Julian Posada may not work in tech but throughout his career has always been the type of leader to embrace technology. He says having an open mind about bringing tech into the myriad of businesses he has worked with has been key to his success.
During his keynote speech at February’s Technori Pitch, Julian shared a few themes he has consistently seen when building businesses. His robust portfolio includes a stint as President of the Chicago Fire Soccer Club, Founder and President of Café Media, Director of Marketing for Hoy Newspaper and as board member of several non-profits.
Julian’s biggest takeaway from his diverse career is that alignment creates momentum. He discovered that the key to success is alignment of people, capital, ideas and pace. “Every time I have come to a critical point I have always sat down and asked myself ‘Where is there alignment?’ and ‘Where is there not alignment,’” he said.
His experience showed him that in addition to creating alignment, leaders also need to understand the self-interest, power and motivation triggers of the people they are working with. Julian says a successful leader takes it one step further by catering to these needs without waning on their principles.
Alignment of people: When Hoy Magazine hired Julian in 2004 he was tasked with creating innovation within the Tribune Media Group. An outsider coming in, he knew the fastest way to succeed was by focusing on people, understanding their self-interest and finding alignment. Realizing early on that the team is what makes you successful helped Julian transform Hoy into a cash-flow-positive business in only 8 weeks.
Alignment of ideas: Later in his career Julian’s work taught him that you need alignment in the non-profit world too. It was here he recognized that you can’t build a movement around one person – you have to create perspective. Alignment of ideas allowed him and his team to recognize the path they want to go down and stay on it.
Alignment of pace: When he joined the Chicago Fire in 2010 Julian felt he needed to recalibrate the cadence to create alignment of pace. This meant firing a large portion of the staff and hiring new people whose pace and ideas aligned.
Alignment of capital: When it comes to securing funding, Julian shared a simple tip: instead of trying to force a business to go into a specific direction he suggests trying to find alignment within funding, capital and advisors.
Now on to the five pitching startups of the night:
Map of the Dead
This month’s Technori event was especially exciting for the team at Doejo because our very own zombie survival, augmented-reality RPG mobile game, Map of the Dead was presenting. As we previously shared, the game is set in a post-apocalyptic world where users must scavenge for weapons, armor and medical aids from real life locations near them. Set to launch in late March, users of the free mobile game come across random zombie threats that debilitate their ammunition and health. During the pitch we shared our plans for monetization (including in-app purchase and brand partnerships) and gave the audience a few video sneak peeks of the graphic zombie-fighting madness.
Vinyl Me, Please
The folks behind Vinyl Me, Please believe that music should be a profound experience, not a 99-cent purchase on the train to work. To better showcase great music, they set up Vinyl Me, Please, a subscription service that delivers a vinyls and a curated playlist to your door each month. With a team of handpicked personal music consultants and a warm vintage aesthetic, Vinyl Me, Please has created a compelling music experience.
My Fit Dog
Because 55 percent of dogs are overweight, My Fit Dog aims to change the way owners across the world treat preventative care for their dogs and themselves. My Fit Dog realizes that in addition to creating a great product they have to create a change in behavior. To do this they have built both a hardware solution and a social network with the hope of creating competition and upping personal expectations.
CoupleCircle believes that the best way for people to meet and interact is through events. A new way to help couples expand their social network, users simply sign up and fill out a private profile that the CoupleCircle team uses to easily and efficiently curate future friendships.
Dude Wipes, created by Dude Products, were invented to change the way guys use the bathroom. The dudes pitched the product as a blunt, entertaining compliment to toilet paper. Each individually packaged flushable wipe contains Vitamin E, soothing aloe and a unique, manly fresh scent.