10 intra/entrepreneur lessons I learned the hard way

Over thirty years ago, I started my first company. Since then, I’ve started more companies, acted as an angel investor in more than ten ventures and as a board member or advisor in several others, and interacted with numerous founders and entrepreneurs. In addition, I’ve collaborated with intrapreneurs inside large organizations trying to get innovations … Read more

Outdated belief #9: We can’t do DevOps because we need safety certification

Embedded systems, by their definition, contain mechanical and electronic components and, through that, interact with the real world. Many of these systems may cause harm to humans if they act in erroneous ways. This is, of course, the case for aeronautical and automotive applications as well as for medical equipment. But also most systems that … Read more

Outdated belief #4: Technical debt results from poor architecture design

In the software community, there’s a general belief that software ages, just like humans – David Parnas is famous for this quote (among many other things). Our findings don’t confirm this. We’ve studied architecture technical debt as well as other types of technical debt for a decade and we’ve generated all kinds of results. One … Read more

Outdated belief #2: A carefully designed architecture is critical

In the early 2000s, I was one of those people preaching the importance of careful design and analysis of a system’s architecture before starting development. The belief was that especially non-functional requirements, such as performance and robustness, are hard to ‘bolt on’ to the system once development is underway. So, the software architecture community, including … Read more

Rule 10: Engage with your ecosystem

Traditional business ecosystems were quite static. Partners stayed partners, competitors stayed competitors and your customers were the same as who they were yesterday. In a digital world, however, business ecosystems are in continuous flux. Your supplier becomes your competitor. You become your customer’s competitor. You partner with companies that you never heard of a month … Read more

Rule 9: Empower those around you

For the longest time in the history of humankind, we lived in a world defined by scarcity. Forests for hunting, land for agriculture, wood for construction and mining sites – all were scarce resources that many wanted to have, and consequently, we competed. Individuals competed against individuals. Tribes competed against tribes. Nation-states competed against other … Read more