Measuring Worth?

16 April 2009

measuring-tape-v2

A long time ago, a clever man once said, “A man’s worth is no greater than his ambitions” (the Roman Emperor Philosopher, Marcus Aurelius).

This may have been true in AD150 but is it still relevant in the always-on world of AD2009? These days a more common measure of worth is your connectivity. Reid Hoffman (LinkedIn co-founder) summed this up nicely when he said, “Your network your net worth.” One of Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s Top Life Tips is to, “go to more parties”. The express reason for this is to expand your network and expose yourself to more positive Black Swans.

A couple of weeks back we received an invite to a London networking event. The speakers were sold on the basis of the number of Twitter followers they had. This made me smile as it reminded me of recent conversations about the pressures and politics of maintaining relationships online.

Is the number of followers a true proxy for how valuable someone’s opinion is? I give you Britney Spears (903,274 followers).

My stepson Newton (694 Facebook friends) loves the fact he’s “more popular” than his younger brother Richard (389 Facebook friends). Phil (646 Facebook friends, 433 LinkedIn connections, 244 Twitter followers) and I (232 Facebook friends, 431 LinkedIn connections, 251 Twitter followers) regularly pull each other’s legs about how ‘popular’ we think we are.

To finish off this post, here’s a list of people we’ve either met or hear about regularly who are attached to the Internet scene here in London. We’ve used Twitter followers to help us measure their worth. Not sure old Marcus would agree with our methods but here you go anyway:

London’s 50 Most Networked Internet People by Twitter followers (As of 14th April 2009)


