Almost exactly 10 years ago, one of Yahoo’s VP wrote the now famous “Yahoo’s peanut butter manifesto”, in which he warned that the company has lost its focus and was slowly becoming irrelevant. Once valued at 140B$ (arguably at the peak of the .com bubble), Yahoo is now being bought by Verizon for less that 5B$.
Bill Gates’ “Tidal wave of the Internet” back in 1995, and Stephen Elop’s Nokia’s Burning platform are 2 other absolute classics in the same vein.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, none of these defining documents are PowerPoints.
Powerpoint are even banned at Amazon, as Jeff Bezos argues that writing down your thinking in plain English “forces better thought and better understanding of what's more important than what, and how things are related. Powerpoint-style presentations somehow give permission to gloss over ideas”
So unsurprisingly, that’s what we do at Founders Basecamp. We work for a few weeks to get to the bottom of a new business idea, and we write down a short memo that describes what we think its worth, and how we’d start it up.