Posts Tagged ‘quote’

Chinese proverb on prosperity & growth

“I’m told that there is a Chinese proverb that says: 

If you want one year of prosperity, then grow grain. 

If you want 10 years of prosperity, then grow trees. 

But if you want 100 years of prosperity, then you grow people.”

(Via Remarks by President Obama and President Hu of the People’s Republic of China in an Exchange of Toasts at State Dinner | The White House)

On Scale

Lunch with the FT: Tadashi Yanai – “‘Scale has no importance on its own,’ he shoots back. ‘But unless you have scale, you may not be able to stay alive or competitive. Unless you have scale, you can be bought by someone else or you may go bankrupt.” - Tadashi Yanai, Fast Retailing, makers of Uniqlo.

It’s not a classic mistake to prioritise scale over profits. The above statement is spot on about scale.

Seeing the future

I cannot say this better than Dustin Curtis can, so read it: What a stupid idea.

They saw the future and they built it. But for some reason, my first reaction to their earliest attempts wasn’t to give them the benefit of the doubt—it was to immediately find problems and then dismiss their ideas.

The future is extremely hard to see through the lens of the present. It’s very easy to unconsciously dismiss the first versions of something as frivolous or useless. Or as stupid ideas.

We all talk about being disruptive, but how many people say things like “the relational database market is a $9bn market, I want to reduce it to a $3bn market and take 1/3 of that”? Saying is one thing, having the vision is another. That was me paraphrasing Marten Mickos (former CEO, MySQL – exit $1bn) speaking to Danny Rimer (partner, Index Ventures).

I live by the mantra that the best way to predict the future is to engineer it (via Alan Kay) and that the future is wide open.

Logic & reason

“Those who study logic too long may lose sight of reason.” - Daniel Nichter (source)


Jaehyo Lee, South Korean artist gone global with a play on textures & shapesDoes having a critical mind require you to be a critic? Does being a critic long enough make you a cynic?

These are thoughts that have crossed my mind in recent times. As I’ve grown older, I realise that I’ve been overly idealistic in the past.

These days, I’m motivated to see the positive in things. Punditry overall is boring as it doesn’t create.

I’m motivated by Scooter Braun’s motto:


I think I’ll spend some free time going back and only looking at the positive side of things.

Performance over time

“You either die a hero or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain.” 

Harvey Dent (fictional character) said that in Batman The Dark Knight. Deep, and something we should often think about.