Work Reconstructed: Lessons in entrepreneurship and the future of work
14 Dec 2023
In the latest podcast episode of Work Reconstructed, Free Trade Europa Founder Glen Hodgson interviews Distributed Founder Cal Adamson to gain insight into entrepreneurship and the future of work in the digital age. Cal shares his valuable lessons learned from building a thriving company from scratch, emphasising the importance of a strong team, a problem-solving mindset, and understanding customer needs.
The conversation also delves into the transformative power of open talent and the impact of AI on the labour market. Additionally, the discussion touches on the role of the education system in fostering entrepreneurship and the abundance of resources available for aspiring entrepreneurs. Listen to the full episode here.
The power of a strong team
Building a strong team when embarking on an entrepreneurial journey is critical to success. The quality of the team will define the quality of the company and the overall experience of building a business. Cal shares:
"The biggest lesson I've learned is that the quality of your team will define the quality of your company. Customer experience, end products, and so on, will define the quality of your life, too."
Being passionate about solving a problem rather than being fixated on an assumed solution is central to starting projects off on the right footing. Entrepreneurs should focus on understanding the problem they aim to solve and to be open to different approaches. Cal states:
"Make sure you're in love with the problem you're trying to solve, not the solution you think is needed. I see people thinking, 'I've got this great idea for an app' rather than 'This problem needs to be solved. I'm really frustrated by this thing that keeps happening.'"
Understanding customer needs in the B2B enterprise space
There are unique challenges and requirements that come with serving enterprise organisations. Cal notes the importance of understanding the needs and buying processes of B2B customers, particularly in large, established companies with complex infrastructures:
"Don't just understand how you solve the problem. Understand how your solution is bought, is integrated, is delivered, cascades through the business that you're working with."
There’s critical need for scalability, predictability, and transparency in serving enterprise organisations:
"Giving enterprises the ability to [access talent] in a vertically integrated solution with full transparency, really scalably, really predictably, is massively beneficial for them inside their organisation."
The transformative power of open talent
Open talent will play a significant role in the future of work. The open talent model allows companies to access high-quality talent cost-effectively and at scale. This enables companies to compete effectively and adapt to the rapidly changing business landscape:
"It's a real common sense approach to workforce composition. Everybody's now average, which is great. But there will always be that other 50% that are willing to go the extra mile, willing to deliver the extra value, and that's actually going to stand out more."
The impact of AI on the labour market
The potential impact of AI on the labour market and the future of work is immense. AI will primarily impact tasks that should never have been human tasks in the first place, such as scheduling meetings and replying to emails. As AI continues to help automate average tasks, allowing humans to focus on higher-level thinking and contextual understanding:
"AI is a great thing. We'll get more average tasks churned out. All of the people willing to go beyond average will get there much faster than they were able to before."
The future is yours to innovate
As the labour market continues to evolve, entrepreneurs and businesses must adapt to leverage the opportunities presented by technological advancements and changing work dynamics. The future holds immense potential for those who embrace innovation, collaboration, and a problem-solving mindset.