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Peter Koehler

Stop the Jargon and Start Connecting

Information Asymmetry and Adding Value

The other morning I was talking to my cousin Nick, who works in the finance industry. We were discussing how a lot of jobs (including in finance) are based on information asymmetry between the "professional" and the layperson.

To maintain this advantage, entire industries (like finance) develop and overuse technical jargon to mask . . .

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June 06, 2015

Leveraging Stress

The Wall Street Journal recently posted this article titled Use Stress to Your Advantage.

Imagine that you work for an organization with hundreds of employees and you’re about to give a presentation to the entire group. The CEO and all the board members are in the audience. You’ve been anxious about this talk all week, and now your heart is . . .

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June 05, 2015

Organizational Debt and Credit.

Building a sustainable organization of one.

We are all familiar with financial debt.

Engineers and programmers are familiar with technical debt, which tech startups often incur in the early days when they are building fast. The code works fine for the moment, but it is not structured in a sound way, and ultimately as the company grows and gains more users they must spend a lot of . . .

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June 02, 2015

Ignore the Competition

a quick take on exclusivity clauses, differentiation, etc.

Recently at Green Zebra we've been in negotiation with two different companies with whom we are exploring partnerships.

They each wanted exclusivity clauses. We said no.

We asked them to ignore the competition, and try to do what we do every single day: serve and delight our customers with quality, care, and consistency.

If you focus too . . .

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May 31, 2015

Your Skills Don't Matter

Adding value is not about what you can do, it's about how you do it.

Your skills don't matter.

It doesn't matter if you're an amazing financial analyst, metalsmith, fundraiser, photographer, writer, or graphic designer.

Your skills are the means. But for your customers, colleagues, and clients, it's all about the ends.

The marketing director does not need a great graphic designer.
She does . . .

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May 29, 2015

How to Start Investing Today

A tried and true, simple approach.

Last week, in my 27 learnings post I said:

Start investing young. Compound interest is your future self's friend. If you haven't started yet, don't panic - just calmly and deliberately set aside a few hours in the next week to open a Roth IRA and a Brokerage account and get started.

I promised I would expand on this statement . . .

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May 22, 2015

On Sharing and Hoarding Ideas

Ideas are for sharing. Ideas are for stealing. Ideas are not for hoarding.

Ideas in your mind are like little infants - they are underdeveloped and have a lot of potential.

Most of the time great ideas don't come from one mind in solitude, but by interaction with other ideas, feedback, and one's environment.

If you have a business . . .

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May 18, 2015

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