284: Lessons from the Tech Titans that Small Business Leaders Can Steal, Adopt, and Use to their Advantage with Alex Kantrowitz

Alex Kantrowitz, author of Always Day One: How the Tech Titans Plan to Stay on Top Forever

Alex Kantrowitz and Bill Ringle discuss the secrets of how the culture of Amazon and Facebook spur innovation and AI to free up human creativity and can be adopted by small business leaders.

>>> Visit MyQuestforTheBest.com for complete show notes and more expert advice and inspiring stories to propel your small business growth. My Quest for the Best is a top-rated small business podcast with over 300 episodes of thought-provoking and insightful interviews with today’s top thought leaders and business experts. Host Bill Ringle’s mission with this show is to provide the strategies, insights, and resources that will unlock the growth potential of your business through these powerful conversations.

Interview Insights

Top 3 Take-Aways from this Interview

  • If we split work up into two categories, the idea work, and the execution work, we spent too much time working on execution on actually like supporting our preexisting products and not enough energy on dreaming up new things and bringing them to life.
  • Optimizing process and finding ways where can bring in technology to help you cut down on execution work is really a big deal.
  • If a company does execution right and then finds a way to make use of the ideas, that’s when they can find themselves going ahead of the market instead of playing from behind.

Read the Show Notes from this Episode

  • Stephen Kinzer, the NY Times bureau chief and foreign correspondent, mentored Alex and opened his rolodex to him based on a cold email. [1:26]
  • Never be shy about asking, allowing someone to do you a favor can be a great gift. [3:35].
  • Examples of how tech companies reinvent themselves. [7:15] 
  • The innovation cycle and the mindset of big tech companies like Amazon. [8:35]
  • Big tech company employees welcome change, reinvention, and transformation. [12:20]
  • Having an engineer’s mindset is important to a company’s success. [13:30]
  • Divide work into two buckets: execution work and idea work. It’s what the tech giants are very good at doing. [15:59]
  • How tech giants build stuff that people need and tend to love. [22:25]
  • The flip side of how Amazon benefits disproportionately from making these technologies available and gathering data from people. [23:16]
  • My Quest for the Best Lightning Round begins [27:24]

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Expert Bio

Alex Kantrowitz is the founder of Big Technology, a newsletter, and podcast about Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft. His first book ALWAYS DAY ONE: How The Tech Titans Plan To Stay On Top Forever debuted in April 2020.

His work has been referenced by dozens of major publications, from The New Yorker to The Wall Street Journal to Sports Illustrated.

Kantrowitz is a graduate of Cornell University‘s School of Industrial and Labor Relations.

Contact Info and Social Media for Alex Kantrowitz

Resources Mentioned During the Interview

Authored by Alex Kantrowitz


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