SydStart Spring 2011 - what my career has taught me


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SydStart Spring 2011 - what my career has taught me

  1. 1. Expect the unexpected Alan Jones,
  2. 2. I’m very old
  3. 3. So very old• I saw men land on the moon on live TV• The first 5 years of my career, nobody had a personal mobile phone• I remember when MSFT was $100B bigger than Apple
  4. 4. A brief history• PR, Journalism late ‘80s• “Web producer” 1994 Microsoft• Accidentally, desperately Yahoo! 1997• HomeScreen Entertainment 2002• Startup advising/co-founding• Pollenizer, Startmate, Bugherd
  5. 5. What journalism taught me• Bill Gates taught me to walk with people• Steve Jobs taught me to show them hospitality
  6. 6. What Doing Words taught me• Find one customer who loves what you do• Save on office space by sharing or moving in with that client• Don’t spend on what you don’t need• When you do spend, spend on the best
  7. 7. What Microsoft taught me• If there’s politics, it’s time to fix it or leave• An organisation’s DNA restricts how it can evolve• A big company can never be a startup
  8. 8. This is not a job• “Continuous partial employment”• Far greater sense of responsibility and commitment required• Abandon ‘command and control’ relationships unless you just want employees
  9. 9. What Yahoo! taught me• Get comfortable with risk• With cashflow, you can acquire what you need• We always keep the wrong people too long• Australian customers don’t like to say no
  10. 10. What HomeScreen taught me• Build in APIs and reporting from day one• Expect the unexpected• Big money doesn’t always help• Benefits of the quiet exit
  11. 11. Do business with friends• Friends care more about doing their best• Friends are more likely to be honest• Friends are better at sharing• (You may lose some friends)
  12. 12.