Monday, May 15, 2017

To Successfully Grow A Business, You Must 'Expect Chaos'

 Really interesting article in this month's Entrepreneur Magazine by Reid Hoffman (

He's the billionaire co-founder of LinkedIn, Greylock Partner, a mentor to many, and, starting in May, the host of a new podcast called 'Masters of Scale.' Here, Hoffman gives an inside look at how he teaches entrepreneurs to grow successful businesses.

“One of the first things that you learn when you are trying to do scale at speed,” says Hoffman, “is to focus on your learning loops.” The simplest way to define “learning loop” is as a process in which your goals are constantly modified by experience. One of the worst mistakes a startup entrepreneur can make is to stick blindly to plan A when market realities are telling you it is way past time to go to plan B. Hoffman has done a lot of thinking about pragmatic ways to enhance learning loop efficiency.
It’s all about “OODA,” he explains. “Observe, orient, decide, act. It’s fighter pilot terminology,” says Hoffman. “If you have the faster OODA loop in a dogfight, you live. The other person dies. In Silicon Valley, the OODA loop of your decision-making is effectively what differentiates your ability to succeed.”

The critical point Hoffman is always trying to get across -- in his books, his podcasts, his interviews with journalists and his mentoring sessions with company founders -- is that no one really knows what is going to happen next. Rare indeed is the business plan that survives contact with reality intact.

No comments: