Notes by Nero Okwa
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Notes by Nero Okwa

2022: A Review. 2023: An Expectation.

Delivering Value

Dear Readers,

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

This is the 2022 annual review issue where we review the past year, and set the scene for 2023.

2022 was an interesting year with the world recovering from a pandemic, the Russia-Ukraine war, inflation and lots of uncertainties. It was also exciting because Morocco became the 1st African nation to reach the World Cup semi-final, and I started a new role with an awesome team and tech product.

I can’t believe it has been a year since our 2021 annual review, more unbelievable is that this newsletter turns 2 years old on Feb 21st 😊 — Save the date. I guess time flies when you are having fun.

2022 Review — 17 Articles

I was able to publish 17 articles in 2022, which had 15,909 views!!!

In 2022, I wrote a review article about How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big, Steve Jobs ‘The Lost Interview’, and life lessons from the successful entrepreneur Robert Reffkin of Compass.

I also concluded 2 series — Strategy, Management & Teamwork for 2022, and Spotify: Product Story ‘Review’, and started a new series: The Streaming Wars.

I wrote a lot on the streaming wars (still ongoing) because it had everything: business competition, technology, and culture, which touch our daily lives meaningfully. We’ve gone from cable TV to streaming everything. How it ends would play a part in what we call TV in the future.

Top 10 Most Read Articles in 2022

Below is a list of the top 10 articles (in descending order)

1. The Career Frameworks that Changed my life

2. How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big — A Book Review

3. 10 minutes with Nero Okwa

4. Strategy, Management & Teamwork for 2022 — Part 2: My Experience.

5. The Streaming Wars — Part 4: Netflix vs Blockbuster

6. Strategy, Management & Teamwork for 2022 — series conclusion

7. Spotify: Product Story ‘Review’ — series conclusion

8. Strategy Rules: Five Timeless Lessons from Bill Gates, Andy Grove, and Steve Jobs

9. The Streaming Wars — Part 5: A Brief History of TV

10. Strategy, Management & Teamwork for 2022 — Part 3: Strategy in Action

The award for 2 Hidden Gem Articles were Steve Jobs ‘The Lost Interview’, and Strategy Rules: Five Timeless Lessons from Bill Gates, Andy Grove, and Steve Jobs. Together they covered design, product management, strategy, technology, and culture.

While the 2 Most Rewarding Articles to write were Career Frameworks, and 10 minutes with Nero Okwa.

Career Frameworks

I wrote this to help you think about your career strategically, in light of the recent layoffs.

I love that it builds on my previous article Career Advice which was birthed out of a conversation with a recent MBA graduate concerned about his job prospects in an uncertainty.

Moving forward, I hope this newsletter can help business school graduates and those in a career transition, secure the right opportunities and thrive.

10 Minutes with Nero Okwa.

I wrote this about me, this newsletter’s objective, and inspirations for Black History Month.

As previously mentioned, I started writing this newsletter as a way to share my career and entrepreneurial experiences, and clarify my thinking from different books and resources.

Today this is a journal of my lifelong learning journey and work experiences across my interests: Business, Technology/Product Management, Career Development, and Africa.

2023 and Beyond

Last year, to encapsulate my expectation for the year and much of what this newsletter is about I chose the subtitle theme — Racing Towards Excellence.

I have been reflecting on how to build on this in 2023. Where do I want to take this newsletter? Again, I needed a new subtitle that set the tone.

I think I’ve got the theme and subtitle for 2023 — Delivering Value.

Choosing a Subtitle

Value is a concept I have always been fascinated by. Then recently I stumbled on 2 resources that really put it into perspective.

The first was by The Pragmatic Engineer. He showed that the main reasons people and businesses pay for things online is: to make more money, for professional education, and for entertainment. Hence, for value.

The second was by Dr. Timothy Chou, the Stanford university cloud computing guru.

In his recent 7 Life Lessons talk, he talked about the importance of teaching insights. I love his definition that “Insight is the gap between where you are today, and where you want to be”.

In 2023, I am interested in how these articles could provide value and share insights to help you — get a job, be better at your job, start a business, and maybe be entertained.

What

Across my interests of Business, Technology, Career Development, and Africa, I want to write:

  1. Book Reviews — I review a book that I found interesting like Choose Yourself
  2. Product Reviews — I review a tech product like Spotify, with a product manager’s lens
  3. Business Teardowns — NEW — where I study a particular company for key lessons
  4. Lessons in Business — I try to learn one business lesson from a successful person like Robert Reffkin, Tyra Banks, and Oprah
  5. Series — where I study a complex topic from different angles like The Streaming Wars
  6. Africa — I write on a topic from the continent like Shaping Africa’s future growth with Fred Swaniker or YouWin! — A Gift of Nigerian Genius.

I am excited to write across these topics, especially on Africa which I find fascinating. I am also excited to introduce a new focus — Business Teardown — and the chance to look at a company’s founding story, culture, strategy, and product. I look forward to finishing the streaming war series, and starting a new one 😊.

When

I would aim to publish a new article 3 times/month on the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Thursday of the month at 7pm.

Conclusion

I hope you would join me on this adventure as we have our best year yet. If you’re finding this newsletter valuable, consider sharing it with friends, or subscribing if you haven’t already.

If you have any more questions kindly leave a comment below or message me at notesbynero@gmail.com.

Thanks for reading and bye for now.

Nero

Delivering Value,

Racing Towards Excellence.

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Nero Okwa

Entrepreneur, Product Manager and StoryTeller. In love with Business, Technology, Travel and Africa.