Resilience at Work + Digital Transformation and IoT + Raising 1 Billion For Startups with Sam Morhaim – Episode 65 –

Nathaniel Schooler 0:09
Sam Morhaim has helped startups create and deploy ideas into reality. From web and mobile applications to IoT and everything in-between. His skills have been applied in many industries like Healthcare, Marketing Automation, and FinTech and for clients of all sizes from startups to Fortune 500’s.
And this is a really, really interesting conversation that we have here.

Sam is Founder & CEO Vantage IO

Well, it’s really great to speak to you Samuel. I’m quite interested to learn about what you’ve been up to after the after the amazing startups you’ve been involved with over the last few years.

Sam Morhaim 0:59
Thank you for having me.

WARNING — AI Transcriptions Below May Cause Grammatically Correct People Serious Stress and Lack of Sleep!

Nathaniel Schooler 1:02
My pleasure. My pleasure. So, in in business, obviously, I mean, I know we’re gonna we’re going to talk about digital transformation, we’re going to talk about startups, right? But also ftse five hundreds and stuff, because I know you’ve been involved in quite a bit of technology within those as well. But best place to start is probably resilience at work, because to building you know, building any business or even starting a new job is tough, right? So we need to kind of work really, really hard to not be depressed, right?

Sam Morhaim 1:35
Yes. Yeah, absolutely. So how do you do that? Definitely. The the mindset is extremely important. I actually you don’t know this because we’re on a phone call. But I wear a bracelet for the last few months. It’s basically says be positive. And on the other side says no negativity allowed. And really, every morning you have to wake up And and have a fresh mindset and not let any any obstacles or rejections throw you down so that you can continue doing the things that that are going to work, you need a lot of hope and a lot of vision to move your idea forward and be able to make it through until until it gets fulfilled. And there is there is no entrepreneur or no business in the world that hasn’t had a fair dose or even an amount dose of awareness. So so they need to always be positive and be extremely resilient in order to to transform those ideas into reality. Yeah,

Nathaniel Schooler 2:39
yeah, I’ll agree with that. I talked to so many people, IBM and Microsoft and things like this. And a lot of the time they actually say that it’s great to have someone who you can speak to someone who they might not be a mentor, they might not be a coach, but they might just be like an advocate of yours, for example, within the business or even just a friend you can talk to I mean, I think that really can Help, you know,

Sam Morhaim 3:01
core right? Yes. And so it’s different for for entrepreneurs work. If you’re if you’re an entrepreneur, if you’re an employee working in a company you want to, to stand out, you typically my experience has been to always find, like you said, not necessarily a mentor but it’s always having that that person that has your back that has your, your your best interest in mind, and you can rely on them and it’s like your internal call not colleague by your internal partner that can help you propel forward inside an organization. When you’re an entrepreneur, you definitely need that because there’s people that complain a lot about isolation being alone being, you know, working seven days straight on the computer and not even seen on, you know, anybody’s faces. But it’s extremely important to always have an external connection, even if it’s a family member or friend, or hopefully, you know, a successful business person that can guide you and can at least check with you every month or every quarter and make sure that you’re being accountable for your your goals and your objectives.

Nathaniel Schooler 4:10
Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I was talking to a gentleman the other day, actually in another one of these expert interviews, and he was saying how, you know, it’s really helpful to have someone who can speak to really, really helpful but also to have a plan. I mean, like, it’s all very well being resilient at work, right. But yeah, if you don’t have a plan of where you want to get to, before you’ve even started that new job or the new project, if you are the entrepreneur, whatever is, but without having a goal that you want to achieve. You can be as resilient as you like, but you’re you’re not you’re not going the right direction. Are you? Correct?

Sam Morhaim 4:47
Yeah, that’s like running very, very fast and very hard in the wrong direction. Yeah, so definitely having a plan. And, I mean, as we go along, I’ll explain a little bit about how we create or startup Hundred projects. And the first part or the first step in the three step process that we have, its defining the vision and defining your your solution that you want to address a single objective. And so if you can, if you can put that in writing and you can clarify, you can clearly state that sort of like your elevator pitch or sort of your, your, your motive for the next three years, you need to be very clear about it and be able to phrase it properly, so that you’ll have a clear objective and be able to run in that direction and not lose sight of what’s really important. Yeah,

Nathaniel Schooler 5:37
yeah. I mean, I think it’s, you know, you obviously work with a number of different different businesses. Some of them are going to have funding, some of them are going to be probably funded by larger enterprises, I would imagine these days because you’ve got the skills and the expertise to put in these, these new sort of ventures. I would call it a venture, but it’s what do you actually would You actually do then in within your your enterprise?

Sam Morhaim 6:05
Well, so so let me let me tell you a little bit about about our company, basically, a few years ago, you have to imagine it’s two o’clock in the morning, there are developers the floor, if you know that they haven’t slept for two days, there’s remote, there’s no more caffeine that can keep us alive. And we’re trying to push forward a software package because our clients are expecting it, or investors are demanding us due to meet or deadlines. And there was just no no way forward. And that’s that’s when it you know, I feel that’s when he hard bottom. And and you know, a few days later, a friend of mine called me and said, Hey, we need to launch this new startup, can you come over and we basically plan all these things, but we had to get started and we had to complete it in under 90 days. And of course, the way that we were doing software at that point or startups software was not going to cut it and we had to reinvent ourselves. We came up with a process a methodology that allowed us to create this amazing piece of software in under 90 days and success happened we were able to do it basically applying what we call now the startup technology framework. And and it’s a very easy process that any entrepreneur or entrepreneur even if it’s a small venture or large venture can apply to their to their projects. And that is what we do at Vantage IO right now we we try to we are goal is to help entrepreneurs and startups launch their ideas and turn them into reality. And that is started day to day this is this is what we do every day. It’s just helping take those ideas from small entrepreneurs all the way to enterprises, and just turn them into into reality as fast and as effective and efficient as possible.

