A matter of knowledge…

1988 ! My first startup in Artificial Intelligence was called “Cognition”!

I think that knowledge is the best way to rise and grow. In the entrepreneurial process, knowledge is very important. All knowledge! Sarah Sarasvathy’s research has led to the effectual approach implemented by entrepreneurs (www.effectuation.org). Sarah talks about three core pieces of knowledge in this venture:

☑️ Who I am

☑️ What I know

☑️ Who I know

Those who know me 😀 know the importance I attach to people and the team in startups💎. I would like to shed some light on these three points with my contribution.


On the first point, Socrates mentioned, “Know thyself, thyself”. To know yourself better is to manage yourself better. It means understanding that we are all different and accepting these differences. It’s about getting the best out of yourself and ultimately out of others and the team. It’s about finding one’s reason for being, one’s motivation, one’s energy and one’s will to do things. Commitment and collective performance are the results of this introspection🌈 work.

On the second point, knowledge is power. I used to talk about the triangle of knowledge with on each of its three points :

– The Knowledge: all the knowledge we have accumulated during our life, education, teachings, readings, tutorials … the theory somehow.

– The Know-How : the practice somehow. The field experience, the operational mastery of methods, tools and techniques.

– The Know-How: the art of interacting with others effectively. We can also talk about Emotional Intelligence.

But I always complete my triangle with a 4th central skill: “Knowing how to act” or Daring. Without taking action, all this knowledge is useless or unused🎯. Finally on the third point, I remember reading this quote:

“It’s not what you know that matters, it’s who you know!”

I find this quote interesting because it highlights a belief that is all too common in technology startups. They attach a lot of importance to their technologies and patents and too often neglect the other aspects of the business. Technology allows to address a need and a market but does not allow to understand and develop this market. Only the players, prospects, customers, partners, suppliers… have the answers 💡 that validate the value proposition and the business model. I suggest to take the above quote a step further:

“It’s not who you know that matters, it’s who knows you!”

Having a network is a great asset! We can add contacts on Linkedin or other social networks without ever having met or interacted with the person. Making +1 can be rewarding for some🥺.

Having your network know you is even more crucial ❗️❗️

My advice to startupers is to be interested in the people you meet but also make sure they understand who you are, what you do and what makes you unique🙏.

Decidedly, knowledge is the best Swiss Army knife in your business ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Do you know another one ❓

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