Kiko's Musings

Founder of Qulture.Rocks
Trying hard to be a: Writer, entrepreneur, angel investor, curious mind.

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Alphabet: wise move?

Here’s why I think Google’s transformation into Alphabet was not a wise one.

As Google cofounder Larry Page, now CEO of the holding company Alphabet, that will have as its main subsidiary Google, the search company, said earlier today:

As Sergey and I wrote in the original founders letter 11 years ago, “Google is not a conventional company. We do not intend to become one.” As part of that, we also said that you could expect us to make “smaller bets in areas that might seem very speculative or even strange when compared to our current businesses.” From the start, we’ve always strived to do more, and to do important and meaningful things with the resources we have.

Well, if Google wants to keep spending investor money into “speculative” areas, what could be dumber than reporting its financials as “Google: hugely profitable” and “other random stuff: huge cash drain”? It will just make...

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Introducing the 8-Box Matrix

We at Qulture.Rocks strongly believe in disproportionately awarding top performers, and dealing fast and objectively with underperformers. But we don’t think the two axes of the 9-Box, a common HR tool, are enough, nor that having so many intermediate boxes helps leaders figure out the wheat from the chaff. That’s why we propose a new tool called the 8-Box Matrix (patent pending) that’ll enable leaders to more accurately understand their talent pool. Voilá!


The 8-Box removes all those in-between categories that do nothing but cloud our judgement, but adds a very important dimension to the matrix, that was lacking in the previous iterations of the tool: Cultural fit. Culture eats strategy for breakfast. And it’s the only sustainable competitive advantage. So why do so many great companies ignore such an important dimension when managing their talent?

Do you feel that a tridimensional...

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The Sales and Marketing Blueprint for B2B SaaS Founders


You may or may not know that I’m the founder of Qulture.Rocks. Drop me a line on if you like this.

This is version 1.5 of the Handbook. It's a work in progress, that has as its sole purpose to help SaaS entrepreneurs with their sales and marketing problems, decisions, etc. If you have any suggestions, shoot me an e-mail at []( If you want more stuff to read from me, go to [](

This is a very basic guide for enterprise SaaS entrepreneurs who want to learn more about how sales and marketing works in the SaaS context. Selling SaaS to companies is a very specific activity: it involves learning how to understand customers, place prospects in a funnel, how to lead them throughout this funnel, step by step, and finally being able to increase the conversion rates of all the funnel’s steps.


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Studying Resources: Dev Bootcamps

I’ve been studying for about 2 months with my gaze set on getting accepted to one of the U.S.‘s top coding bootcamps: Hack Reactor and Fullstack Academy.


The learning road has been a very snaky one. I first started out with Codecademy and Codeschool courses, that I felt would prepare me to these bootcamps’ selection processes. They didn’t. Codeschool’s Javascript track was barely a track, stopping short of concepts like recursion, closures, higher-order functions, and the sort. I also ended those MooC tracks without any sense of what exactly could all that Javascript be used for (while I learned how to unite strings, loop arrays, and access objects, I didn’t learn any practical implementations that could be used in websites or web apps.

So I tried looking at the bootcamps’ prep aid to see if I could get more references to great material. I found many pointers to Eloquent Javascript...

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2015 Reading List: Update


Recommended entries in bold

Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products
Nir Eyal

Inspired: How To Create Products Customers Love
Marty Cagan

Great book for those who want to learn more about the role of the Product Manager, made notorious by Marissa Mayer’s Associate Product Manager program at Google.

MY LIFE AND WORK (Annotated) (Timeless Wisdom Collection..
Henry Ford

How to Get What You Want: A Short Primer for Ambitious People
Jason Shen

Mastering the Rockefeller Habits: What You Must Do to..
Verne Harnish

Amazing book for learning how to scale an organization. One of those books that feels like a syrup: short, concentrated, and straight to the point. Highlighted almost all pages.

The Profit Zone: How Strategic Business Design Will Lead You..
Adrian J. Slywotzky

The Greatest Salesman in the World
Og Mandino

How to Lie with Statistics

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A Brief History of OKRs

OKRs are an old staple of business management, rebranded, repurposed, and tweaked to 21st century necessities of companies and professionals.

It all started with the fathers of management: Taylor, Ford, and the sorts, who began treating business like a science. How so? They figured they could measure output, and then formulate hypotheses as to how they could improve output. Back then that meant productivity, as measured by output per employee. These guys figured out optimum work schedules, break times, and lightning arrangements for factories. They also started streamlining production, adding specialization to the factory floor. These practices all brought incredible, tangible improvements.

In the 50s, a fellow named Peter Drucker, who’s believed to be the greatest management guru that ever lived, figured out that managers goals could be a great thing. Now, not only they had to improve...

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The News Tornado: Part 3

Finding the new news business model.

If we want to solve the problem with ad revenues:

The solution, if we want to keep high-quality news being produced on an ad-supported model, is to somehow find some form of news that is i) high quality, ii) in depth, and iii) still entertaining.

Think about Apple. It’s one of the rare cases of a wildly successful mass-market product that is of “good taste.” If we can’t, sometimes, rely on the mass’s tastes to pick up the wheat from the chaff (think about entertainment - the movie business is succumbing to Avengers 5, X-Men 12, etc -, “news” with Buzzfeed, you get the point) we’ll need a visionary leader who can build desirability into high-quality journalism.

If we want to solve the problem with paid access:

We need to find a way to empower customers, and reduce transaction friction. How about charging users a low price on a per-article basis...

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The News Tornado: Part 1

This is a sort of draft for a larger post on the news I’ve been meaning to write for some time. But I’m a procrastinator, and I need quick wins. So I decided to post some ideas, which will hopefully become a nicer post some time in the future.

I am very worried about the news.


No, not that way…

That the news business is in a tipping point is no news. (No pun intended).

How so?

Old line news content producers/media, like the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal, just to name two of the most famous entities, are struggling with their existing business models (print medium (a), ad revenues (b), paid access ©, ultra-high quality content (d)).

The bad content vicious cycle:

1) Customers are increasingly relying on online news, so print circulation is either stable or falling dramatically, depending on the property. Circulation is a measure of “eyeballs looking at ads” so ad...

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Qulture.Rocks is live!

I am founding Qulture.Rocks, a SaaS/professional services company focused on the culture aspect of businesses’ human resources. It was inspired by my writing of The 3G Way, a book that got me really thinking about corporate culture and management, after spending more than 12 years working at various types of companies and cultures.

Check it out at http://Qulture.Rocks

We’ll have an interesting blog about culture as well. http://Qulture.Rocks/blog

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My highlights/notes: How Google Works

These are every highlight I made on my kindle when reading How Google Works, which is probably THE best business book that was published in 2014 (and to date, for that matter). I tried to organize them all, but it’s just too much stuff, so I’ll leave you to it.


The Internet has decimated traditional media business models, but new ones have and will continue to emerge in their place. The result will be a much bigger, more fragmented and chaotic market for creators and endless choices for consumers.

Just bringing even a basic level of information transparency to health care could have a tremendous positive impact, lowering costs and improving outcomes.

Health-care consumers suffer from a dearth of information: They have virtually no data on procedural outcomes and doctor and hospital performance, and often have a hard time accessing their own health data, especially if it is held by...

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