Nathaniel Schooler 7:51
Right, right. So So really, it’s about just hitting sometimes when you hit that rock bottom, it’s it’s a really key driver, isn’t it like you’re you’ll you’ll be trying to do all these things and you’ll work really hard and lots of hours. And the moment you hit that sort of rock bottom, it’s almost like everything changes, and, and you’re pushed to do something completely different and reinvent yourself and reinvent what you’re doing. Right?

Sam Morhaim 8:15
Yes. And that’s where resilience comes in a lot, because it’s just when you’re at the bottom, where if you don’t have that resilience and that objective, I mean, my objective has always been to create startups and grow stars. So if I didn’t have that clear objective, and I didn’t have that resilience, I could have stayed in the bottom, I could just keep on doing the same old things and doing the the processes that we were doing before but instead of resilience and that that determination that helps us go from from those adversities and take them into turn them into into opportunities and threats, form them so that they can help you move forward and not push you down.

Nathaniel Schooler 8:56
Yeah, yeah, you have to I mean, it’s It’s how it’s how you achieve anything, isn’t it? You know, you, you just you just keep keep doing it and keep keep focusing on what you’re trying to achieve. And no matter what, you know, if you get Uber’s in the way, I mean, that’s what one of my one of my other guests, he talks about being Uber’s you know, and it does happen, right. But like, it’s, it’s just something that you need to just be aware of, and not worry that you have to change direction. I mean, you might need to go around something or change your route slightly. But if you keep your end goal being a big hairy goal, right, you’re going to get there aren’t

Sam Morhaim 9:35
you? Sadly, exactly. And you just mentioned the big hairy goal and that’s something that we implemented about a year ago into into everything that we do, and in our case is to help raise $1 billion to the startups that we helped create and launch. So that is, that is for be carried goal at this point. By 2030. Yeah, you should do that you should do we want to help raise $1 billion for the startups that we helped create. All the way from here until 2030.

Nathaniel Schooler 10:09
Yeah, I think that’s achievable. You got you got plenty of time there.

Sam Morhaim 10:13
Yeah, there’s, there’s one there’s a 1 billion startup just two miles from here. So hopefully we can help more than just one but, but it’s definitely a big hairy goal for us and and something that really passionate that we’re very passionate about. Yeah,

Nathaniel Schooler 10:30
yeah. So when it comes to being resilient at work, yeah. Do you do you think that it’s important to like take breaks, like regular breaks, if you’re, if you’re on a computer or day or you’re working really hard, like whether you’re in a company or not, it doesn’t matter, but like, you can be resilient, but if you don’t look after yourself, you’re not gonna you’re not going to manage it. Are you to go the distance, right?

Sam Morhaim 10:52
Yes. Now there needs to be a balance and people talk about, you know, the life business balance. I don’t separate them for me. I’m passionate and I’m obsessive about my business and the market and the projects that we do. Yeah, wherever. Although my mind is always focused on that there has to be, I can work for our strength, I will have to complete a task that the way I like to do it, I think it’s called the door methods like work for 45 minutes to an hour on a very, very focused on a given task. Yeah. And then I’ll stop and do something, I’ll just go get coffee make a cold or something that that’s not part of my my main task for my main goal for the day. Yeah, then after 15 minutes, I’ll come back and I’ll spend another hour two hours sometimes, depending on the time there’s, there’s morning people, there’s afternoon people like if you sit me down at 9pm I’ll go straight until two in the morning. So that’s that for me works that those are my productive hours, but definitely there needs to be a little bit of there needs to be breaks and you have to this is We’re especially if you’re an employee of a large company, when you get to the conference room or when you get to the to the coffee maker machine, people are in nowadays, just looking at their phones. They’re not connecting. They’re just waiting for that for the meeting to start looking at their phones, but they’re not creating relationships, and specially large companies, you need to create those relationships. You need to create those partnerships. And those happen while you’re waiting for a meeting to start. And those happen while you’re, you know, putting yourself on coffee. And you have that that small conversation and you realize that you have something in common with with somebody that works with you and you create those partnerships, you will not move forward in an organization. If you’re the best that there is you will still move forward. If the one who’s above your are the one who can make that decision doesn’t know you or doesn’t like you. So it has to have both. So it all goes and it goes back to your question is should you take breaks? Well, yeah, you should look people in the eye at least once a day. Say goodbye. Morning say goodbye, take some coffee and breathe so that you can actually focus for the next two hours and something that’s meaningful, important to you.

Nathaniel Schooler 13:08
Yeah, yeah. 100% It’s really important those those things are so important, you know, having conversations with people. It’s Yeah, it’s it’s fundamental to being happy in business. Like, I was talking to the some people from Microsoft and just let get a literally release the episode in a few days. And, you know, they were basically when people say to them, I’m not here to make friends. Like, that’s like a classic line. Yeah, that people? Yes, they just, they just, they just look at them and think, well, you’re not going to be here for long.

