Business & tech

Investors saving money

With the current 2022 crisis, one big change seems to be investors less interested in betting on projects without a clear return on investment in the near future. 

While a part of me is afraid that this will give less opportunities for absolutely crazy ideas to grow, another bigger part of me is actually happy with that change. 

So far getting investment feels to be more profitable to people with seemingly impossible projects.

Those were either too good to be true (the bigger, the better) or based on losing a lot of money to undercut the competition. Basically creating no real value or benefit.

Theranos is the most obvious example but not the only one. I do not blame investors to be fair, they are shown extraordinary things and some biased information to say that this is easily achievable. 

Sadly, the same investment could have helped smaller but achievable projects, start-ups that would have grown and be beneficial both for society and for the investors.

Business & tech

Giving and receiving feedback

Giving and receiving feedback is something important both in day to day life and at work.
This allow us to progress and help other to do so.
However, this is always easier said than done. If not given properly it is very easy to trigger to the other person that feeling of flight or fly. Resulting in people being either defensive or completely ignoring the feedback.
Most of the responsibility reside on the person giving feedback more than on the one receiving it. Similarly to teaching, it is to the teacher to be sure that the students learn and understand, not the other way around.
But worry not, there is definitely a way to do so properly.
1- if this is done during a meeting, it is a better for the person to know in advance that this will be about feedback.
As a manager, you should not have to do it in a sneaky way. If it is so, then you may have to think more about why are you doing so, and as an employee, you may want to ask directly the question.
2- it does not cost much to explain that the feedback is to help to progress. As such, the manager should also communicate that way. As mentioned in the beginning, this should be done to elevate other, not to destroy them. If the feedback is only a negative comment without mentioning how things can improve, it isn’t a very good feedback.
3- Feedback should also be based on facts and examples. It is definitely fair for someone to ignore a “feeling” as they can be very personal and biased. On the other hand, employee should not simply ignore facts.
4- It is also better if feedback is given about things that were agreed and expected. For example, saying that something has not been done when never agreed beforehand is not a good feedback.  On the other hand, if something agreed has not been done, that is an excellent opener for feedback.
5- Like every meeting, it should be concluded with actionable points. What need to be done, when, how etc. This is again about setting expectations.
If there is still a clear disagreement between manager and employee, it may be need to ask a mediator to give their opinion about the situation. Either bey organising the meeting with the 3 parties, or by writing discussion.
But again if the all discussion is based on facts, objectives, results, there should not be any disagreement.
It is actually part of manager job to set all of that properly from the start and ease their work at the end.
Business & tech

Speeding success through project management

For any company, and mostly new one, it is easy to have good ideas and harder to execute them properly.
This can result in loss of time, money and also motivation from employees.
This usually come from poor project management, which should start as soon as an idea start to become a project.
All what I am going to say will sounds logical and very basic, but for some reason, that sort of process is easily forgotten or not taken seriously enough.
Project management helps for decision making, move faster, limit back and forth, and it will also bring some good spirit to everyone involved in it.
It helps to evaluate the idea/project. What will be the impact? Will it be for current or new customers? Does it open to a new market? What is the return on investment?
It is then important to define clear goals and requirements. A lot of projects can go down, because this is not set properly. The later it happen and the worst it is. What are the deliverables? What are the exact specs? A minimum and optimum should be set.
A next step is to define roles, responsibilities and timeline. Goals, deadline and being sure that the right person does the right job definitely speed up any projects. Otherwise things will take more time than expected, multiple people may be doing the same things etc.
It is usually better to start with a small, core team, made with the people who came up with the idea. Relatively soon after some experts should be added, as well as people who do not believe in the idea. If those people can be convinced, their doubt lifted, then you are into something.
Last but not least, people should be hold responsible for their work, Both for the worst and the best (which is sometime ignored).