Beyond Entrepreneurship


This book is about how to turn an existing enterprise into an enduring, great company

The Rabbit Hole is written by Blas Moros. To support, sign up for the newsletter, become a patron, and/or join The Latticework. Original Design by Thilo Konzok.

Key Takeaways

  1. You must start this when you’re small or the inertia will be too hard to overcome
  2. Great companies have sustainable cash flows, are admired and respected, have a huge impact on the industry, and have duration (100+ years)
  3. Leadership Style
    1. Sincere, a multiplier (others will copy), charisma does not equal leadership, develop your own style, relentlessly seeks the truth
    2. Effective corporate leadership consists of 2 parts: leadership function and leadership style. The function of leadership – the number-one responsibility of a leader – is to catalyze a clear and shared vision for the company and to secure commitment to and vigorous pursuit of that vision. This is a universal requirement, no matter your style (which is unique to the individual)
    3. Decisive – zero in on what truly matters, use your intuition, every decision better than no decision, adapt with new info, disagreement opens door to better decision making, push decisions as far down as possible, be clear about which type of decision process (group vs. autocratic)
    4. Focus –  1 priority at a time, manage your time and not your work, can force yourself to be better at this by working less (!)
    5. Personal Touch – touching the medium, build long-term win/win relationships with all stakeholders, handwritten notes, informal communication, be accessible, little hierarchy
    6. Hard/Soft people skills – leader as teacher/mentor/guide, high expectations + high support, positive feedback
    7. Communication – always keep vision top of mind, use images / analogies, speak with normal conversational words and be authentic, present bad news openly and transparently
    8. Ever Forward – energy, growth, hard work, optimistic, tenacity, never ‘enough’, never stop
  4. Vision
    1. Core values / beliefs – forms the basis of extraordinary human effort, context for strategic and tactical decisions, creates cohesion / teamwork / community, lays the groundwork for the company to evolve past a few key individuals
    2. Purpose – why you exist, 100 year north star
    3. Mission – bold, achievable, timeline
      1. Targeting, common enemy, role model, internal transformation
    4. Must be clear and shared
  5. Strategy
    1. Methodology to achieve the mission
      1. Strategy must descend directly from your vision
      2. Strategy must leverage the strengths and unique capabilities of your company – do what you’re good at
      3. Strategy must be realistic
        1. Strategy should be set with the participation of those who are going to be on the line when it happens
    2. 3-5years, 3-5 priorities, <3 pages
    3. Focus –
    4. Tactical Excellence + Innovation
  6. Innovation
    1. Creativity isn’t the problem, it’s how to nurture the creativity all around us and getting that acted upon and turned into innovations
    2. Be receptive to ideas from anywhere – trade shows, travel, expert talks
    3. “being” the customer – field test the products or services, solicit feedback
    4. Experimentation and mistakes
    5. People being creative – educational training, books, hire some creative misfits
    6. Autonomy and decentralization – shared vision is crucial, facilitate the transferring of knowledge between all people / units, have an open system, avoid matrix structures
    7. Rewards – must reward creative contribution, make heroes of the creative contributors, set measurable innovation goals, separate career track for creative contributors, compensate people, 20% time
  7. Tactics
    1. Hiring – values, reference docs
    2. Inculturating – starter kit, internal memos
    3. Training
    4. Goal-setting – specific
    5. Measuring – track performance, identify barriers, remove, repeat
    6. Appreciating – informal, awards / recognition, financial (dinners, spot bonuses)
  8. Company Dashboard
    1. Cash flow, both current and projected
    2. Financial accounting info
    3. Cost information
    4. Sales info
    5. Customer info

What I got out of it

  1. The first 100 pages or so are worth reading and re-reading for anybody interested in business, leadership, culture, quality

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