Sam Morhaim 13:41
You know, and that’s

Nathaniel Schooler 13:43
because you spend so much time at work these days. And if you don’t have people to support you, then you can be as resilient as you like, but it’s like, it’s like, it’s like trying to swim upstream in a really powerful River. You’re not going to do it, you know, you’re really not going to go anywhere. And You know, you will always fail if you if you try to, you know, just be different and not fit in. It’s just,

Sam Morhaim 14:07
yeah, it’s the way I think it goes back again to resiliency because if you don’t have a friends or any anybody that that you like at the place that you work or your your own company or you don’t like your clients, you don’t like your co workers or your employers, you’re not going to like going there, you’re going to avoid waking up in the morning and driving there. For some people, it means waking up very early and driving two hours to work. It’s really hard to be resilient. If you don’t have at least I mean, that you’re going to have adversity but you don’t have to make adversity for yourself. You have to you have to make friends you have to like where you’re going you have to like your clients and you like like your price. And yes, there’s there’s this for older millennials. So there’s some things you’re going to do stuff that you don’t like to do, which is part of getting to your goal or again to the goal of the team or the company they work with but ultimately, I Please, there needs to be some a few positive, very positive things. One of them is definitely friendships and partnerships and you are going to make in those organizations that you your partner. Yeah,

Nathaniel Schooler 15:12
yeah. 100%. And, yeah, I mean, the thing is, don’t forget that like where you are now, if you’re a millennial listening to this, or even if you’re in your 40s, or 50s, or 60s, you know where you are now, you might not like it, you might not enjoy it. Yeah. But if you continue spending your time every evening watching rubbish on TV, yeah. And then and then and then well wasted. You’re wasting your life away. Yeah. Because you could be studying and learning something new. And that will take you to do something that you really enjoy. Yeah. I mean, I haven’t always enjoyed work. Yeah. You know, and sometimes I have bad days, but then that’s life. Right? And you get you get through it. And you just you move forward. Yeah, you can you have to move forward. Right. No matter how slowly Yeah,

Sam Morhaim 15:59
of course. Right. Yeah, yeah, yeah, if you don’t move forward, you’re you’re you’re basically moving backwards. You’re not saying the same place progress is definitely the the key to to success into happiness in everything that you do there needs to be even if it’s small, tiny progress amounts, but it always needs to be moving forward. Yeah,

Nathaniel Schooler 16:19
yeah. So I know you, you know a lot about digital transformation with your background. And, and I’m very interested in Internet of Things. Yeah. Because it you know, it’s just something I’m hugely interested in, especially, you know, as far as like, enterprise resource planning software, in terms of supply chain, etc, right. But like, I’d love to, I’d love to talk to you about digital transformation.

Sam Morhaim 16:50
Sure. So, just to give you, your listeners a little more background, the last maybe 15 to 17 years. spent in in fairly amount of healthcare IT development. And we basically were developing software for managing the health care of patients in small clinics and multi physicians offices. And one day we got a call from Royal Caribbean one of the cruise lines, the largest cruise lines, one of the larger schools in the world, and they needed to basically improve the way that we’re handling Calker on board. So people that don’t know you know, you always think about beaches and drinks but on board a cruise ship there are anywhere from 700 to 2000 crew members, this are employees that lived there for a 10 or 12 months at a time and they have healthcare issues and they also have wellness programs and all these things. And Royal Caribbean try to approach large companies to get them to to put the software in that you reach out to Microsoft GE center a lot of large players in the healthcare industry in These healthcare software and they just couldn’t make it. And we we had the technology and we had the team and the capabilities to go in and develop something for for them. So we developed from the ground up brand new software that was dedicated to managing healthcare on board. And this fundamentally transform how cruise ships in the world right now use on Manage Hilter. by three years after we launched the first ship in Royal Caribbean, all of the major cruise lines in the world were using this software, this piece of software that we did, even the US Coast Guard, they have a program where every crucial when it comes to port, they need to transmit information. And they were not enforced. But they were they were strongly suggesting that they had to use for software because he was everything that they needed and compliant and secure the way they wanted it. So all of this basically created a gigantic mess. formation for people on board and hope for you get everything from death from the waiter at a cruise line all the way to the director of medical operations at Carnival Corporation changing the way they handle healthcare. And this is extremely important for them. So everything from how they document that the cases the X rays, their blood tests, everything changed, they were doing it on paper, and now they all of a sudden they had to do it with with a with an iPad in front of them and computing and sending everything remote. And this this was a dramatic transformation for them. And it changed the life of everybody on board. So we definitely affected way more than then that we initially thought he would in a very positive way of course, really so what sort of comments were you were you getting then Samuel from from from the happy team members? Well definitely for them. To start off they were pro when a waiter goes from one trip when one cruise ship to another. They have to Carry a bunch of papers on their their Yeah, yeah, they have to carry their blood tests and they had to carry all this all this x rays and everything because the next cruise doctor needed to know who they are and what illnesses they have and everything else. So from that point onwards, everything was this digital and so they could just access their the records from any ship and he would just get transferred. We we have to file a patent for this we we implemented something called multi Master Master replication through this connected satellites, because you have this ship’s going through, you know, through all parts of the world where you don’t even get internet. I used to have better internet the 1997 than they do in some of the ships today. Oh yeah.

Nathaniel Schooler 20:47
And like I know what it’s like having like catching a ferry from here with like, Oh, yeah, you know, to Spain, like, it’s just, it’s just rubbish, isn’t it completely. So you had to use Saturday. Instead of internet, right?

Sam Morhaim 21:02
Well, so it’s internet over satellite, bad the bandwidth. It’s just horrible. They some of the biggest ships a three, four years ago, the biggest ship had four megabit bandwidth for the entire ship. So you have to imagine that and they prioritize it everywhere from boys communications, and it goes down all the way to internet and then down below is medical internet. So, so we if somebody was making a interesting call and telling family members how they spend their day in the beach, we have to wait for that cold to finish to send or x rays to the satellite. So it’s a very, it’s very much so and that’s part of the transformation. We had to talk to this it people in, in in different parts of the world, different companies. We’re talking everything from Germany, Malaysia, the UK, where you know, crown Corporation has the headquarters and we have Had to, we had to convince this IP people to give us space on their ship for the servers, we have to convince them to give us a little more bandwidth. We had to do all these transformations and have them shift from, okay, everybody’s going to fax their documents or send them through, you know, buy paper, and now everything’s going to be digital, they’re going to lose the paper torch and the paper trail. And everything’s going to be digitalized. And it’s going to be it’s going to give more visibility, which is a good thing for some people. And it’s a bad thing for some others, right, because, you know, so explosive inefficiencies and errors and but at the same time, it also makes everybody more accountable and more productive. So it’s a it’s a very interesting experiment, what we did there and the whole ecosystem, how we changed. We were able to see it to witness it firsthand on how everything happened.

