Week 33: remote work, attitude, a normal week

This was a normal week for me. Something I appreciate. I had some great meetings, got a lot done, and had some in-person get-togethers for various reasons. All of them were nice. I met some people for the first time after 18 months of only virtual encounters in person again. With APX, we had our first IRL team BBQ in more than a year, and I had some good meetings in person. This all felt very nice. Following the news was not so nice and followed me into my dreams. But all in all, a good week for me personally.

Remote work

I plan to spend two to three days per week in the office and the other days at my home office for the foreseeable future. My office at home works better for me right now than my desk in my office. My infrastructure at home is great right now. We have three internet connections (Phone, Cable, Satellite), and as a backup, I can always use my data plan. So even when Dina and the boys are around, we can all be online, videoconferencing, gaming, and chatting as much as we want. One of our connections will always work.

Many of our meetings are online, and I notice that this is also the case when we are in the office. Today our default is that meetings are virtual, and when you want to meet in person, you specifically have to organize this. This works really well for us. I personally appreciate our personal touchpoints, and I am also looking forward to our first team days at coconat in a few weeks. We plan to do these quarterly from now on.

Attitude

I have been thinking about our attitude at APX on interacting with founders for the past few weeks. And I want to share some thoughts:

  • we do not need to tell them what to do. We can remind them of what they told us what they wanted to do, and we can share our first and second-hand experiences with them.

  • We can support them in reflecting on what they are doing and how they do it.

  • We can open doors for them. They have to walk through themselves.

  • There is no us and them. In the end, it is “us” together as partners for the long run. Most of the time, our interests are aligned. When they are not, we have to address this openly.

  • We must agree with them on what is in their and our circle of concern and circle of influence. This is individual.

  • We can continuously get better at asking the right questions.

  • What is our responsibility?

  • How can we support the founders in maximizing and utilizing their degrees of freedom?

  • What communication style shall we develop and cultivate?

  • How can we follow up with the right topics and at the right frequency?

As I am not free of faults myself, this is a continuous space of clarification and improvement for me. In the end, it is about the question am I, and are we, good investors?

What I watched and read this week? Because of quite some evening events, my media consumption time was reduced. And in addition to this, a lot of the things I read are behind paywalls. Here are a few links:

Later today, I will visit Neue Nationalgalerie for the first time since it closed for renovation in 2015. As it is one of my favorite museums on this planet, I was waiting for the reopening and am very much looking forward to it being around again.

Thank you for your time reading my weekly mail, and I hope you got something meaningful from it. Would you mind sharing all feedback you might have?

Have a great week!

Joerg