Hi, my name is Tom, and I am an energetic entrepreneur from Switzerland. I am the Co-Founder & CEO of a B2B SaaS company of 35 employees.
Besides being an entrepreneur, I am an engineer, a distinct enemy of all administrative hurdles, an active reserve general staff officer in the Swiss Armed Forces, a solar power advocate, an electric car owner, and a mountaineer. I am married and I have 3 children.
How does this all make sense, and why do I write on Medium?
My motivation to write is to help other entrepreneurs. And because entrepreneurship requires connecting the dots between so many different activities, I am every now and then also writing about my activities besides entrepreneurship.
I call things what they are. As a result, my articles are short and practical — When I have written everything I wanted to write, I stop. As an entrepreneur, I have benefited most from practical tips & tricks from other entrepreneurs rather than from theory. I really don’t have the time to read an entire Ph.D. thesis when I’m looking for a solution to a pressing problem I am facing.
Entrepreneurship is a Lot Less Glorious Than Suggested on Social Media
Maybe you think I’m living a glorious and successful life, but most of the time, it’s anything but: Success as an entrepreneur comes from what I call The Grind — year-long, daily hard work to advance the thousands of different tasks required for a company to succeed. More often than not, things take longer and take more effort than anticipated. Most of the time, you will have to put aside your personal gain for a long time in order to make sure that your company can thrive.
That’s why I have come to find administration the least helpful thing during The Grind. Therefore, I have become a distinct enemy of all administrative hurdles, because administration has haunted my entire journey as an entrepreneur. Be it lengthy hassles with procurement, preparing for ISO 9001 or ISO 27001 certification, or dealing with the legal aspects of closing a financing round.
The apparently glorious entrepreneur life is often ambushed by all the mistakes that happen along The Grind. Looking back, my journey is full of mistakes — many of my articles aim at sharing my learnings from mistakes:
I’m Still An Engineer, And I Love It
It’s been a while since I last touched productive code, and my engineers tell me that this is a good thing;-) Nevertheless, I still enjoy technical discussions, and I believe that technology is one of the key elements in combating climate change. As a convinced electric car owner, I charge my cars from solar panels installed on my own roof:
As you might see in the article linked above, my articles are typically sober, based on data, and yes… sometimes a little technical;-)
I Am An Active Reserve General Staff Officer
Switzerland still has an active reserve system in its Armed Forces, and I am serving on its Air Force staff as a general staff officer. Besides serving my country, the active reserve system let me meet people I wouldn’t have met without the military, and develop my leadership and crisis management skills.
Entrepreneurship includes a healthy dose of leadership and crisis management, and some of my articles are about the parallels between leadership in the military and in entrepreneurship:
Thankfully, I was never deployed in wartime, but I do have real-life experience in military assistance operations within Switzerland (search-and-rescue operations, COVID-19 assistance operations, airspace protection operations). Furthermore, my participation in a large international military exercise in 2019 helped me learn and understand the context other European countries use their armed forces.
Last But Not Least, I am A Private Man
To me, writing is about sharing experience and learnings from my professional life. I am not writing about my private live, my family or about how much money I have made in whatever little time —remember, entrepreneurship is a marathon, and a lot less glamorous than you might think!
So if you’re looking for easy-to-read reality articles, I’ll be open and honest — don’t bother following me, there is other writers for you out there!