Nathaniel Schooler 22:58
Yeah, it’s a it’s a Very interesting time right now like yeah, to just to just watch what’s going on out there in the world is it’s absolutely life changing for for many people, you know?

Sam Morhaim 23:10
Yes There it is,

Nathaniel Schooler 23:12
excuse me a little bit of a cough. So let me just let me just think if we can expand on this so what are the most interesting kind of developments Do you think with internet of things in your in your opinion?

Sam Morhaim 23:26
Well, I mean, I like to split internet of things into into two main realms. One is just the the devices that we see everywhere and and the second part is the the wearables everything that has to do with your body and or your pets bodies, or, you know, whatever it is that it’s connected to your body. Most recently, we’ve been involved in developing a software for a company that’s creating a wearable device, that it’s applied by your physician and it’s applied behind your ear and they give you another An application for your phone where you can administer doses of this treatment basically sense some electrical signals right behind your ear. And it if the studies are correct, it can help with blood pressure, it can help with substance abuse mental health. It’s a it’s a very, you know, life changing technology, that when it goes out, you know, I can’t disclose the name right now. But once it goes out, it’s going to change the life of everybody. But you can imagine that Yeah, back in the day, they you, you wouldn’t imagine that your cell you’re going to be pushing a button on your phone to give your brain electrical signals. I mean, you have to you can even go five years back and think about something this life changing. And so all these things that are happening are just amazing. The other day, I was talking to a guy that works in shipping and logistics, and he was telling me how they go nowadays to warehouses and We’re not talking about the Amazons of the world, we’re talking about just regular small warehouses where the four lifts are automated. There’s nobody in the warehouse anymore. Yeah, they go, they scan paper, and for live, you know, send them the message and the boxes and the pallets start coming out. And there’s nobody to talk to you because the policies start piling up, and then you have to put him in your chalk. But it’s all of this internet of things that are there is changing our world and, and people don’t realize it. Mostly everything. Everything new today, is connected to the internet. It has some sort of sensor, it has some sort of intelligence, even if it’s small, or, or if you know there’s there’s Cortana openers that you push a button and you record things open, your blinds and your windows open. That’s Internet of Things and that has intelligence and it’s connected to your Wi Fi. And he knows about you and the more the more that you connect all these devices and more they will know about you. This is Scary for some people but it’s also very exciting for some others because yeah, use properly it’s going to is going to change or any terrorist in your life but he’s going to change you in ways that we can’t really imagine at this point.

Nathaniel Schooler 26:13
I’ve got a good one for you Samuel, you get it? So let’s just say you you you set up your home yeah. So that you’ve got a detector for when your mother in law arrives so 100 meters away your mother in law arrives Yeah, then fully automated the lights go off and the curtains sharp.

Sam Morhaim 26:39
That’s a good one. My buddy

Nathaniel Schooler 26:42
was talking to me about that, but I just wish

Sam Morhaim 26:46
there we could have a brother by Bill for you in the next few days.

Nathaniel Schooler 26:50
But you can I bet you can. Like you know, these these things. It amazes me how cheap they are to manufacture as well. I mean, I you know, I’m talking to some guys about Machine chips quite recently, you know, and sensors and this kind of stuff and and it’s kind of like, it’s so cheap that it’s almost like it’s almost like you there’s going to be I was watching a video about this sort of ubiquitous box that can be used for anything. So it’s kind of like you you you literally have this box and it’s and you just brought the box straight into like your computer or your phone. And yeah, and and you decide what you want it to do. And then you just plug in the sensors to it, right? It’s just it, the world is going to change so dramatically if you if you think that the I watch for has got an ECG machine on it. Yeah, like an ECG machine on a on a watch.

Sam Morhaim 27:44
Yeah. No, no, it’s I’m gonna tell you another funny one while we were in the ships while we’re on board, and some of the requirements by the doctors work well and other kinds, but they tell us a story and every story basically or mostly every Story turning to a requirement and into a feature in the system. And they were telling us a story about a, I don’t know a waiter and a bartender, and there were a couple and they, you know, they got pregnant and they were going to have they had to deliver the baby and boy, but they were outside of I think they were outside of Bahamas territorial waters. And so they didn’t know exactly if the baby belong to the father’s country or the mother’s country or the Bahamas, because it depends on where you were born. So they wanted us to put literally, this is the request. They told us if we could put a baby locator button so that when a baby was born, we could just push the button. I’m exactly what which location the ship was on when the baby was born into the world. Wow,

Nathaniel Schooler 28:47
that’s really important. The tax implications. And yeah, and like if you get divorced in the wrong country, right. You could be in big trouble if that child is like from the wrong place. Right. Yeah, that’s really interesting. Right here. So, so we’ve digital transformation. Yeah.

Sam Morhaim 29:09
How?

Nathaniel Schooler 29:10
I mean, I’m in the process, I’m learning about ERP systems like enterprise resource planning. So how does digital transformation fit into the RP? Or the other way round? Like, how would you go about it if you would integrate?

