Culture as code from a16z 🥗- Se souvenir des belles choses by Charles Pepin ⛅️- Building pyramids but how? 🧱- Will Apple buy ManU ⚽️?- Sebastien Caron, Mapstr's founder by Matt Stefani 🎙
Le temps n'est pas la durée.
Episode #91. Hey Sunday reader 👋🏼
This Sunday, The Timestamp comes again with your weekly dose of summaries from the articles, books, or podcasts you may have missed in tech & culture.
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#1. Culture as code 🥗
Patrick Kervern shares 9 takeaways from a podcast published in The A16z Podcast on Oct 6th, 2022👇.
How do you build, set, shape, fix, and change your culture? a16z co-founder Ben Horowitz discusses his latest book, What You Do is Who You Are.
Culture is what you do. It is not in your KPIs and OKRs.
Inspired by the Samouraï Code. Value is what you believe. Virtue is what you do.
Cultural orientation is good or bad practices highly visible to employees from day one. That is why onboarding and expected behaviors are very important.
Example of virtues vs values at A16Z. Every time you are late to a meeting with an entrepreneur, you need to pay Ben Horowitz 10 dollars per minute. This is how you show respect for the entrepreneur's time and what it means to build a company.
Write and make implicit the ethics and the lines that will not be crossed.
How can you be a founder with a proverbial reality distortion field and not lie to yourself? The distinction is simple: believing in something others don't see is not lying.
Pirate and the Navy: How do startups navigate this cultural transition? The consumer is the great equalizer. How consumers feel matters.
At a16Z we don't let anyone sign an offer without agreeing to the culture.
You value people on the magnitude of their strengths not their lack of weaknesses.
#2. Se souvenir des belles choses ⛅️
Some weeks ago, I have been asked to share more podcast ideas in French. My enthusiasm for Charles Pepin, a philosopher with a graduate degree from HEC, makes me share a few takeaways from this inspiring podcast he published in Nov 2021 (Sorry for the French)👇.
Se souvenir des belles choses est un art du présent. Rien à voir avec le passéisme ou la nostalgie. Se souvenir c’est au contraire vivre pleinement le moment présent, profiter de l’instant.
“Le temps n'est pas la durée”. Vivre l'instant présent au sens des épicuriens est finalement une notion plutôt animale; l'homme se différencie de l'animal par sa capacité à penser le temps présent ou passé en se souvenant des belles choses (et des moins belles).
Se souvenir de tout serait assurément insupportable. Cette supercapacité nous empêcherait de vivre au présent, pleinement car le présent nous renverrait constamment à une autre référence temporelle.
#3. Building pyramids but how? 🧱
Sharing here a few takeaways from another podcast in French about History. Episode published on Nov 24, 2022 on Oyez Oh Yeah!
The Egyptian civilization lasted for more than 3000 years. Since the pyramids were built in -2500 years BC, this means that Cleopatra was as distant in time to the construction of the pyramids as we are today from the birth of Jesus Christ.
The size of each pyramid would be linearly correlated with the duration of the reign of the pharaoh they were built for. They would just be tombs built for their master; nobody was visiting those pyramids at the time. It is 99% certain that Egyptian pyramids are full and plain; the only caveat that exists in each of them is a tumb.
It is still not easy to understand how they were built... while the wheel did not yet exist. Most likely, each large piece of stone was pulled and pushed by workers while using salt and water to create a surface of less resistance.
#4. Will Apple buy ManU ⚽️?
Tech may intersect with football. Sharing a few takeaways from an article published in Huddle Up on Nov 29, 2022 “Is Apple going to buy Manchester United?”.
ManU football club is for sale as their American owner, the Glazer family wants to pull the plug. For the record, they purchased the club in 2005 for $1.2bn. The club could be worth between 5 and $7bn today.
ManU is set to enter in the Top5 of the highest sports team sales in history. If it sells at a price higher than $3.16bn, it will surpass the amount paid recently for the acquisition of Chelsea FC. Liverpool FC is also for sale, we can question if the UK football club's valuation reached a peak.
Overall the investment of the Glazer family grew +283% in valuation since 2005. Apple is said to have plans to build the most modern stadium in the world while other contenders include Jim Ratcliffe (UK billionaire), Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal (via Saudi Arabia PIF), a consortium that includes David Beckham (played with Man Utd from 1994-2003), Amancio Ortega (Spanish businessman and founder of Zara).
#5. Sebastien Caron (Mapstr) by Matt Stefani 🎙
It has been a while since I shared a few notes about an interview podcast by Matt Stefani (GDIY). This week, I enjoyed this > 3-hour conversation with Sebastien. Hey Sebastien 👋🏼, you remind me of my days at StationF; building a mobile app is not an easy business. Great interview published on Nov 27, 2022👇.
Sebastien Caron is the founder of Mapster, a Spotify-like app enabling anyone to create and keep ‘placelists’. Sebastien graduated from Ecole Polytechnique and was part of the first class attending the X-HEC program. Guess what, he is not so proud of being an X graduate.
Sebastien is quite an atypic profile as he admits that the French elite educational system just conditioned him to learn fear; it took him 10 years to unlearn fear and become an entrepreneur and solo founder of Mapstr.
With 3m users after 7 years, Mapstr builds a unique long-term user retention but the mobile app still struggles to find its growth engine. Sebastien is a symbol of courage for entrepreneurs; he still holds on with 4 employees entertaining the dream that anybody on the planet should have Mapstr on their phone.
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