1. Jemima Kiss

10,568 followers

http://twitter.com/jemimakiss


2. Mike Butcher

8.888 followers

http://twitter.com/mikebutcher



3. Nick Donnelly

4,329 followers

http://www.twitter.com/nickdonnelly



4. Paul Walsh

4,094 follower

http://twitter.com/PaulWalsh



5. Paul Carr

3,551 followers

http://twitter.com/paulcarr



6. Amanda Rose

3,436 followers

http://twitter.com/amanda



7. Michelle Dewberry

3,360 followers

http://twitter.com/michelledewbs



8. Hermoine Way

2,431 followers

http://twitter.com/hermoineway



9. Sam Sethi

2,189 followers

http://www.twitter.com/ssethi



10. Nick Halstead

1,847 followers

http://twitter.com/nickhalstead



11. Michael Acton Smith

1,757 followers

http://twitter.com/acton



12. Richard Morross

1,246 followers

http://twitter.com/stewarttownsend



13. Mat Morrison

1,424 followers

http://www.twitter.com/mediaczar



14. Nathan McDonald

1,362 followers

http://twitter.com/nathanmcdonald



15. Joff Arnold

1,253 followers

http://twitter.com/toodlepip



16. Joshua March

1252 followers

http://twitter.com/joshuamarch



17. Stewart Townsend

1,246 followers

http://twitter.com/stewarttownsend



18. Basheera Khan

1,098 followers

http://twitter.com/bash



19. Andy McLoughlin

1,069 followers

http://twitter.com/robertloch



20. Benjamin Ellis

1,007 followers

http://twitter.com/BenjaminEllis



21. Sam Michel

1,004 followers

http://twitter.com/toodlepip



22. Ben Way

936 followers

http://twitter.com/benbpway



23. Sophie Cox

890 followers

http://twitter.com/sophiecox



24. David Terrar

883 followers

http://www.twitter.com/dt



25. Bindi Karia

803 followers

http://twitter.com/bindik



26. Alex Hoye

765 followers

http://www.twitter.com/alexhoye



27. Stephanie Robesky

756 followers

http://twitter.com/nerdgirl



28. Luke Razzell

736 followers

http://twitter.com/weaverluke



29. Bastian Lehmann

683 followers

http://www.twitter.com/basti



30. Elizabeth Varley

660 followers

http://twitter.com/evarley



31. Robert Loch

656 followers

http://twitter.com/robertloch



32. Sokratis Papafloratos

652 followers

http://twitter.com/sokratis



33. Nic Brisbourne

643 followers

http://twitter.com/pmross



34. Mario Cacciottolo

629 followers

http://twitter.com/mariosotm



35. Andrew Scott

626 followers

https://twitter.com/andrewjscott



36. Danvers Baillieu

610 followers

https://twitter.com/danversbaillieu



37. David Langer

602 followers

https://twitter.com/langer



38. James Cherkoff

600 followers

https://twitter.com/cherkoff



39. Nick Bell

593 followers

https://twitter.com/nickbelluk



40. Barry Vitou

557 followers

https://twitter.com/bazv



41. Steve Kennedy

499 followers

https://twitter.com/stevekennedyuk



42. Chris Osborne

422 followers

https://twitter.com/chrsoz



43. Emma Haslett

415 followers

http://www.twitter.com/emmahaslett



44. Fabio De Bernardi

399 followers

https://twitter.com/fabiodebe



45. Meriem Aissaoui

375 followers

http://twitter.com/mernas



46. Robin Klein

375 followers

http://twitter.com/robinklein



47. Dug Falby

349 followers

http://twitter.com/dug



48. Nikhil Shah

344 followers

http://www.twitter.com/nikhilshah



49. Stephanie Bouchet

328 followers

http://twitter.com/rougefrog



50. Paul Mackenzie Ross

325 followers

http://twitter.com/pmross

The master version of  this list appears on the Snagsta website. View it here to share it with your nearest and dearest.

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Are the best entrepreneurs pertinacious* pigs or flexible fools?

20 June 2008

Piggy wiggy

We have repeatedly been told that we have to be prepared to follow Snagsta wherever it takes us. Very often the dream founders start out with is totally different from the website they end up with. This can happen for a variety of reasons:

1. Along the wide and varied path that is web development better ideas turn up out of nowhere

2. The founders’ idea is slightly off target (I think the diplomatic wording for this is ‘ahead of their time’)

3. The investors ‘suggest’ a ‘new approach’ (as an aside: we’ve been given all the latitude we’ve wanted so far)

4. The users decide they have a much better idea for how the site should be used (this was certainly the case with Twitter (according to Biz Stone) and Bebo (as Michael Birch explains).

It appears flexibility is important.

And then you’ll walk into another meeting and someone will tell you what they look for in founders is an unwavering pig-headed determination to see their idea through against all odds.

But even the best ideas occasionally have to be abandoned. So the question is: how do you know when enough is enough?

And the answer is… predictably: you don’t.

The good news is you can’t be criticised because nobody knows. It’s luck (certainly if you take Taleb‘s word or the FT‘s)

The bad news is that this decision could either make you or lose you A LOT OF MONEY.

At Snagsta we’ve built our solution to this problem into the management team. Alex Moore is possibly one of the most stubborn people I know and I’m extremely flexible (some people call me indecisive… but I’m not so sure).

The point is that one should have some contingencies. And I am pleased to be able to demonstrate to our readers that we are ready. In the unlikely event that Snagsta needs to shift focus we have strategically also registered the domain www.shagsta.com.

Have a great weekend!

footnotes:
* pertinacious – don’t be embarrassed, I had to look that up too.

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T minus 7 days and counting…

18 January 2008

Things are hotting up under the Queenstown Road Arches. We’re a long way from the Golden Arches claim of over 100 billion served but big changes are afoot. Within a week our private alpha site will be up and there’s a real buzz in the air. And its not just the electrified railtracks overhead!

One thing that has really got us revved up is the fact that people have started asking us for lists! They know we’ve been collecting for a while now and so figure we’ve got some good stuff! And they’re right. I’ve just fired off a list of excellent suggestions for a chilled out weekend in Cape Town. And one person asked for a list of no-fail first date hotspots to take girls to in London. So if you find yourself sitting beside my brother Dave in a cozy nook of the Crazy Bear then make sure you keep your wits about you. Of course this warning may already be too late for some!

I was at the Imperial Entrepreneurs event on Tuesday night. Apart from providing the opportunity to drink beer with like-minded people they always seem to attract some great speakers. I am really starting to understand why setting up your own business is so addictive. Stephanie Bouchet, the Global Marketing Director for Joost, shared her 8 tips for an entrepreneur:

1. Think Customer: Integrate them into your organisation.

2. Passion: Choose a job you love and you’ll never have to work again!

3. Timing: Like all things in life. As much as there is a bit of luck involved, you also need to trigger it.

4. Creativity: I don’t mean design; I mean creativity with respect to ideas and problem-solving.

5. Learn: Learn from your mistakes and don’t be afraid to fail.

6. Network: In London try 2nd Chance Tuesday / OpenCoffee / EYP / MiniBar

7. Growth: Grow beyond your time spent at work and apply what you learn in the office to life.

8. Have fun!