, only to be released if and when his son, Cixi’s father, delivered the balance. The life of the family was turned upside down. Cixi, then eleven years old, had to take in sewing jobs to earn extra money – which she would remember all her life and would later talk about to her ladies-in-waiting in the court. “As she was the eldest of two daughters and three sons, her father discussed the matter with her, and she rose to the occasion. Her ideas were carefully considered and practical: what possessions to sell, what valuables to pawn, whom to turn to for loans and how to approach them. Finally, the family raised 60 per cent of the sum, enough to get her grandfather out of prison. The young Cixi’s contribution to solving the crisis became a family legend, and her father paid her the ultimate compliment: ‘This daughter of mine is really more like a son!’ Treated like a son, Cixi was able to talk to her father about things that were normally closed areas for women. Inevitably their conversations touched on official business and state affairs, which helped form Cixi’s lifelong interest. Being consulted and having her views acted on, she acquired self-confidence and never accepted the com“common assumption that women’s brains were inferior to men’s. The crisis also helped shape her future method of rule. Having tasted the bitterness of arbitrary punishment, she would make an effort to be fair to her officials.
Jung Chang (Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China)
Delegate judiciously: This is another incredibly important lesson for leading. A finance billionaire once told me that to scale a business you have to know how to delegate: “A great employee will do something 80 percent the same way you would do it. The last 20 percent is their personal take on the deliverable. There’s a 50 percent chance that your way would be the right way and a 50 percent chance that their way is better. They’re not going to do it 100 percent the same way you would, but you have to hope that you hire people who will do things better than you would, who will try things that are smartly conceived. You have to get comfortable with people doing things 80 percent the way you would have done them in order to scale a business.” The ability to delegate smartly is critical.
Ivanka Trump (Women Who Work: Rewriting the Rules for Success)
What entrepreneurs quickly learn is that they need to price their product at least 2.3 times its cost to allow for at least one 50 percent margin for them and another 50 percent margin for their retailers (1.5 × 1.5 = 2.25). That first 50 percent margin for the entrepreneur is really mostly covering the hidden costs of doing business at a scale that they hadn’t thought of when they first started,
Chris Anderson (Makers: The New Industrial Revolution)
ECONOMIC RULES OF THE DYSFUNCTIONAL MEDICAL MARKET More treatment is always better. Default to the most expensive option. A lifetime of treatment is preferable to a cure. Amenities and marketing matter more than good care. As technologies age, prices can rise rather than fall. There is no free choice. Patients are stuck. And they’re stuck buying American. More competitors vying for business doesn’t mean better prices; it can drive prices up, not down. Economies of scale don’t translate to lower prices. With their market power, big providers can simply demand more. There is no such thing as a fixed price for a procedure or test. And the uninsured pay the highest prices of all. There are no standards for billing. There’s money to be made in billing for anything and everything. Prices will rise to whatever the market will bear.
Elisabeth Rosenthal (An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back)
Books. Sure. But mostly I build interest. Attention. Allure. A book is just packaging, just a container. This is what I’ve realized. The mistake people in the book business make is they think their job is to build good containers. Saying you’re in the book business is like a winemaker saying he’s in the bottle business. What we’re actually building is interest. A book is simply one shape that interest can take when we scale and leverage it.
Nathan Hill (The Nix)
While it is not unheard of, most sane people would be embarrassed to take an introductory martial arts class and then develop their own “martial art” from it and teach it to unsuspecting students, exposing them to the danger of miscalculating their effectiveness at defending themselves in a critical situation. Yet agile practitioners do this every day ― some do not even feel any sense of shame for calling themselves “agile coaches” after a year of practical experience.
Gereon Hermkes (Scaling Done Right: How to Achieve Business Agility with [email protected] and Make the Competition Irrelevant)
My stomach lurched; it was the day of the rehearsal. It was the day I’d see not just my friends and family who, I was certain, would love me no matter what grotesque skin condition I’d contracted since the last time we saw one another, but also many, many people I’d never met before--ranching neighbors, cousins, business associates, and college friends of Marlboro Man’s. I wasn’t thrilled at the possibility that their first impression of me might be something that involved scales.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
Finally, when young people who “want to help mankind” come to me asking, “What should I do? I want to reduce poverty, save the world,” and similar noble aspirations at the macro-level, my suggestion is: 1) Never engage in virtue signaling; 2) Never engage in rent-seeking; 3) You must start a business. Put yourself on the line, start a business. Yes, take risk, and if you get rich (which is optional), spend your money generously on others. We need people to take (bounded) risks. The entire idea is to move the descendants of Homo sapiens away from the macro, away from abstract universal aims, away from the kind of social engineering that brings tail risks to society. Doing business will always help (because it brings about economic activity without large-scale risky changes in the economy); institutions (like the aid industry) may help, but they are equally likely to harm (I am being optimistic; I am certain that except for a few most do end up harming). Courage (risk taking) is the highest virtue. We need entrepreneurs.
Nassim Nicholas Taleb (Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life)
Each of the eight scales represents one key area that managers must be aware of, showing how cultures vary along a spectrum from one extreme to its opposite. The eight scales are:        •  Communicating: low-context vs. high-context        •  Evaluating: direct negative feedback vs. indirect negative feedback        •  Persuading: principles-first vs. applications-first        •  Leading: egalitarian vs. hierarchical        •  Deciding: consensual vs. top-down        •  Trusting: task-based vs. relationship-based        •  Disagreeing: confrontational vs. avoids confrontation        •  Scheduling: linear-time vs. flexible-time
Erin Meyer (The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business)
We want the ability to re-engineer our bodies and minds in order, above all, to escape old age, death and misery, but once we have it, who knows what else we might do with such ability? So we may well think of the new human agenda as consisting really of only one project (with many branches): attaining divinity. If this sounds unscientific or downright eccentric, it is because people often misunderstand the meaning of divinity. Divinity isn’t a vague metaphysical quality. And it isn’t the same as omnipotence. When speaking of upgrading humans into gods, think more in terms of Greek gods or Hindu devas rather than the omnipotent biblical sky father. Our descendants would still have their foibles, kinks and limitations, just as Zeus and Indra had theirs. But they could love, hate, create and destroy on a much grander scale than us. Throughout history most gods were believed to enjoy not omnipotence but rather specific super-abilities such as the ability to design and create living beings; to transform their own bodies; to control the environment and the weather; to read minds and to communicate at a distance; to travel at very high speeds; and of course to escape death and live indefinitely. Humans are in the business of acquiring all these abilities, and then some.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
This may be a bit controversial, but I’m not so sure compensation scales are a “moral” issue, at least once you exceed the very bottom of the range. If I create a business model that works only if I pay animators half the going rate in Hollywood, and we find it impossible to hire competent animators at that rate, I know my business model is invalid. It won’t work. On the other hand, if enough animators turn up willing to work for that pay scale, the business model may be valid. Turnover will undoubtedly be on the high side, as many of the better animators will move on to higher-paying work, but if we can build turnover into our business model, the business still works.
Phil Vischer (Me, Myself, and Bob: A True Story About Dreams, God, and Talking Vegetables)
In Webvan’s case premature scaling was an integral part of the company culture and the prevailing venture capital “get big fast” mantra. Webvan spent $18 million to develop proprietary software and $40 million to set up its first automated warehouse before it had shipped a single item. Premature scaling had dire consequences since Webvan’s spending was on a scale that ensures it will be taught in business school case studies for years to come. As customer behavior continued to differ from the predictions in Webvan’s business plan, the company slowly realized it had overbuilt and over-designed. The business model made sense only at the high volumes predicted on the spreadsheet.
Steve Blank (The Four Steps to the Epiphany: Successful Strategies for Startups That Win)
The state, too, is in decline, though perhaps less obviously than the idea of the national community. The reason is simply that the global community of capitalists will not let the Western state reverse its post-1970s policies of retrenchment, which is the only way for it to adequately address all the crises that are currently ripping society apart. If any state—unimaginably—made truly substantive moves to restore and expand programs of social welfare, or to vastly expand and improve public education, or to initiate programs like Roosevelt’s Works Progress Administration or Tennessee Valley Authority (but on a necessarily broader scale than in the 1930s), or to restore organized labor to its power in the 1960s and thereby raise effective demand, or to promulgate any other such anti-capitalist measure, investors would flee it and its sources of funds would dry up. It couldn’t carry out such policies anyway, given the massive resistance they would provoke among all sectors and levels of the business community. Fiscal austerity is, on the whole, good for profits (in the short term), since it squeezes the population and diverts money to the ruling class. In large part because of capital’s high mobility and consequent wealth and power over both states and populations, the West’s contemporary political paradigm of austerity and government retrenchment is effectively irreversible for the foreseeable future.
Chris Wright (Worker Cooperatives and Revolution: History and Possibilities in the United States)
I'm wondering how many times he can possibly use the word alliance in one sentence when Tiny Cooper cuts Mr. Fortson off by saying, "Hey, wait, Jane, you're straight?" And she nods without realign looking up and then mumbles, "I mean, I think so, anyway." "You should date Grayson," Tiny says. "He thinks you're super cute." If i were stand on a scale fully dressed, sopping wet, holding ten-pound dumbbells in each hand and balancing a stack of hardcover books on my head, I'd weigh about 180 pounds, which is approximately equal to the weight of Tiny Cooper's left tricep. But in this moment, I could beat the holy living shit out of Tiny Cooper. And I would, I swear to God, except I'm too busy trying to disappear.
John Green (Will Grayson, Will Grayson)
Etatism by no means aims at the formal transformation of all ownership of the means of production into State ownership by a complete overthrow of the established legal system. Only the biggest industrial, mining, and transport enterprises are to be nationalized; in agriculture, and in medium- and small-scale industry, private property is nominally to continue. Nevertheless, all enterprises are to become State undertakings in fact. Owners are to be left the title and dignity of ownership, it is true, and to be given a right to the receipt of a 'reasonable' income, 'in accordance with their position'; but, in fact, every business is to be changed into a government office and every livelihood into an official profession.
Ludwig von Mises (The Theory of Money and Credit)
asked him to imagine the following: If I selected an employee of the company at random, from any level or function or region, and that employee had an absolutely brilliant idea that would unlock a dramatic new source of growth for the company, how would he or she get it implemented? Does the company have an automatic process for testing a new idea, to see if it is actually any good? And does the company have the management tools necessary to scale this idea up to maximum impact, even if it doesn’t align with any of the company’s current lines of business? That’s what a modern company does: harnesses the creativity and talent of every single one of its employees. Jeff answered me directly: “That’s what your next book should be about.
Eric Ries (The Startup Way: Making Entrepreneurship a Fundamental Discipline of Every Enterprise)
What Ethereum Is Good For Ethereum is suited to building economic systems in pure software. In other words, it’s software for business logic, wherein people (users) can move money (data representing value) around with the speed and scale that we normally get with data.12 Not the three- to seven-day floating period you get with the commercial banking system. Or the fees associated with vendors such as Visa, MasterCard, and PayPal. With a simple Ethereum application, for example, it is fairly trivial to pay hundreds of thousands of people, in hundreds of countries, small amounts every few minutes, whereas in the legacy banking system you would need an entire payroll department working overtime to constantly rebalance your account ledgers and deal with the cross-border issues.
Chris Dannen (Introducing Ethereum and Solidity: Foundations of Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Programming for Beginners)
Soon after World War II, a tired-looking woman entered a store and asked the owner for enough food to make a Christmas dinner for her children. When he inquired how much she could afford, she answered, “My husband was killed in the war. Truthfully, I have nothing to offer but a little prayer.” The man was not very sentimental, for a grocery store cannot be run like a breadline. So he said, “Write your prayer on a paper.” To his surprise she plucked a little folded note out of her pocket and handed it to him, saying, “I already did that.” As the grocer took the paper, an idea struck him. Without even reading the prayer, he put it on the weight side of his old-fashioned scales, saying, “We shall see how much food this is worth.” To his surprise, the scale would not go down when he put a loaf of bread on the other side. To his even greater astonishment, it would not balance when he added many more items. Finally he blurted out, “Well, that’s all the scales will hold anyway. Here’s a bag. You’ll have to put them in yourself. I’m busy.” With a tearful “thank you,” the lady went happily on her way. The grocer later found that the mechanism of the scales was out of order, but as the years passed, he often wondered if that really was the answer to what had occurred. Why did the woman have the prayer already written to satisfy his unpremeditated demands? Why did she come at exactly the time the mechanism was broken? Frequently he looked at that slip of paper upon which the woman’s prayer was written, for amazingly enough, it read, “Please, dear Lord, give us this day our daily bread!” —Henry Bosch
Our Daily Bread Ministries (Prayer (Strength for the Soul))
American diplomats had been slow to understand the scope of the change being driven by Chinese migration to Africa. The phenomenon had been flagged in State Department cables as early as 2005, with diplomats identifying the budding, large-scale movement of people from China to Africa as part of a campaign to expand Beijing’s political influence and simultaneously advance China’s business interests and overall clout. These early, classified warnings also spoke of the spread, via emigration, of Chinese organized crime, particularly in smuggling and human trafficking. For the most part, however, it seemed that American diplomats were still in search of the right voice, the right message. All too often, Washington struck a paternalistic tone that came across as: Listen up children, you must be careful about these tricky Chinese.
