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For the second time in a week, I woke up in the middle of the night as my mind started racing, thinking about all that’s been happening as a result of COVID-19. I tried telling myself, maybe this was all just a bad dream. Maybe if I go back to sleep, it will all be gone in the morning.

A lot of us are thinking that this situation is surreal. Highways, stores, schools and parks gone empty overnight. The news headlines are unavoidably grim. Emotions are flaring. This is something we’ve seen in movies, not in real life.

Last night, I had the privilege of attending a virtual version of TechTO, a gathering of our local tech community I’ve admired for years. Over 2,000 members of the Toronto tech community gathered on a virtual platform. A first for TechTO who usually holds in-person events. …


Being a startup, you’re always fighting against the odds. CB insights recently released a post-mortem on 101 startups, boiling down the 20 top reasons why startups fail. While there are likely 100 more reasons that they don’t list as to why a business can fail, as a founder, you’re out there trying to desperately balance hundreds of things to prevent failure, let alone, succeed.

Someone recently asked me what a ‘day in a life’ looks like for me. I answered with a blank stare. I haven’t had a typical day for the last 2 years. There’s so much to do that even if I worked 24x7, I still wouldn’t make a dent. Some days feel like you’re pushing a boulder up a hill and others, the boulder rolls back down and knocks you flat! …


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In her recent TED Talk, Margaret Heffernan, an entrepreneur, former CEO of five companies and author, discussed an experiment on productivity by evolutionary biologist William Muir at Purdue University. Muir was interested in productivity and leverages experiments with chickens for one simple reason — their productivity is easy to measure because you can just count the eggs. He wanted to know what factors can make chickens more productive, so he devised a beautiful experiment.

Chickens live in groups, so he divided a flock of chickens into two groups. The first group was left alone for six generations. In the second group, Muir only selected the most productive chickens for breeding — those who produced the most eggs — to create a “superflock” of “superchickens.” …


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One of the things I consistently notice when speaking to employees about culture change is the finger-pointing back at senior management. I hear “They need to change” or “Management needs to change their behaviors first!”. Non-coincidentally, this exact same sentiment is shared when speaking with management. They’re saying: “Our employees don’t want to change. We have to force them to comply”.

There’s no doubt that changing an organization’s culture requires both management and employees to be in it together, however, we’ve fallen too deep into the trap of “us versus them” when it comes to making the first move for change. …


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When you are an established player in your industry and a new competitor emerges, the first natural reaction is to ignore them, but at the same time, just keep a close watch from the corner of your eye to see what they’re up to. But what if that competitor accumulates 700,000 new customers within their first year just like hot enterprise collaboration start-up Slack did?

What if you’re the InterContinental Hotels Group, which, over the past 238 years acquired 4,600 hotels with 674,000 rooms to become the largest player in hospitality. …


When the Model T Ford was introduced in 1908, consumers were thrilled. They didn’t care that it didn’t have a roof or windshield wipers. It was better than a horse and buggy, and reinvented personal transportation. The Model T turned a page from an era of scarcity into an era of mass consumption. When Henry Ford launched the first Ford plant in Highland Park, Michigan, it quickly became the benchmark for mass production methods around the world. Ford and his engineers knew that to meet demand, their focus on productivity and efficiency had to be relentless. They invented machines and devised methods of assembling parts and cars as efficiently as possible. With a complete car leaving the line every 10 seconds of every working day, Model T production reached record levels. …

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