Nový článek na blogu:

Overwhelmed? This will help you feel better

I remember that when we were kids, there were these moments: Everything I had to or wanted to do was finished. Clear table. Last time I had everything done was about the age of 12. Isn’t that crazy? Now when I’m 30, I have a task lists for 3 to 4 lives. The work never stops. We are all overwhelmed. Yesterday, I dig trough my old notes and find those 4 quotes that can be helpful not to loose our minds:

On todo lists:

If your todo list is finished, you’ve given up or are dead.

Yes. It is never ending. It is hard to say who said this quote. (Maybe Melanie in this Lifehacker article)

On complaining on being overwhelmed

This one is so truth!

Never tell your problems to anyone…20% don’t care and the other 80% are glad you have them.

Lou Holtz

On problems and solutions

If there is no solution to the problem then don’t waste time worrying about it. If there is a solution to the problem then don’t waste time worrying about it.

Dalai Lama

On everything

I especially like this one:

Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.

John Lennon

I like tha last one especially. Have a great day and do not let things overwhelm you!

Nový článek na blogu:

The power of Exponential: Your math teacher never told you about this

Last fall on a cloudy Saturday, I attended a talk that changed how I see certain things. Why nobody showed me this thing before?

Every Tuesday, I post  a new story for this blog. If you read it regularly, you know that I am obsessed in finding how to make things work better and faster.

On that Saturday talk, the speaker showed us this formula:


If you make something 1% better every day, it gets 37.8x better ain a year. Isn’t that fascinating?

The Instagram story

Let’s look at Instagram. They launched the app in October 2010 and started with maybe 10-20 users at day 1. In December 2014, the app had 300 million users. Is this some crazy rocket-speed growth? No. The compound daily growth was just 1.09%. Yes, that’s right. Instagram grew only 1% a day.

My story since then

Wen come to work, I ask myself these questions: „What can I do today to grow the company 1%?“ „What can I do to improve 1% in something today?“

Yes, I admit that this principle is not 100% applicable to real life. But it helped me understand one thing: The growth is usually driven by small and persistent improvements rather than big jumps.

Nový článek na blogu:

6 things I was horribly wrong about when I started an online business.

When I joined the team more than 2 years ago, I thought it would be a piece of cake. Huge market. Product almost ready. We’re smart guys. That sounds like imminent success, doesn’t it? In reality, things work differently. I was horribly wrong.

#1: Lets get a tiny part of this huge market. It should be easy.

It should, but it is not. If you build a hot dog stand in front of a McDonalds, you probably get enough revenue to keep going. It does not work like this in competitive online markets. If your product is not a superstar or a great niche player, you get nothing.

The good thing is that we figured this out soon enough and starte working. Currently, we are already gaining market share.

#2: There is competition, but we’re smart guys, we’ll be ok

The competition is hard. Much, much harder than I ever expected. We need to play an A game in all the aspects to keep up: Product design, UX, SEO, Advertising etc.

Many authors and mentors discourage startups from entering competitive markets. For example Peter Thiel in his great book „Zero to One„. However, look at Uber, Tesla, Apple and the other superstars. They all entered a very competitive market and were able to transform it.

#3 If you can grow revenue, you can grow profit

No, you can’t. Getting evenue is easy. It is just a function of money your going to invest into your product and advertising. Getting profitable is a completely different game. This is the hard part.

#4 Online retail is great because you do not have to deal wih the customers

Oh God. Online bussines is a fiction. The barrier between online and offline business is gone. The website (online hotel booking engine in our case) is just a tip of an iceberg. There is a huge amount of customers request that cannot be handled automatically. People call you, e-mail you and you have to have a big enough team to deal with it. The good thing is, the better the product is, the less request we have to handle by hand. But still. The difference between an online booking site and a physical travel agency is much smaller than we thought.

#5 You can easily say what campaigns will work 

If it was that easy, all hollywood movies would be blockbusters. Still, there are a lot of movies with millions invested and zero success. The same goes for advertising campaigns. It is impossible to predict what will people like and engage with. The only thing we can do is test many ideas in small batches.

#6 People will remember us and like us

Until you get big and famous, nobody gives a shit about your company. Nobody trusts you. Nobody remembers you. It is not possible to use the same marketing techniques like lovebrands use. If brands like Apple, Google or Uber say something, everyone listens. If a „no-name“ company says something. Nobody listens. Until you build your brand name and authority, you’re nobody.

It is challenging, but we love it

Nový článek na blogu:

The Offline CEO: Can you run a startup without a computer?

No, this is not a joke. I do believe that a CEO can run a company without using a computer. I am not talking about printing e-mails, but spending more time offline with people and pen&paper. What if working offline helps you be more effective?

I haven’t ditch my computer. I still keep using my computer for most of the day for now. But I already tried spending a day at work without a computer couple of times. I was just working with people, pen and paper and my smartphone. It was great.

Reasons why it is a good idea.

I am not advocating for all CEOs ditching their laptops for all the time, but let me present few ideas why would it help to use it less:

#1 You don’t need it for the most important management roles:

My  key roles as a startup CEO:

  • Creating and sharing a vision
  • Setting goals and strategy
  • Building a motivated and talented team
  • Training individual team members
  • Investor management
  • Solving hard problems

The most effective tools I use:

  • 1-on-1 meetings
  • workshops
  • flipchart
  • pen and paper
  • mind maps
  • sticky notes

Does computer help me for my key management roles? Not a lot.

#2 80% of online time is waste

Imagine Elon Musk, Tim Cook, or Barrack Obama in their daily work. Do they write lenghty e-mails, shuffle files and folders, compose complex presentations or check random things online? Probably not. Yet, sitting in front of a computer leads us towards these actions. This time is usually not very valuable for CEOs.

# 3 Mobile e-mail is better

Why mobile? Because people keep the answers short and to the point. They pick up the phone if it is faster. It makes writing long e-mails harder.  Smartphones just make everyone e-mail lives better.

My offline workspace
My offline workspace

Reasons against staying offline:

# 1 Startup manager should keep a maker role

Founders usually spend around 80% of their time making and 20% managing in early times. The managing part gets bigger as the company grows. Running a team of 15 people, I spend about 60%-70% managing and 30-40% making. I do product design and review, I deal with customers, I manage budgets and cash flow. I believe that as the team will grow, my maker role will go down to about 10%. But I do not think it is a good idea to ditch making and be 100% manager. I would lose the connection with the core of the business.

# 2 There are few things that are just better with a PC

Managing cash flow, analyzing data or preparing decks for pitches. These are examples of work I do that would be much less efficient offline.


Meeting With Socialsharks
Meeting With Socialsharks


Ditching your MacBook is still not on the table. Leaving it at home 1 or 2 days a week is certainly a good idea. T will give you more time for people, for thinking, for drawing and creating.

However, I strongly believe, that not bringing the laptop to work at least 1 or 2 days a week would make a CEO’s life much more focused and productive.