Sam Morhaim 29:26
Sure. So one of the the first tips of advice when it has to do with with those large type of transformations, when you’re going to replace that your work for a company for even if it’s even if it’s a medium sized company, you’re going to impact the lives of a lot of people. And again, this is people that spend eight to 10 hours a day doing this for the last five to 10 years doing it one way. So the first thing is to realize if you actually need to make the change because sometimes is just a flashy sales presentation and A lot of noise or bus on the internet about this new CRM, or this New York be software that does something amazing. But the reality is that that’s something amazing only works, if all your history and all your stuff is well kept and well done. And odds are 99% of the time. It’s not just to give you an example, there was a company that was implementing CRM that had some business intelligence, some artificial intelligence built into it, and it could detect which was the best deal or the best prospect to call. So you know, all the all the all the flashy things that would that we hear about that artificial intelligence can do. And this company was about to switch. Well, actually, they switch the last few weeks, they switch to this new platform because they were promised this. The problem is that they’re there. There’s a step called Data sanitation. And if your data is not clean and organized in a way that this new software can process, it’s all going to work is is going to be a different screen is going to be a different process. But it’s going to do exactly the same or very similar to what you were used to be doing before. So the very first thing is to just understand, do we really need this? I know we’re really prepared to make this change. Because if not, you can, you know, you’re going to switch the system and then wait three years to sanitize your data, you might as well just stay in your old system and begin that tiny station now save that money for three years down the road when better and more improved software comes out. So the The only thing that I that I like to ask management before even considering changing a software piece, and this goes into your smoke at through this entrepreneurship. And we we do this very often I I analyze tools every week, because I like looking at tools for everything from my automation to code review to UI design, everything that that’s new. I’d like to use it for a little bit and see if it’s going to work for us now. But in reality, I only use four or five tools and and it’s really hard for any other tool to come and take the place of, you know, I use Trello for everything. So it’s not as much as the RP right? It’s just for task management software. It works and I don’t need a fancy AI or fancy system to track or desk Trello goes up for us. I’m not affiliated or anything with Trello. But you know, I we like that software a lot. And every week I look at other software that try to replicate, emulate or improve on what Thrilla does. And yet some of them are cool and interesting. But for me to change the way that my project managers work and my developers work, just because an extra feature, it’s not worth it. And if it’s not work for me with you know, 10 or 15 people, it’s definitely not word impact negatively impacting the life of 100 200 or 1000 people when you implement a European your European You’re a new CRM.

Nathaniel Schooler 33:02
Right? Right. Yeah. It’s it’s a very difficult call, isn’t it? Because you’ve also got that culture change play with, with, with everything, you know? Which, which, which is kind of that’s kind of like one of the biggest issues, isn’t it with with with with putting in a noose. I mean, let’s just say you’re you’re going in and you’re putting an AARP in, right? And you’re transforming that business from, you know, all sorts of different data stacks and all sorts of different departments and you’re putting in a full AARP system, right? So, just yeah, systemized every process in that business. Yeah. And, and the CFO wants, wants to make sure you streamline everything, so you can keep up with your competition and everything else. But like, if the enterprise, you know, has a load of people and they’re not behind it, you’re in big trouble because it is going to have people are going to leave and we’re going to have all sorts of problems there. Yeah,

Sam Morhaim 33:58
exactly. So One of the things going back toward to my days with with the cruise industry, one of the factors for success. And again, it’s it was that partnership or that relationship that we had with what we call the the champion, the corporate champion of the product. So we had, of course, internally, we had the leaders, the architects, the salespeople, and everything else. But in each of the, each of the large cruise lines, we had somebody that was or ally, insight that was pushing forward for us, that was helping us and he was given us that information. We needed to convince other players so if accounting needed something very specific, we were able to talk to them, listen to them so that we could get their buy in and then we when we went to the nurse director, we were we knew exactly what they needed. So he was having that that partnership, insight. Having that that partner Say that could help us. And it’s again, going back to that relationship building, right? Where if you, if you don’t get that buying from all the departments and all the people that you’re going to impact, it’s going to be really hard, you’re not going to be able to push a grassroots movement. In a large corporation like this, you need to get the buying from the influential people. And you need to know what makes everybody take and convince them in a certain way. And it goes the same for it for everything, even if you’re doing even if you’re selling widgets, and you’re selling one two, or three door wickets. If you have some sort of relationship and you have some buying from from inside that household or even inside that small company that’s looking for your for your widget, you’re going to be more successful in selling them and servicing them because otherwise you’re just fucking strangers and might as well just put a classified ad and sell your stuff. You want to bring that value that you that you can actually improve their lives and improve everything that they Doing day in and day out

Sam Morhaim 36:05
Yeah,

Nathaniel Schooler 36:05
yeah it’s um it’s an interesting one isn’t it when you when you when you look and you see how many companies are not around these days that were huge players like if you if you look at what let’s look at blockbuster yeah apparently I believe they had the CEO at the time actually launched his he launched something which could have actually saved the business but the management team stopped him

Sam Morhaim 36:39
well it wouldn’t surprise me that their their reality is they could have been Netflix today they I don’t know this I don’t know I don’t know that story in particular but it wouldn’t surprise me if they had somebody even the CEO or somebody down below had maybe that initiative was saying hey let’s let’s switch to streaming before or let’s Do something else to to catch up, you know, with the times because before Netflix, everything was just going to store and getting up you’re getting your your meeting your end or your DHS Yeah. And and they had to a lot of people probably saw they saw it coming Netflix did and XFINITY Comcast the cable provider, so are they they have been very successful at it and not not a lot of people. Probably outside of the US knows this. But you know, XFINITY the cable company had been investing massively into streaming. And they had all this it’s been a five to seven year project for xfinity to transforming to interview to streaming company. So there’s all these people that saw this, some of them to action. And if this people at blockbuster didn’t get the buying, they couldn’t convince enough people. And he goes, we’re going back to resiliency and relationships if somebody had enough clout and enough Our to convince them and from an transferred that vision to everybody in the team and convincing them that the way that we’re doing business for the last 30 years was not going to work in 2010, or I don’t know where they go to the windows and eight, he probably would have made a change, and they probably would still be around and they will have another option besides Netflix. Yeah. And hope. Right? Yeah.

