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Have a go. Seed some idea's and take a weekend to consider.


Use this to ensure that the next business you start, or join, ticks ALL boxes. You'll be surprised about the nuances that an activity like this can bring - such as - none of my choices below align with a startup...


What is my perfect business, the one that serves ME the most?


What is my perfect business consist of:

  • Variety

  • Complex challenges 

  • Future scenarios/ Big tailwinds

  • A core/ happy customer base

  • Some scale-ability

  • Driven people who learn quickly

  • A big vision


What serves me:

  • Creativity‘

  • World firsts’

  • Working with people I love and respect 

  • Fixing problems 

  • Flexibility 

  • To be paid what I deserve 

  • The ability to have a laugh and or a break without guilt


What is my perfect role in that business:

  • Strategy - opportunities, threats, positioning, key stakeholders

  • People - hiring, inspiring, guiding

  • Structures - setting up best practices and thought guides and allowing staff to own and evolve them

J

  • Jock

I watched something on youtube recently from Jordan Peterson about reviewing your life in six epochs and using it to release the past and use the learnings for the future.

I found it quite interesting: https://thedeepdish.org/self-authoring-review-jordan-peterson/


Here is mine (I've removed some names and last names for sensitivity purposes). This is of-course v1 and I continually think of things each day to add.


I found a good way to prompt memories was to play music that was from that epoch...

1. Papua New Guinea and Manilla

What things I remember

● Spending time on the farm

● Always over fed

● No technology

● Absolute freedom

● Feeling less physically gifted than the others

● Nannies

● Swimming

● Dressing up and feeling free about it

● Sweet things

● Being naked all the time

● Presents



What major emotional things I remember

● Annihilating myself on the pushbike down the gravel

● Picking up the melted bar

● Feeling like I was black

● Feeling free

● No anxiety about anything

● Feeling lesser than the others * admiring their contentment

● Feeling like a king

● Expectations


How did they affect me

● Longterm feeling of connection to developing world

● An appreciation of non-technology based creativity

● A sense of belonging

● Built greed

● Discontentment

● A feeling developed that I was different to everyone


What I would have done differently or not

● Stayed more in touch and visited more often

● Forgiven Mikey

● Spent more time appreciating culture instead of consuming

How I learned for the next epoch

● I learned how to accept and make friends with any kind of person

● I learned to be myself and love that at all times

● To not show off


2. Primary school

What things I remember

● Ruchy

● Zest for life

● Waking up early

● Loving sport

● Excitement for little things - cheese tv, secret lollipops

● Changing houses a lot

● Changing nannies a lot

● Changing dogs a lot

● Dad never there

● Mum missed every birthday

● Friday night swimming

● Wests rugby

● My core friends justin, jack, clive and playing halo

● Choosing after school care - just loving playing


What major emotional things I remember

● Never being good enough at rugby for dad

● Getting caught for stealing

● First crush - Jacqui

● The difficulty of choosing the school to attend


How did they affect me

● A feeling developed of having to be the best at everything and showing off

What I would have done differently or not

● Kept friends that went to separate schools closer

● Stopped caring about winning and help others so that we could be the best as a group

How I learned for the next epoch

● Most friends don’t last forever

● You can’t win everything


3. High School

What things I remember

● Excitement of getting into wesley - but lewy got moved

● Meeting Wadey

● Owning rugby - but resting on laurels

● Consistent injuries

● Joining water polo and finding the friends I really gelled with

● Not being good enough at waterpolo for dad

● Politics in sports

● Being friends with all-but-four kids at school

● How private boys school makes you nervous with girls

● Rolling up my pants due to the heat

● Getting out of trouble

● Fighting other schools on the weekends

● 5ths cricket and 3rds bball - doing sport for fun

● Playing wow 24/7

● Being the best at computer games

● Having my own unit

● Nights with the guys when the parent are away and struggling to convince girls to come over

● Realising that I am not smart - I can just memorise and remember patterns, I am way more creative