Howard W. French (China's Second Continent: How a Million Migrants Are Building a New Empire in Africa)
purposes,’ he insisted. In Suhrawardy’s view, the Muslim League government was not making non-Muslims, especially Hindus, feel safe within Pakistan and questioned the government’s claims to the contrary. ‘Why are the Hindus running away from Sindh [if] they were safe and sound, where they had established business on colossal scales and which they made their homes?’ he asked, pointing to the deep cultural ties of Sindhi Hindus to Sindh. According to Suhrawardy, the rhetoric of an Islamic state was responsible for causing insecurity among non-Muslims. ‘The Pakistan State, if it is to be maintained, must be maintained by the goodwill of Pakistanis of all people, Muslims or non-Muslims whom you consider to be your nationals,’ he stressed. The minorities could not depend ‘merely on the goodwill of the Muslims or on their authority or their strength’.48
Farahnaz Ispahani (Purifying the Land of the Pure: Pakistan's Religious Minorities)
Commerce is considered by classical economists to be a positive-sum game. The act of selling and buying always benefits both the seller and the buyer. It is unfortunate that popular culture has propagated the Marxist myth that one person gains in business at the expense of another, that capitalism is evil because it is a zero-sum game—somebody wins while someone else loses. When liberals make the argument that capitalism is the cause of all of our problems, they are either speaking out of abject ignorance or being totally disingenuous to protect their interests. We have not had true free-market capitalism in this country on any wide scale. Where we have had economic successes in this nation’s history, it has been those times when people have done something outside of the government’s involvement. Every time the federal government has been involved, it has created chaos, waste, and corruption.
Ziad K. Abdelnour (Economic Warfare: Secrets of Wealth Creation in the Age of Welfare Politics)
Peter Thiel and Ken Howery at Founders Fund, however, reached out to their friends behind the scenes at Friendster. They dug into why users were leaving the site. Like other users, Thiel and Howery knew that Friendster crashed often. They also knew that the team behind Friendster had received, and ignored, crucial advice on how to scale their site—how to transform a system built for a few thousand users into one that could support millions of users. They asked for and received a copy of Friendster’s data on user retention. They were stunned by how long users stayed with the site, despite the irritating crashes. They concluded that users weren’t leaving because social networks were weak business models, like clothing brands. They were leaving because of a software glitch. It was a False Fail. Thiel wrote Zuckerberg a check for $500,000. Eight years later, he sold most of his stake in Facebook for roughly a billion dollars.
Safi Bahcall (Loonshots: How to Nurture the Crazy Ideas That Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries)
Prince Arctic?” A silvery white dragon poked her head around the door, tapping three times lightly on the ice wall. Arctic couldn’t remember her name, which was the kind of faux pas his mother was always yelling at him about. He was a prince; it was his duty to have all the noble dragons memorized along with their ranks so he could treat them according to exactly where they fit in the hierarchy. It was stupid and frustrating and if his mother yelled at him about it one more time, he would seriously enchant something to freeze her mouth shut forever. Oooo. What a beautiful image. Queen Diamond with a chain of silver circles wound around her snout and frozen to her scales. He closed his eyes and imagined the blissful quiet. The dragon at his door shifted slightly, her claws making little scraping sounds to remind him she was there. What was she waiting for? Permission to give him a message? Or was she waiting for him to say her name — and if he didn’t, would she go scurrying back to the queen to report that he had failed again? Perhaps he should enchant a talisman to whisper in his ear whenever he needed to know something. Another tempting idea, but strictly against the rules of IceWing animus magic. Animus dragons are so rare; appreciate your gift and respect the limits the tribe has set. Never use your power frivolously. Never use it for yourself. This power is extremely dangerous. The tribe’s rules are there to protect you. Only the IceWings have figured out how to use animus magic safely. Save it all for your gifting ceremony. Use it only once in your life, to create a glorious gift to benefit the whole tribe, and then never again; that is the only way to be safe. Arctic shifted his shoulders, feeling stuck inside his scales. Rules, rules, and more rules: that was the IceWing way of life. Every direction he turned, every thought he had, was restricted by rules and limits and judgmental faces, particularly his mother’s. The rules about animus magic were just one more way to keep him trapped under her claws. “What is it?” he barked at the strange dragon. Annoyed face, try that. As if he were very busy and she’d interrupted him and that was why he was skipping the usual politic rituals. He was very busy, actually. The gifting ceremony was only three weeks away. It was bad enough that his mother had dragged him here, to their southernmost palace, near the ocean and the border with the Kingdom of Sand. She’d promised to leave him alone to work while she conducted whatever vital royal business required her presence. Everyone should know better than to disturb him right now. The messenger looked disappointed. Maybe he really was supposed to know who she was. “Your mother sent me to tell you that the NightWing delegation has arrived.” Aaarrrrgh. Not another boring diplomatic meeting.
Tui T. Sutherland (Darkstalker (Wings of Fire: Legends, #1))
Adelia began to get cross. Why was it women who were to blame for everything—everything, from the Fall of Man to these blasted hedges? “We are not in a labyrinth, my lord,” she said clearly. “Where are we, then?” “It’s a maze.” “Same difference.” Puffing at the horse: “Get back, you great cow.” “No, it isn’t. A labyrinth has only one path and you merely have to follow it. It’s a symbol of life or, rather, of life and death. Labyrinths twist and turn, but they have a beginning and an end, through darkness into light.” Softening, and hoping that he would, too, she added, “Like Ariadne’s. Rather beautiful, really.” “I don’t want mythology, mistress, beautiful or not, I want to get to that sodding tower. What’s a maze when it’s at home?” “It’s a trick. A trick to confuse. To amaze.” “And I suppose Mistress Clever-boots knows how to get us out?” “I do, actually.” God’s rib, he was sneering at her, sneering. She’d a mind to stay where she was and let him sweat. “Then in the name of Christ, do it.” “Stop bellowing at me,” she yelled at him. “You’re bellowing.” She saw his teeth grit in the pretense of a placatory smile; he always had good teeth. Still did. Between them, he said, “The Bishop of Saint Albans presents his compliments to Mistress Adelia and please to escort him out of this hag’s hole, for the love of God. How will you do it?” “My business.” Be damned if she’d tell him. Women were defenseless enough without revealing their secrets. “I’ll have to take the lead.” She stumped along in front, holding Walt’s mount’s reins in her right hand. In the other was her riding crop, which she trailed with apparent casualness so that it brushed against the hedge on her left. As she went, she chuntered to herself. Lord, how disregarded I am in this damned country. How disregarded all women are. ... Ironically, the lower down the social scale women were, the greater freedom they had; the wives of laborers and craftsmen could work alongside their men—even, sometimes, when they were widowed, take over their husband’s trade. Adelia trudged on. Hag’s hole. Grendel’s mother’s entrails. Why was this dreadful place feminine to the men lost in it? Because it was tunneled? Womb-like? Is this woman’s magic? The great womb? Is that why the Church hates me, hates all women? Because we are the source of all true power? Of life? She supposed that by leading them out of it, she was only confirming that a woman knew its secrets and they did not. Great God, she thought, it isn't a question of hatred. It’s fear. They are frightened of us. And Adelia laughed quietly, sending a suggestion of sound reverberating backward along the tunnel, as if a small pebble was skipping on water, making each man start when it passed him. “What in hell was that?” Walt called back stolidly, “Reckon someone’s laughing at us, master.” “Dear God.
Ariana Franklin (The Serpent's Tale (Mistress of the Art of Death, #2))
Hey, did you hear about Brad Miller?" he asked, already forgetting about the Lissie conversation. "He got his car taken away for getting another speeding ticket. Of course he tried to tell his parents that it was a setup." Violet laughed. "Yeah, because the police have nothing better to do than to plan a sting operation targeting eleventh-grade idiots." She was more than willing to go along with this diversion from conversations about Jay and his many admirers. Jay laughed too, shaking his head. "You're so cold-hearted," he said to Violet, shoving her a little but playing along. "How's he supposed to go cruising for unsuspecting freshman and sophomores without a car? What willing girl is going to ride on the handlebars of his ten-speed?" "I don't see you driving anything but your mom's car yet. At least he has a bike," she said, turning on him now. He pushed her again. "Hey!" he tried to defend himself. "I'm still saving! Not all of us are born with a silver spoon in our mouths." They were both laughing, hard now. The silver spoon joke had been used before, whenever one of them had something the other one didn't. "Right!" Violet protested. "Have you seen my car?" This time she shoved him, and a full-scale war broke out on the couch. "Poor little rich girl!" Jay accused, grabbing her arm and pulling her down. She giggled and tried to give him the dreaded "dead leg" by hitting him with her knuckle in the thigh. But he was too strong, and what used to be a fairly even matchup was now more like an annihilation of Violet's side. "Oh, yeah. Weren't you the one"-she gasped, still giggling and thrashing to break free from his suddenly way-too-strong grip on her, just as his hand was almost at the sensitive spot along the side of her rib cage-"who got to go to Hawaii..." She bucked beneath him, trying to knock him off her. "...For spring break...last..." And then he started to tickle her while she was pinned beneath him, and her last word came out in a scream: "...YEAR?!" That was how her aunt and uncle found them. Violet never heard the key in the dead bolt, or the sound of the door opening up. And Jay was just as ignorant of their arrival as she was. So when they were caught like that, in a mass of tangled limbs, with Jay's face just inches from hers, as she giggled and squirmed against him, it should have meant they were going to get in trouble. And if it had been any other teenage boy and girl, they would have. But it wasn't another couple. It was Violet and Jay...and this was business as usual for the two of them. Even her aunt and uncle knew that there was no possibility they were doing anything they shouldn't. The only reprimand they got was her aunt shushing them to keep it down before they woke the kids. After Jay left, Violet took the thirty dollars that her uncle gave her and headed out. As she drove home, she tried to ignore the feelings of frustration she had about the way her aunt and uncle had reacted-or rather hadn't reaction-to finding her and Jay together on the couch. For some reason it made her feel worse to know that even the grown-ups around them didn't think there was a chance they could ever be a real couple.
Kimberly Derting (The Body Finder (The Body Finder, #1))
Main Street is dead, which is no news to the families whose families ran family businesses on Main Street. When I returned...I found that all the local businesses from my childhood had been extirpated by Wal-Mart. If there is one single symbol for the demise of regional American culture, it is this superstore prototype, a huge capitalist boot that stomped the moms and pops, like soft, damp worms, to death. Don’t get me wrong. I love Wal-Mart. There is nothing I like more than to consign a mindless afternoon to those aisles, suspending thought, judgment. It’s like television. But to a documentarian of American culture, Wal-Mart is a nightmare. When it comes to towns, Hope, Alabama, becomes the same as Hope, Wyoming, or, for that matter, Hope, Alaska, and in the end, all that remains of our pioneering aspirations are the confused and self-conscious simulacra of relic culture: Ye Olde Curiosities ‘n’ Copie Shoppe, Deadeye Dick’s Saloon and Karaoke Bar—ingenious hybrids and strange global grafts that are the local businessperson’s only chance of survival in economies of scale.
Ruth Ozeki (My Year of Meats)
ONCE, a youth went to see a wise man, and said to him: “I have come seeking advice, for I am tormented by feelings of worthlessness and no longer wish to live. Everyone tells me that I am a failure and a fool. I beg you, Master, help me!” The wise man glanced at the youth, and answered hurriedly: “Forgive me, but I am very busy right now and cannot help you. There is one urgent matter in particular which I need to attend to...”—and here he stopped, for a moment, thinking, then added: “But if you agree to help me, I will happily return the favor.” “Of...of course, Master!” muttered the youth, noting bitterly that yet again his concerns had been dismissed as unimportant. “Good,” said the wise man, and took off a small ring with a beautiful gem from his finger. “Take my horse and go to the market square! I urgently need to sell this ring in order to pay off a debt. Try to get a decent price for it, and do not settle for anything less than one gold coin! Go right now, and come back as quick as you can!” The youth took the ring and galloped off. When he arrived at the market square, he showed it to the various traders, who at first examined it with close interest. But no sooner had they heard that it would sell only in exchange for gold than they completely lost interest. Some of the traders laughed openly at the boy; others simply turned away. Only one aged merchant was decent enough to explain to him that a gold coin was too high a price to pay for such a ring, and that he was more likely to be offered only copper, or at best, possibly silver. When he heard these words, the youth became very upset, for he remembered the old man’s instruction not to accept anything less than gold. Having already gone through the whole market looking for a buyer among hundreds of people, he saddled the horse and set off. Feeling thoroughly depressed by his failure, he returned to see the wise man. “Master, I was unable to carry out your request,” he said. “At best I would have been able to get a couple of silver coins, but you told me not to agree to anything less than gold! But they told me that this ring is not worth that much.” “That’s a very important point, my boy!” the wise man responded. “Before trying to sell a ring, it would not be a bad idea to establish how valuable it really is! And who can do that better than a jeweler? Ride over to him and find out what his price is. Only do not sell it to him, regardless of what he offers you! Instead, come back to me straightaway.” The young man once more leapt up on to the horse and set off to see the jeweler. The latter examined the ring through a magnifying glass for a long time, then weighed it on a set of tiny scales. Finally, he turned to the youth and said: “Tell your master that right now I cannot give him more than 58 gold coins for it. But if he gives me some time, I will buy the ring for 70.” “70 gold coins?!” exclaimed the youth. He laughed, thanked the jeweler and rushed back at full speed to the wise man. When the latter heard the story from the now animated youth, he told him: “Remember, my boy, that you are like this ring. Precious, and unique! And only a real expert can appreciate your true value. So why are you wasting your time wandering through the market and heeding the opinion of any old fool?