Nathaniel Schooler 38:24
But, but then that goes back to the culture of the business. It goes back to the management, being coherent, and being able to fit with the other people within the business, right. Like, and there’s no difference with with Internet of Things. Yeah. If if you if you if you if you’re installing any RP system, right, and you’ve got your yard, let’s say you’ve already got your ERP system and you’re all you’re all kitted out. Yeah. Each department within that business, depending on what sorts of business is because all businesses are different, right? They’re all going to have opportunity to have Internet of Things and sensors with You know, fully traceable product if it’s a physical product, etc, etc. Right. So yeah, each department is going to be able to plug into something far greater than what it’s at now. Right. But But the thing is without the culture without a culture of improvement, daily improvement innovation, yeah. They’re not going to be able to improve that that business fast, right?

Sam Morhaim 39:27
Yes. Now I go back to work. First of all it needs to make sense to I mean, it always makes sense to improve that the question is, if that new shiny object is going to really improve, or is going to be more of a, you know, a flashy new thing. And so, I’m all for improvement, but I do like either a diff improvement, so I do like to, okay, we’re going to change something. Let’s just make sure that we changed a little piece and a little piece to start, and then once we’re in and we have proven That that this actually improves the lives of accounting department, then sales is going to want and then marketing is going to want it to and management is going to want it as well. So it goes back again to also how we do with this with a with our company. We like to focus a lot on MVP Minimum Viable products. Yeah, when people come up with us to with great ideas, it’s only would shut them down. But we’d like to transform their idea from a bulldozer into a little sniper that can go behind enemy lines, convince people change their lives. And then then from the from the insight, transform everything else. So you can just say we’re going to put on up everybody shut down their computer reboot and you have a new ERP because it’s going to create chaos, especially if you’re if you’re a large organization. But if you can convince a small group of people to improve a little bit, if you say we’re going to start claimer data for the next three months and then we’re going to put this little component that’s going to make your life easier. And you show them up, you know, six months down the line, you show everybody else, how they’re having more more productivity, how they’re achieving their goals better, then you can then people are going to chase you to be next, instead of you having to choose volunteers of who wants to, to alter their workflow dramatically. And and it’s based, it helps a lot to have those abilities to to change smoke with small increments instead of having to transform everything all at once.

Nathaniel Schooler 41:34
Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. So you as a chief finance officer, what would you would you actually go through the whole business in your mind and say, Well, these are the areas that we could improve from the on the bottom line the most, and you would start there or how would you if you if you were the CEO, and the CFO was sitting next to you, how would you decide on which parts of the business to Focus on first.

Sam Morhaim 42:02
Well, the one that would benefit the most with the least amount of change. So we have a large company, we’re we’re 100 salespeople, but we have a small marketing team. Well, let’s go in and change something for the marketing team so that they can provide more leads to the sales people. And we can prove that that this whole new automated system works for marketing. I’m sure I’m you know, we have that five guys marketing team. If it works for them, then they can go to the hundred salespeople and have them change. I won’t be able to do a day one, but definitely three or six months down the line when I can prove that I can go and tell them you’ve got more leads in the last few months. Guess what it was because of this. Now it’s your turn to change. So the word that there’s the least amount of resistance and the most benefit, sort of like the low the lowest hanging fruit. If you’re in a large warehouse, then You know, what is your biggest problem? He said the receiving you said, shipping? Where is it that you’re having those those problems the most? And where is it going to impact the least because you want to make this change without disturbing too many people. And once it’s in, it’s like, like, it’s like you’re you’re behind enemy lines, a spy, once he’s in, he can convince everybody once you change a little piece of the business, and it works and and people can see how it work and the process went through, then they’ll be chasing you to change them and not the other way around.

Nathaniel Schooler 43:34
Right. Right. That makes a lot of sense. I mean, Internet of Things is is is also very risky, though, isn’t it from it from a from a security standpoint?

Sam Morhaim 43:46
Yeah, yeah, there’s, there’s a lot of there’s been a lot of talks from all the large manufacturers on how to standardize that and how to make everything secure. Because, you know, we’re discussing there, there’s all these cheap devices. You can buy Anything from Amazon under you know, 30 $40. And you can create an an IoT device very quickly, you have the skills, you know, we did a couple hours, you could have motion detection camera on, on your on your front door. But if you just spent a few hours on that probably didn’t implement enough security, anybody could just go and start snooping and looking through your camera, because everything gets connected. So there’s a lot of concerns. But there’s also there’s, you know, common sense. So back in the day, everybody just had their computers open, no, no firewalls, no passwords. And, you know, there were some savvy users, and they, they knew that this was going to happen, that would just mean that it wasn’t meaningful information back then. And you just have to do it on your own, I think is the same for IoT devices. We have some baby monitoring cameras a few years ago that we bought two, you know, for kids and the cameras basically came with the password, there was no easy way to change it. So guess what, they had the default password. And so we saw the news articles that people were hacking to those and scaring kids. So quickly. And now we went and changed all the passwords with firewalls. And nowadays, everything comes with that security built in, it doesn’t go with it, people password forces you to set up a new password as soon as you install it. So manufacturers are learning this, consumers are getting more and more educated. So now you you talk to most consumers, and they’ll know what a VPN is. They’ll know what a firewall is. And so with IoT, it’s now it’s a given, it’s like, well, you need to be probably have some sort of security already. And so it’s not that these manufacturers are going forward and I hope they’ll they’ll do this more and more because there’s always that 20% of the population that that’s not going to care or not going to know about this and Bill just putting their camera and they’ll they won’t know that they need to make this change.