● Realising the power of doing the subject you enjoy

● Finding Gym and my advancement in getting big compared to others

● Finding a role-model-and soon not-to-be - big middas

● Finding people on my level of crazy or different - stevo (maybe more)


What major emotional things I remember

● Never understanding why girls didnt like me - Full body transformation

● Hurting my back - taking me out of my cycle and using as an excuse for rugby

● Giving up on waterpolo because I didn’t like training

● Beginning to understand how people can let you down - Duncan kicking me in polo, Alex ditching me because of Bek


How did they affect me

● I built this absolute intensity and hatred/ resentment for everything that wasn’t on my team or the way I wanted it

● Intensity showed me how to get further with fitness and built work ethic I never had

● I grew my superiority complex

What I would have done differently or not

● Been less of a cunt to people close to me

● Not given up on waterpolo

● Started my back recovery early and finishing off y12 rugby properly

● Be more confident and comfortable inside


How I learned for the next epoch

● Looking good gets you far

● Being ‘friends’ with a lot of people gets you far

● Hard work gets you far


4. PT and Steel fixing

What things I remember

● Work hard so you never have to steel fix again

● I couldn’t accept people not trying hard

● I found it hard to sell something I didn’t really care about

● Friday night RE and rum draft


What major emotional things I remember

● Realisation of how much I hate old school macho shit

● How running a service based company is not the way to go

● Realising how much I can learn about a subject when I am truly into it - nutrition, lifting etc.

● That I didn’t even think twice about going to Europe - friends, family, anything


How did they affect me

● Beginning to see how full-time work is different from people at uni and the drifting it causes

● Created my complex of stagnation - do you know how hard it is to just sit there lifting steel

What I would have done differently or not

● Nothing actually - maybe that one time at steel fixing I would have actually punched Kevo

How I learned for the next epoch

● -


5. Europe and shoes

What things I remember

● Emily

● Meeting Charlsey and doing crazy gambling and clubbing

● Building the chelsea players houses in Ikea

● Realising how lucky I was to be at my age but living in the same house as 30 year olds

● Abercrombie and fitch - how much I hated that fakeness

● All girls and gay guys at shoe school - become best friends with girls only - realising that’s who i grewup with and looked after me and make me feel safe

● Being completely odd - but realising the potential of leveraging it

● The winter made me feel like I was on holidays

● Meeting my closest friends - shay, witty

● I was completely obsessed with training - and it got in the way of my enjoyment

● Falling in love with bek

● Convincing stores and shows to be the world’s first - Premierre classe tuelleries

● Why factories could never make what I dreamt of

● Living in Rimini on the beach in the 1 star and going to the beach gym and riding a bike to the factory

● Living in the kempinski in Geneva

● Being in Awe of Phillippe - but feeling like I wasn’t being brought on the journey

● Finding who I wanted to be my mentor in Xavier - but not getting support

● Hanging with Coco and Charles and seeing how guys like that love life

● Realising how much fashion is just absolute bullshit and everyone is fake

● How building meaningful relationships with people in business is good and bad - Grazia

● Moving to Italy to try and save the company

● Going to private showings with Dianne Von Furstenberg

● Burning down the factory

● Annihilating Philippe and recording it

● Having my first ever panic attack - montreux train station > milan


What major emotional things I remember

● Falling in and out with Bek

● Panic

● Feeling a major lack of business understanding


How did they affect me

● I still get anxiety

● I know what ‘the’ feeling is now, but still haven’t had it again

● It caused me to grow an obsession to build business understanding and processes - because no-one could ever understand the dreams I could invision except myself and I didn’t know how to help others help me execute them


What I would have done differently or not

● Not let hard work get in the way of creativity

● Understood the business model before diving in

● Worked for someone else properly first

● Been harsher in negotiation and decision making

● Kept in touch with the girls from the shoe school + philippe


How I learned for the next epoch

● I can convince people of anything/ to believe anything

● When I front a business people take notice quickly

● Home is where the heart is

● It doesn’t matter where you are or what you are doing it is who you are with that matters