William Mougayar (The Business Blockchain: Promise, Practice, and Application of the Next Internet Technology)
Such threats and promises often succeed in creating stable human hierarchies and mass-cooperation networks, as long as people believe that they reflect the inevitable laws of nature or the divine commands of God, rather than just human whims. All large-scale human cooperation is ultimately based on our belief in imagined orders. These are sets of rules that, despite existing only in our imagination, we believe to be as real and inviolable as gravity. ‘If you sacrifice ten bulls to the sky god, the rain will come; if you honour your parents, you will go to heaven; and if you don’t believe what I am telling you – you’ll go to hell.’ As long as all Sapiens living in a particular locality believe in the same stories, they all follow the same rules, making it easy to predict the behaviour of strangers and to organise mass-cooperation networks. Sapiens often use visual marks such as a turban, a beard or a business suit to signal ‘you can trust me, I believe in the same story as you’. Our chimpanzee cousins cannot invent and spread such stories, which is why they cannot cooperate in large numbers.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
The Greeks thought of culture as character. It was predictability across scale: the behavior of a city, a state, or a people in small things, big things, and those in between. 32 Knowing who they were and what they wanted, the Spartans were wholly predictable. They saw no need to change themselves or anyone else. The Athenians’ strategy of walling their cities, however, had reshaped their character, obliging them restlessly to roam the world. Because they had changed, they would have to change others—that’s what having an empire means—but how many, to what extent, and by what means? No one, not even Pericles, could easily say. Pericles was not Xerxes. “I am more afraid of our own blunders than of the enemy’s devices,” he admitted as war approached. Knowing that the Athenians’ empire could not expand indefinitely, Pericles “unsparingly pruned and cut down their ever busy fancies,” Plutarch explained, “supposing it would be quite enough for them to do, if they could keep the [Spartans] in check.” 33 But as Pericles’ agents acknowledged before the Spartan assembly, allowing the empire the equality he celebrated within the city could cause contraction, perhaps even collapse.
John Lewis Gaddis (On Grand Strategy)
The right Brand Promise isn’t always obvious. Naomi Simson — founder of one of the fastest-growing companies in Australia, RedBalloon — was sure she knew what to promise customers who want to give experiences such as hot air balloon rides as gifts, rather than flowers and chocolates. Her promises included an easy-to-use website for choosing one of over 2,000 experiences; recognizable packaging and branding (think Tiffany blue, only in red); and onsite support. It wasn’t until a friend and client mentioned that she was using the website as a source of ideas — but buying the experiences directly from the vendors — that Simson had an “Aha!” moment. She realized that other customers might be doing the same thing, assuming that RedBalloon must be marking up the price of the experiences to cover the costs of the website, packaging, and onsite support. To grow the business, she promised customers they would pay no more for the experiences they bought through RedBalloon than for those purchased directly from the suppliers; otherwise, customers would get 100% of their fee refunded. The company calls this promise, which is technically a pricing guarantee, a “100% Pleasure Guarantee,” to fit its brand.
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
And this is one of the first things one learns from Musk’s example—he is relentless in his pursuit of the bold and, the bigger point, totally unfazed by scale. When he couldn’t get a job, he started a company. When Internet commerce stalled, he reinvented banking. When he couldn’t find decent launch services for his Martian greenhouse, he went into the rocket business. And as a kicker, because he never lost interest in the problem of energy, he started both an electric car and a solar energy company. It is also worth pointing out that Tesla is the first successful car company started in America in five decades and that SolarCity has become one of the nation’s largest residential solar providers.9 All told, in slightly less than a dozen years, Musk’s appetite for bold has created an empire worth about $30 billion.10 So what’s his secret? Musk has a few, but none are more important to him than passion and purpose. “I didn’t go into the rocket business, the car business, or the solar business thinking this is a great opportunity. I just thought, in order to make a difference, something needed to be done. I wanted to have an impact. I wanted to create something substantially better than what came before.
Peter H. Diamandis (Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World)
If there are costs to becoming legal, there are also bound to be costs to remaining outside the law. We found that operating outside the world of legal work and business was surprisingly expensive. In Peru, for example, the cost of operating a business extralegally includes paying 10 to 15 per cent of its annual income in bribes and commissions to authorities. Add to such payoffs the costs of avoiding penalties, making transfers outside legal channels and operating from dispersed locations and without credit, and the life of the extralegal entrepreneur turns out to be far more costly and full of daily hassles than that of the legal businessman. Perhaps the most significant cost was caused by the absence of institutions that create incentives for people to seize economic and social opportunities to specialize within the market place. We found that people who could not operate within the law also could not hold property efficiently or enforce contracts through the courts; nor could they reduce uncertainty through limited liability systems and insurance policies, or create stock companies to attract additional capital and share risk. Being unable to raise money for investment, they could not achieve economies of scale or protect their innovations through royalties and patents.
Hernando de Soto (The Mystery Of Capital)
The market is the first force that has led to the shriveling of citizenship. The classic case is the Wal-Mart effect. A town has a Main Street of small businesses and mom-and-pop shops. The shopkeepers and their customers have relationships that are not just about economic transactions but are set in a context of family, neighborhood, people, and place. Then Wal-Mart comes to town. It offers lower prices. It offers convenience. Because of its scale and might in the marketplace, it can compensate its workers stingily and drive out competition.   The presence of Wal-Mart leads the townspeople to think of themselves primarily as consumers, and to shed other aspects of their identities, like being neighbors or parishioners or friends. As consumers first, they gravitate to the place with the lowest prices. Wal-Mart thrives. The small businesses struggle and lay off workers. They cut back on their sponsorship of tee ball, their support of the food bank. As the mom-and-pops give way to the big box, and commutes become necessary, lives become more frenetic and stressful. People see each other less often. The sense of mutual obligation that townsfolk once shared starts to evaporate. Microhabits of caring and sociability fall away. In this tableau of libertarian citizenship, market forces triumph and everyone gets better deals—yet everyone is now in many senses poorer.
Eric Liu (The Gardens of Democracy: A New American Story of Citizenship, the Economy, and the Role of Government)
What’s the best thing you’ve done in your work and career? In business decision-making, certainly one of your highlights was licensing your computer operating system to IBM for almost no money, provided you could retain the right to license the system to other computer manufacturers as well. IBM was happy to agree because, after all, nobody would possibly want to compete with the most powerful company in the world, right? With that one decision, your system and your company became dominant throughout the world, and you, Bill Gates, were on your way to a net worth of more than $60 billion. Or maybe you’d like to look at your greatest career achievement from a different angle. Instead of focusing on the decision that helped you make so much money, maybe you’d like to look at the decision to give so much of it away. After all, no other person in history has become a philanthropist on the scale of Bill Gates. Nations in Africa and Asia are receiving billions of dollars in medical and educational support. This may not be as well publicized as your big house on Lake Washington with its digitalized works of art, but it’s certainly something to be proud of. Determining your greatest career achievement is a personal decision. It can be something obvious or something subtle. But it should make you proud of yourself when you think of it. So take a moment, then make your choice.
Dale Carnegie (Make Yourself Unforgettable: How to Become the Person Everyone Remembers and No One Can Resist)
I dreamt of a City to the West of here,” Dixon tries to recall, scrying in his Coffee-Mug, the wind blowing Wood-smoke in his eyes, “at some great Confluence of Rivers, or upon a Harbor in some inland Sea,— a large City,— busy, prospering, sacred.” “A Sylvan Philadelphia. . . .” “Well . . . well yes, now tha put it thah’ way,— ” “I hope you are prepar’d for the possibility, that waking Philadelphia is as sacred as anything over here will ever get, Dixon,— observe you not, as we move West, more and more of those Forces, which Cities upon Coasts have learn’d to push away, and leave to Back Inhabitants,— the Lightning, the Winter, an Indifference to Pain, not to mention Fire, Blood, and so forth, all measur’d upon a Scale far from Philadelphian,— whereunto we, and our Royal Commission, and our battery of costly Instruments, are but Fleas in the Flea Circus. We trespass, each day ever more deeply, into a world of less restraint in ev’rything,— no law, no convergence upon any idea of how life is to be,— an Interior that grows meanwhile ever more forested, more savage and perilous, until,— perhaps at the very Longitude of your ‘City,’— we must reach at last an Anti-City,— some concentration of Fate,— some final condition of Abandonment,— wherein all are unredeemably alone and at Hazard as deep as their souls may bear,— lost Creatures that make the very Seneca seem Christian and merciful.
Thomas Pynchon (Mason & Dixon)
Paying for power was so common that in 2012 the Modern Chinese Dictionary, the national authority on language, was compelled to add the word maiguan—“to buy a government promotion.” In some cases, the options read like a restaurant menu. In a small town in Inner Mongolia, the post of chief planner was sold for $103,000. The municipal party secretary was on the block for $101,000. It followed a certain logic: in weak democracies, people paid their way into office by buying votes; in a state where there were no votes to buy, you paid the people who doled out the jobs. Even the military was riddled with patronage; commanders received a string of payments from a pyramid of loyal officers beneath them. A one-star general could reportedly expect to receive ten million dollars in gifts and business deals; a four-star commander stood to earn at least fifty million. Every country has corruption, but China’s was approaching a level of its own. For those at the top, the scale of temptation had reached a level unlike anything ever encountered in the West. It was not always easy to say which Bare-Handed Fortunes were legitimate and which were not, but political office was a reliable pathway to wealth on a scale of its own. By 2012 the richest seventy members of China’s national legislature had a net worth of almost ninety billion dollars—more than ten times the combined net worth of the entire U.S. Congress.
Evan Osnos (Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China)
I dreamt of a City to the West of here,” Dixon tries to recall, scrying in his Coffee-Mug, the wind blowing Wood-smoke in his eyes, “at some great Confluence of Rivers, or upon a Harbor in some inland Sea,— a large City,— busy, prospering, sacred.” “A Sylvan Philadelphia. . . .” “Well . . . well yes, now tha put it thah’ way,— ” “I hope you are prepar’d for the possibility, that waking Philadelphia is as sacred as anything over here will ever get, Dixon,— observe you not, as we move West, more and more of those Forces, which Cities upon Coasts have learn’d to push away, and leave to Back Inhabitants,— the Lightning, the Winter, an Indifference to Pain, not to mention Fire, Blood, and so forth, all measur’d upon a Scale far from Philadelphian,— whereunto we, and our Royal Commission, and our battery of costly Instruments, are but Fleas in the Flea Circus. We trespass, each day ever more deeply, into a world of less restraint in ev’rything,— no law, no convergence upon any idea of how life is to be,— an Interior that grows meanwhile ever more forested, more savage and perilous, until,— perhaps at the very Longitude of your ‘City,’— we must reach at last an Anti-City,— some concentration of Fate,— some final condition of Abandonment,— wherein all are unredeemably alone and at Hazard as deep as their souls may bear,— lost Creatures that make the very Seneca seem Christian and merciful.” “Eeh, chirpy today . . . ?
Thomas Pynchon (Mason & Dixon)
Conservative foreign policy is in the business of shaping habits of behavior, not winning hearts and minds. It announces red lines sparingly but enforces them unsparingly. It is willing to act decisively, or preventively, to punish or prevent blatant transgressions of order—not as a matter of justice but in the interests of deterrence. But it knows it cannot possibly punish or prevent every transgression. It champions its values consistently and confidently, but it doesn’t conflate its values and its interests. It wants to let citizens go about their business as freely and easily as possible. But it knows that security is a prerequisite for civil liberty, not a threat to it. Where it can use a finger, or a hand, to tilt the political scales of society toward liberal democracy, it will do so. But it won’t attempt to tilt the scales in places where the tilting demands all of its weight and strength and endurance. It does not waste its energy or time chasing diplomatic symbols: its ambitions do not revolve around a Nobel Peace Prize. It prefers liberal autocracy to illiberal democracy, because the former is likelier to evolve into democracy than the latter is to evolve into liberalism. It knows the value of hope, and knows also that economic growth based on enterprise and the freest possible movement of goods, services, capital, and labor is the best way of achieving it. And it is mindful of the claims of conscience, which is strengthened by faith.
Bret Stephens (America in Retreat: The New Isolationism and the Coming Global Disorder)
The failure of Communism was consecrated in the fall of the Soviet Union. The remarkable thing is that, as in most cases when prophecy fails, the faith never faltered. Indeed, an alternative version had long been maturing, though cast into the shadows for a time by enthusiasm for the quick fix of revolution. It had, however, been maturing for at least a century and already had a notable repertoire of institutions available. We may call it Olympianism, because it is the project of an intellectual elite that believes that it enjoys superior enlightenment and that its business is to spread this benefit to those living on the lower slopes of human achievement. And just as Communism had been a political project passing itself off as the ultimate in scientific understanding, so Olympianism burrowed like a parasite into the most powerful institution of the emerging knowledge economy--the universities. We may define Olympianism as a vision of human betterment to be achieved on a global scale by forging the peoples of the world into a single community based on the universal enjoyment of appropriate human rights. Olympianism is the cast of mind dedicated to this end, which is believed to correspond to the triumph of reason and community over superstition and hatred. It is a politico-moral package in which the modern distinction between morals and politics disappears into the aspiration for a shared mode of life in which the communal transcends individual life. To be a moral agent is in these terms to affirm a faith in a multicultural humanity whose social and economic conditions will be free from the causes of current misery. Olympianism is thus a complex long-term vision, and contemporary Western Olympians partake of different fragments of it. To be an Olympian is to be entangled in a complex dialectic involving elitism and egalitarianism. The foundational elitism of the Olympian lies in self-ascribed rationality, generally picked up on an academic campus. Egalitarianism involves a formal adherence to democracy as a rejection of all forms of traditional authority, but with no commitment to taking any serious notice of what the people actually think. Olympians instruct mortals, they do not obey them. Ideally, Olympianism spreads by rational persuasion, as prejudice gives way to enlightenment. Equally ideally, democracy is the only tolerable mode of social coordination, but until the majority of people have become enlightened, it must be constrained within a framework of rights, to which Olympian legislation is constantly adding. Without these constraints, progress would be in danger from reactionary populism appealing to prejudice. The overriding passion of the Olympian is thus to educate the ignorant and everything is treated in educational terms. Laws for example are enacted not only to shape the conduct of the people, but also to send messages to them. A belief in the power of role models, public relations campaigns, and above all fierce restrictions on raising sensitive questions devant le peuple are all part of pedagogic Olympianism.
