Change is hard and takes a lot of determination and effort. Most of us don’t like change. We would like to keep things the way they are. It’s safer, more convenient, risk-free… At least in our minds. In fact, change is necessary and it’s much riskier to stay the same (more about that later). I think it’s time to change how we think about change. I think it’s time to replace the forcing concept of change and adopt the concept of beta.
When you commit to beta, you automatically enter startup mode and apply the startup mindset skills needed to succeed today and tomorrow. That’s the Beta Paradigm!
Your perspective is your most important, maybe only, tool. A changed perspective means new opportunities. Meeting with new people often means new perspectives. Going to exciting places is another way to get new perspectives, especially if the place in itself contains a lot of different influences – like Barcelona. It’s not a coincidence that our Nex(t)cellence THINK TANK – a group of sharp and somewhat crazy minds co-creating ideas on the future of entrepreneurship and work-life – will take place there 🙂
Brilliant Seth Godin wrote the other day: “The opposite of yes is maybe. Because maybe is non-definitive, and both yes and no give us closure and the chance to move ahead.” Maybe is also the opposite of being in startup mode. Maybe means stagnation and stagnation is THE biggest enemy in your professional life. Sometimes it’s hard to answer yes/no and maybe feels like an easy way out. Don’t go there! Instead, try to make the big decision smaller. Decide on some part and keep moving. Remember that everything is in beta – also your decision. Stay in Startup Mode!
Got this ”Note to inspire” from Simon Sinek today: “It doesn’t matter when we start. It doesn’t matter where we start. All that matters is that we start.” Couldn’t agree more. But sometimes it’s hard to know when and where to start. This is when it’s helpful to adopt the concept of beta. Look at yourself and your business/career as an app, launch in beta and improve as you go! A beta version is not perfect, the aim is instead to make progress based on what you learn along the way.
As some of you know, Per Frykman and I currently work on a new book – a book that’s reinventing itself and is a permanent beta version. Our ambition is to write the world’s first fully customized book, where you choose the content to get your personalized hands-on guide to the future of entrepreneurship and work-life.
No matter what you do, you will face the unexpected more than once during the process. That happened to us yesterday. We had just read the great book The Start-up of You by Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha (if you haven’t already, read it!) where we discovered that they also write about ”permanent beta”. Of course, we sent them a email to check if it would be a problem that we used the same phrase as a title for our book. We got a very nice reply where they wished us good luck and kindly let us know that they would be happy if we didn’t use it as the title. Alright then, so we needed to come up with a new title. To be honest, I was a bit disappointed at first, but it turned out that after all this unexpected happening resulted in a BIG win (as it almost always does – stay open to unexpected opportunities!)
We started thinking about the concept of being in constant beta once again. And we realized that this concept has the potential to actually transform business and work-life. The change will be so substantial we think it is a paradigm shift. Therefore, our project and book has a new title: The Beta Paradigm – Time to get famous for what you haven’t done… yet.
Some might think paradigm is a really strong word. It is. But it’s our firm belief that that’s exactly where we’re heading. Call us crazy, we’ll love it 🙂
The fastest way to change is to spend time with the right people
The best way to make sure you don’t settle is to meet new, exciting people with different perspectives but a common interest
The funniest way to learn is together with others, picking each other’s brains.
Do you agree? Welcome to join our Nex(t)cellence THINK TANK in beautiful Barcelona! A small group of sharp and somewhat crazy minds co-creating ideas on the future of work-life and entrepreneurship. September 24-27.
Interesting to think about that before success was measured in size. The bigger the better. True for everything from the pyramids to companies. Big can indeed be impressive, but nowadays big doesn’t equal success. Instead it is important to grow in other dimensions. To stay passionate, curious, resilient, nimble… To stay in startup mode.
Big can still be a consequence, but it’s not the aim. The aim is to constantly develop.
One important ingredient to succeed as an entrepreneur, or any other professional, is to commit to continuous growth – or as we like to call it: to be in permanent beta. Your beta versions help you easily make progress and each beta version make you more and more unique. It is because of your uniqueness people choose to work with you and it is because of your uniqueness you’ll get famous. And as you are unique, why should you read the same book as everyone else? Of course you should have your unique guide to the future of entrepreneurship and work-life. #permanentbeta #tailormadebookinprogress
A plan turns your beliefs into action, which is the key to make change. But a plan also risks limiting your options. Too rigorous planning with too long time perspective actually hinders you from seeing the opportunities around you. Plan no longer than two steps ahead. Two steps ahead to make sure your next move maximize the opportunities for the step after. Make sure your plan has room for flexibility, iteration and randomness. Commit to permanent beta, to continuous growth. Stay in Startup Mode!
More and more seems to agree that a startup mindset is essential for success. We all need to nurture our entrepreneurial minds! Today, all of us act in information-poor, resource-constrained and time-compressed surroundings – just as startups always have.
We need to use our creativity, be courageous enough to take on a certain amount of risk and commit to permanent beta. If innovation before was like “Ready, aim, fire”, innovation today is “Aim, fire, aim, fire, aim, fire…” More important than ever to Stay in Startup Mode!