● To be customer centric, not opinion centric


6. Little Tokyo Two

What things I remember

● The excitement of finding a building

● Negotiating the building cost down $600k and making promises to Michiko

● Gathering friends to build the business with and how much I loved that

● Building the whole building with chappo

● Evan not committing because damian gave him the handcuffs

● Having a unit next to the building so that I could work extra hours

● The energy I get from that kind of commitment

● The success of our opening party

● Signing our first tenants while winging everything at night based on customer tours - Urban Developer

● Not knowing our model but trying whatever we could to be cool/ add value - shucked oyster and martini nights

● Not seeing that we should have remained a creative hub and forcing other growth

● Getting our first 100 customers and doing 30k/mth > Breakeven

● Getting the email about RCL and using that to build out our future

● My struggle to hire operational people that could follow my intensity

● Firing my best friend - not knowing how to manage and coach people - having no tolerance for drugs

● Winning the capital in my flower pants and learning about the win while on the treadmill at gym

● Opening substation without doing any calculations to win that tender

● The first time I realised I could strategically analyse things way beyond anyone else - i.e how I could frame exactly what all competitors were coming to the table with, without actually knowing

● Having Florence - not knowing what I thought, committing for Erin, finding out how much I truly love Florence and having kids and how much she has taught me again about zest, relaxing, appreciating, emotion

● Seeing the future with the software and the Saas services BEYOND the space

● The difficulty of building out software the the costs associated

● Spending 20k/pm on marketing without actually knowing how marketing works or how to achieve it

● Getting too emotionally connected with staff and having them cheat us - Isaac

● Not being comfortable with stopping and making money - but continually innovating and pressing on for ‘the bigger dream’ sacrificing all business stability

● Understanding the importance of operations and structures and the fact that no-one else can work with the same intensity

● Never believing the hype - doing intense DD and testing before committing - Springfield

● Never put all your eggs in one basket - 240 queen

● How true leadership skills can get people to do things beyond what they believed possible - 4 day full business turnaround

● Taking 2 days off to talk with people about the picture and what was happening + what to expect - how powerful that was

● How being undercapitalised really does hurt growth and opportunity

● Giving away too much time and energy for free

● How important staff recruiting strategies and DD is

● How much I don’t care about what people say about me - or maybe how I can cop it without it really affecting me

● How much PR works for and against you - how PR and your last name can affect your family

● How different people deal with crisis - some hide, some cry, some reflect and move forward, some do it themselves and some need others

● How many people care about their ‘image’/’reputation’ over you - how tall poppy does exist and how there is no respect for leaving it all out there

● 10 highly skilled people can do the work of 100 normal people

● People in larger organisations can’t think or organise fast enough - Organising YBF for BM

● How small changes in peoples’ lives makes them resent you until they realise what you have to do - the Substation conversation

● Learning to read fast and learn fast is an extraordinarily important skill - for your future staff too

● Always pay your lawyers and accountants first

● Rylan + Ryan


What major emotional things I remember

● Bringing the team on the vision journey

● Finding out who has the metal to stay on through the tough stuff

● How rumours can affect people around you - Anthony, defamatory PR

● How my situation affected everyone around me rather than me

● How itchy I was to do something again

● How important it was to write and reflect


How did they affect me

● Found a lot of clarity about who I would and wouldn’t give time too in my life - both personally and who I would work with and target in business

● I’ve become extremely systematic and analytical

● I realise that I can see things that others can’t and it’s rare to have the ability to join high-level strategy/vision with execution

● I can’t sell things I don’t believe in or have buy-in with

● I have to think about my actions and how they affect my loved ones - because I am immune does not mean they are - Georgia’s comments about Fisherman’s Club

