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The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten - 517: How to Plan in 2020?

517: How to Plan in 2020?

The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten

In today’s episode of The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about how to make plans during 2020.

With everything that has happened in 2020, you’d be forgiven if you chose to describe this year as the year of crisis. With this crisis comes uncertain and it can be quite challenging to make long-term plans in uncertain times like these.

In today’s episode, Steli and Hiten talk about if you should make plans in 2020, how you should plan in this year, why your timelines have to be shorter during a crisis and much more.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:00 About today’s topic.

00:42 Why this topic was chosen.

01:33 Should you make plans in 2020?

02:43 How you should plan in 2020.

04:19 Why your timelines have to be shorter during a crisis.

04:59 How Steli currently makes his plans.

06:04 The right way to approach crazy times like these.

08:00 How Hiten approached the crisis.

11:59 How teams could deal with high pressure.

12:12 How you can adapt to the uncertainty.

3 Key Points:

  • You’re just planning, but not as far ahead as you normally would.
  • 2020 isn’t done with us.
  • During a crisis, your timelines have to be shorter


Steli Efti: Hey everybody, this is Steli Efti.


Hiten Shah: And this is Hiten Shah.


Steli Efti: And today on The Startup Chat, we’re going to talk about how to make plans during 2020. So, making good plans is always challenging, but I find 2020, I mean... 2020 is a particular, unique year, in that it probably is a more challenging year for companies and startups and founders to make any sort of plan that people might have real confidence in, especially if it’s a longterm plan. So I’ve encountered this a couple of times this year already with friends that I thought it might be useful for the two of us to unpack this for our listeners, which is, “What the hell do you do?” If you run a startup, if you’re a founder and you want to plan, should you, in 2020? Are plans completely useless? Are they totally useful? And how should you think about making plans kind of the way that we approach this and the things that we’ve seen work well? I thought might help founders keep their sanity and hopefully accomplish more of the things they want to accomplish, even during an outstandingly crazy year like 2020. So, first of all, let me ask you this question. 2020, should we still make plans or would you advise anybody to stop making plans because this year is too nuts?


Hiten Shah: So, the... The... I’ve had, like, two or three conversations specifically about this, and I’ve shared something that... By the time I have two or three and I get the same question, and it’s a new question, I tend to like, have some kind of way to think about it or, like, you know, I’m driven crazy, you know? So I think that’s a really good question. The way it worked for me, and the way I was approaching this, not too long ago is I... Hang on, I just need to fix my mic. So I basically... When the sort of pandemic came along, I was taking things in a sort of hour by hour adjustment period, so to speak. So everything to me was thrown out the door because now all of a sudden, there’s this virus that we’re all dealing with and we have to sort of figure out what that means for us. And so I was taking it hour by hour because new information was coming in. This is like all up to about Shelter in Place. And then after Shelter in Place, I think the first few days were very similar and our, by “our”, meaning, like people were consumed with the news about it. Nobody knew what was going on obviously, and what was going to happen to us as a society like overall. Like what’s next? And then basically I... I realized that I was then going day to day and after that I was going week to week and I barely got to like a month ahead. And then the protests started and the rioting and kind of... And then it got global. And then I got back to like almost an hour by hour, just making sure that like, you know, people I knew were safe and accounted for and were kind of, you know, taking care of themselves and then more news kept coming in and opinions and all these other things. And then I went to about day by day. And right now, I’m still at about day by day. I think I’m about to be week by week soon, maybe starting next week. And what that means is you’re just planning not as far ahead as you normally would. Because oftentimes we’re planning the month, the quarter, the year. I don’t think we can do that. And it’s not because I expect anything new to show up, but I definitely, more than ever, expect the unexpected.


Steli Efti<...

06/30/20 • -1 min

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