So one and a half years into The Change and new lessons emerge! If it was real before it’s now getting very real indeed! It’s time for us to choose whom to back from a selection of genuinely amazing people. We have to be grateful. I plan to show that through acknowledgment of challenges that were beyond me before but that I’ve hopefully grown into, along this intense journey.
Despite massive wins this month I am keen to reflect further. We need never repeat earlier mistakes! Sure we’ve had a great quarter in pretty much all elements of our business, with continued growth in Innovation, some amazing partners on board, with much evolution in our transformation business, married and continued progress on our adventure.
1. The Change begins to define itself!
Up until now we have had three companies which ran as one. Now we have three sister companies who work as sisters do. They work to their own mission and purpose rather than running as they had been as a muddled mess.
The Change composes of Venture capital www.thechange.vc , transformation services www.thechange.services and innovation www.thechange.is and by all three now running to a specific mission, we are confident we will begin to be “The Change,” we have always wanted to see in the world. www.thechangegroup.co will be live soon to bring it all together.
Our big mission has also become clearer so watch this space for our impact strategies and ESG! Watch for new public appointments in the near future!
What a difference a quarter makes! It’s taken our team to work together and iron out some bugs but we feel if you start the journey now it will be a whole new experience.
It always starts and ends with a sprint & What a team to sprint with!
2. Working on the business rather than in the business
We took a massive step forward this quarter genuinely working on our own business and not just in it. We had two sprints on our own company and we also ran our first virtual sprints which worked out pretty well! We then did two face to face sprints with two teams we are proud to be involved with and it worked out even better! By sprinting we have cut short the journey by some £250k plus and in doing so we have saved pain and heart ache like we never experienced otherwise!
Shout out to
All that matters at the start is the right team, working together in the right way!
3. The Change begins!
After an aspirational start The Change begins anew with a further 50 T Shirts ready for the backs of our Change Makers. With a fresh mindset, an improved team with capacity to deliver and the funds available to back some of this quarter’s top global teams. We want the best and brightest to apply and we hope our stumbling at the start hasn’t put you off. We were new to it and did our best to learn as quickly as we could! Before now our mission hadn’t been clear enough though and for that reason we are bringing new expertise to The Change over the next while so watch this space. Together when structured correctly and with the correct motivation we are unstoppable
Some pics from our own sprint!
If you are looking for investment simply go to:
Lets see if we can help!
If you are looking for transformation and you know that you need more than money simply go to:
If you need Innovation support to get you through COVID why not just give us a PM!
If you had your reservations as a founder in applying to a new VC, well please put those aside even if we can’t help directly we might be the signpost. We have learned a lot on this journey and will soon be releasing important news on our fund lead. Our doors are always open for business. After more than 170 pitches it’s all go at The Change!
4. Time Management of Zoom & Teams in a post COVID world
The recent adoption of Zoom by the wider world has opened up a whole new world of communication opportunities but has created a new problem. Instant access to diaries with a potential for over-communication as an outcome.
I expect many people to feel overwhelmed and are struggling to cope!
Time management systems are a must for the modern age if we are to lead healthy happy and fulfilling lives which don’t instead result in over-communication.
Limit zoom use to something which allows you sanity! Don’t be a victim no matter what your job.
Love what you do!
5. Some people aren’t cut out to change the world! You just have to accept that, not everyone is focused on legacies that benefit the world. Some do just want to benefit their own pockets.
It’s hard as a person focused on creating change to accept that not everyone is like you. It’s harder still to realise that some people who don’t think like you probably really don’t like you, or what you stand for or against.
I’m in this world for win, win, win and it’s only becoming more clear to me that the many if not most are in for just short term wins or worse in it for me, me, me. The ego kills all shreds of understanding as to why!
I might be on my soap box, it’s not like me, but such people can window dress that they are more than the sum of their parts and yet when you get underneath the skin of their achievements they really are limited to what one would call personal gain.
It can be hard for me in particular to forgive those people who take more than they give in life, especially when they often take what is due to others for themselves but really it’s fool on them, even when they win they lose… Givers gain!
Progress in society comes in many forms and who knows, perhaps the personal drive for self-gratification of some does bring benefit to others.
The soul comes from giving back change from growth, and even if others do accumulate more material wealth than me, I’ll leave them to measure their achievements in such a way. I’ll stick to doing it my own way. “Pro tanto quid retribuamus.”
I’m going to make a lot of money for a lot of people and make some for myself in the process!
Others are set to try to make money for themselves but they may steal the world’s clothes in the process.
Success for me will be the economic growth of my investees, the personal growth of my team and colleagues, and my investors and the part I had to play in it. I’ll make sure this time I work with those who feel the same way as I do and want my family to have success to boot. #APlayers
6. Feeling sorry for yourself doesn’t cut it. Be #therocketman and change the world
So we all deal with things in different ways. We are also complex to the extreme and often we miss out some of the key layers of defence we put up. The truth is I never really recovered from a trust event in my business that had a major impact on me since 2012. The Andrew Cuthbert who emerged from that event lost a great deal of faith in humanity and also lost all expectation of positive personal outcomes even when I worked on amazing things. I then ended up working with more people who weren’t aligned with my ethos in my next venture and well that took a toll too, but it all hardened me up. I have been really fortunate to have a career of wonder and discovery, I have had the chance to work on some amazing technologies with some amazing people but it’s on reflection that since at least 2013 I have been doing so while feeling sorry for myself, never really buying into anything the way I had before that major life event that changed me.
Business relationships are like marriages and while I never intend to have a second marriage I did leave my first business love Omnisoft feeling that figuratively “I’d got into bed with the wrong people,” for me on a number of occasions. That haunted my trust in people for a long time. Even though I had convinced others I was OK, I deep down wasn’t and instead of smashing it with the great people I would meet through creating The Change I was until now simply going through the motions of business life without direction or purpose. It was only this quarter that that changed.
