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jerryking : bottlenecks   9

The Similarities Between Building and Scaling a Product and a Company – AVC
August 15, 2013 | AVC | by Fred Wilson.

Once you have a successful product in the market, you need to turn your attention to scaling it. The system you and your team built will break if you don't keep tweaking it as demand grows. Greg Pass, who was VP Engineering at Twitter during the period where Twitter really scaled, talks about instrumenting your service so you can see when its reaching a breaking point, and then fixing the bottleneck before the system breaks. He taught me that you can't build something that will never break. You have to constantly be rebuilding parts of the system and you need to have the data and processes to know which parts to focus on at what time.

The team is the same way. Your awesome COO who helped you get from 30 people to 150 people without missing a beat might become a bottleneck at 200 people. ....
How you fix your system and how you fix your team depends on the facts and circumstances of the problem. There is no one right answer. The key is removing the bottleneck so the rest of the system can work again. ...It is harder to instrument your team the way you can instrument a software system. 360 reviews and other feedback systems are a good way to get some data. And walking around the company, doing lunches with managers who are one level down from your senior team, and generally being open to and available for feedback is the way you get the data. When you see that someone on your team has maxed out and the entire system is crashing as a result, you need to act.
Fred_Wilson  scaling  teams  professional_service_firms  bottlenecks  COO  instrumentation_monitoring  soft_skills  turning_your_team 
october 2016 by jerryking
Water Data Deluge: Addressing the California Drought Requires Access to Accurate Data - The CIO Report - WSJ
April 22, 2015| WSJ | By KIM S. NASH.

California, now in its fourth year of drought, is collecting more data than ever from utilities, municipalities and other water providers about just how much water flows through their pipes....The data-collection process, built on monthly self-reporting and spreadsheets, is critical to informing such policy decisions, which affect California’s businesses and 38.8 million residents. Some say the process, with a built-in lag time of two weeks between data collection and actionable reports, could be better, allowing for more effective, fine-tuned management of water.

“More data and better data will allow for more nuanced approaches and potentially allow the water system to function more efficiently,”...“Right now, there are inefficiencies in the system and they don’t know exactly where, so they have to resort to blanket policy responses.”...the State Water Resources Control Board imports the data into a spreadsheet to tabulate and compare with prior months. Researchers then cleanse the data, find and resolve anomalies and create graphics to show what’s happened with water in the last month. The process takes about 2 weeks....accuracy is an issue in any self-reporting scenario...while data management could be improved by installing smart meters to feed information directly to the Control Board automatically... there are drawbacks to any technology. Smart meters can fail, for example. “The nice thing about spreadsheets is anyone can open it up and immediately see everything there,”
lag_time  water  California  data  spreadsheets  inefficiencies  municipalities  utilities  bureaucracies  droughts  vulnerabilities  self-reporting  decision_making  Industrial_Internet  SPOF  bottlenecks  data_management  data_quality  data_capture  data_collection 
april 2015 by jerryking
If BlackBerry is sold, Canada faces an innovation vacuum - The Globe and Mail
Aug. 17 2013 | The Globe and Mail | KONRAD YAKABUSKI.

The sale and breakup of a flagship technology company is a reoccurring theme in Canadian business. But this time is different. If BlackBerry Ltd. goes, there is no ready replacement. That’s a telling switch from the situation Canada faced with the sale of Newbridge Networks in 2000 and the demise of Nortel Networks in 2009....Canada has an innovation bottleneck. An abundance of science is generated in university labs and start-up firms but most of it never finds its way into commercial applications. Risk-averse banks and too many businesses of the bird-in-the-hand variety remain the weak links in Canada’s innovation system.

“We punch above our weight in idea generation,” observes Michael Bloom, who leads the Conference Board of Canada’s Centre for Business Innovation. “But the further you move towards commercialization, the weaker we get as a country.”....Innovation can be driven by any sector, even the old-economy resource extraction business of the oil sands. But tech firms remain by far the most R&D-intensive players in any economy.

