Esports, Startups, Secrets for Success (Podcast Part I)

In this podcast, Karim Nurani welcomes Arnold Hur the Chief Operations Officer and Co-President of Gen.G, the highly successful professional esports team and event company. In part 1 of this conversation, Arnold gives insights into company growth strategies, successful career paths, and the value of learning from failures.

In this podcast, we explore three major themes:

Speed Toward Failure
The experience you learn from failure in business is an important element for success. But you need to fail quickly – that is, speed towards failure! It doesn’t work if you’re trying too hard not to fail; don’t over-think things too much. Remember that failures almost always produce specific elements or features that become useful later, like the need to do quality user research and get into the minds of your customers.

Game Character Careers
As you expand your career, each job experience gives you more insight into being a startup entrepreneur. For example, you start to understand how decisions are made in large organizations, which is a useful skill, no matter whether you’re competing with a big corporation or trying to be bought by one. Don’t get caught up with titles and reporting structures. Regard each job as a transition, where moving gives you momentum and helps you gain the confidence to grow things. Think of yourself as a game character with special abilities that let you transform into any other character and acquire their powers and skills.

Understand the Effects of Growth
You can solve a lot with money as you build a large company, but beware of raising too much funding. The more money you have, the less fun the job becomes. As the CEO, you can stay on top of everything yourself with up to about fifty people. After that, you really need to focus on getting the right processes and people on board, ensuring that you have a good product-market fit, etc. At around 150 people, you’ll be adding the rocket fuel, and then you’ll hit the next growth curve and stuff is going to break. At this stage, internal politics can start emerging, so it’s important to know how to create an ethical and truthful culture, so ensure that you have a team that can put all the key core processes in place.

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