Kenneth Minogue
Moore’s Law, the rule of thumb in the technology industry, tells us that processor chips—the small circuit boards that form the backbone of every computing device—double in speed every eighteen months. That means a computer in 2025 will be sixty-four times faster than it is in 2013. Another predictive law, this one of photonics (regarding the transmission of information), tells us that the amount of data coming out of fiber-optic cables, the fastest form of connectivity, doubles roughly every nine months. Even if these laws have natural limits, the promise of exponential growth unleashes possibilities in graphics and virtual reality that will make the online experience as real as real life, or perhaps even better. Imagine having the holodeck from the world of Star Trek, which was a fully immersive virtual-reality environment for those aboard a ship, but this one is able to both project a beach landscape and re-create a famous Elvis Presley performance in front of your eyes. Indeed, the next moments in our technological evolution promise to turn a host of popular science-fiction concepts into science facts: driverless cars, thought-controlled robotic motion, artificial intelligence (AI) and fully integrated augmented reality, which promises a visual overlay of digital information onto our physical environment. Such developments will join with and enhance elements of our natural world. This is our future, and these remarkable things are already beginning to take shape. That is what makes working in the technology industry so exciting today. It’s not just because we have a chance to invent and build amazing new devices or because of the scale of technological and intellectual challenges we will try to conquer; it’s because of what these developments will mean for the world.
Eric Schmidt (The New Digital Age: Reshaping the Future of People, Nations and Business)
Here’s some startup pedagogy for you: When confronted with any startup idea, ask yourself one simple question: How many miracles have to happen for this to succeed? If the answer is zero, you’re not looking at a startup, you’re just dealing with a regular business like a laundry or a trucking business. All you need is capital and minimal execution, and assuming a two-way market, you’ll make some profit. To be a startup, miracles need to happen. But a precise number of miracles. Most successful startups depend on one miracle only. For Airbnb, it was getting people to let strangers into their spare bedrooms and weekend cottages. This was a user-behavior miracle. For Google, it was creating an exponentially better search service than anything that had existed to date. This was a technical miracle. For Uber or Instacart, it was getting people to book and pay for real-world services via websites or phones. This was a consumer-workflow miracle. For Slack, it was getting people to work like they formerly chatted with their girlfriends. This is a business-workflow miracle. For the makers of most consumer apps (e.g., Instagram), the miracle was quite simple: getting users to use your app, and then to realize the financial value of your particular twist on a human brain interacting with keyboard or touchscreen. That was Facebook’s miracle, getting every college student in America to use its platform during its early years. While there was much technical know-how required in scaling it—and had they fucked that up it would have killed them—that’s not why it succeeded. The uniqueness and complete fickleness of such a miracle are what make investing in consumer-facing apps such a lottery. It really is a user-growth roulette wheel with razor-thin odds. The classic sign of a shitty startup idea is that it requires at least two (or more!) miracles to succeed. This was what was wrong with ours. We had a Bible’s worth of miracles to perform:
Antonio García Martínez (Chaos Monkeys: Obscene Fortune and Random Failure in Silicon Valley)
a young Goldman Sachs banker named Joseph Park was sitting in his apartment, frustrated at the effort required to get access to entertainment. Why should he trek all the way to Blockbuster to rent a movie? He should just be able to open a website, pick out a movie, and have it delivered to his door. Despite raising around $250 million, Kozmo, the company Park founded, went bankrupt in 2001. His biggest mistake was making a brash promise for one-hour delivery of virtually anything, and investing in building national operations to support growth that never happened. One study of over three thousand startups indicates that roughly three out of every four fail because of premature scaling—making investments that the market isn’t yet ready to support. Had Park proceeded more slowly, he might have noticed that with the current technology available, one-hour delivery was an impractical and low-margin business. There was, however, a tremendous demand for online movie rentals. Netflix was just then getting off the ground, and Kozmo might have been able to compete in the area of mail-order rentals and then online movie streaming. Later, he might have been able to capitalize on technological changes that made it possible for Instacart to build a logistics operation that made one-hour grocery delivery scalable and profitable. Since the market is more defined when settlers enter, they can focus on providing superior quality instead of deliberating about what to offer in the first place. “Wouldn’t you rather be second or third and see how the guy in first did, and then . . . improve it?” Malcolm Gladwell asked in an interview. “When ideas get really complicated, and when the world gets complicated, it’s foolish to think the person who’s first can work it all out,” Gladwell remarked. “Most good things, it takes a long time to figure them out.”* Second, there’s reason to believe that the kinds of people who choose to be late movers may be better suited to succeed. Risk seekers are drawn to being first, and they’re prone to making impulsive decisions. Meanwhile, more risk-averse entrepreneurs watch from the sidelines, waiting for the right opportunity and balancing their risk portfolios before entering. In a study of software startups, strategy researchers Elizabeth Pontikes and William Barnett find that when entrepreneurs rush to follow the crowd into hyped markets, their startups are less likely to survive and grow. When entrepreneurs wait for the market to cool down, they have higher odds of success: “Nonconformists . . . that buck the trend are most likely to stay in the market, receive funding, and ultimately go public.” Third, along with being less recklessly ambitious, settlers can improve upon competitors’ technology to make products better. When you’re the first to market, you have to make all the mistakes yourself. Meanwhile, settlers can watch and learn from your errors. “Moving first is a tactic, not a goal,” Peter Thiel writes in Zero to One; “being the first mover doesn’t do you any good if someone else comes along and unseats you.” Fourth, whereas pioneers tend to get stuck in their early offerings, settlers can observe market changes and shifting consumer tastes and adjust accordingly. In a study of the U.S. automobile industry over nearly a century, pioneers had lower survival rates because they struggled to establish legitimacy, developed routines that didn’t fit the market, and became obsolete as consumer needs clarified. Settlers also have the luxury of waiting for the market to be ready. When Warby Parker launched, e-commerce companies had been thriving for more than a decade, though other companies had tried selling glasses online with little success. “There’s no way it would have worked before,” Neil Blumenthal tells me. “We had to wait for Amazon, Zappos, and Blue Nile to get people comfortable buying products they typically wouldn’t order online.
Adam M. Grant (Originals: How Nonconformists Move the World)
I went straight upstairs to my bedroom after Marlboro Man and I said good night. I had to finish packing…and I had to tend to my face, which was causing me more discomfort by the minute. I looked in the bathroom mirror; my face was sunburn red. Irritated. Inflamed. Oh no. What had Prison Matron Cindy done to me? What should I do? I washed my face with cool water and a gentle cleaner and looked in the mirror. It was worse. I looked like a freako lobster face. It would be a great match for the cherry red suit I planned to wear to the rehearsal dinner the next night. But my white dress for Saturday? That was another story. I slept like a log and woke up early the next morning, opening my eyes and forgetting for a blissful four seconds about the facial trauma I’d endured the day before. I quickly brought my hands to my face; it felt tight and rough. I leaped out of bed and ran to the bathroom, flipping on the light and looking in the mirror to survey the state of my face. The redness had subsided; I noticed that immediately. This was a good development. Encouraging. But upon closer examination, I could see the beginning stages of pruney lines around my chin and nose. My stomach lurched; it was the day of the rehearsal. It was the day I’d see not just my friends and family who, I was certain, would love me no matter what grotesque skin condition I’d contracted since the last time we saw one another, but also many, many people I’d never met before--ranching neighbors, cousins, business associates, and college friends of Marlboro Man’s. I wasn’t thrilled at the possibility that their first impression of me might be something that involved scales. I wanted to be fresh. Dewy. Resplendent. Not rough and dry and irritated. Not now. Not this weekend. I examined the damage in the mirror and deduced that the plutonium Cindy the Prison Matron had swabbed on my face the day before had actually been some kind of acid peel. The burn came first. Logic would follow that what my face would want to do next would be to, well, peel. This could be bad. This could be real, real bad. What if I could speed along that process? Maybe if I could feed the beast’s desire to slough, it would leave me alone--at least for the next forty-eight hours. All I wanted was forty-eight hours. I didn’t think it was too much to ask.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
The Ten Ways to Evaluate a Market provide a back-of-the-napkin method you can use to identify the attractiveness of any potential market. Rate each of the ten factors below on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 is terrible and 10 fantastic. When in doubt, be conservative in your estimate: Urgency. How badly do people want or need this right now? (Renting an old movie is low urgency; seeing the first showing of a new movie on opening night is high urgency, since it only happens once.) Market Size. How many people are purchasing things like this? (The market for underwater basket-weaving courses is very small; the market for cancer cures is massive.) Pricing Potential. What is the highest price a typical purchaser would be willing to spend for a solution? (Lollipops sell for $0.05; aircraft carriers sell for billions.) Cost of Customer Acquisition. How easy is it to acquire a new customer? On average, how much will it cost to generate a sale, in both money and effort? (Restaurants built on high-traffic interstate highways spend little to bring in new customers. Government contractors can spend millions landing major procurement deals.) Cost of Value Delivery. How much will it cost to create and deliver the value offered, in both money and effort? (Delivering files via the internet is almost free; inventing a product and building a factory costs millions.) Uniqueness of Offer. How unique is your offer versus competing offerings in the market, and how easy is it for potential competitors to copy you? (There are many hair salons but very few companies that offer private space travel.) Speed to Market. How soon can you create something to sell? (You can offer to mow a neighbor’s lawn in minutes; opening a bank can take years.) Up-front Investment. How much will you have to invest before you’re ready to sell? (To be a housekeeper, all you need is a set of inexpensive cleaning products. To mine for gold, you need millions to purchase land and excavating equipment.) Upsell Potential. Are there related secondary offers that you could also present to purchasing customers? (Customers who purchase razors need shaving cream and extra blades as well; buy a Frisbee and you won’t need another unless you lose it.) Evergreen Potential. Once the initial offer has been created, how much additional work will you have to put in in order to continue selling? (Business consulting requires ongoing work to get paid; a book can be produced once and then sold over and over as is.) When you’re done with your assessment, add up the score. If the score is 50 or below, move on to another idea—there are better places to invest your energy and resources. If the score is 75 or above, you have a very promising idea—full speed ahead. Anything between 50 and 75 has the potential to pay the bills but won’t be a home run without a huge investment of energy and resources.
Josh Kaufman (The Personal MBA)
In opting for large scale, Korean state planners got much of what they bargained for. Korean companies today compete globally with the Americans and Japanese in highly capital-intensive sectors like semiconductors, aerospace, consumer electronics, and automobiles, where they are far ahead of most Taiwanese or Hong Kong companies. Unlike Southeast Asia, the Koreans have moved into these sectors not primarily through joint ventures where the foreign partner has provided a turnkey assembly plant but through their own indigenous organizations. So successful have the Koreans been that many Japanese companies feel relentlessly dogged by Korean competitors in areas like semiconductors and steel. The chief advantage that large-scale chaebol organizations would appear to provide is the ability of the group to enter new industries and to ramp up to efficient production quickly through the exploitation of economies of scope.70 Does this mean, then, that cultural factors like social capital and spontaneous sociability are not, in the end, all that important, since a state can intervene to fill the gap left by culture? The answer is no, for several reasons. In the first place, not every state is culturally competent to run as effective an industrial policy as Korea is. The massive subsidies and benefits handed out to Korean corporations over the years could instead have led to enormous abuse, corruption, and misallocation of investment funds. Had President Park and his economic bureaucrats been subject to political pressures to do what was expedient rather than what they believed was economically beneficial, if they had not been as export oriented, or if they had simply been more consumption oriented and corrupt, Korea today would probably look much more like the Philippines. The Korean economic and political scene was in fact closer to that of the Philippines under Syngman Rhee in the 1950s. Park Chung Hee, for all his faults, led a disciplined and spartan personal lifestyle and had a clear vision of where he wanted the country to go economically. He played favorites and tolerated a considerable degree of corruption, but all within reasonable bounds by the standards of other developing countries. He did not waste money personally and kept the business elite from putting their resources into Swiss villas and long vacations on the Riviera.71 Park was a dictator who established a nasty authoritarian political system, but as an economic leader he did much better. The same power over the economy in different hands could have led to disaster. There are other economic drawbacks to state promotion of large-scale industry. The most common critique made by market-oriented economists is that because the investment was government rather than market driven, South Korea has acquired a series of white elephant industries such as shipbuilding, petrochemicals, and heavy manufacturing. In an age that rewards downsizing and nimbleness, the Koreans have created a series of centralized and inflexible corporations that will gradually lose their low-wage competitive edge. Some cite Taiwan’s somewhat higher overall rate of economic growth in the postwar period as evidence of the superior efficiency of a smaller, more competitive industrial structure.
Francis Fukuyama (Trust: Human Nature and the Reconstitution of Social Order)
Simplifying the product offering doesn’t mean that you are taking away the customer’s choice; rather it sends the message that you know the customers so well that you are delivering the exact solution they are looking for.
Nathan Furr (Nail It then Scale It: The Entrepreneur's Guide to Creating and Managing Breakthrough Innovation: The lean startup book to help entrepreneurs launch a high-growth business)
Some of the world’s biggest banks and investor groups have swung behind a pledge to raise $200bn by the end of next year to combat climate change. In a move the UN said was unprecedented, leading insurers, pension funds and banks have joined forces to help channel the money to projects that will help poorer countries deal with the effect of global warming and cut reliance on fossil fuels. The announcement came at the start of a UN climate summit in New York aimed at bolstering momentum for a global agreement to lower planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions due to be signed in Paris at the end of 2015. “Change is in the air,” said UN secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon. “Today’s climate summit has shown an entirely new, co-operative global approach to climate change.” The summit opened with business and government pledges to make cities greener, create a renewable energy “corridor” in Africa and rein in the clearing of forests for palm oil plantations. The private sector’s contributions marked a “major departure” from past climate summits, the UN said, adding in a statement that financial groups “had never previously acted together on climate change at such a large scale”. One obstacle to the Paris agreement is developing countries’ insistence that richer nations must fulfil pledges made nearly five years ago to raise $100bn a year by 2020 for climate action.
We can always scale our way back down the ladder, but it’s very dangerous going over the head of people who believe they had the right and authority to tell us no.
Mike Weinberg (New Sales. Simplified.: The Essential Handbook for Prospecting and New Business Development)
A company at the top of its game has accumulated a number of rules of thumb—implicit assumptions and beliefs about what has been central to its success. New technologies and business models belie or change some of those assumptions, but they only seem sensible if the management team can become aware of those implicit assumptions and mind-sets and suspend them for a moment to contemplate the change. It’s very hard to do that with the inherited wisdom, experience, and lore of a company. This is why the failures of incumbents to capture the benefits of disruptive innovations are a result not of bad managers, but of good managers practicing what they have done best. Incremental innovations can quickly be scaled and incorporated. Disruptive innovations require changes in customer sets, business models, or performance metrics that are no longer consistent with what led to success in the past.
Stefan Heck (Resource Revolution: How to Capture the Biggest Business Opportunity in a Century)
The Krishnas' resolution was brilliant. They switched to a fund-raising tactic that made it unnecessary for target persons to have positive feelings toward the fund-raisers. They began to employ a donation-request procedure that engaged the rule for reciprocation, which, as demonstrated by the Regan study, is strong enough to overcome the factor of dislike for the requester. The new strategy still involves the solicitation of contributions in public places with much pedestrian traffic (airports are a favorite), but now, before a donation is requested, the target person is given a "gift"—a book (usually the Bhagavad Gita), the Back to Godhead magazine of the Society, or, in the most cost-effective version, a flower. The unsuspecting passerby who suddenly finds a flower pressed into his hands or pinned to his jacket is under no circumstances allowed to give it back, even if he asserts that he does not want it. "No, it is our gift to you," says the solicitor, refusing to accept it. Only after the Krishna member has thus brought the force of the reciprocation rule to bear on the situation is the target asked to provide a contribution to the Society. This benefactor-before-beggar strategy has been wildly successful for the Hare Krishna Society, producing large-scale economic gains and funding the ownership of temples, businesses, houses, and property
A stock Gulfstream G650, a top-of-the-line business jet, cruises at altitudes up to 50,000 feet. If a G650 were retrofitted with a low-bypass military engine such as the Pratt & Whitney F100, it could lift a payload of 13 tons to 60,000 feet, an altitude that would likely be adequate for the minimal deployment described in Phase 3. A fleet of just twenty aircraft acquired within a few years at a cost of $1.5 billion should enable sufficient radiative forcing to produce large-scale climatic effects that are just barely detectable.
David Keith (A Case for Climate Engineering (Boston Review Books))
When Shelby Hunt and Lawrence Chonko gave the Machiavellianism scale to one thousand professional marketers, they found that over 10 percent scored in the highest possible range—and far, far above the population average. In other words, they were among the highest possessors of traits that hinged on manipulation and deception. And yet, they engaged in a legitimate business. None of them were criminals. None of them were even aristocrats of crime.
Maria Konnikova (The Confidence Game: Why We Fall for It . . . Every Time)
From that vision comes this year’s annual plan. What will you do this coming year to make progress on your vision? What projects will you undertake that will bring you closer? What initiatives will you start or stop? What products will you create or retire? The clearer your Vision Script, the more apparent the answers to these questions will be.
Michael Hyatt (The Vision Driven Leader: 10 Questions to Focus Your Efforts, Energize Your Team, and Scale Your Business)
Jakubowski and his collaborators have since launched the Open Building Institute, which aims to make open-source designs for ecological, off-grid, affordable housing available to all.81 ‘Our goal is decentralized production,’ he explains. ‘I’m talking about a business case for efficient enterprise where the traditional concept of scale becomes irrelevant. Our new concept of scale is about distributing economic power far and wide.
Kate Raworth (Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist)
Overall, the people from the more commercialized societies are much more willing to cooperate outside of narrow kinship circles. The core message is that commerce and advanced market societies tend to breed trust and reciprocal cooperation. It is no accident that such hypotheses were common among eighteenth-century Enlightenment thinkers, such as the Frenchman Montesquieu, and others who were observing the rise of commercial society on a massive scale for the very first time.
Tyler Cowen (Big Business: A Love Letter to an American Anti-Hero)
Not surprisingly, my number-one rating goes to India. Its scale and underinvestment in infrastructure and its urbanization trends give it phenomenal potential. Add to that the first apparently progressive, pro-business government in its history, led by Prime Minister Modi, and India is off the charts in terms of investment potential. India is the only major emerging country to reach new highs over its 2007 peak because of this.
Harry S. Dent (Zero Hour: Turn the Greatest Political and Financial Upheaval in Modern History to Your Advantage)
To be sure, many large, public companies have also been molded by their communities. Walmart is a product of Bentonville, Arkansas, and Hershey’s is a product of Hershey, Pennsylvania. For that matter, Target and H. B. Fuller are just as much products of the Twin Cities as Reell. What was different was the intimacy of the connections. A human-scale company in a single location can be part of a community without dominating it. The CEO and other top managers can establish personal relationships with the company’s neighbors, with leaders of local nonprofits, with the rest of the business community, and with government officials. There’s a focus, an intensity, a depth of commitment that inevitably becomes harder to maintain as the business expands. That was what Weinzweig meant by being “rooted.
Bo Burlingham (Small Giants: Companies That Choose to Be Great Instead of Big)
Another thing I’m learning in my new job is that while people still refer to this business as “the tech industry,” in truth it is no longer really about technology at all. “You don’t get rewarded for creating great technology, not anymore,” says a friend of mine who has worked in tech since the 1980s, a former investment banker who now advises start-ups. “It’s all about the business model. The market pays you to have a company that scales quickly. It’s all about getting big fast. Don’t be profitable, just get big.
Dan Lyons (Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble)
Chinese companies don’t have this kind of luxury. Surrounded by competitors ready to reverse-engineer their digital products, they must use their scale, spending, and efficiency at the grunt work as a differentiating factor. They burn cash like crazy and rely on armies of low-wage delivery workers to make their business models work. It’s a defining trait of China’s alternate internet universe that leaves American analysts entrenched in Silicon Valley orthodoxy scratching their heads.
Kai-Fu Lee (AI Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley, and the New World Order)
The MTA had limited flexibility to cut its expenses. The subways had very high fixed costs and the Transit Authority needed to provide enough services for the four-hour peak commuting period. While a private business would have tried to replace full-time workers with part-time workers or scaled back salaries and benefits, those were not feasible options for a state-run enterprise whose workers were politically influential. Instead, a new union contract in 1968 allowed transit workers to retire with half pay after twenty years of work, exacerbating the MTA’s financial problems and affecting service quality after most of the car maintenance workers and 40 percent of the electrical workers retired in the next two years.75 With
Philip Mark Plotch (Last Subway: The Long Wait for the Next Train in New York City)
An MVP is a prototype of a product with just enough features to enable validated learning about the product and its business model.
Nicole Forsgren (Accelerate: Building and Scaling High-Performing Technology Organizations)
what was state of the art three years ago is just not good enough for today’s business environment.
Nicole Forsgren (Accelerate: Building and Scaling High-Performing Technology Organizations)
Most businesses have the goal of getting as big as possible. Supreme, on the other hand, strives to remain underground and boutique, growing only when they deem it will enhance the brand. As style writer Glenn O’Brien put it, “Supreme is a company that refuses to sell out.” But why? Well, first off, because it wouldn’t be authentic to who they are, what they do, and what they’re into. For instance, when asked why they wouldn’t expand into women’s wear, Jebbia simply replied, “It’s not what we know.” And that’s all they’ve done—manifest an authentic reflection of their core beliefs with unyielding discipline. Supreme is a reflection of Jebbia’s life experiences and pas- sions. It just happened that his passion for “cool and unusual things for young people” was in harmony with the global youth movement that his brand has come to represent. Supreme continues to succeed on a massive scale because they have the discipline to focus their resources on creating great products rather than over-expanding. Or, as Jebbia puts it, “Staying true to what you do best has played a major role in our longevity. I would like people to see that we’re a small, independent skate company that has done our own thing, in our own way, over many years, and will hopefully continue to do so.
Alan Philips (The Age of Ideas: Unlock Your Creative Potential)
Creating the pop-ups—doing something that was a pure reflection of my passions—changed my life. The core idea and drive to execute what I envisioned enabled me to realize my potential for the first time. That shift in how I approached the world supercharged all other areas of my existence. I went from being a struggling entrepre- neur to heading up a food and beverage business with $150 million in annual revenue to chief marketing officer of a publicly-traded hotel company to head of brand and experience at a billion-dollar startup in less than five years. And not only did the pop-up restaurant expe- rience provide me with the opportunity to share my creativity on a large scale while supporting my family, it also gave me the gift of fulfillment and the confidence to trust my instincts and enjoy the journey as much as, if not more than, the result.
Alan Philips (The Age of Ideas: Unlock Your Creative Potential)
Moteefee, a platform founded in 2015 and that currently has 2,500 micro-retailers and entrepreneurs, recently raised 4.5 million euros that will be used for further business expansion. According to PaySpace Magazine, Moteefe has raised €4.5 million in a Series A round led by Gresham House and Force Over Mass Capital. The platform for on-demand production of merchandise aims to use the money for further expansion worldwide. What is more, it plans to launch new products for large retailers and scale its operations. Moteefe enables influencers and retailers to create custom and personalized merchandise and then sell them around the world. The Dutch company takes care of the printing, the store, the payment, the customer service, and the fulfillment, charging a commission for every sale. In 2019, Moteefe was the UK’s fastest-growing e-commerce company with revenue growth of over 9,000 percent between 2015 and 2018.
What do you do when you have two outstanding employees who logically both fit in the same place on the organizational chart? Perhaps you have a world-class architect who is running engineering, but she does not have the experience to scale the organization to the next level. You also have an outstanding operational person who is not great technically. You want to keep both in the company, but you only have one position. So you get the bright idea to put “two in the box” and take on a little management debt. The short-term benefits are clear: you keep both employees, you don’t have to develop either because they will theoretically help each other develop, and you instantly close the skill set gap. Unfortunately, you will pay for those benefits with interest and at a very high rate.
Ben Horowitz (The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers)
When you scale an organization, you will also need to give ground grudgingly. Specialization, organizational structure, and process all complicate things and implementing them will feel like you are moving away from common knowledge and quality communication. It is very much like the offensive lineman taking a step backward. You will lose ground, but you will prevent your company from descending into chaos.
Ben Horowitz (The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers)
A process is a formal, well-structured communication vehicle. It can be a heavily engineered Six Sigma process or it can be a well-structured regular meeting. The size of the process should be scaled up or down to meet the needs of the communication challenge that it facilitates. When communication in an organization spans across organizational boundaries, processes will help ensure that the communication happens and that it happens with quality.
Ben Horowitz (The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers)
Begin to Think About: Whether you are paying attention to your existing customers or to just your potential customers Whether you could make your business better (however you define that) instead of just making it bigger Whether your business really needs scale to succeed Where the upper bound to that scale might be, the place where profit and enjoyment have diminishing returns
Paul Jarvis (Company of One: Why Staying Small Is the Next Big Thing for Business)
As a winding river must follow the contours of the landscape on its way to the ocean, a business must navigate the undulations of the marketplace on the way to its Everest.
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
Platforms overcome this chicken-and-egg problem when the value to new users of participating in the platform exceeds the cost of participation. The point when this occurs is called critical mass. Once a platform scales past critical mass, network effects are accretive and help the business gain a majority market share.
Alex Moazed (Modern Monopolies: What It Takes to Dominate the 21st Century Economy)
In the past, part of the problem was that this concept was applied to businesses that didn’t have any real network effects and very little sustainable advantage, even if they were to succeed. and are both examples from the dot-com era. But another problem with the emphasis on first-mover advantage is that it gives you the wrong ideas on how you should go about scaling a network. The growth-at-any-cost mind-set is a big reason why platforms that get initial traction often fail to reach scale. Both Friendster and Myspace got big fast. But they did so largely by ignoring the effect this growth had on the quality of their platforms.
Alex Moazed (Modern Monopolies: What It Takes to Dominate the 21st Century Economy)
in a networked world, scale comes from cultivating an external network built on top of your business.
Alex Moazed (Modern Monopolies: What It Takes to Dominate the 21st Century Economy)
As it turns out, these decentralized networks don’t form and grow all by themselves. It usually takes an organization acting as the primary node in that network to grow and coordinate all of that activity on a large scale. These platform businesses don’t operate the way traditional organizations did. Rather than investing in internal resources—such as employees, factories, or warehouses—platforms create value by coordinating these large external networks of consumers and producers.
Alex Moazed (Modern Monopolies: What It Takes to Dominate the 21st Century Economy)
Because of rising coordination costs, once an organization reaches a certain size and continues to grow, it starts to experience diseconomies of scale, where information and transactions costs rise rather than decline when the business produces more.