Nathaniel Schooler 46:00
Yeah, but that goes for all of it. I mean, if you put a new router in, you know, anything a home is so risky. Like, it’s, it’s, it’s to the point of actually the awareness. People just don’t know. Like, they really don’t know I speak to a lot of security experts and they’ve got no idea most people, and certainly England because it’s like, oh, I’m not a techie is kind of how people look at it. And it’s like, well actually, do you want people getting into your machine and having a look around, you know, kind of kind of where we’re at? Have you got a virus protection? Or no, I haven’t got one. It’s like, Well, why haven’t you got virus protection? When you go click that link? You’re going to ruin your whole machine? Yeah.

Unknown Speaker 46:40
You know, yeah. And it’s

Nathaniel Schooler 46:42
it is a worry, I think for some people but so that’s that’s really interesting conversation. So what are your favorite Internet of Things devices that you that you like the most?

Sam Morhaim 46:55
Hmm, well, definitely. I’m a fan. Off the nest camera. It’s one of the the best devices. I mean, if you look at my kids bedroom, it looks like a like a movie studio. For some reason my wife wanted to get like eight or 10 different cameras, and we have like every single angle covered. Every camera was different manufacturers, we we just we and then one broke and we got another one. But really the one that stands out is the nest, because again, I’m not affiliated with nest or Google or anything like that. But you plug in the camera and you know it’s a small whisper, it guides you through setting it up, yes with a barcode scan. And in couple of minutes you’re up and running, and you in the interface of how you scroll up and down the Video Timeline. It’s amazing. It’s so amazing that we actually implemented that similar timeline for an audio application that we’re creating for the law and legal recording industry. So because they need to record audio on and be able to scroll down Fast back and forth. So we we emulated the same sort of the same system. It’s amazing. It’s just out of this world and how easy they made it. Other than that, I, I haven’t installed many consumer products for myself. But we were announced, I just have my Alexa and the nest cameras and that’s it. But I’m on the on the other front, there’s all this massive amount of IoT devices and everything so interesting. We found the other day one that the tech solution, there’s one that can detect your your grass needs irrigation. There’s there’s all this interesting, especially in agriculture, for some reason, it’s taking off so dramatically and improves the lives of so many people because they don’t have to. They don’t have to like go and take the samples every week. Now they just going into a console, push a button, and they get all the readings that they needed for a lot of acres. Oh, Land. So all those are extremely interesting to me especially the one scene in agriculture, healthcare, definitely it’s it’s one of my favorite ones. But those are you know, due to the regulation, slow process and everything else, it’s still going to be a wait a little bit until we get a lot of those newer products coming out. But those are extremely interesting that especially the ones are noting basis that build record that much that much regulation are starting to come out there is continuous reading for glucose, where you just put up with the device and just kind of pull your phone out everything that you need it and it’s continuously reading glucose without pinching it’s it’s amazing. Everything that yours is going to is going to blow our minds away.

Nathaniel Schooler 49:46
Wow. So so for diabetics, that’s huge, right?

Sam Morhaim 49:50
Yeah, yeah. Met imagine you know, back in the day, well, even today, a lot of people just have to, you know, use needles, pinch their nail their fingers once a day or once a day. Now they just go with their phones can their arm and they have a little wearable on their arm and it tells them continuously reading off of glucose. It’s amazing.

Nathaniel Schooler 50:10
Wow, that’s revolution that’s revolutionary completely

Sam Morhaim 50:14
is for the application that we make. I mean, just just think about the implications of you going to first of all, it’s something that that are in the US Of course, everything has to be coded so that he will be built an insurance will pay for it. This treatment that we’re talking about, it’s it’s coated, it’s coated already it’s going to be paid by insurances and paid by Medicare. So you can go to you can go to your doctor, they’ll they’ll, you know, they’ll say you have, you know, mental a mental condition or substance abuse, and instead of just sending you with some pills or sending you to somewhere else, they’re going to put a little device behind your ear that’s not even noticeable. and download an app on your on your phone. And so every two hours, you’ll push the button Give yourself the electrical stimulation and it’s going to help you take that anxiety away and take that substance abuse and lower it. So it’s it’s incredible. Yes think about, you know, five years ago or 10 years ago people didn’t even think about anything like this going on a radio we’re seeing today. Wow.

Nathaniel Schooler 51:22
Wow so so that is going to regulate the person’s brain and the happiness levels right?

Sam Morhaim 51:30
Well yeah i, i don’t i can’t disclose too much of the deal but basically measures an imbalance with your the frequency of the heartbeats and electricity that your body generates and helps you stabilize that. And it’s it they have studies where they demonstrate how it lowers blood pressure, lowers stress levels, and it also helps with substance abuse conditions and they have the studies they have demonstrated that that technology or that stimulation works. And when anything to opt into a product that’s going to be a consumer facing product, you just go to your doctor and he’ll be able to set it up for you guys, because there’s very precise points where it needs to be applied. But there’s some other technologies where it’s not that precise, where you just go, you’re going to go to your neighbor’s pharmacy, buy this wristband, and he’s going to tell you information or he’s going to provide with certain therapies that will help you with your with your conditions or to help improve your your, your your body. It’s just amazing. Wow, that’s incredible. So,

Nathaniel Schooler 52:38
so I can’t Yeah, that’s, that’s absolutely amazing. I mean, I think the the challenge is, is is getting people to adopt these things fast enough so that they’re actually they actually grow. I mean, do you think we’re at the right time now to, to adopt these new technologies?

