Just Start

The largest inhibitor to success is not starting.

We spend hours upon hours learning, planning and strategizing.

Then doubt creeps in.

What if I mess up? What if I fail?

Then 98% of us stop.

All that planning was for not.

Just start.

I think I need to learn more before I start.

Sure, pick up a book or listen to a podcast or take an online course. But then act.

Just Start.

But I don’t know everything yet. What if I mess up?

No one was fully qualified when they started. But they started. They learned on the job.

When you mess up – you will learn something the book didn’t teach you.

You will get back up again, adjust and eventually find success.

Just Start.

I really have no idea what I’m doing. I’ve read some things and talked to a few people, but everyone is way more experienced than me.

They have experience because the started. They learned. They immersed themselves. They found success.

Just Start.

It’s really intimidating. I’m not sure I can do it.

That fear? Those butterflies? They are a good thing.

It means this means something to you.

Just Start.

Selecting the Right Business Partner

There are a few big questions we ask or get asked in our lives.

  • “Will you marry me?”
  • “Do you want another kid?”
  • “Do you accept this job offer?”

The one that often gets overlooked is

“Will you be my business partner?”

Business Partners are great. You double the ideas. You share the risk and the reward. You split whatever comes your way right down the middle.

Whether you are beginning a side hustle or a creating a start-up venture, the partner you select will set you on a trajectory for success or failure.

It is natural to look at a friend or family member and say, “Yeah, let’s go into business together! You like me. I like you. Let’s do this!”

It’s not that simple.

A business partnership is founded on 3 bedrocks.

Bedrock #1: Integrity

Going into business together means you’re going to be relying on one another to make sound financial decisions and operate within the law. You are representing them. They are representing you.  

It seems so simple, but if you can’t trust your partner to act with high integrity 100% of the time, you will not succeed together.

Bedrock #2: The Why

There’s a reason why you want to start a new venture. That’s your why. 

What’s your partners why?

It is imperative that your why and your partner’s why are in the same zip code. 

If you’re in this to earn money right away, but your business partner wants to earn a big paycheck at the end – your why’s are not in the same zip code.

In that scenario, you will want to make decisions that are better for the short-term, while your partner will want to make decisions that are better for the long-term. Conflict will arise. Trust will erode. The venture will not prosper. 

Bedrock #3: Equity Equality

There are 2 types of equity you and your partner will put into a new venture: Sweat Equity and Financial Equity.

Sweat Equity is the number of hours you spend on the venture.

Financial Equity is the number of dollars you spend on the venture.

It’s important that both of these are equal. It shows that you’re both in this together – fully committed. 

An unequal balance will be OK at the beginning. The newness and excitement of the venture will overshadow the inequality. With time, the newness will wear off and the inequality will come to the forefront. This can lead to frustration, conflict and dissent. 


Perhaps the business partner you have in mind checks these 3 boxes. If so, go for it! If not, proceed with caution. 

A business partnership will never be perfect. You don’t have to align on everything. In fact, if you do agree on everything, that’s a red flag. You need different styles of thinking and you need to challenge one another at the right time. 

Starting a new venture is bold, courageous and fun. It can completely transform your life. Go find the right business partner and conquer the world!

Is Cryptocurrency For Me?

Yes.

Currency is a figment of our collective imagination. The US Dollar – it’s just coins and pieces of paper that billions of people believe have value. The actual metal of the coin nor the paper of the bill have much, if any, value.

If currency is a figment of our collective imagination, why can’t a new currency take hold in our imagination?

Well, it’s already happening.

The top banks, leading investment firms and wealthy individuals across the world are starting to believe. The banks and firms are offering ways for their customers to invest and they, along with prominent individuals are investing in cryptocurrency themselves.

The next generation of wealth (Gen Z: birth between 1997-2015) are believers. They are the adults of tomorrow. The bank VPs. The creators of wealth. The transactors of currency.

If the banks believe. If the prominent individuals believe. If the future generation believes. What say you?

What is Cryptocurrency?

In its simplest form, it is internet money. No person, country, bank or entity owns it. Any person with an internet connection can acquire it.

Is there just one Currency?

There are over 5,000 different cryptocurrencies in the world. The most well-known is Bitcoin.

Where do I buy it?

There are 100’s of online “exchanges”, but the most notable are Coinbase, Bittrex, Binance and Gemini. Not every exchange has every coin, but they all have the most widely known coins (Bitcoin, Ethereum, etc.).

Why do people believe in Bitcoin?

Believers of Bitcoin typically focus on 3 key attributes: Decentralization, Efficiency, Trackability.

1. Decentralization

This is the biggest difference between fiat currency (like US Dollar) and Bitcoin. It means the banks don’t control it. A country doesn’t control it. The collective people do.

There’s a fixed supply. No one can print more Bitcoin.

2. Efficiency

The value of bitcoin is the same in South Africa as it is in the United States. No currency conversions needed. No boundaries to be concerned with. No middlemen doing the transaction. The coins can be transferred immediately over the internet with immediate audit-ability through the blockchain (the technology backing Bitcoin).

3. TRACKABILITY

All transactions made with bitcoin are recorded on a public ledger (blockchain). This ledger is constantly updated and is immutable. No one can “fake” the money because the ledger would deny its existence. Anyone who cares to know can find out how many bitcoin are in “circulation” at any given time.

How Risky is Cryptocurrency?

Every investment has risks. Cryptocurrency is a healthy risk.

If your portfolio only consists of some combination of index funds, cash and your house: you’re not risking enough.

If you’re under 40, you’re really not risking enough.

Why?

The younger you are, the more time you have to bounce back from a risk gone wrong. Opportunistically, the more time you have to enjoy a risk gone right.

The collective imagination of cryptocurrency is building.

What say you?

AI Matchmaker

What do you think of when you hear the term ‘AI’?

The Terminator?

Allen Iverson?

Robots taking over?

AI (Artificial Intelligence) is fascinating. It means so many things to so many people. 

Some of us embrace AI, feeling as though it will automate mundane tasks to allow humans to concentrate on more advanced tasks. Others fear AI, believing it’s the beginning of the end of humans providing value.

Regardless of where we sit on the spectrum, AI is becoming mainstream. We each interact with it every day.

AI is our personal assistant (Siri, Alexa, etc.).

AI helps drive our cars.

AI pushes advertisements to us.

AI enhances our video games.

AI makes our social platforms more relevant.

AI is everywhere.

AI can be complex, if you let it. AI encompasses deep technical sub-categories like Machine Learning, Robotics and Neural Networks.

We don’t need to know these things inside and out in order to explain AI.

AI is about solving problems and gaining efficiencies. Find a problem or something that’s inefficient – you’ve probably stumbled on an AI use case.

Some that immediately come to mind:

  • A coffee shop espresso machine going down (problem)
  • The line at the DMV (inefficient)

The problems and inefficiencies are there. The tools and technology are there. We just have to play matchmaker between the two.