● I won’t give up my daily time with Florence

● I thrive with exercise and routine


What I would have done differently or not

● I would have done the same as Steve baxter and put Lt2 up for sale

● I would never put all my eggs in one basket

● I would have raised capital to expand our programs

● Innovation can kill

● Only build, imagine, hire and manage after you understand it first

● I would have sent a defamation letter after the first article

● I would have completed the liquidation end-to-end myself


How I learned for the next epoch

● There are strong pros and cons of big fish small pond

● Being systematic, data driven and experimental is the only way

● People who can see patterns are rare

● Blind optimism is a true thing

● Focus on core business elements only until they are a machine

● Collect money

● Take your money

● Do nothing for free

● Consider your partners before getting in bed - i.e government and how that will effect your position/ decisions moving forward

● Choose business with future scenarios and tailwinds

● Find the funding or buy-out and work backwards

Updated: Jan 23

When engaging as an interim CEO (or whatever leader / crisis management position is required) The first week with a new company consists of a meeting and drinks followed by a week of sending me documents and having calls to clarify their intentions, vision and processes.

Within a week, I can generally speak with people in the industry, read all of the documents, call past customers, call staff, look laterally at other industries and businesses with patterns that could be used/ foretasted for this business etc. and come up with some initial prioritisation actions and a list of recommendations before jumping into strategy (or usually more commonly, creating value for the future) work.


A set of priorities and recommendations could look like this.

RE CRM

  • Hubspot has X contacts.

  • Shit in shit out. Create consistent daily updates. Tag relevant people and create tasks.

  • X has done well with creating lists, however we need extra fields: type of stakeholder, how close they are to being a client, where they are based, contact owner (and who should own which contacts),

  • Where are the inbox conversations coming from? Is there a chatbot on the website?

  • Snippets for different calls - who are the different sales calls we can make

  • What success did you have with your outbound templates? I’d suggest trialling more permission based outreaches

  • What metrics should we have in dashboard? I think it should be readership of emails?

  • Strategy X Email 8.4% open rate. I’d suggest we only send highly impactful touch points:

  • Can we please look at the top view/click contacts here and add specialised info/ flags for them: 21.4% open rate:

  • Make comments and notes on all hanging fruit and tag team

  • Start the social publishing through Hubspot

  • It looks like the forms on the website are Hubspot generated - correct?

  • How accurate are the sponsorship and partnership deal pipelines in HS?

  • Let’s upload important decks to HS and send them out through HS emails - we can see exactly who views, for how long and what they click

  • Let’s create some workflows - what are the forms and workflows we could create (user stories)

  • Here’s the link to HS/ Eventbrite integration. At the bottom the other Ticketing systems are shown: Implement

  • RE the lists on X: Sponsor/ Partners - can I recreate them in deals?, What is market research?, Can we change Content mgmt to the Excel?, I guess the biggest problem with it really is the exporting - unless you can show me different? RE Airtable lists - maybe I can do it after this event? It’s not high priority - but will be better for the future. I can still link the hubspot etc.

RE Social Generally.

  • LI/Facebook.

  • Always re-share through your personal pages, it gets further outreach and is free Check re blog posting on Linkedin through company page

  • Have you tried any LI marketing? I think all of your potential Key stakeholders are there?


RE Events in general.

  • How can we make them more data driven

  • How can we make seriously exclusive content - first to know

  • How can we capture audience data

  • How can we drive the Xagenda from the needs of the key stakeholders

  • What are the core messages for the X

  • If Xis the most successful/ easiest - wouldn’t you run that in multiple countries -3/4x per year and add a day of X and a day of Xuntil they get a big enough following themselves? TBD

  • What is an X? Pay $1500gbp, venue TBD on volume, 50/50

  • What is a community event?

  • How does X stuff work?

  • Discounted for X: because they are where the data come from Fame / distributions

  • Money

  • Talent

  • Education


Promotions

  • How have the promotions worked in the past individually?

  • What’s a user study?

  • RE PR, Media, CM - how do you use them? Can you rate out of X them as supporters?

  • Discounts?


RE Budget

  • What is the X goal - and outlook - $100,000 GBP , $4361GBP

  • What is the X goal - and outlook - $200,000 , $0

  • Stage 1 recommendations

  • Leave website/ branding (I’ll learn webflow) (change colour if you want) Make small changes.

