October 9, 2018

Helge Seetzen

Tips & Tricks with TandemLaunch’s CEO and Founder, Helge Seetzen

We are going to meet with some of the talented entrepreneurs here at TandemLaunch and let them share their tips and tricks for building successful companies.

To start this series off right, we are going to share some of the best trips and tricks from our very own CEO and Founder of TandemLaunch, Helge Seetzen.

Helge is an award-winning technologist, entrepreneur, and recognized global authority on technology transfer and display technologies. His past successes include the transformation of university intellectual property into fully commercialized LED TV technology, including selling his last company – Brightside Technologies – to Dolby Laboratories after landing partnerships with several of the largest consumer electronics companies in the world. Helge holds over 60 patents in the fields of display, camera, and video technology.

1. Continuous improvement of the team

A lot of entrepreneurs make the mistake of building a company up to their own capability rather than up to the opportunity. When you build the company up to the opportunity rather than up to your own capability and you’re lucky, your own capability exceeds the capability of the opportunity – and then you can become the next Elon Musk or Steve Jobs. That’s often not the case but sometimes it is, especially when you have a nuanced view of what your capability is.

Capability shouldn’t be the only thing to focus on though, as a lot of entrepreneurs make the mistake to think that they are an “okay” manager and will keep their team to a size they can comfortably manage. These entrepreneurs are using team size as a constraint and are leaving a lot of value on the table, and while this may not result in the death of the company, it’s not a great situation in the end. One of the things we try to instill in the entrepreneurs at TandemLaunch is a sense of continuous upgrading and improvement of the team, the board, and investor base. This can even come in the form of hiring a program manager, leaving you with the freedom to do the architectural work and for them to do the management work. All in all, this will allow you to build your organization around you rather than below you.

2. If there is love, there is a way

I am rather opportunistic, and I tend to fall in love easily – with technology, entrepreneurs, ideas, and visions. I do so very quickly and profoundly and although I get my heart broken sometimes, everything usually works out. That’s why when I come across something and have this feeling that this would be a great addition to the world, I decide to do something about it. More often than not, it results in magical moments of creating companies rather than strategic decisions.

3. Work with good people

This is self-explanatory, but always try your best to work with good people. In other words, productive people that will inspire you to be a better person, provide you with motivation to achieve your goals, and empower you to make the changes you need to succeed.

Focus the mindshare on the things that matter and have a big impact.

4. Focus on the right things

As an entrepreneur, you will be forced to make decisions all the time, and the key points that you should focus on are decisions that have a big potential for impact because all the other little things don’t matter as much. Life becomes easier if you focus on the decisions that matter. In terms of a range of outcomes, if the problem has a low range of outcomes, don’t worry about it so much

5. Spend more mindshare and less time

As an entrepreneur you don’t become successful by investing time, you become successful by investing mindshare. Time spent writing an email or coding is useful and needs to be done but you can’t expect to do all that and be a successful entrepreneur.  You need to put your mind to work and share mindshare. The tough part about mindshare is that you never receive more and from whatever you already have, you need to subtract smaller things that occupy your mind and offload smaller tasks from it as well.

The first thing is to offload tasks that can be easily done or solved and in the second layer are things with a narrow dynamic range. If something does not have a wide dynamic range, don’t worry about it and delegate it. Focus the mindshare on the things that matter and have a big impact.

We hope you have learned something from Helge’s tips and tricks on building successful companies. Building companies is no easy task but with the right guidance and mindset, you too will be able to help shape the future.  Follow our series as we get our talented entrepreneurs at TandemLaunch to share their tips as they are currently building out their own companies!

The content of this article first appeared on the Point of No Return podcast.