Leaders also need to pause

Growing exponentially at the beginning and then slowing down in order to take on the next phase of growth is part of the advice to young entrepreneurs from successful business people

If you are in a rush, I advice pausing and returning when you have the time. Think about situations that demand you make an immediate decision. When you have to draw a hasty conclusion without having all of the information. When you start the day thinking about all the things you had to do yesterday. As Free Damm says To go on, take a break; it is a philosophy that successful business people share and takes as its premise pausing in order to go further.

The recipe is as simple as it is complex. "It is not about setting up companies, but scaling them and to scale them you have to stop, think and know exactly which market you are addressing and how you will go about it," argues Ricard Garriga, cofounder of Menorca Millennials, the first start-up decelerator that is currently being attended by entrepreneurs and investors on the island of Menorca with the aim of reviewing business models and preparing for the next phase of growth.

According to Lucas Carne, cofounder of Privalia, investing time in getting to know your fellow travellers, the business model or what is truly important for the next quarter allows you to get on track in the right direction. "In the company we do sessions abroad to talk about the strategy, the culture, the team and to bring everyone into line," he points out.

Ignasi Puig, founding partner of the SCPF advertising agency, is someone who prefers short but continuous breaks: "I like more to deccelerate every 10 minutes rather than taking a month sabbatical. Pausing to organise your ideas and projects is a real need in order to move forward."

For Charlie Taibi, COO of UnCollege, a year-long programme with a stay abroad, professional practices and mentoring, which is targeted at young students about to begin university, "decelerating is taking one step backward to take two steps forward." According to Taibi, most companies exist immersed in the day-to-day rush that makes it difficult to think long-term. "Each day, when I finish the day's work, I write down what I have done in a notebook; that way I am more aware and do better the next day," he says.

The Menorca Millennial entrepreneurs disconnect and prepare for the next phase of growth.

The Kit-Kat moment
Yet, when should one deccelerate? "After having accelerated a lot for a long time, when the company has gained a greater level of maturity and size; it is time to reconsider strategy and positioning," argues Philippe Gelis, cofounder of Kantox, the Barcelona company specialised in the management of currencies and one of the more established startups in the FinTech ecosystem.

According to Gelis, deceleration provides a moment in which you can forget the everyday and the aims of the week. In other words, "you stop thinking short-term and go on to think long-term."

Patrick Morselli, who led the expansion of Uber in Latin America, does not entirely agree. "I don't think that to decelerate you first need to have been through a period of aceleration; in the same way we need to sleep every day, we also need to decelerate." Morselli explains that there are different types of deceleration and that every day you can deccelerate for 10 minutes. "I like to pause first thing in the morning to focus and work out what it is I want to do that day, as at times you get the feeling that you have done a lot of work but what you have done has not brought great results or made a positive impact. According to the former Uber executive, "to identify those multiple actions, you have to have previously paused."

According to Franc Carreras, professor digital marketing at Esade, at the times you are facing a threat or crisis situation you should take a break. "It is a method used in crisis situations but also something that should be done regularly," argues Carreras, who points out that there are people who give thanks every morning when they wake up: "Putting positive thoughts into your brain first thing in the morning generates great benefits."
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