  • Start a running hubspot properly with eventbrite and entering data Yes + the app

  • Do key stakeholder interviews right away > XXX

  • Add paid XX

  • Collect data through: X, X, X)

  • Add/ validate X/ X

  • Validate for future in person at the X with iPhone online forms + follow up to data base: membership, awards night, why they came, what could be better, what they are looking for: community, talent, investment, learning, credibility, distribution: what they’d find impactful with Data capture/display/usage, segment selling, what do exhibitors get/ care about, ambassador's to refer, referral program

  • Sell and market hard - experimental and follow ups. Start with low hanging fruit, Create email chain plan to current database, LinkedIn Outbound, Paid trials

  • Let’s get a X more testimonials

  • Revert to X only, with extra 2 days of X/X (select 3/4 countries)


To-dos:

  • Hub spot training (creating dashboards) DATE:

  • Complete content page (content strategy page)

  • Complete strategy one pager

  • Strategy

  • Get memberships for data

  • World first news/ announcement/ findings

  • Enable investments

Once we have agreed as a management team, I'd then move on to organising and building the frameworks to execute the short-term goals - but also seed them with a document to begin populating about creating an agile strategy into the future.


I believe in building long-term sustainable businesses with a 10 year vision, yearly strategies, quarterly tactics and daily reviews.


After both the above and below are completed, you are off and running.


Here's what I give them to start out with.

Setting the scene.

Key questions.

What business are we in?

What kind of business do we currently run, how does it work in general, what are the pro’s and con’s.


What are the ultimate benefits we seek to deliver?

What are we actually trying to deliver, to whom, and where else could they get it.


What purpose we have to do what we do?

Why are we doing this


Where can/do we fit into the ecosystem?

Where does X and all of its assets/ elements sit in the competitive ecosystem


What are the most prevalent vision scenarios?

What are the key future outlooks that should affect our strategic decision making


What is our ultimate goal?

What are you trying to achieve with the business A) Return B) Time frame C) Impact


Secondary questions.

What are our sacred cows?

What are the big things that we have in our current arsenal that we could be leveraging further, that no-one else has.


What positive and negative past events can we recall?

What have we done/ tried in the past that worked and didn’t work well.


What constraints do we have?

Capital, skills, timing, geography, industry, social behaviour.


What opportunities do we have?

What is the list of key opportunities we currently have within reach?


What priorities do we have?

What are the short-term key priorities


What are our knowledge gaps?

What are we missing to be able to execute the larger vision


What are our personnel gaps?

What do we need to make our goals easier to reach


Forces.

What are the major external forces facing us, our industry and our business type and why?

Things like Brexit..


What are the major internal forces affecting us currently?

Things like lack of accurate data…


Who are our key stakeholders

What do we think they value and what are their hierarchy of needs?


Potential vertical map

What are the 3 major strategic verticals, what are the long, medium and short term goals / activities and how can/ could they link together so that we remain flexible.


*Ideally in this section you build a 9x9 table and fill out the ideas that could be executed for the 3 verticals but in the short, medium and long-term.


Once you had completed them - you could start drawing priority or commonality links and visibly see the agility/ interlinking between your strategic ideas sitting right in-front of you!


Ideation pages

Links to external strategy pages for your train of thought and discussion.

X

Y

Z


No pain no gain matrix

No painer

Strategies that hold well under some scenarios and are indifferent in others


No brainer

Strategies that hold well under all scenarios


No gainer

Strategies that are ill-advised under all scenarios


Big pain, big gain

Strategies that hold well under some scenarios but may be adverse under others


Testing scenarios

How and what are we going to test before we decide on a path. Test live interviewing at the X on a tablet. Create associated forms.


X inclusions

Y strategy

Z


Strategic objective outline

The story.

Revenue lines.

Products and services.

Capital and resources required.

Staffing changes and requirements.


Let me know what you think or how I could improve.


Of-course if you'd like to use anything, please do.

J