Hi y’all! I hope you enjoyed last week’s edition of our top 5 guest posts of the week roundup and gained many valuable lessons from it, I know I did (duh, I curated them myself).

It’s a long weekend in Singapore this week so I’m sure many of you have loads of time to catch up on some reading. So with further ado, allow me to serve you five fantastic guest posts this week for your reading pleasure.

Bon appétit!

How to manage your time effectively while running a large team

Managing your time efficiently is tough enough when you have a job, but what about if you are the boss of a company of 130 employees?

This is what Aytekin Tank, who runs JotForm, has to tackle with on a daily basis.

In his opinion editorial, he explains in full detail how he has managed to cut short his hours (he works from 10 am to 5 pm daily — what a blessing!) yet still remain equally productive.

It is really about narrowing down what constitutes meaningful work, and doing things that help to increase your energy or cutting out habits that decreases energy.

Here is a great takeaway from the article: “Stepping away from the office, when possible, allows your mind to reshuffle the deck…rest can generate more breakthroughs than metaphorically banging your head against the wall for 10+ hours a day.”

I really encourage everyone to read his article if you want to optimise work productivity and attain work-life balance.

The benefits of market education (and why it wins more customers

When founders build a product, the most obvious route they take to promote that product is to talk about it incessantly, and how it is unique and better than their competitors.

But while product marketing is important, many neglect to educate their target market about the industry and the problems it can solve.

Yes, it may sound like the same thing, after all, who sells a product without first describing the problems it can solve?

In her op-ed, Joanna Viegan, the product marketing officer at Ambidextr, explains that market education is really about taking a holistic approach to educating potential users and customers about the broader market and landscape.

Citing the growth of e-commerce in Asia as an example, she says that some e-commerce players, instead of choosing to extol the merits of their marketplace, they chose to educate users on how they can buy online, the steps that should take to safeguard their accounts, or how to track packages.

“In many cases, market education influenced product development, as these marketplaces adopted cash-on-demand and consumer-friendly return policies to engender trust in e-commerce further,” she says.

“If you go out of your way to discuss issues relevant to consumers, they will turn to you when it comes time to choose a company or provider. It may seem counter-intuitive, but it’s true.”

How to increase your chances of succeeding

It’s a well-known fact that most startups fail and only a few become success stories, and even fewer become unicorns (hence the term).

So how do you increase your chances of becoming a winner?

In his op-ed, Harry Jacob says that while it is hard to pinpoint a reason why some startups thrive, there are some common factors that can come into play.

Citing stats, he says that entrepreneurs who have the highest rates of success are actually those in their 30s. “40 per cent of startups are founded by people that are 30-39 years old”.

He then goes on to describe strategies entrepreneurs should adopt to ensure a higher rate of success, such as having a sound financial strategy and knowing your market.

Definitely relevant tips for founders across all ages and markets.

Why crypto exchanges need to be decentralised

Despite cryptocurrencies being lauded due to their decentralised nature (and thus freeing it from the influence of monetary policies), most of the exchanges used to store them are actually centralise–  in fact, only 1 per cent of transactions go through decentralized exchanges.

And because they are centralised and are also online, they are susceptible to hacking (which happens quite often).

In his op-ed, blockchain entrepreneur James Nguyen explains that its time for all crypto exchanges to be decentralised and cites five good reasons why that should be the case.

One of the reasons is because “a decentralized exchange ensures better transparency and accountability, which will mean better compliance with financial regulations.”

“This is almost technically impossible to do in a centralized setting, especially when there is a potential single point of failure.”

“A decentralized exchange ensures better uptime, while a distributed consensus mechanism ensures that malicious players cannot game or cheat the system.”

Read more to find out why decentralised crypto exchanges are better.

How to lead a startup with an MNC

In today’s fast-paced tech landscape, more MNC’s are becoming open to the idea of running startups within their own organisations. The reason is simple: they lead to the growth of better products and will thus increase their ability to generate higher revenues.

Kevin Fitzgerald, the Regional Director of Xero, explains in his op-ed how he helped shape the startup culture within the company and the learnings he got out of it.

One of the most important aspects of this process is about cultivating a culture of experimentation.

“It is important that we create a safe environment for them to thrive and succeed, and that can only be achieved if employees feel safe to display his/her own vulnerability or gaps in knowledge and be authentic and passionate about it. It will also open doors for them to be creative in their approach and be adventurous in trying out new ideas.”

Does your startup manager encourage you to be creative? If the answer is no, you might want to have chat with them.

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