Are you embracing new ways of working?


– Copenhagen, 1999 : Starting at Ernst and Young Consulting!

 My first day as a very fresh consultant: nobody there to welcome and lead me in this new, intimidating adventure. But something blew my mind, on that day. I received 3 things: a laptop, a mobile phone and a corporate credit card so that I could work on projects in Oslo, London or Tokyo. Already back at that time, I discovered a seamless way of working.  


– Hong Kong, 2014 : Clients and video conference…

Fast-forward 15 years, I am the co-founder of an edtech startup in Hong Kong. Our team members are located in different countries around the world. We are a “digital-first” company and work together mostly online via video conferences.  

After a lot of effort, our team finally manages to line up meetings with one of the world’s most-known luxury watch companies as well as one of the largest insurance companies. We are very excited to present our innovative products to them! 

Their answer: “A video conference? No, this is absolutely impossible. We cannot and are not allowed to use video conferences with external companies! You need to fly in to our Headquarters in Switzerland” 

We still got many such answers until 2019.  

Then, something big happened and gave an incredible boost to digitisation…  


– May 18, 2022 : Radical change

Fanny Guinochet, a French journalist I appreciate, explains that 78% of executives (in France) are happy to work remotely. They even envision to work 100% remotely within the next 10 years. 10% of them even think that the “office” will fully disappear! 

Executives want to be autonomous, flexible and organise their day-to-day activities as they see fit. They also want to see purpose in their lives and work for companies that are socially responsible. These are also the values of a large group in our society: the Millennials! 


#innovation #disruption #newwaysofworking #climatechange #sustainability #Millennials #digitisation #entrepreneurship 


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Bootstrapping in business. To be or not to be.

Bootstrapping is one of the strongest forms of entrepreneurship, meaning start and proceed a business without external capitals. They will survive through very little money and no outside investments to build their business.

That makes the very difference between bootstrapped start-ups and fund-raised companies. Bootstrapped businesses expect to have slow and quiet growth, focusing on business models to offset the costs. On the other hand, companies involved with external funding or help will be expected to have a higher growth rate so that they could strategically meet the investor’s ROI. 

    Many of the successful companies had their beginnings as a bootstrapped company. Including,  

    • Dell Computers 
    • Facebook Inc. 
    • Apple Inc.
    • Coca Cola Co. 

          In this article, I will write about bootstrapping in business, financing methods, stages and pros and cons of bootstrapping.

          Bootstrapping Financing methods 
          • Owner Financing: The use of personal income and savings. 
          • Personal Debt: Credit card debt, personal loans 
          • Sweat Equity: A party’s contribution to the company in the form of effort. 
          • Minimize Operating Costs: Keep costs as low as possible. 
          • Inventory Minimization: Requires a fast turnaround of inventory. 
          • Subsidy Finance: Government cash payments or tax reductions. 
          • Selling: Cash to run the business comes from sales. 


                      Bootstrapping process 
                      1. Early Stage 
                        The entrepreneur utilizes personal savings or borrowed or investment money from friends and family. Also, the founder might be running or working for other projects.
                      2. Customer and (or) Sales-Funded Stage  
                        In this stage, money from customers is used to keep the business operating and, eventually, funds growth. Once expenses are met, growth will speed up. 

                      3. Credit Stage 
                        In the credit stage, the entrepreneur must focus on the funding of specific activities, such as improving equipment, hiring staff, etc. At this stage, the company takes out loans or may even find venture capital, for expansion. 


                            Companies Eligible for Bootstrapping 
                            • Early-stage companies
                              They do not 
                              need a large amount of capital which will allow for flexibility for the business and time to grow. 

                            • Serial entrepreneur companies
                              The founder has capital from the exit of previous companies they can use to invest could reap the benefits of bootstrapping


                            Advantages of Bootstrapping 
                            • Full control 
                              Founders will hold total control over the finances which allows them to maintain control over the organization’s cash flow. Equity is retained by the owner and can be redistributed at their discretion. This can ensure that the business is moving in the direction desired, according to the founders’ vision and cultural values, without any external influence, and when successful, keeping the profits for themselves. 
                              • Low barriers of entry 
                                Start with the founder’s own money means that super-efficiency is necessary. Solving problems without external funding means that bootstrappers have to become resourceful and develop a versatile skill set. 
                                • Focus on the business itself 
                                  Raising external finance can be a very stressful and time-consuming task. By bootstrapping their company, founders can concentrate on the core aspects of the business such as sales and product. Additionally, due to the limited cash supply, it’s normal to have alternative options such as factoring, asset re-financing, and trade finance with bootstrapping. 


                                  Disadvantages of Bootstrapping 
                                  • Personal liability – High risk of failure  
                                    All financial risks pertaining to the business in question all fall on the owner’s shoulders. The owner is forced to put either their own or their family/friend’s investments in jeopardy in the event of the business failing. 
                                    The founder needs to become adept at handling stressful situations that might crop up if you finance your company using debt to another person, such as family members and friends. Understanding what is expected and communicating this clearly to others can help you cope with the stress of the situation. 

                                  • Limited cash flow 
                                    Without the aid of occasional external sources of funding, entrepreneurs can find themselves unable to promote employees or even expand their businesses. A lack of money could possibly lead to a reduction in the quality of the service or product.
                                    One reason some bootstrapped companies are unsuccessful is due to the lack of revenue: Profit may not be sufficient to meet all costs. 

                                    Starting a business most often requires very long hours of work just to keep your business going, plus, usually, there is no stipend to go with this effort. All problems are yours, as hiring staff is not usually an option.

                                  Bright side 

                                  Building your own financial foundations is a huge attraction to future investors. Investors are much more confident when it comes to funding businesses that are already backed and have shown promise. Flaws can be corrected with growth, such as product and service. Therefore, perfection at the launch of the business is not a necessity. 

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                                  Digital nomads in Croatia

                                  Building a global company through digital nomadism?

                                  Our digital nomad lifestyle has been an incredible source of experiences! We have not only seen amazing places, but more importantly, met great people from around the world! Some of them have even joined our team. With some others, we have created synergies and in all cases, we have had a good time!

                                  You can read the full article in Croatian or translated automatically.  

                                  Digital nomads in Split

                                  Great thanks to #LjubicaVuko, #ToniTrivković and #SplitTechCity. ?


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                                  ” Why did we fail? “

                                  This is the question our Agile coach asked me a few days ago.
                                  I looked at her with what might have been a big question mark on my face. “How can you say we are failing, or even worse, that we failed?! Specially now that we are actually getting one client request after the next !!! ” I answered bewildered. (I should have noticed her malicious smile…, but too late)
                                  She answered: “I’m not saying that you have failed. Nor am I actually saying that you are failing. I am saying that you should think about it.”
                                  “What do you mean?” I answered.
                                  “Project yourself in 6 months. Ask the whole team to do this. Then, ask the team why it has failed. Ask it to find all the reasons why you collapsed, disappeared. This will help you identify the key challenges you face now.”
                                  “Did you get my attention?” she added.
                                  “Oh yes, as always…” I answered.
                                  To my Dear-Agile-Coach: Thanks for this wonderful – though simple – tip. 😉
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