It took a slight dip for me to realise that I was running on one cylinder not 12 and that dip came from a concern Gavan Wall my Cofounder had on how we deliver on some of our ambitious goals. Anxiety caused me to be open about how I felt and the blocker that has held me back for all this time.
Many experiences since 2013 only reinforced how I felt about the world and why I’d come to the conclusion that outcomes didn’t REALLY matter, I’d got into a rut that wasn’t obvious to me. I did because I could. I also forgot about the sacrifices my family make for my work and the cost of not valuing my work in a way that created value for me and those who support me rather than just for those who have not valued what I do for them over the years. I hadn’t “been present,” or true to me.
I had been living a lie… I now realise The Change matters! My Families outcomes matter. The cylinders are firing up so watch what I achieve now on 12 rather than on 1. I’ve been cruising in first pretending I was ok for 8 years! It’s time to take my game to another level, and leave those who have squandered earlier opportunities and effort I gave to see what I can really do with the right support. I’m back!
7. Mutual Understanding helps relationships, understanding ourselves in context of others changes lives
My journey has been an interesting one, highly non-orthodox at almost every level and understanding myself has been core to me, even when I came up with the wrong answer.
Interpersonal understanding was secondary and yet that’s probably because I’ve allowed every person I meet to take me apart and make judgements on who I am and why I do what I did. The truth is no one could ever get why. My why was abstract to them while it was clear as day to me. I wanted to change the world. I knew what that meant even if they did not!
Today interpersonal understanding is critical for me, my team and the teams we work with but I’m clear this can only be achieved through every individual understanding the key components of themselves, and working through those to an epiphany of what works with those around us as the context.
I’m confident that over the last quarter we all started to get that sense of flow that comes from being a great team which works with common purpose.
We are no longer just the sum of our parts but have started to become something more.
We are becoming happier, healthier and more fulfilled as a result, and we will deliver 100x more than we would have done before the transition.
I think that’s a result!
8. False hope is no hope
There are some really amazing people in this world and they stand out. Many may have been broken along the way and put themselves back together in such an unusual way that it unlocks a new type of creativity that just isn’t found in the everyday person.
There are those that have that gift from the second you meet them and those that don’t. We back those that have that and its essential I see past my own world view and into theirs.
For some no matter how talented, their brokenness is beyond repair and the difficulty of the road has to be considered when making an investment. We all have to enjoy this journey and the individual that founded the concept has to be ready to open their minds as much as I am.
The long and the short of it is that the worst engagements I have had with founders, have been where there was a clear gap at the outset, but yet I ploughed on anyway trying to fix problems through my own means.
When I have been clear with a founder on my expectations, I think it’s important that I then extend that same opportunity to that founder to expect from us in return, and let us know if we falter in any way.
If The Change is not the right vessel for the journey I need to be just as clear about that.
Long goodbyes are the hardest for all involved! If someone is a new venturer in business and they don’t want to grow together NO can be the kindest answer. You as the venture partner may simply be the wrong partner.
9. One man or one woman armies – There is no I in team…
There are exceptional individuals out there and these people have something special inside them. They have what it takes to do almost anything they put their mind to and yet they struggle to move their journeys forward. I have no doubt been one of these individuals in the past and having now formed The Change I realise that it takes a certain set of circumstances to get the superhuman amongst our investees back on track.
If you listed their characteristics, they would be the dragon in top trumps.
Individually they are exceptional, but they may require a unique type of coaching and mentorship to play well in a team, and as generalists they can struggle to find their zone when amongst great and exceptional specialists. These guys are the hardest of calls. You have either found the next Zuckerberg waiting to happen or you have found a spectacular car crash. The most likely outcome being the latter.
These things burn energy but maybe just maybe they will be worth it, and maybe just maybe you can find the right people for the journey…
I know I couldn’t do it without the exceptional people around me.
This month the glue between us grew. We started to do the business in a way that hadn’t happened before the glue had set…
@Sarah Doyle @Raghav Bhola @Yannick Tona @Henry Algeo @ Gavan Wall it was a difficult month but one I think we end on a high and grew from all the same!
10. Raw exposed and vulnerable
Never before have people been more exposed and likely to suffer mental health issues than now. Pressures are rising across the world due to the pandemic. For me the pressure is rising too, I have to confess my working days are extending week after week, making virtually every day a working day currently. But I am a lucky one, a short exit from the place I call home and I enter a lovely green space, my garden and this makes all the difference to me. I can only imagine how others are feeling, especially those in the cities of the world. The world has gone digital for the moment and we have both gained and lost as a result. Change is happening every day as the world tries to settle into a new flow.
We need to be cognisant of more than just work issues if we are to survive. Work life balance has never been more important. Before this most lived at home and worked from the office, now the lines are blurred. We must create new ways of living and working to continue to thrive.
A new mixed digital physical picture is emerging and this needs leadership from within every company not just ours.
As my TedX talk approaches and I reflect on these things I’m increasingly aware of of the issues I’ll address at TedX on how Data & AI is progressing #ThinkNetwork now more than ever
In closing I am ecstatic to have our first engagements at The Change signed and sealed, I am ecstatic for the progress of our teams! I am excited by the experienced team I am humbled to be part of and ready to make this new year a wonderful one that leaves 2020 behind.
We are moving to a whole new level so I really look forward to passing on achievements in the coming months rather than mere reflections and growth!
I look forward to sharing some of the amazing founders I have had the joy to encourage in my next update!
Thanks for reading & listening to my thoughts!