Celebrate the 20th anniversary… not your first!!


my father is a civil engineer and I will always remember when he celebrated the 20th anniversary of his own shop quite a while ago. He started his speech with the words "We did not celebrate our first year because we did not know if we would make the second. Now - twenty years later - I think we can be sure that we survived the second and even the third..."

This came to my mind reading this http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/11/30/the-first-time-ceos-recession-survival-guide/ article on techcrunch.com.

It is not to have an idea and to be brave enough to found your own shop, it is about surviving years to come.

I really like the metaphor of the romans in there: The difference between the barbarians and the romans was discipline. While the barbarian lived from one thing to the other (today happy because of a victory, tomorrow totally down because of a failure) the romans had discipline. In fact they had something underneath that. First they had a vision to work for. Then they had leaders that were able to build discipline by following the path to that vision. By the way this vision was not to conquer city X after we did city Y yesterday. It was long term.

But 2,000 years of management research later we would add just one thing on top: Be flexible enough to react in time and give people freedom to be creative to unlock the crowd-intelligence. Those two aspects were - at least within the roman army - not reflected.



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