Alex Moazed (Modern Monopolies: What It Takes to Dominate the 21st Century Economy)
Microbusinesses aren’t new; they’ve been around since the beginning of commerce. What’s changed, however, is the ability to test, launch, and scale your project quickly and on the cheap. • To start a business, you need three things: a product or service, a group of people willing to pay for it, and a way to get paid. Everything else is completely optional. • If you’re good at one thing, you’re probably good at other things too. Many projects begin through a process of “skill transformation,” in which you apply your knowledge to a related topic. • Most important: merge your passion and skill with something that is useful to other people.
Chris Guillebeau (The $100 Startup: Fire Your Boss, Do What You Love and Work Better To Live More)
Principal Management Corporation, the manager of the LargeCap Value Fund, actually provides no investment management services, focusing instead on “clerical, recordkeeping and bookkeeping services.” Responsibility for the day-in and day-out portfolio management rests with a subsidiary of Alliance Capital Management, Bernstein Investment Research and Management.17 The fee arrangement between Principal and Bernstein involves only a portion of Principal’s take from its investors. For the year ended December 31, 2003, Principal’s no-load Class B shares bore the burden of a 2.51 percent expense ratio, as detailed in Table 8.7. Investors paid a 12b-1 fee of 0.91 percent, other expenses of 0.85 percent and a management fee of 0.75 percent. Principal’s fees all but guarantee that investors will fail to generate satisfactory returns. The management fee arrangement between Principal and Bernstein provides clues to the economies of scale available in the money management industry. At asset levels below $10 million, of the 0.75 percent management fee, 0.60 percent goes to Bernstein and 0.15 percent goes to Principal. As assets under management increase, Bernstein’s fee share decreases and Principal’s fee share increases. At the final break point of $200 million in assets, of the scale-invariant 0.75 percent fee, Bernstein receives 0.20 percent and Principal receives 0.55 percent. The fee structure clearly illustrates scale economies in the investment management business. Bernstein, the party responsible for the heart of the portfolio management process, earns fees that diminish (with increases in assets under management) from 0.60 percent of assets to 0.20 percent of assets. Since Bernstein’s work changes not at all as asset levels increase, the reduction in marginal charges makes sense. It makes no sense that Principal’s mutual-fund clients accrue no benefits from economies of scale. Total expenses incurred by investors remain at 2.51 percent regardless of portfolio size. As Bernstein’s management fee declines, Principal’s management fee increases. For assets above $200 million Principal adds a management fee of 0.55 percent to other fees of 1.76 percent, bringing the egregious total to 2.31 percent for Principal and 0.20 percent for Bernstein. In this topsy-turvy world, Principal earns a marginal management fee of 0.55 percent for performing back-office functions, while Bernstein earns a marginal management fee of 0.20 percent for making security-selection decisions. As scale increases, Bernstein earns less while Principal takes more.
David F. Swensen (Unconventional Success: A Fundamental Approach to Personal Investment)
grow double digits each year for decades. To scale any business you must first create a reliable system for all functions—manufacturing, sales, promotion, talent acquisition, innovation, even leadership from the CEO.
Jason Jennings (The Reinventors: How Extraordinary Companies Pursue Radical Continuous Change)
As an entrepreneur, the story you start with is probably wrong. But until you start testing your underlying hypotheses, you don’t know how you’re wrong.
Matt Blumberg (Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business, + Website)
the failure of early startup initiatives is predictable, so that failure should be built into the process rather than treated as a crisis when it happens.
Matt Blumberg (Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business, + Website)
The Likert scale. Respondents are asked to choose where they fall on a range of possible feelings about a thing, generally in the form of “strongly dislike,” “dislike,” “strongly like,” “strongly disagree,” and “strongly agree.” Multiple choice. Respondents are asked to pick from mutually exclusive sets, such as “Republican, Democrat, Independent, other.” Rank order. Respondents are asked to rank order several items. Example: “Rank the following eight activities from least preferred (1) to most preferred (8).” Open ended. Respondents are asked to simply write out a response in any way they like. Example: “Was there anything you were dissatisfied with about our customer service?
Douglas W. Hubbard (How to Measure Anything: Finding the Value of Intangibles in Business)
Tarek Mohamed Bouazizi, who burned himself to death in front of the governor’s offices in the town of Sidi Bouzid in December 2010.12 Bouazizi killed himself precisely one hour after a policewoman, backed by two municipal officers, had seized from him two crates of pears, a crate of bananas, three crates of apples and a second-hand electronic weight scale worth $179. Those scales were his only capital. He did not have legal title to his family’s home, which might otherwise have served as collateral for his business. His economic existence depended on the ‘fees’ he paid to officials to allow him to operate his fruit-stand on
Niall Ferguson (The Great Degeneration: How Institutions Decay and Economies Die)
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and Outcomes. We start with the functions and processes driving the business, then push for the company to set goals, delineate measurable Brand Promises, and pick Critical Numbers on the One-Page Strategic Plan, including KPIs for both the People and Process sides of the business so the leadership team has a balanced view of performance.
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
Invest with an end vision in mind in order to scale your investment growth, misguided investments yeild losses.
Wayne Chirisa
Leaders create things that didn’t exist before,” Seth Godin says. “They do this by giving the tribe a vision of something that could happen, but hasn’t (yet).
Michael Hyatt (The Vision Driven Leader: 10 Questions to Focus Your Efforts, Energize Your Team, and Scale Your Business)
To achieve cost savings and strategic performance while innovating and taking decisions that will have serious consequences, apply the systems thinking approach and a knowledge-based vision. Have a long-term focus and strategic objectives; acknowledge the complexity of an organization; recognise that scaling-up successful strategy requires (hyper)convergence of business objectives, data analytics, human-factors engineering, information and cyber security, regulatory compliance, cutting edge technologies… Understand the process! Enjoy success!
Ludmila Morozova-Buss
Whatever variant of freedom is espoused, a basic income would enhance it. However, in the liberal tradition a basic income would be both necessary and sufficient, if judged high enough to meet basic needs. In the republican tradition, however, basic income would be necessary but not sufficient; other institutions and policies would be needed properly to advance freedom. A basic income would strengthen the following prosaic or day-to-day freedoms: — the freedom to refuse a job that is onerous, boring, low-paying or just nasty; — the freedom to accept a job that is none of the above but which could not be accepted if financial necessity dictated; — the freedom to stay in a job that pays less than previously or that has become more financially insecure; — the freedom to start a small-scale business venture, which is risky but potentially rewarding; — the freedom to do care work for a relative or friend, or voluntary work in and for the community, that might not be feasible if financial necessity required long hours of paid labour; — the freedom to do creative work and activities of all kinds; — the freedom to risk learning new skills or competences; — the freedom from bureaucratic interference, prying and coercion; — the freedom to form relationships and perhaps set up ‘home’ with someone, often precluded today by financial insecurity; — the freedom to leave a relationship that has turned sour or abusive; — the freedom to have a child; — the freedom to be lazy once in a while, a vital freedom to which we will return. Would alternative social policies do as well on any of these counts? At the very least, a social protection policy should be neutral on behavioural freedom, not moralistic, directive, coercive or punitive. The
Guy Standing (Basic Income: And How We Can Make It Happen)
Groupon is a study of the hazards of pursuing scale and valuation at all costs. In 2010, Forbes called it the “fastest growing company ever” after its founders raised $135 million in funding, giving Groupon a valuation of more than $1 billion after just 17 months.5 The company turned down a $6 billion acquisition offer from Google and went public in 2011 with one of the biggest IPOs since Google’s in 2004.6 It was one of the original unicorns. However, the business model had serious problems. Groupon sometimes sold so many Daily Deals that participating businesses were overwhelmed . . . even crippled. Other businesses accused Groupon of strong-arming them to sign up for Daily Deals. Customers started to view the group discount (the company’s bread and butter) as a sign that a participating business was desperate. Businesses stopped signing up. Journalists suggested that Groupon was prioritizing customer acquisition over retention — growth over value — and that it had gone public before it had a solid, proven business model.7 Groupon is still a player, with just over $3 billion in annual revenue in 2015. But its stock has fallen from $26 a share to about $4 today, and it has withdrawn from many international markets. Also revealing is that the company is suing IBM for patent infringement, something that will not create customer value.8 Many promising startups have paid the price for rushing to scale. We can see clues to potential future failures in the recent “down rounds” (stock purchases priced at a lower valuation than those of previous investors) hitting companies like Foursquare, Gilt Group, Jet, Jawbone, and Technorati. In their rush to build scale, executives and founders search for shortcuts to sustainable, long-term revenue growth.
Brian de Haaff (Lovability: How to Build a Business That People Love and Be Happy Doing It)
Business will be more successful when they realize that one of their greatest strengths will be their multifaceted digital proficiency to scale up and shift from “doing digital” to “being digital.
Pearl Zhu (Digital Fit: Manifest Future of Business with Multidimensional Fit)
An entrepreneur seeks to test a series of unproven hypotheses (guesses) about a startup’s business model: who the customers are, what the product features should be, and how this scales into a hugely successful company.
Steve Blank (The Startup Owner's Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company)
The importance of understanding the platform business, as an enabler of interactions, cannot be overstated. In a connected world, businesses will increasingly focus on enabling interactions between users.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
But today, the power of the network effect is fading. The network effect isn’t the one-stop solution for repeatable interactions that it once was.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
Food animals also get antibiotics for “growth promotion,” a metabolically mysterious process that has made possible the entire high-volume, low-margin business of industrial-scale farming. Since the 1950s, when two pharma company scientists discovered that feeding chicks the waste products from drug manufacturing made them put on weight much faster, many U.S. farmers have been giving tiny doses of antibiotics to cattle, swine, and poultry.34
Maryn McKenna (Superbug: The Fatal Menace of MRSA)
Thomas A. Kochan, a professor at MIT’s Sloan School of Management, has probably researched corporate diversity more extensively than anyone. His conclusion after a five-year study? “The diversity industry is built on sand.” Prof. Kochan initially contacted 20 major companies that have publicly committed themselves to diversity, and was astonished to find that not one had done a serious study of how diversity increased profits or improved operations. He learned that managers are afraid that race-related research could bring on lawsuits, but that another reason they do not look for results is “because people simply want to believe that diversity works.” Like other researchers, he found “the negative consequences of diversity, such as higher turnover and greater conflict in the workplace,” and concluded that even if the best managers were able to overcome these problems there was no evidence diversity leads to greater profits. “The business case rhetoric for diversity is simply naive and overdone,” he says, noting that the estimated $8 billion a year spent on diversity training did not even protect businesses from discrimination suits, much less increase profits. Common sense suggests that it is hard to get dissimilar people to work together. Indeed, a large-scale survey called the National Study of the Changing Workforce found that more than half of all workers said they preferred to work with people who were not only the same race as themselves, but had the same education and were the same sex.
Jared Taylor (White Identity: Racial Consciousness in the 21st Century)
From a business perspective, we all know that airlines have struggled for years,” says Mac Kern, former vice president of commercial planning at Surf Air. “It’s a very capital intensive business, not to mention commodity-based. Prices get driven downward. It’s very competitive. The subscription model gives us predictive revenue—that’s something that no commercial carriers have. They don’t know if a flight is going to be profitable until the door on the airplane closes (and they still have to fly at that point!). Because of subscriptions, we know exactly how much revenue we’re going to generate at the beginning of every month. So we can scale our operation effectively, because we know exactly how much flying we’re able to execute. That kind of insight is basically magic in the aviation industry. No one has been able to do that before.
Tien Tzuo (Subscribed: Why the Subscription Model Will Be Your Company's Future - and What to Do About It)
The Tech Humanist proposal is to ensure that business objectives and human objectives are as aligned as possible so that as automated experiences scale, they scale human values with them, and a sense of what is meaningful to humans surrounds us.
Kate O'Neill (Tech Humanist: How You Can Make Technology Better for Business and Better for Humans)
For me life is not about the numbers, profit, size or scale. That is ego. The test is the quality of impact you have on each individual in your life and in each soul touched by your warmth.
Rasheed Ogunlaru
We busy ourselves with our food for a couple of minutes, then Nick puts his fork down again. “You know, Troy,” he says, a serious expression on his face. “We should become friends.” “Why would I want to become friends with a giant prick?” I tease. “I already have one of those.” Nick’s eyes widen. “You do?” His gaze travels down my torso. “I wouldn’t have picked that. You’re kind of….” here he pauses, no doubt trying to think of a polite euphemism, “short.” “Well, not everything about me is drawn to scale,” I say, smug as smug.
R. Parr (Toy)
About 85 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions come from fossil fuels, and about 80 percent of those come from just two sources: coal (46 percent) in its various forms, including anthracite and lignite; and petroleum (33 percent) in its various forms, including oil, gasoline, and propane. Coal and petroleum are used differently. Most petroleum is consumed by individuals and small businesses as they heat their homes and offices and drive their cars. By contrast, coal is mainly burned by heavy industry: coal produces the great majority of the world’s steel and cement and 40 percent of its electricity. The percentages vary from place to place, but the pattern remains. Coal provides about two-thirds of China’s energy, but almost all of it is used by big industries. Coal provides less than a fifth of U.S. energy, but again almost all of it is for industry. In both places petroleum consumption is on a smaller, more individual scale.
