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Stoa Digest #13: Your actions affect others.
Courtesy: The Bullwhip Effect
Highlight of the Week
We had a Stoa Amphi after a really long time last week.
Shonik was our moderator for a conversation with Dilip, Srinidy and other members of the Community who chose to join in & provide input.
There were quite a few insights on:
Getting a job as a Product Manager
What it takes to be one
The problems they most often face in the role.
The Community team’s been working on previewing this for a while now.
We hope you like it!
Feel free to give us some feedback, or juicy details we can use about future fellows we’re going to Spotlight! 😊
Let’s Rewind: Last Week at Stoa 📆
Breaking down the idea of a Business Generalist
Sunil Seetharaman came to break down some myths & legends about being a Generalist in the Startup World.
We strongly recommend you watch the recording, even if just to find Priyank’s quick thinking response.
When thinking of moving into startups, there’s a term doing the rounds, “Business generalist” or sometimes even just “Generalist”.
The thing to remember here is that being a jack of all trades(aka Generalist) still involves knowing some of them(trades) better than all of them.
There are very rarely individuals who are good at absolutely nothing.
While attaining mastery is great, learn from the masters of your skill & build yourself a career moat around a good mix of these interest layers.
Allow this to help you consider whether this is a moat you want to be around for the rest of your career, or again, go back to the foundation structure, and think of how you can re-build this for yourself.
At all points of time in a startup there are two things you serve a purpose for.
Either you contribute to
To cost reduction.
When this isn’t being met, that’s when you’re in danger.
Remember to always pick good companies to work for - the day you start feeling depressed that your Sunday’s getting over, you’re at the wrong place.
Before you decide what you want to do, though, you have to also decide if you’re willing to do the following, at the companies you choose to work for:
Stick on for consistency
Have life experiences or,
Just always remember, when switching from one major industry to the next, your only way up is through the rungs. You have to sacrifice & compromise in the short term, in the hope that the future pans out for you.
The sooner you experiment in your career, the higher the dividend - it’s plain & simple compounding. It’s also something you can't pursue later on in your career when you need stability.
Remember this: The best generalists dont have the answers, they just get to the problem quicker & keep iterating to find the solution faster than anybody else.
Something that this requires is a “Constantly open to learning” attitude - from all aspects/departments of the company you work in.
The Bullwhip effect
Cohort 3 played a game over the weekend that we hope would’ve made them exercise many different skills:
Restraint when it comes to Panic Reactions
Team-building & trust
Operations are the backbone of absolutely any industry, which means that they have to be optimised constantly.
Something that makes this easier is building processes.
A process is a series of actions to result in the achievement of a goal. Without that action, you can’t really move forward.
“Just Dunzo it”
Solving for Distribution
Solving for retention
Kartik came to talk to Cohort 3, about Operations at Dunzo, the company we all now use as a verb.
We all interact with Hyperlocal businesses in one way or another, instead of us summarising it all here, we’d recommend you go have a look at the recording - it’s well worth a few 🧠😱🤯
Something Dunzo ended up doing that not many Hyperlocal businesses did, was cater to niches of their audience. This helped them survive the boom of Hyperlocal businesses in 2016 & grow into the evergreen company it is today.
If you remember our thread on Discord maybe about a week ago or so, there was a conversation around, “Delivery in >30m” - you’re in luck because Kartik covered exactly this, to explain why this model is something that works, and sometimes almost too well even.
Here’s an article he swears has a cult following that is extremely serendipitous & right on time for Cohort 2’s VC month.
We’ve had quite a few Cohort 4 fellows join us, and as painful as this might currently be because we’re not used to Circle, whenever you do go on Circle -
Take a second, click on the Introductions space and read through 2-3 of them and offer them some validation & say Hi!!
Don’t leave our new members hanging! You’ll be surprised of what you find!
Birthday Parttaaayy! 🥳 🎂
Mrunmayi Parchure - Sep 6th (TODAY!)
Varun Pimplé - Sep 8th
Meme Wars 🥲
This week’s shiny new winner of Best Meme goes to …………
If you remember the Bullwhip Game - you’re feeling this meme as much as we did.
To end, we’ll leave you with this: 🎧
Nicaia made a playlist for that post session fatigue, when you just want to vibe.