The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten
478: [Encore Episode] Beginning of the New Year – How to Reflect and Plan Ahead
Dec 31, 2019
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In today’s episode of The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about how to reflect and plan ahead at this time of year.

At this time of year, it is very common for founders to go into reflection mode and reflect on the progress of their business. This could be thinking about what they’ve achieved in the year, what went well in that year and what didn’t go so well. This is a good thing, and while it is recommended that some founders do it, some other founders might decide to use this time of year to plan for the coming year.

In this week’s episode, Steli and Hiten talk about how you could use this time of very productively, two key things people do this time of year, why you should do what works for you and much more. 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:00 About today’s topic.

00:38 Why this topic was chosen.

01:10 How you could use this time of year very productively.

01:44 Two key things people do at this time of year.

02:40 How this time of year is the easiest time to get somebody to reflect on the past.

03:07 Why a lot of people reflect at this time of year.

04:34 Why you might want to reflect at this time of year.

06:07 Why you should do what works for you.

09:53 How there’s no one path to be successful.

10:51 Why Hiten loves giving one on one advice. 

3 Key Points:

This is the easiest time to get somebody to reflect on the pastIf you’re in that mood, don’t fight it.Just do you.


Steli Efti: Hey, everybody, this is Steli Efti.


Hiten Shah: And this is Hiten Shah, and today on The Startup Chat, what are we going to talk about, Steli?


Steli Efti: Well, Hiten, I think we're going to talk about the mood that we're all in, which is we're kind of in the tradition between holidays, New Year's, and kicking off 2018, and I think we want to talk a little bit about that season from an entrepreneurial point of view, from a [subtle] point of view. First, things slow down, right? And they kind of, I think, a lot of people... It puts people into a contemplating mood. You start reflecting back on how this year went, and you start trying to prepare for what the goals and what the changes and what the "resolution" should be for next year. I think we want to just go through this a little bit from our own lenses and maybe highlight some of the things startups and entrepreneurs can do to use this time in the most productive way possible, to make sure that the next year is going to be killer and successful, and they're going to accomplish the right type of things that they want.


Hiten Shah: Yeah, I love that. I think I'd like to split it into two. I think there's two things people do during this time, in my experience, which is they reflect on the year and what's gone on, in this case in 2017, and then they think about what's next. In some cases, one thing I wanted to mention is, you mentioned startup and founder perspective? I've found this to be a business and personal perspective as well. Holistically, regardless of size of company or what you're up to because a lot of companies go into planning mode pre-holidays, and even into the holidays depending on how aggressive the company is and how much they let you have a holiday, so to speak. And they're planning out next year. They're doing forecasts and all that fun/boring stuff, depending on how you look at it, and then other companies that are much smaller, like a startup, they tend to not have formal processes. Sometimes they don't even think about this stuff, but there's still a bunch of reflection and figuring out what's next going on. So to me, let's talk about reflection really quickly. What I've found, and this is mostly in the advisor role I have in a lot of situations, whether it's with friends or companies I'm formally advising, as well as in my own companies,

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