- Roommate: Man, I just want to go out and talk to people.
- Me: Yeah, you get to make so many new friends and learn so much.
- Roommate: I don't even care about making friends, I just want to talk to people!
This was a big AHA! moment for me. I started thinking about what really is (a) business? I started with a company and then started eliminating everything that was not a core function, i.e. everything that could be outsourced.
It starts with the idea, and then a cycle ensues. (A very simplistic and artistic diagram is below)
I know this cycle isn’t complete, but I stopped once I realized that everything could be outsourced. You can even outsource the management and coordination of these functions in the cycle and still (legally) remain the owner of the business!
The only thing that remains then, is the idea. The first Idea. So, to start a business, you don’t need expertise in any of the above functions. Other people can take care of that for you. All you need is the idea. (Also a competitive advantage and the
If all the above is true, why do they call it business school? You don’t need an education to have an idea, only an awareness of the world and its problems.
They should call it marketing school and accounting school and manufacturing school, because they is what they are actually educating you for.
I watched a documentary about a bunch of people that got laid off and how it changed their lives. The documentary is called “Lemonade.” probably from the saying about life giving you lemons…
The people in the movie testified as to how their lives were stuck in their jobs and careers–and they had no time for anything else. Getting laid off was a blessing–some started businesses, some spent more time at home, and one even changed genders.
I’m just happier
The thing that’s the most dangerous is not to do anything
My name is Kurtis Glaid and I got laid off from a big ad agency… and it’s awesome *laughs*
Getting laid off was not a bad thing… Now is like a world of possibilities
I got laid off and I’m finally doing something that matters.
I was reflecting on my recent decision to resign from the UW-W CEO Board of Directors and realized that I wasn’t getting enough value from the meetings at CEO, and further…the board of directors was counterintuitive of entrepreneurial spirit. So, I wrote this.
Seth Godin talked about the difference between hunters and farmers.
Farmers like to sit in class, meetings, and lectures and take the time to let the knowledge become ripe. They like to be sure of success before taking action. (There’s nothing wrong with this, just a preference.)
Hunters like action. They like to learn by application and on-the-go. They don’t want to spend time listening, when the could learn the same thing by doing. They are just as scared of failure most of the time, but have much shorter memories and can move on much faster than farmers.
The Purpose of an Entrepreneurship Club
An entrepreneurial organization exists to FIND/TRAIN/BUILD/CREATE/ENCOURAGE individuals
with entrepreneurial tendencies.
The current model for student organizations is standardized: guest speakers and pizza parties. There is a lot of learning and education and networking, but it is target towards farmers who are accumulating knowledge for later harvesting.
An individual with entrepreneurial tendencies is a hunter. He/she does not want to sit and listen (or either of those on their own). The very idea of a chair is daunting. The only way to balance a lack of physical dynamism is to go overboard on mental dynamism. An experienced entrepreneur could probably find a business idea in the dead bug under his table. So the standard model works for him/her. The TRAINEE, on the other hand, needs further guidance.
Eliminate the Board of Directors
The first thing I would do to focus on creating entrepreneurs is get rid of the standard board of directors. You cannot create an entrepreneur in a structure of leaders and followers. A different model is required. I’m sure it is possible, but I can’t think of an effective way to COMPLETELY eliminate the board though, so I’m going to edit it to…MINIMIZE the amount of people in charge. 2-4 should be more than enough.
Please…..no slideshows.. (especially because most of the people who would agree to speak to a student organization are either terrible at making slide shows, or use the same ones they use for corporate presentations.) Fastest way to put us to sleep.
Bring in professional speakers who have good presentation skills, even if what they say is useless. Entrepreneurs need stimulation, NOT information, at meetings–they’ll find whatever information they need on the internet or on their own time.
Get a list of entrepreneurs or business owners (NOT managers or executives) and do random matching. Even a speed-dating type thing. Entrepreneurs naturally think of questions to ask, but it’s too easy to get lost in the crowd and forgo opportunities that arise in group sessions.
Entrepreneurs have to be able to do business on the run–the mobile scene is quickly becoming huge. Brick and mortar is becoming obsolete in more and more industries. On the same note, club meetings shouldn’t take place in a classroom (remember the desk/chair phobia?). Everything can be done remotely, but there is still value in meeting up. I would just vary the setting every time, to get rid of every remnant of standardization.
Yesterday, I presented my grand idea of intra-college student networking to the College of Business Dean’s Advisory Council. I’m not sure I did a good job of explaining the concept of my idea, so I figured I’d write it down. I’m giving a similar presentation next week to apply the same concept on an intra-university level, and I figured I’d write it down and see if I could explain it here.
I start my spiel…
I’ve been in a university setting for almost three years now, and I’ve noticed something…the systems in place in college don’t match up with the systems outside university. When the “real world” recruited students to work the 9-5s, the system worked perfectly. Today, no no no.
My primary concern was the isolation of each student organization. I drew Image 1 on the whiteboard to explain the current system of networking. Each big circle is a college, the smaller circles inside are student organizations. There are 3 problems with the picture below:
- All the intelligence and knowledge that is being harvested at UW-W is being redirected to other campuses
- Outside the university setting, this isolation model is simply not applicable. The Marketing department will constantly be in touch with the Finance department, HR will often communicate with Accounting.
- There is no connection between organizations on the UWW campus. Each organization is isolated from the other.
Instead, the model should be more like Image 2; one of INTRAcollege networking. A system that allows students to network both inside and outside their field.
How to create this system? Specialization and outsourcing. Guess what…that’s EXACTLY the system that is dominating in the “real world” right now. I suggested that organizations outsource their website maintenance to an IT org, outsource their marketing to the marketing org, outsource their accounting to the accounting org, and so on.
Someone asked the question, “well, we don’t need to do that…we already have IT students and accounting students and marketing students in our org who help us do that…”
Well…that’s another problem in the system don’t you think? Organizations open themselves to all majors because they value quantity over quality. Consequently, the function of the organization is scattered and out of focus, and in the end, imperfect.
I went to an event last night to learn all about dining etiquette in a business/interview environment. Jim Allen, Director of Catering at Chartwells was the speaker/demonstrator. I got a free dinner out of it, and some great tips. I took notes too…so here they are:
First rule: Common sense is the best judge.
Styles of venue: American, European, Russian (in order from least to most formal).
Invitation: Only the person on the card is invited. You have 2 days to respond.
Dress Conservative. Don’t stand out in this area. No cologne. too many people allergic. Minimal, if you must. Should not be able to smell it unless you’re being hugged.
Arrival: Home: Five minute window from time on card to plus 5 minutes. Restaurant:Get there early and wait in lobby for host(s).
First thing you do when you sit down: Put your napkin on your lap!
Small talk: Pre-plan three safe subjects. No politics. only general sports.
Ordering: Stick with easy foods, known foods. From middle third of menu. Follow hosts lead on pricing. DO NOT TRUMP host.
Eating: Wait for host to start.
Silverware start from outside settings, then move in.
Soup (we had tomato basil): Dip spoon in sideways and scoop away from you. Sip from the side of spoon. Don’t slurp.
Paying Don’t offer to pay. Host’s responsibility.
Ending: All rules apply even if host says its a “casual” meeting.
Do your research on host/company before you go.
And if you didn’t believe me..here’s the notes I took on the back of the welcome sheet: (definitely not polite to take notes on your lap at a formal event…)