Charles C. Mann (The Wizard and the Prophet: Two Remarkable Scientists and Their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow's World)
How Explainer Videos Work For Your Business If you wonder how to take your business to the next level, then explainer videos could be your answer. A short, crisp, informative piece of explainer video is the ultimate key to reach your ideal business leads. Henceforth, you need not worry about keeping your profits high. All you have to do is to invest a part of your money in getting quality, professional explainer videos to boost up your rankings on search engines. Google’s algorithm for search engine rankings includes a part that quantifies the amount of time spent by the visitors to your website. The longer time they spent, the higher will be your ranking. This is why your site needs an explainer video to keep the clock ticking for you. These videos are great ways to get the attention of your visitors; it really keeps them engaged for a long time, provided the videos are interesting. It has been found out that a human brain is more attentive to visuals rather than mere phrases. As readers spend only a few seconds to minutes on each site, quality content with a catchy title would grab their attention, but not always. On the other hand, if they confront an interesting and funny video, they will be attracted and urged to watch the content. That is why explainer videos are smart marketing tools. According to top marketing firms, websites with explainer videos rank higher than others in Google universal searches. In a business, an explainer video offers you a smart platform to reach your ideal customers and introduce your services to them with the reasons for them to choose you over your competitors. What could it be? An explainer video could be anything. You can share your identity, ideas, concepts, issues, solutions, products, services and even arguments. You can bring them all up with videos in just a few seconds. How long could it be? The shorter, the better. Videos more than a 90 seconds could be boring to your visitors. Keeping them short and engaging is the trick to make the visitors stay on your page, which in turn fetches the ranking. Here are a few reasons to justify the need for explainer videos for your business. 1. Creates a virtual connection: The most important aspect of online marketing is to showcase your personality in a smart manner. Your customer is with little or no contact with you in online business. So it is crucial to build a trustworthy bond with your customer to maintain a strong relationship. Explainer videos do this job for you; they offer you an identity that is recognized by your customers which wins their trust. 2. Gains popularity: A good and attractive explainer video is extremely contagious. It is not restricted to your website alone and can be shared with other video hosting sites like YouTube. This means your site gains popularity. People share videos on a higher scale rather than sharing web pages. Moreover, free video hosting sites like YouTube can be accessed even on a Smart phone which is an added advantage. 3. Holds all in one: Website clutter is a serious mistake that directly affects the rankings of a website. With the intention to hike rankings and boost sales, many website owners clutter their site with loads of images, colorful fonts, flash pictures and pop boxes. This could only have adverse effects on the site. It increases the load time of the website and leaves the visitors confounded that they wonder what your site conveys. On the contrary, an explainer video is can be designed to comprise all such smart aspects squeezed into a single video. 4. Resurrects your identity: PPT slides and pop up ads are obsolete and they don’t belong to this era of online business marketing. A colorful, funny and informative video with great visuals can do the magic; it grabs the attention of the audience. This is particularly suitable for multifaceted businesses with multiple products and services. You can create customized videos for each product and
A correctly tuned system must be able to run for years at full load without slowing down nor crashing.
David M. Finkel (Build a Business, Not a Job! - How to Build Your Business to Sell, Scale, or Own Passively)
It's like playing an instrument. It's like dancing," she says simply. Her house looks like the aftermath of a personalized earthquake visited by a vengeful god, but even here, amid such disturbing chaos, what Kim has elegantly just confirmed is the profound power of sequence; the beauty of order. Heartbeat, breath, ebb tide, flood tide, the movements of the earth, the phases of the moon, seasons, ritual, call and response, notes in a scale, words in a sentence. Human connection and security lie here.
Sarah Krasnostein (The Trauma Cleaner: One Woman's Extraordinary Life in the Business of Death, Decay, and Disaster)
You should never spend any customer acquisition marketing efforts or dollars on sending visitors to your online store.
Tanner Larsson (Ecommerce Evolved: The Essential Playbook To Build, Grow & Scale A Successful Ecommerce Business)
Stewart Brand: It had great continuity and those people stayed in touch online for decades and all that. But it ossified… Fabrice Florin: And a lot of the intellectuals that were sharing ideas on The Well went on to branch out into different areas. But you can really trace back a lot of the origins of this new movement to The Well. A lot of the folks were there. Howard Rheingold: I remember I got a friend request on Facebook early from Steve Case and I said, “I know who you are. But why do you want to friend me?” And he said, “Oh, I lurked on The Well from the beginning.” So I think, yes, it did influence things. Larry Brilliant: Steve Jobs was on it—Steve had a fake name and he lurked. Howard Rheingold: Steve Jobs, Steve Case, Craig Newmark: They would all say that they were informed by their experiences on The Well. Fabrice Florin: The Well was the birthplace of the online community. Larry Brilliant: All that goes back to Steve giving me the computer, letting me use it in Nepal, the experience I had with his software to access the satellite, and then coming back and Steve seeing what Seva-Talk could be. We showed it to hundreds of people and nobody saw anything in it. Steve got it immediately. Fabrice Florin: And Stewart basically gave the technology a set of values and ethics that all the developers could share. They already had their own hacker ethic, but he helped to amplify it and bring people together. And then it became big business, and it was hard for intellectuals to be the primary driving force anymore. It became the businesspeople who started driving it. Which is understandable given the scale and scope of what happened. It just became too large for intellectuals to hold.
Adam Fisher (Valley of Genius: The Uncensored History of Silicon Valley (As Told by the Hackers, Founders, and Freaks Who Made It Boom))
But prioritizing speed over efficiency—even in the face of uncertainty—is especially important when your business model depends on having lots of members and getting feedback from them. If you get in early and start getting that feedback and your competitors don’t, then you’re on the path to success. In any business where scale really matters, getting in early and doing it fast can make the difference.
Reid Hoffman (Blitzscaling: The Lightning-Fast Path to Building Massively Valuable Companies)
Approximately 40 percent of CEOs are MBAs.2 Many large-scale studies have found that leadership based solely on MBA-trained logic is not enough for delivering long-term sustainable financial and cultural results, and that it often is detrimental to an organization’s productivity. In one study, researchers compared the organizational performance of 440 CEOs who had been celebrated on the covers of magazines like BusinessWeek, Fortune, and Forbes. The researchers split the CEOs into two groups—those with an MBA and those without an MBA—and then monitored their performance for seven years. Surprisingly, the performance of those with an MBA was significantly worse.3 Another study published in the Journal of Business Ethics looked at the results of more than five thousand CEOs and came to a similar conclusion.4
Rasmus Hougaard (The Mind of the Leader: How to Lead Yourself, Your People, and Your Organization for Extraordinary Results)
By 2008, storm clouds were gathering over Microsoft. PC shipments, the financial lifeblood of Microsoft, had leveled off. Meanwhile sales of Apple and Google smartphones and tablets were on the rise, producing growing revenues from search and online advertising that Microsoft hadn’t matched. Meanwhile, Amazon had quietly launched Amazon Web Services (AWS), establishing itself for years to come as a leader in the lucrative, rapidly growing cloud services business. The logic behind the advent of the cloud was simple and compelling. The PC Revolution of the 1980s, led by Microsoft, Intel, Apple, and others, had made computing accessible to homes and offices around the world. The 1990s had ushered in the client/server era to meet the needs of millions of users who wanted to share data over networks rather than on floppy disks. But the cost of maintaining servers in an ever-growing sea of data—and the advent of businesses like Amazon, Office 365, Google, and Facebook—simply outpaced the ability for servers to keep up. The emergence of cloud services fundamentally shifted the economics of computing. It standardized and pooled computing resources and automated maintenance tasks once done manually. It allowed for elastic scaling up or down on a self-service, pay-as-you-go basis. Cloud providers invested in enormous data ​centers around the world and then rented them out at a lower cost per user. This was the Cloud Revolution. Amazon was one of the first to cash in with AWS. They figured out early on that the same cloud infrastructure they used to sell books, movies, and other retail items could be rented, like a time-share, to other businesses and startups at a much lower price than it would take for each company to build its own cloud. By June 2008, Amazon already had 180,000 developers building applications and services for their cloud platform. Microsoft did not yet have a commercially viable cloud platform. All of this spelled trouble for Microsoft. Even before the Great Recession of 2008, our stock had begun a downward slide. In a long-planned move, Bill Gates left the company that year to focus on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. But others were leaving, too. Among them, Kevin Johnson, president of the Windows and online services business, announced he would leave to become CEO of Juniper Networks. In their letter to shareholders that year, Bill and Steve Ballmer noted that Ray Ozzie, creator of Lotus Notes, had been named the company’s new Chief Software Architect (Bill’s old title), reflecting the fact that a new generation of leaders was stepping up in areas like online advertising and search. There was no mention of the cloud in that year’s shareholder letter, but, to his credit, Steve had a game plan and a wider view of the playing field.
Satya Nadella (Hit Refresh: The Quest to Rediscover Microsoft's Soul and Imagine a Better Future for Everyone)
You hired for scale too soon. The most consistently wrong advice that venture capitalists and executive recruiters give CEOs is to hire someone “bigger” than required. “Think about the next three to five years and how you will be a large company” is how the bad advice usually sounds.
Ben Horowitz (The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers)
A company might employ different types of scaling at different points in its life cycle. The canonical sequence that companies like Google and Facebook have gone through begins with classic start-up growth while establishing product/market fit, then shifts into blitzscaling to achieve critical mass and/or market dominance ahead of the competition, then relaxes down to fastscaling as the business matures, and finally downshifts to classic scale-up growth when the company is an established industry leader. Together, this sequence of scaling generates a classic “S-curve” of growth, with slower initial growth followed by rapid acceleration, eventually easing its way into a gentle plateau.
Reid Hoffman (Blitzscaling: The Lightning-Fast Path to Building Massively Valuable Companies)
If you don’t give your team permission to fail, you’re not giving them permission to innovate.
Matt Blumberg (Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business, + Website)
success isn’t measured by your lack of stumbles but by the quality of your recoveries.
Matt Blumberg (Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business, + Website)
Making it good at scale means admitting that it must be different and embracing the changes that you’ll need to make to keep things from falling apart.
Ben Horowitz (The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers)
What’s more, when Grant plotted total revenue over the three months against employees’ scores on the 1-to-7 scale, he found a distinct, and revealing, pattern. Indeed, revenue peaked between 4 and 4.5—and fell off as the personality moved toward either the introvert or extravert pole. Those highest in extraversion fared scarcely better than those highest in introversion, but both lagged behind their coworkers in the modulated middle.31 “These findings call into question the longstanding belief that the most productive salespeople are extraverted,” Grant writes.32 Instead, being too extraverted can actually impair performance, as other research has begun to confirm. For example, two recent Harvard Business Review studies of sales professionals found that top performers are less gregarious than below-average ones and that the most sociable salespeople are often the poorest performers of all.33 According to a large study of European and American customers, the “most destructive” behavior of salespeople wasn’t being ill-informed. It was an excess of assertiveness and zeal that led to contacting customers too frequently.34 Extraverts, in other words, often stumble over themselves. They can talk too much and listen too little, which dulls their understanding of others’ perspectives. They can fail to strike the proper balance between asserting and holding back, which can be read as pushy and drive people away.* The answer, though, isn’t to lurch to the opposite side of the spectrum. Introverts have their own, often reverse, challenges. They can be too shy to initiate and too timid to close. The best approach is for the people on the ends to emulate those in the center. As some have noted, introverts are “geared to inspect,” while extraverts are “geared to respond.”35 Selling of any sort—whether traditional sales or non-sales selling—requires a delicate balance of inspecting and responding. Ambiverts can find that balance. They know when to speak up and when to shut up. Their wider repertoires allow them to achieve harmony with a broader range of people and a more varied set of circumstances. Ambiverts are the best movers because they’re the most skilled attuners. For most of you, this should be welcome news. Look again at the shape of the curve in that second chart. That’s pretty much what the distribution of introverts and extraverts looks like in the wider population.36 A few of us are extraverts. A few of us are introverts. But most of us are ambiverts, sitting near the middle, not the edges, happily attuned to those around us. In some sense, we are born to sell.
Daniel H. Pink (To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others)
To keep this from happening, establish a culture of Yes. Growing companies spawn chaos, which most managers try to control by creating more processes. While some of these processes may be necessary to help the company scale, they should be delayed for as long as possible. Set the bar high for that new process or approval gate; make sure there are very compelling business reasons for it to be created. We like this quote from American academic and former University of Connecticut president Michael Hogan: “My first word of advice is this: Say yes. In fact, say yes as often as you can. Saying yes begins things. Saying yes is how things grow. Saying yes leads to new experiences, and new experiences will lead you to knowledge and wisdom. … An attitude of yes is how you will be able to go forward in these uncertain times.”48 A few years ago the former head of YouTube, Salar
Eric Schmidt (How Google Works)
Binet himself worried about the potential misuse of the tests he designed. He insisted they were not a measurement, properly speaking. He argued that intelligence comes in many different forms, only some of them testable by his or by any test. His understanding of different skills, aptitudes, or forms of intelligence was probably closer to that of educator Howard Gardner’s concept of “multiple intelligences” than to anything like a rigid, measurable standard reducible to a single numerical score.21 His words of caution fell on deaf ears. Less than a year after Binet’s death in 1911, the German psychologist William Stern argued that one could take the scores on Binet’s standardized tests, calculate them against the age of the child tested, and come up with one number that defined a person’s “intelligence quotient” (IQ).22 Adapted in 1916 by Lewis Terman of Stanford University and renamed the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale, this method, along with Binet’s test, became the gold standard for measuring not aptitude or progress but innate mental capacity, IQ. This was what Binet had feared. Yet his test and that metric continue to be used today, not descriptively as a relative gauge of academic potential, but as a purportedly scientific grading of innate intelligence.
Cathy N. Davidson (Now You See It: How Technology and Brain Science Will Transform Schools and Business for the 21s t Century)
Networks inherently bring a unique challenge. When value moves in a straight line (as in the case of pipes), it can move in only one direction.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
Your aliveness is going down because you are committing suicide in installments.” Involvement need not necessarily mean that you have to go and do something. You can just look at people and be involved. You can look at the sky and be involved. You can look at every life and be involved. You can close your eyes and still be involved. Involvement is not an act, it is a certain willingness towards life – you have become willing to the process of life. If you get identified, you are becoming unwilling to the process of life – you are only willing in selection, you are not willing with the rest of life. It is this unwillingness which is scaling down the aliveness in a human being.