Hence, the tech sector is a key barometer of a country’s innovation strength. And innovation matters because it has a profound influence on our living standards – it is “the key long-run driver of productivity and income growth,” ...Canadian businesses remain oddly complacent.

“We tend in this county not to look at the true market opportunity of innovation,” Mr. Bloom adds. “If you only see a market of 35 million people, you’re going to see more risk than if you see the market as Europe, the U.S. and Asia. Americans see risk, but also great opportunity.”

It’s no coincidence that many of Canada’s greatest entrepreneurs and innovators have been immigrants. Unlike his American counterpart, the average Canadian business graduate does not dream of becoming the next Sergey Brin, Steve Jobs or, for that matter, Peter Munk.

Mr. Lazaridis and ex-BlackBerry co-CEO Jim Balsillie notwithstanding, how many Canadian entrepreneurs and innovators have truly changed the world, or aspire? By all accounts, not that many. A Conference Board study released last month found that only 10 per cent of Canadian firms (almost all of them small ones) pursue “radical or revolutionary” innovations. Large firms focus at best on “incremental” innovations.
Blackberry  bottlenecks  commercialization  competitiveness_of_nations  complacency  hollowing_out  Konrad_Yakabuski  Newbridge  Nortel  innovation  idea_generation  ecosystems  breakthroughs  incrementalism  large_companies  sellout_culture  Jim_Balsillie  moonshots  immigrants  Canada  Peter_Munk  market_opportunities  weak_links  thinking_big  oil_sands  resource_extraction  marginal_improvements  innovation_vacuum  punch-above-its-weight  This_Time_is_Different 
august 2013 by jerryking
Glass ceilings, sticky floors, and mid-level bottlenecks
September 2010 I Impact . Alison Konrad finds that women and visible minorities are less likely to be promoted than white men
visible_minorities  movingonup  women  workplaces  career_paths  glass_ceilings  bottlenecks  white_men 
october 2010 by jerryking
Corner Office - Tachi Yamada and the Importance of Undivided Attention - Question - NYTimes.com
Feb. 27, 2010 | NYT | Adam Bryant's interview of Tachi Yamada,
M.D., president of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global
Health Program.
* Don’t micromanage, but have microinterests.
* Every moment counts, be 100 % in the moment.
* Intelligence = complex abstract thinking = human relationships. Look
for people who’ve moved.
* Humour, is an underestimated and important value.
* Leadership, in order to connect with groups of people, requires giving
of yourself.
* Turn battleships by making directional commitments and staying the
course,
* In giving feedback, the positive messages get lost in the one negative
message, and the negative message gets garbled.
* Figure out what your North Star is.
* Be open to new challenges.
* If there are 10 tasks in an overall project, identify the most
critical task among those 10. What is the one thing that everything
else hinges on (i.e. the linchpin)? Invest time in understanding that one thing. Then,
if/when the problem occurs, it usually occurs there.
billgates  philanthropy  CEOs  linchpins  Managing_Your_Career  career  feedback  hiring  leadership  focus  slight_edge  rate-limiting_steps  affirmations  humour  commitments  priorities  bottlenecks  abstractions  moments  attention  North_Star  monotasking  mindfulness  living_in_the_moment 
march 2010 by jerryking
The Green Machine Hal Harvey spends his environmental war chest with one guiding principle: winning
FEBRUARY 12, 2007 WSJ article by JEFFREY BALL. Global warming
is tougher than localized environmental threats such as smog. That, Hal
Harvey argues, requires environmentalists to focus less on fiery
rhetoric and more on hashing out economically efficient policies that
have political legs. In doling out the dollars at his disposal, Mr.
Harvey uses much the same strategy as the other venture capitalists in
Silicon Valley. He invests where he thinks he'll get maximum return. In
his parlance, he looks for the political "pinch points" likely to
promote technologies that will deliver the most "tons of carbon avoided
per philanthropic dollar invested." He and his colleagues try to compute
that using spreadsheets.
green  environment  philanthropy  lobbying  policy  strategy  UFSC  financial_literacy  pain_points  bottlenecks  leverage  return_on_effort  investors  climate_change 
february 2009 by jerryking

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