Would we bet on it?

Gordon Bell, a prominent investor who funds start-ups, is very blunt with executives of firms in his portfolio. For instance, when someone makes predictions for company performance, Bell will zero in on one number and ask the CEO, “Wanna bet? A side bet, you and me, for $1,000.” If the CEO gulps, Bell knows he or she has doubts. At least once, when an underperforming … [ Read more ]

Conflict between discovery and colonization

A classic example of the conflict [between the skills, mindsets and structures needed for discovery and colonization] is the story of Lotus 1-2-3 in the 1980s.