Sunday, March 29, 2009

"Startuping" in big companies

There is an interesting discussion on Arctic Startup and Jüri Kaljundi's blog about the importance of culture and how it affects the number of startup's being started in a country.

Most certainly culture affects the number of startups, but! Culture is something that changes. So the number of supportive measures by government and also media, universities, established companies and third sector help to change the culture. If the helping measures are implemented, enterpreneurship is made popular in the media then in a perspective of 3-5 year culture will change and the number of new startups starts to grow. We have seen similar changes in culture in Estonia. The rise of all kind of volunteer organizations, the green movement, movements promoting biking to work has been actually quite remarkable. If people are willing to take part in volunteer organizations then most certainly they are also willing to try their own businesses.

Another dimension of this discussion should be the "big" companies. As the culture of startups grows it also drives the big companies to innovation, product development and global markets. It comes through people, universities and media... through reading Arctic Startup for example. :-) As the big companies are not something isolated from the society and culture - they are affected.

Time and strategic management

Tonight we all lost one hour. Well nothing serious about that, we will get it back next autumn. :-)

I have been studying strategic management lately and well.... it all sounds quite simple and straightforward in the theory-books. In practice however, as every manager knows, the everyday problems and life are serious fighters against any strategic initiatives. And one of the most important issues is time or actually the lack of it. The managers just don't have time. Even when they start working in the evenings and weekends they still cannot get all the everyday issues resolved and never get to the strategic, but not so burning issues. So I thought of a metric that maybe is of some help.

Count how many meetings in your calendar are:
- initiated by you,
- initiated by you due to an "everyday problem"
- initiated by others.

This would be a relatively objective measure on who or what is running things. Is it you, is it the everyday problems, is it somebody else... or is it the everyday problems of somebody else. :-) You can of course modify the list. For example add sales and customer meetings in it and categorize them. Nevertheless you get an objective measure on who or what specifies the direction your team is moving towards.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

MicroLink Incubator now a member of Microsoft BizSpark!

I am proud to announce that MicroLink Incubator is now a Network Partner of Microsoft BizSpark program. The first partner from Estonia.
For our Incubator customers this is useful as we can support them with Microsoft's technology for free. Much of the programming for the incubator startups we do on MS .net so this is a benefit.