At our Wamda Mix n' Mentor event in Dubai, angel investors Fadi Ghandour and Joi Ito and entrepreneurs Muhammed Mekki of Namshi and Brian Sigafoos of Duplays gathered for a final panel moderated by Wamda CEO Habib Haddad.
In the very first segment, Habib Haddad asks Fadi what keeps him motivated and focused on Aramex, after building 4 businesses at the same time. Fadi, who recently announced a Corporate Entrepreneurship Responsibility movement to involve the private sector in entrepreneurship, explains that it was "100 times more difficult to start a business 30 years ago," describing how his team worked hard to convince partners to come on board. "It's knocking on doors until one opens," he says.
Habib asks Joi about his philosophies on the Power of Pull, and how he's been able to execute very quickly on ideas. In the old days, you would stock assets and centrally command them, he explains. But today, "what you'd think of as assets- people, lines of code- are actually liabilities unless you can pivot quickly." The Power of Pull is essentially about learning on the fly, he describes.
Joi also notes why he's no longer a futurist, but rather a Now-ist. "It's better to be ready for anything than to be prepared for a particular thing." As an example of a Now-ist approach, he describes outdoing government analysis and creating one of the biggest open data sets in the world on seismology after the Japan earthquake last year, by quickly leveraging available technology and a team of experts.
Finally, Ito, who elaborated more on the need for agility in our interview, discusses examples of why pivoting quickly helps your chance of success. "There's no company that's been successful, except maybe Amazon, that looks anything like [it did] when it started," he says.
Want more tips from our Mix N' Mentor panel? Check out what our panelists had to say about:
- Why Entrepreneurs Don't Need MBAs to Succeed
- How the Private Sector Can Support Startups
- Entering the Saudi Market, and Global Trends for 2013
- Why Gamers Make Great Managers & Tips on Startup Culture
- Hiring and Scaling a Startup Culture
- Why Startups Should Support Sustainability
- Tips from Fadi Ghandour on Bootstrapping