people that influence me

My Dad -

My Father was my biggest inspiration, greatest teacher, best friend and double act companion.

A seemingly bottomless fountain of knowledge and trivia on anything and everything I wanted to know about or advice on. On the rare occasion where he wasn’t understanding in the field I was seeking his advice in (usually technology) he was the World’s best listener.

Steve Jobs -

The truth is from everything I’ve read, listened to and watched about Steve Jobs he isn’t the kind of personality I normally like. But, this page isn’t about who I like.. It’s about who has influenced me and Steve Jobs has. You can look at it in a number of ways, as I write this into my Apple wireless keyboard that I am looking through an Apple HD Cinema monitor that is being powered by a MacBook Pro and being directed by a wireless Apple mouse. Yes that may sound like an Apple fan boy boast, but it’s really not. In fact much like my feelings towards the late Steve Jobs I don’t love Apple, in a lot of ways I dislike them, but it doesn’t stop me paying way above the industry average for their so called alternatives.

Another way of looking at it is seen throughout this web site. It’s plain simple, without unnecessary fuss. Kind of like Apple.

Those two reasons aside the real reason why I am influenced by Steve Jobs is his unbelievable ability to spot opportunities and launch them with devastating efficiency and traction.

I doubt I’ll ever see someone as brilliant as Steve Jobs in my lifetime again.

Mark Suster -

Mark is a tech industry veteran. Don’t get me wrong, he’s not old, but in a relatively young industry he’s been involved a long time.

Unlike a lot of the other people on this list Mark doesn’t shoot for the headlines with big publicity, instead he’s built an amazingly strong following through his credibility and sound advice.

This post here is for me the best post ever written on the Enterprise Startup space. And, it only covers off a small element of it.

Gary Vaynerchuk -

I first found Gary by Stumbling Upon this video. It blew me away. Remember that that video was filmed at an event in 2008.

Since then I’ve keenly followed Gary and seen his rise as a quite well known eCommerce guy through to a full blown tech industry star.

I’ve read both his books Crush It and The Thank You Economy both of which are ace.

I am really struggling to describe why Gary has influenced me because it’s kind of obvious just by tuning into anything he’s done over the last 5 years.

David Heinemeier Hansson -

David Heinemeier Hansson or @dhh as I’ll call him for short (his Twitter Handle) is a founder of 37 Signals a project management software suite and the creator of Ruby on Rails a code platform that is widely popular within the software industry.

I’ve always followed @dhh on Twitter and have read the books he co-wrote with co-founder of 37 Signals Jason Fried. @dhh’s view of the tech industry is totally refreshing. To be frank he sees through all of the BS of which there seems to be so much of and points out the Elephants in the room nobody else seems to be able to spot.

I’d recommend reading Re:Work and Getting Real if you are working within the technology space.

If you’ve got a spare couple of hours you should definitely watch these two episodes of This Week in Startups where @dhh lays the smack down on the realities of the tech industry with unrealistic valuations and short sighted decisions:

#Twist Episode #46 

#Twist Episode #337

Kim Dotcom - 

If Kim Dotcom’s life was to be made into a Hollywood movie Sylvester Stallone would play him. Not because they sound or look anything alike but because nobody else could quite pull off the ‘can’t be beat’ life that Kim lives.

After his business MegaUpload became a target to be made an example of Kim’s chips looked to be down and out. But against all odds he not only rose back up but bigger and better than before. His new business MEGA is better than MegaUpload was, and he’s also leading a crusade against the unjust prosecution that locked him up and seized his belongings.

Somehow he also finds time to be a #1 gamer and make music too..

Ragy Thomas - 

Ragy is the founder and CEO of Sprinklr. Aside from founding a winning, software company that has gone from idea to an enterprise and industry leader in just a few years, Ragy has done so at the same time as building a world class company culture. Ragy believes that only three things matter: 1) Having a brilliant product 2) Delighting your customers and 3) Nothing else matters.

more to come.