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How to stay motivated when
you’re in it for the long haul
Roan Lavery, co-founder & CEO FreeAgent
An existential crisis
2013
START UP BINGO!!
FOUNDED 2007
BOOTSTRAPPED
ANGEL FUNDING
VC FUNDING
DEBT FUNDING
CROWD FUNDING
IPO
ACQUISITION 2018
Search “keyword terms” for
interesting articles & resources
Photograph this slide for
future reference
THE
FIELD GUIDE
N
Individual
Team
Company
Society
Individual
Layers of motivation
Selfish


Altruistic
Team
Team purpose


Colleagues & Manager
Company
Mission


Culture
Society
Purpose


Impact
Individual (founder) motivation
• Ownership


• Financial freedom aka money


• Status & sense of identity


• What you do & your role


• Accomplishment


• Personal growth
• Scratching an itch


• Making a dent in the universe


• Improving society


• Building a great company


Selfish Altruistic
It’s your baby!
SMALL BUSINESS
It’s your baby!
SMALL BUSINESS
Until it isn’t
Allure of the Exit
EXIT
Personal growth
Needs of the


business
Your ability
• Challenged


• Stressed


• Imposter syndrome


• Poor performance
• Comfortable


• Complacent


• Stagnating growth
“Tom Toro”
Finding your purpose
“Profit is not the
purpose of a business,
but rather the test of
its validity.”
Peter Drucker
Finding your purpose
Your mission
Who are you helping?


How are you helping them?


What impact do you want to have?


Is this pitched at the right level?


Does it inspire people?
Company
Personal motivation
What do you want to achieve?


What are you most proud of?


Has this changed over time?
Personally
Motivating the company
Inspiration, mission, goals & culture
“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum
up the men to gather wood, divide the
work and give orders. Instead, teach them
to yearn for the vast and endless sea.”
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum
up the men to gather wood, divide the
work and give orders. Instead, teach them
to yearn for the vast and endless sea.”
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Mind your language
“Infinite games by Simon Sinek”
Finite games
Known players


Fixed rules


Clear endpoint


Obvious winners & losers
Infinite games
Players change


No time limit


No fixed rules


No endpoint
“Achieve goals”, “Hitting targets”,
“Beating the competition”
Goals
Can be very motivating


Create focus and alignment


Foster accountability
+
+
Demotivating if incorrectly set


Can create short-term thinking


Encourage negative behaviours


Can feel like a hamster wheel
_
+
_
_
_
A new car that would be ‘under 2000 pounds and under
$2,000’ and would be available for purchase in 1970. 
Goal
“Goals gone wild”
“Primed to perform”
Culture
• Culture refers to the cumulative deposit of knowledge, experience, beliefs, values, attitudes, meanings, hierarchies, religion, notions of time,
roles, spatial relations, concepts of the universe, and material objects and possessions acquired by a group of people in the course of
generations through individual and group striving.


• Culture is the systems of knowledge shared by a relatively large group of people.


• Culture is communication, communication is culture.


• Culture in its broadest sense is cultivated behavior; that is the totality of a person's learned, accumulated experience which is socially
transmitted, or more briefly, behavior through social learning.


• A culture is a way of life of a group of people--the behaviors, beliefs, values, and symbols that they accept, generally without thinking about
them, and that are passed along by communication and imitation from one generation to the next.


• Culture is symbolic communication. Some of its symbols include a group's skills, knowledge, attitudes, values, and motives. The meanings
of the symbols are learned and deliberately perpetuated in a society through its institutions.


• Culture consists of patterns, explicit and implicit, of and for behavior acquired and transmitted by symbols, constituting the distinctive
achievement of human groups, including their embodiments in artifacts; the essential core of culture consists of traditional ideas and
especially their attached values; culture systems may, on the one hand, be considered as products of action, on the other hand, as
conditioning influences upon further action.


• Culture is the sum of total of the learned behavior of a group of people that are generally considered to be the tradition of that people and
are transmitted from generation to generation.


• Culture is a collective programming of the mind that distinguishes the members of one group or category of people from another.
Culture
Noun | /ˈkʌl.tʃər/
“The Culture Wheel”
Company culture?
Permission to play
Culture is the way we
do things around here.
“
”
Deal and Kennedy, 1982
“deal and kennedy corporate cultures”
Choose your adventure
LTD COMPANY
SOLE TRADER
PRODUCT COMPANY
SALES COMPANY
What type of company is it?
What’s more important?
LTD COMPANY
SOLE TRADER
QUALITY
SPEED
LTD COMPANY
SOLE TRADER
CUSTOMER FOCUSED
GROWTH FOCUSED
What’s the focus of the company?
PRODUCT SALES
QUALITY SPEED
CUSTOMER GROWTH
What is important to the company?
Decisions, priorities & strategy
LTD COMPANY
SOLE TRADER
USE DATA TO
MAKE DECISIONS
IDEAS & OPINIONS
DRIVE DECISIONS
How are decisions made?
LTD COMPANY
SOLE TRADER
EMPOWERED TEAMS
TOP DOWN CONTROL
Who makes the decisions?
How do people approach conflict?
LTD COMPANY
SOLE TRADER
EMBRACE CONFLICT
PRIORITISE HARMONY
DATA DRIVES
DECISIONS
IDEAS & OPINIONS
DRIVE DECISIONS
EMPOWERED
TEAMS
TOP DOWN
CONTROL
EMBRACE
CONFLICT
PRIORTISE
HARMONY
How does the company work?
Structure, management & vibe
How are sta
ff
treated?
What’s the
workplace
like?
What is important to the
company?
How does the company work?
How do people behave? VALUES & BEHAVIOURS
STRUCTURE, MANGEMENT & VIBE
DECISIONS, PRIORITIES &
STRATEGY
BENEFITS & PERKS
OFFICE &
WFH
The Culture