Sam Morhaim 52:55
Absolutely. Yeah. If so, everything, everything There’s going to be two groups of people, there’s a group of people that that gets scared, or that are against that transformation. And anywhere you are in life, you’ll feel one way or another. So, you know, or partners where you know would never think about, you know, calling somebody or texting somebody to wish them a happy birthday and this is what we do today. Even you know, when when, when people would completely be against you in sending a letter they will have to go in person and see face to face nowadays is like everything’s, you know, it’s through the through the online, the camera and your, your FaceTime and everything else. So there’s all this transformation that it’s happening. There’s going to be a generational change, they’re going to be a cultural change. But definitely, if if you get past this, the scaling face and get passed up the cultural, you’ll you’ll you’ll realize how this improves your life. Now, how And we had with some balance I said the the scenario where you’re in the you know you’re in the business in a conference room yes waiting for the conference to start and you look around and everybody’s just glued to their to their phone. They’re checking their checking the news, and they’re not building relationships. They’re not looking at each other and say, hey, what what do you do last night? What what what are you doing this weekend? And so they’re they’re not you have to be careful not to lose touch of there’s there’s a commercial that says like the internet, there was a commercial documentary where they created the internet to connect people not to connect devices not to leave people in a basement just watching binge watching Netflix for it for three days straight, or doing everything online. They created all this technology was to connect people. This podcast this opportunity to express our ideas, meet people, connect them, connect with them, and then, you know, real repeat or own ideas and Come up with your wins. And that’s, that’s very important not not to lose sight of that humanity behind all this revolution that it’s in front of us. Yeah,

Nathaniel Schooler 55:09
yeah. I’m, I’m completely blown away, you know, by this. I mean, I’m not in my 40s right. I’m just like my early 40s. And growing up with, you know, what, three, we had three channels when I grew up in television. Right. And, you know, I remember mobile phones coming in and you know, and it’s like, it’s just a bizarre state of affairs when you go when you look at how fast things are moving. But I think I think we need to be very aware of the security issues with certainly some of the chips, the chips that are being manufactured in certain countries, we can’t really talk about that on this in too much detail. Because, you know, I don’t want to get involved with with that. But, you know, we’re in a place right now where the people that know what they’re doing can monitor you quite easily so it’s it’s a bit of a funny one, isn’t it? You know, you either embrace it and go, you know all in or you’re kind of a bit more cautious and I think a lot of people are very cautious in how they approach things. Certainly my dad’s age. I mean, he’s 85 he’s embracing his iPhone eight. Yeah. And you know, learning how to use an iPhone at the age of 85 is an interesting experience for him. Because it because it’s blowing his mind because the capabilities of these devices is huge on a really, so yeah, it’s it’s certainly an interesting time, but I think it’s going to transform a lot of medicine as well, isn’t it? You know, like you were saying with with health monitoring, personalized drugs. There are just so many so many innovations coming along that it’s Oh, yeah, it’s, we haven’t even thought

Sam Morhaim 56:52
about it. I just said personalized drops and personalized treatments. But I think that, especially for Hilter, the key, the key of the, you know, the foundation of the scientific process, which is observation. And that’s how every medicine and therapy, it’s created, at least in the in the US where he has to go through this very strict FDA process and lengthy process yet. It’s based on observation. And so the biggest problem we’ve always had is okay, so you need to do to do observations, you need those metrics to be able to know if something works or not, and what So nowadays, imagine if, you know if you can just connect yourself and be able to get all your readings, which we already doing on the iPhone then and I’m surely Andre, where you get all these readings and you can get many more you can get now your glucose levels and blood pressure and all these things that you can measure down to the to the millisecond. And so you combine those observations with with medical experiments and and all these processes that they need to take place to approve a drug, and it will have to speed up, there’s no way that it stays the same speed that it’s been for the last 50 or 100 years where the FDA takes five to 10 years, until all the medical that the whole approval process goes by, you will have to accelerate. And I I know they’re in the talks to to change this. The the last director of the VA was a little bit against it. But they but it’s just going to happen. It’s going to happen where this accelerates everything. taken care of safety. Of course, you you don’t want to just put a medication out there that’s going to do hurt somebody, but but definitely would safety in mind that it’s going to accelerate that tremendously.

Nathaniel Schooler 58:43
Yeah. What it’s going to transform so many people’s lives in all areas is an Internet of Things. And digital transformation is just massive. So look, I’m going to leave you to it. It’s been a real joy. So how do people find you to learn more about what you’re up to Samuel? Sure.

Sam Morhaim 58:59
Yeah. So We prepared a special offer for the listeners of your podcast if your visitors go to advantage io.com slash built business acumen, that Vantage io.com slash build business acumen, you’re going to see, there’s going to be a little form and for all your entrepreneurs regardless if you’re in the very early stage, late stage or your growth stage, we have something for you. It’s a free 30 minute consultation where we go through the through the startup technology framework assessment, we help clarify your problem with help define how your solution will look like your technology assessment and your roadmap planning. So by the end of that call, you’re going to have all this documents and all these answers for you. It’s a completely free service that we’re offering to your listeners. So you can go there you can visit us advantage io.com follow you can follow us on Instagram at ask more hain which is my my First that my first letter of my last name as more time and we’d love to talk to all of you and hear everything you guys have to say and hear the feedback from this podcast. But I’m also it’s just been an honor being here and sharing all this experiences with you.

Nathaniel Schooler 1:00:16
Thank you. It’s been it’s been great.

Sam Morhaim 1:00:17
Thank you. Thank you so much.

Sheri Hinish 1:00:23
Thanks so much for listening. Please subscribe and wherever you prefer, share with your friends. And if you enjoyed the show, drop us a review on iTunes or wherever you listen

Transcribed by https://otter.ai