Technology Company Growth Slowing

Can you really create the next billion dollar startup?

With episodes of Shark Tank playing on rerun seemingly non-stop the American Dream of creating the next billion dollar startup seems to be alive and well, but is it really?

Golden Era

In the tech industry we have been in somewhat a “golden era” of growth the past 20 years that was fueled by very low cost borrowing rates and insane company valuations. We are just starting to see the cracks as the interbank borrowing rates continually creeping up and consumers have less disposable income due to soaring housing and consumable goods costs.

Layoffs

While layoffs at more traditional tech-only companies (Alphabet, Meta, Salesforce) may not be as surprising, companies such as Amazon and Microsoft have very diversified businesses and therefore are a much better indicator of the health of the overall economy. So, seeing Microsoft layoff nearly 10,000 and Amazon laying off 18,000 people could be the canary in the coal mine 🐥 of our country’s upcoming economic struggles.

canary in the coal mine picture

Shocking

Many people are surprised by this — how could it happen?!

To understand this, considering the overarching “personality” of our US-centric culture provides us some clues. One of my favorite tools to assess personalities is the enneagram and if the US had an overarching personality type it would be an enneagram 3. Enneagram 3’s are highly successful, highly driven, thrive in the spotlight, move fast, and are overly optimistic. A glaring blind-spot for this personality type is their tendency to not fully think through the details, plow through objections, and glaze over concerns that are raised.

Many of the leaders of our country are the ones that speak the loudest, tout the largest accomplishments, and make life look “easy”. Our culture is susceptible to these personalities because many of us dream of an easeful life where #winning is a daily experience. The reality is, life is a challenging experience, while we all have our own unique challenges, there will be challenge.

Real Life

I’m hoping we all notice these tendencies in ourselves and more carefully consider the flashy “billion dollar” startups or crypto pump or latest scandal. Real life is beneath all the varnish and considering the wider impact of our actions. At Floodlight we are thoughtful about the type of work we create and would love to discuss your next billion dollar idea.