Pyramid
Closing thoughts
Thanks!
roan@freeagent.com


@roanlavery

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How to stay motivated when you're in it for the long haul - Roan Lavery.pdf

  • 1. How to stay motivated when you’re in it for the long haul Roan Lavery, co-founder & CEO FreeAgent
  • 4. START UP BINGO!! FOUNDED 2007 BOOTSTRAPPED ANGEL FUNDING VC FUNDING DEBT FUNDING CROWD FUNDING IPO ACQUISITION 2018
  • 5. Search “keyword terms” for interesting articles & resources Photograph this slide for future reference THE FIELD GUIDE N
  • 6. Individual Team Company Society Individual Layers of motivation Selfish Altruistic Team Team purpose Colleagues & Manager Company Mission Culture Society Purpose Impact
  • 7. Individual (founder) motivation • Ownership • Financial freedom aka money • Status & sense of identity • What you do & your role • Accomplishment • Personal growth • Scratching an itch • Making a dent in the universe • Improving society • Building a great company Selfish Altruistic
  • 9. It’s your baby! SMALL BUSINESS Until it isn’t
  • 10. Allure of the Exit EXIT
  • 11. Personal growth Needs of the business Your ability • Challenged • Stressed • Imposter syndrome • Poor performance • Comfortable • Complacent • Stagnating growth
  • 13. “Profit is not the purpose of a business, but rather the test of its validity.” Peter Drucker
  • 14. Finding your purpose Your mission Who are you helping? How are you helping them? What impact do you want to have? Is this pitched at the right level? Does it inspire people? Company Personal motivation What do you want to achieve? What are you most proud of? Has this changed over time? Personally
  • 15. Motivating the company Inspiration, mission, goals & culture
  • 16. “If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
  • 17. “If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
  • 18. Mind your language “Infinite games by Simon Sinek” Finite games Known players Fixed rules Clear endpoint Obvious winners & losers Infinite games Players change No time limit No fixed rules No endpoint “Achieve goals”, “Hitting targets”, “Beating the competition”
  • 19. Goals Can be very motivating Create focus and alignment Foster accountability + + Demotivating if incorrectly set Can create short-term thinking Encourage negative behaviours Can feel like a hamster wheel _ + _ _ _
  • 20. A new car that would be ‘under 2000 pounds and under $2,000’ and would be available for purchase in 1970.  Goal “Goals gone wild”
  • 22. • Culture refers to the cumulative deposit of knowledge, experience, beliefs, values, attitudes, meanings, hierarchies, religion, notions of time, roles, spatial relations, concepts of the universe, and material objects and possessions acquired by a group of people in the course of generations through individual and group striving. • Culture is the systems of knowledge shared by a relatively large group of people. • Culture is communication, communication is culture. • Culture in its broadest sense is cultivated behavior; that is the totality of a person's learned, accumulated experience which is socially transmitted, or more briefly, behavior through social learning. • A culture is a way of life of a group of people--the behaviors, beliefs, values, and symbols that they accept, generally without thinking about them, and that are passed along by communication and imitation from one generation to the next. • Culture is symbolic communication. Some of its symbols include a group's skills, knowledge, attitudes, values, and motives. The meanings of the symbols are learned and deliberately perpetuated in a society through its institutions. • Culture consists of patterns, explicit and implicit, of and for behavior acquired and transmitted by symbols, constituting the distinctive achievement of human groups, including their embodiments in artifacts; the essential core of culture consists of traditional ideas and especially their attached values; culture systems may, on the one hand, be considered as products of action, on the other hand, as conditioning influences upon further action. • Culture is the sum of total of the learned behavior of a group of people that are generally considered to be the tradition of that people and are transmitted from generation to generation. • Culture is a collective programming of the mind that distinguishes the members of one group or category of people from another. Culture Noun | /ˈkʌl.tʃər/
  • 26. Culture is the way we do things around here. “ ” Deal and Kennedy, 1982 “deal and kennedy corporate cultures”
  • 28. LTD COMPANY SOLE TRADER PRODUCT COMPANY SALES COMPANY What type of company is it?
  • 29. What’s more important? LTD COMPANY SOLE TRADER QUALITY SPEED
  • 30. LTD COMPANY SOLE TRADER CUSTOMER FOCUSED GROWTH FOCUSED What’s the focus of the company?
  • 31. PRODUCT SALES QUALITY SPEED CUSTOMER GROWTH What is important to the company? Decisions, priorities & strategy
  • 32. LTD COMPANY SOLE TRADER USE DATA TO MAKE DECISIONS IDEAS & OPINIONS DRIVE DECISIONS How are decisions made?
  • 33. LTD COMPANY SOLE TRADER EMPOWERED TEAMS TOP DOWN CONTROL Who makes the decisions?
  • 34. How do people approach conflict? LTD COMPANY SOLE TRADER EMBRACE CONFLICT PRIORITISE HARMONY
  • 35. DATA DRIVES DECISIONS IDEAS & OPINIONS DRIVE DECISIONS EMPOWERED TEAMS TOP DOWN CONTROL EMBRACE CONFLICT PRIORTISE HARMONY How does the company work? Structure, management & vibe
  • 36. How are sta ff treated? What’s the workplace like? What is important to the company? How does the company work? How do people behave? VALUES & BEHAVIOURS STRUCTURE, MANGEMENT & VIBE DECISIONS, PRIORITIES & STRATEGY BENEFITS & PERKS OFFICE & WFH The Culture Pyramid