Sadguru (Mind is your Business)
In the quest to transform into platforms, organizations must shift from a culture of dollar absorption to a culture of data absorption.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
Startups – as well as enterprises – building platforms, often make the error of engineering viral growth before designing the right incentives for users to stay on in an engaged fashion.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
ensure that reverse network effects do not set in, platforms need to ensure that access and creative control, as well as curation and customization, scale well as the platform
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
You as the leader should have a Function Accountability Chart (FAC) to help CEOs and managers to see clearly the person who is accountable for each role and key positions. It should also show the metrics or key performance indicators assigned for each of the main functions of the business. Each item on the Profit & Loss, and Balance Sheet should be assigned to specific people who are accountable for these roles. Each team should know their responsibilities, accountabilities and who they are answerable
Emily Goldstein (Scaling Up: The Secrets You Should Know to Make Your Business Grow Exponentially)
On platforms, the business does not create the end value; rather, the business only enables value creation. As a result, participants on the platform take on production as well as consumption roles.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
The goal is to reverse the first law of entrepreneurial gravity and develop a viable business model in which the faster you grow, the more cash you generate — through larger deposits, faster collections, shorter sales and delivery cycles, etc. Then you’ve built a company that can self-fund its own growth.
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
independent of the normal planning and budgeting processes, to allow bottom-up ideas to flourish. “No one has ever before brought together such a global and diverse set of business thought leaders on this scale to discuss the most pressing issues and opportunities of our age,” says Nick Donofrio, IBM’s executive vice president of innovation and technology. “We have companies literally knocking at the door and saying, ‘Give us your best and brightest ideas, and let’s work together to make them a reality.’ It’s a golden opportunity to create entirely new markets and partnerships.
Harvard Business School Press (HBR's 10 Must Reads on Innovation (with featured article "The Discipline of Innovation," by Peter F. Drucker))
consider a young Tunisian man pushing a wooden handcart loaded with fruits and vegetables down a dusty road to a market in the Tunisian town of Sidi Bouzid. When the man was three, his father died. He supports his family by borrowing money to fill his cart, hoping to earn enough selling the produce to pay off the debt and have a little left over. It’s the same grind every day. But this morning, the police approach the man and say they’re going to take his scales because he has violated some regulation. He knows it’s a lie. They’re shaking him down. But he has no money. A policewoman slaps him and insults his dead father. They take his scales and his cart. The man goes to a town office to complain. He is told the official is busy in a meeting. Humiliated, furious, powerless, the man leaves. He returns with fuel. Outside the town office he douses himself, lights a match, and burns. Only the conclusion of this story is unusual. There are countless poor street vendors in Tunisia and across the Arab world. Police corruption is rife, and humiliations like those inflicted on this man are a daily occurrence. They matter to no one aside from the police and their victims. But this particular humiliation, on December 17, 2010, caused Mohamed Bouazizi, aged twenty-six, to set himself on fire, and Bouazizi’s self-immolation sparked protests. The police responded with typical brutality. The protests spread. Hoping to assuage the public, the dictator of Tunisia, President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, visited Bouazizi in the hospital. Bouazizi died on January 4, 2011. The unrest grew. On January 14, Ben Ali fled to a cushy exile in Saudi Arabia, ending his twenty-three-year kleptocracy. The Arab world watched, stunned. Then protests erupted in Egypt, Libya, Syria, Jordan, Kuwait, and Bahrain. After three decades in power, the Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak was driven from office. Elsewhere, protests swelled into rebellions, rebellions into civil wars. This was the Arab Spring—and it started with one poor man, no different from countless others, being harassed by police, as so many have been, before and since, with no apparent ripple effects. It is one thing to look backward and sketch a narrative arc, as I did here, connecting Mohamed Bouazizi to all the events that flowed out of his lonely protest. Tom Friedman, like many elite pundits, is skilled at that sort of reconstruction, particularly in the Middle East, which he knows so well, having made his name in journalism as a New York Times correspondent in Lebanon. But could even Tom Friedman, if he had been present that fatal morning, have peered into the future and foreseen the self-immolation, the unrest, the toppling of the Tunisian dictator, and all that followed? Of course not. No one could. Maybe, given how much Friedman knew about the region, he would have mused that poverty and unemployment were high, the number of desperate young people was growing, corruption was rampant, repression was relentless, and therefore Tunisia and other Arab countries were powder kegs waiting to blow. But an observer could have drawn exactly the same conclusion the year before. And the year before that. Indeed, you could have said that about Tunisia, Egypt, and several other countries for decades. They may have been powder kegs but they never blew—until December 17, 2010, when the police pushed that one poor man too far.
Philip E. Tetlock (Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction)
It’s between $1 million and $10 million that the team needs to focus on cash. Growth sucks cash, and since this is the first time the company will make a tenfold jump in size, the demands for cash will soar. In addition, at this stage of organizational development, the company is still trying to figure out its unique position in the marketplace, and these experiments (or mistakes) can be costly. This is when the cash model of the business needs to be worked out (e.g., “How is the business model going to generate sufficient cash for the company to keep growing?”).
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
We are in the business of enabling interactions.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
Then you need to evaluate all the key relationships surrounding the business. Would you keep all your existing customers? Are you happy with your investors/bank? Are your vendors supporting you properly? Are your advisors — accountants, lawyers, consultants, and coaches — the best for the size of the organization and future plans? The toughest decisions to make are when the company has outgrown some of these relationships and you need to make changes.
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
I understood that customers needed solutions, not products
Martin Norbury (I Don't Work Fridays - Proven strategies to scale your business and not be a slave to it)
The ability of a business to scale is determined by its ability to aggregate the inputs to business – labor and resources – and coordinate them efficiently toward value creation and delivery.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
The reality is that most companies already have systems or ways of working (to varying levels of competence), but most simply do not follow them.
Martin Norbury (I Don't Work Fridays - Proven strategies to scale your business and not be a slave to it)
In the words of Paul Johnson: The Temple, now, in Herod’s1 version, rising triumphantly over Jerusalem, was an ocular reminder that Judaism was about Jews and their history—not about anyone else. Other gods flew across the deserts from the East without much difficulty, jettisoning the inconvenient and embarrassing accretions from their past, changing, as it were, their accents and manners as well as their names. But the God of the Jews was still alive and roaring in his Temple, demanding blood, making no attempt to conceal his racial and primitive origins. Herod’s fabric was elegant, modern, sophisticated—he had, indeed, added some Hellenic decorative effects much resented by fundamentalist Jews who constantly sought to destroy them—but nothing could hide the essential business of the Temple, which was the ritual slaughter, consumption, and combustion of sacrificial cattle on a gigantic scale. The place was as vast as a small city. There were literally thousands of priests, attendants, temple-soldiers, and minions. To the unprepared visitor, the dignity and charity of Jewish disapora life, the thoughtful comments and homilies of the Alexandrian synagogue, was quite lost amid the smoke of the pyres, the bellows of terrified beasts, the sluices of blood, the abattoir stench, the unconcealed and unconcealable machinery of tribal religion inflated by modern wealth to an industrial scale. Sophisticated Romans who knew the Judaism of the diaspora found it hard to understand the hostility towards Jews shown by colonial officials who, behind a heavily-armed escort, had witnessed Jerusalem at festival time. Diaspora Judaism, liberal and outward-minded, contained the matrix of a universal religion, but only if it could be cut off from its barbarous origins; and how could so thick and sinewy an umbilical cord be severed? This description of “Herod’s” Temple (actually the Second Temple, built in the sixth century B.C. and rebuilt by Herod) is more than a bit overwrought. The God of the Jews did not roar in his Temple: the insoluble problem was that, since the destruction of the First Temple and, with it, the Ark of the Covenant, God had ceased to be present in his Temple. Nor would animal sacrifice have disgusted the gentiles, since Greeks, Romans, and all ancient peoples offered such sacrifices (though one cannot help wondering whether, had the Second Temple not been destroyed, it would today be ringed from morn to night by indignant animal-rights activists). But Johnson is right to emphasize that Judaism, in its mother city, could display a sweaty tribalism that gentiles would only find unattractive. The partisan, argumentative ambience of first-century Jerusalem, not unlike the atmosphere of the ultra-Orthodox pockets of the contemporary city, could repel any outsider, whether gentile or diaspora Jew. Perhaps most important is Johnson’s shrewd observation that Judaism “contained the matrix of a universal religion.” By this time, the more percipient inhabitants of the Greco-Roman world had come to the conclusion that polytheism, whatever manifestation it might assume, was seriously flawed. The Jews alone, by offering monotheism, offered a unitive vision, not the contradictory and flickering epiphanies of a fanciful pantheon of gods and goddesses. But could Judaism adapt to gentile needs, could it lose its foreign accent and outlandish manners? No one saw the opportunity more clearly than Luke; his gospel and its sequel, the Acts of the Apostles, present a Jesus and a Jesus Movement specifically tailored to gentile sensibility.
Thomas Cahill (Desire of the Everlasting Hills: The World Before & After Jesus)
Lesson to Learn Natural talent alone will rarely be enough to get anyone to their goals. You need to work really hard to achieve anything in life.
Martin Norbury (I Don't Work Fridays - Proven strategies to scale your business and not be a slave to it)
Thinking is the hardest work to do, that’s why so few people are engaged in it.’ HENRY FORD
Martin Norbury (I Don't Work Fridays - Proven strategies to scale your business and not be a slave to it)
Why Web Positioning Systems are the exercises significant consequences? Look Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the lack of time in this impressive small businesses. Every order is the existence of control of the Internet, and the strengthening of the current market on the Internet considerably contains. Optimizing websites can help to live the derivatives market by helping their sites high in engines rank and it is only seen with. It's a tough professional needs of innovation and technology towards help in their own remain in the Supreme. There are many Internet-participation optimize the management of such times and exercises SEO system most is currently running. Look well trained Engine Optimization specialists have everything apart. They do not scale particularly heavy industry, organizations, and the smaller size you use SEO provider to improve the organization of small businesses. Why, in fact, he should have a part of the program is the search engine optimization?
To grow a business successfully you need to let the system deliver the excellent result – not the people.
Martin Norbury (I Don't Work Fridays - Proven strategies to scale your business and not be a slave to it)
Do you have consistent sources of cash, ideally generated internally, to fuel the growth of your business?
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
Cash is the oxygen that fuels growth. And the cash conversion cycle (CCC) is a key performance indicator (KPI) that measures how long it takes for a dollar spent on anything (rent, utilities, marketing, payroll, etc.) to make its way through your business and back into your pocket. In
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
We are increasingly moving into the business of enabling efficient social and business interactions, mediated by software.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
Ecosystems are the key enablers of value creation on platforms and a new source of competitive advantage.
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)
Larry E. Greiner’s classic Harvard Business Review article titled “Evolution and Revolution as Organizations Grow,
Verne Harnish (Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0))
Albert, friend to royalty,” Beatrix said later at the Rutledge Hotel, laughing as she sat on the floor of their suite and examined the new collar. “I hope you don’t get above yourself, and put on airs.” “Not around your family, he won’t,” Christopher said, stripping off his coat and waistcoat, and removing his cravat. He lowered himself to the settee, relishing the coolness of the room. Albert went to drink from his bowl of water, lapping noisily. Beatrix went to Christopher, stretched full length atop him, and braced her arms on his chest. “I was so proud of you today,” she said, smiling down at him. “And perhaps a tiny bit smug that with all the women swooning and sighing over you, I’m the one you went home with.” Arching a brow, Christopher asked, “Only a tiny bit smug?” “Oh, very well. Enormously smug.” She began to play with his hair. “Now that all this medal business is done with, I have something to discuss with you.” Closing his eyes, Christopher enjoyed the sensation of her fingers stroking his scalp. “What is it?” “What would you say to adding a new member to the family?” This was not an unusual question. Since they had established a household at Riverton, Beatrix had increased the size of her menagerie, and was constantly occupied with animal-related charities and concerns. She had also compiled a report for the newly established natural history society in London. For some reason it had not been at all difficult to convince the group of elderly entomologists, ornithologists, and other naturalists to include a pretty young woman in their midst. Especially when it became clear that Beatrix could talk for hours about migration patterns, plant cycles, and other matters relating to animal habitats and behavior. There was even discussion of Beatrix’s joining a board to form a new natural history museum, to provide a lady’s perspective on various aspects of the project. Keeping his eyes closed, Christopher smiled lazily. “Fur, feathers, or scales?” he asked in response to her earlier question. “None of those.” “God. Something exotic. Very well, where will this creature come from? Will we have to go to Australia to collect it? Iceland? Brazil?” A tremor of laughter went through her. “It’s already here, actually. But you won’t be able to view it for, say…eight more months.” Christopher’s eyes flew open. Beatrix was smiling down at him, looking shy and eager and more than a little pleased with herself. “Beatrix.” He turned carefully so that she was underneath him. His hand came to cradle the side of her face. “You’re sure?” She nodded. Overwhelmed, Christopher covered her mouth with his, kissing her fiercely. “My love…precious girl…” “It’s what you wanted, then?” she asked between kisses, already knowing the answer. Christopher looked down at her through a bright sheen of joy that made everything blurred and radiant. “More than I ever dreamed. And certainly more than I deserve.” Beatrix’s arms slid around his neck. “I’ll show you what you deserve,” she informed him, and pulled his head down to hers again.
Lisa Kleypas (Love in the Afternoon (The Hathaways, #5))
Everything old is new again! The answers lie in using the old to interpret the new!
Sangeet Paul Choudary (Platform Scale: How an emerging business model helps startups build large empires with minimum investment)