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Things I wish I'd known

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I gave a presentation at my old high school on the topic of "things I wish I'd known back then". It was part motivational, part educational. The slides don't tell the full story, but hopefully they'll be useful to someone.

Things I wish I'd known

  1. 1. I wish I knew…<br />Will Critchlow<br />Founder, Distilled (2005-)<br />Alumnus, St. Aidan’s (1991-1998)<br />
  2. 2. This is my best friend – we met playing basketball at St. Aidan’s in 1991<br />
  3. 3. This is my brother – he left St. Aidan’s in 2001<br />
  4. 4. Somehow, we’ve grown a decent business<br />
  5. 5. It wasn’t always this way – back in 1997, we made £800 and got sued.<br />
  6. 6. In 2005, we made a go of it – we made £36,000 in revenue and learnt the value of getting things in writing<br />
  7. 7. Overnight success takes years<br />It’s really easy to stop here<br />
  8. 8. We didn’t make a business plan – we got talked into college, then “sensible jobs” – which earnt significantly more than the business initially<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/ianvisits/5458806574/<br />
  9. 9. Can I have some advice please?<br />
  10. 10. Stop worrying what others’ think. Things don’t always work out great for the cool kids<br />
  11. 11. Hang out with people who are smarter than you: you will come to resemble the people you hang out with<br />
  12. 12. Business friends rock – you don’t get a network at “networking events”. Just like you don’t make friends at “friend events”<br />
  13. 13. No, you can’t have a pony – you aren’t owed anything. Make your own way. Lead without permission<br />Not yours<br />Idea unashamedly from: http://media.b-list.org/presentations/2008/djangocon/reusable_apps.pdf<br />
  14. 14. Curiosity is your best asset – I learnt Python and Django to (help) build our video store. It made $15,000 in its first month<br />
  15. 15. NBED How to get hired – example of Ed<br />Anyone can get hired – don’t scatter-gun CVs. Choose where you want to work and impress the hell out of them<br />A guy younger than you lot made this to impress us<br />
  16. 16. “For everyone who comes in here talking about the team they are going to hire, there are three others out there that did hire people”<br />http://www.bothsidesofthetable.com/2011/01/28/on-leadership-teams-success-happiness/<br />
  17. 17. Read these books: http://dis.tl/j53cJghttp://dis.tl/kgbEqrhttp://dis.tl/mqxG0j<br />
  18. 18. “You need to make cold calls every single day otherwise your business will wither and die”.<br />We didn’t. It didn’t.<br />
  19. 19. Once you leave college, it’s not cheating any more – attribute sources, but copy away. Give yourself unfair advantages<br />http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2011/05/whats-high-school-for.html<br />
  20. 20. From here on out, do something you love– if you don’t, you’re “doing it wrong”<br />
  21. 21. I hope I’ve given you some useful advice. Remember as you make your way into the world that most people don’t know what they’re doing<br />“Never compare your inside to someone else’s outside”<br />
  22. 22. Will Critchlow, Head of R&D<br />Feel free to give me a shout with any questions or for any further advice you need.<br />
  23. 23. Credits<br />Bothsidesofthetable.com<br />Failblog.org<br />media.b-list.org/presentations/2008/djangocon/reusable_apps.pdf<br />Sethgodin.typepad.com<br />www.flickr.com/photos/ianvisits/5458806574/<br />

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