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david hieatt
Cardigan Bay
Curator for The Do lectures. Co-founder of Hiut Denim Co
Interests: Businesses that change things. Ideas that change things.
Recent Activity
If you innovate, you will be copied. It’s like a rites of passage. If you have a patent, you are more protected. But it’s not bulletproof. Dyson had a patent and he got copied by Hoover. How do they sleep? They sleep just fine. They don’t have your code of honour. It’s dog eat dog for them. You can be angry. You can be right. You can be hurt. But you won’t change them. Yes, you have protection like Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights. All of them afford protection of your way of doing things. All of them are important. But... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at david hieatt
Recently we sent out our first paper mailer at Hiut. It was designed by Nick Hand. The illustrations were by a young talent. It was printed on Nick Hands letter press. Less young talent. We hand folded them. We hand stamped Hiut on each envelope. We put each address on. We even de-duped by going through each pile. In a digital world, isn’t all this just a pain in the ass? For sure, it took us some time. And the late nights by the team just sticking labels on to envelopes has been something. (Thanks Naomi, thanks Rob) But something... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at david hieatt
The Multiplier is a theory that small actions can give you big results, if you find what your multiplier is? The multiplier enables David to beat Goliath. It enables you to maximise your day. It helps you get much more done than others. The Multiplier doesn’t rely on out-spending anyone or working longer hours than others either, but stems from learning to use your energy, your time, your insights and your ideas to their full potential. Take the example of your energy as a Multiplier. How do you look after it? How do you increase it? How do you maintain... Continue reading
Posted Apr 9, 2015 at david hieatt
We are all busy. But change doesn’t require much in the way of time. Out of each day, give yourself 30 minutes. Just for you. Make it something that matters to you. Then invest 30 minutes each day in it. Just plug away at it. Not for long. But often. 30 minutes is small enough amount of time for most people to find. But long enough to make a big difference over a period of time. Getting fit is a great investment in ‘You’. Doing yoga is a great investment in You. Reading a great book is an investment in... Continue reading
Posted Apr 6, 2015 at david hieatt
Twitter could only do 140 characters because it was designed for a text service. Technology was its restraint. So when you look at the restraints that you face, from budgets to geography, maybe they are the making of you. If you can look at an obstacle and think of it as providing an answer for how you go forward, it will change your mind set. And start to provide answers, and not just problems. The difference between a problem and an opportunity is how you view them. Ryan Holiday wrote a great book on this: The Obstacle is the way.... Continue reading
Posted Mar 18, 2015 at david hieatt
A super tanker takes 21 miles to turn. And 16 Miles to stop. It’s good to know that because we tend to spend a lot of time talking about how much bigger our rivals are than us. But, if you view their size as their weakness, then you take a different view of your competition. And start to think how vulnerable they are to you, if you play to your strengths. Their size makes them slow. And this world is speeding up. So play to your strength that you are small. Small means fast. Small means responsive. You don’t have... Continue reading
Posted Mar 15, 2015 at david hieatt
I don’t think we lack talent in Wales. I don’t think we lack a good work ethic. What I believe we lack is a belief in ourselves. In our ideas. And so we don’t pursue them. And we don’t make our ideas happen. We make the assumption, and it’s a mistaken one, that other people are smarter than us. And if we tell ourselves that lie enough, it becomes a truth. We start to believe it; we start to live that out in real life. But it’s a truth that other people do have more belief than us. They have... Continue reading
Posted Mar 14, 2015 at david hieatt
I see it everyday. The buzzard on top of the lamppost just sitting there. Waiting. Watching. Listening. Still. Silent. Working smart by doing next to nothing. When there’s a movement, it swoops down. And has lunch. For the buzzard the lamppost serves two purposes. It gives it a vantage point. And saves its energy. When it flies, it is to hunt. It is not flying around in hope. It is flying on a mission to eat. Movement equals food. For years I have subscribed to the Motley Fool subscription service. It’s an excellent service. Probably the best there out there.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2015 at david hieatt
Yesterday I zoomed up to Dublin for a quick meeting. On the way back, we stopped in a food market called Avoca. It’s impressive. The attention to detail. The sourcing. The variety. The way it was all displayed. After an hour or so, we decided to hit the road back to my sisters. But before we did, we thought we’d have a quick cup of tea. The place was pretty busy, but the guy who served us took time to warm the cups, and the teapot. I watched him pay attention to getting it right. The cup of tea was... Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2015 at david hieatt
No. No. No. No. No. No. Try doing something new, try raising some money, try being ahead of your time, and you are going to hear this word a lot. I mean, a lot. Entrepreneurs hear this word more than most. What makes the entrepreneur is how they react to it. How they use it give them strength. How it spurs them on. Entrepreneurs keep going. Entrepreneurs develop a thick skin because they have to. They learn the art of the hustle. They learn to pick themselves back up from the floor. Time after time. Because they know that one... Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2015 at david hieatt
I used to think networking was some kind of dirty word. But, I was wrong. If you can 'find the others' who are are trying change the world, it will help you just to be around them. They will help with optimism, with belief, and with contacts who be able to help you. They will share problems, and answers to similar issues to what you will face. What industry they are in doesn't matter as much as how they view the world. And what they think it could be. You need to hang out with them. Learn from them. Argue... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2015 at david hieatt
Where these two circles overlap is where you are now. It’s called today. And today is your biggest gift. You can’t change the past. It is done. Learn from it. But don’t live there. Yup, the future is exciting. But it will be shaped by what you do today. How hard you work at something today. How much you try today. How much you learn today. The future is decided by what you do today. My Next Do Workshop -How to build a great brand with very little money'. March 6th Wales. My workshop in London April 24th. My Book.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 11, 2015 at david hieatt
Where these two circles overlap will be where I will have my biggest successes. And my biggest failures. But it will always be where I am most alive. Charlie Engle is an ultra marathon runner. He ran across America. He ran across the Sahara in 100 days. I asked him to write a piece for the YearBook that we do at Hiut Denim. He said he would. On one condition. That I had to promise to give the factory everything I had. Like everything. And not to hold back. And not to spare myself. His words haunt me. I will... Continue reading
Posted Feb 9, 2015 at david hieatt
Before I start a project, a business, I draw three circles. One is: Does this interest me. Does it interest me enough to fuel the bad days. There will be bad days. Trust me. And that is when most people quit. They don’t have enough interest in it to keep going when logic says it is going to fail. Then I ask myself, do I have a skill that will enable me to make this successful? Can I make it work? Can I find an edge here? And lastly, what have I seen that others haven’t? Can I get a... Continue reading
Posted Feb 8, 2015 at david hieatt
Sometimes the best way to start something is to keep your day job, and start it as a side project. I have some experience of this. I started howies from our spare bedroom in 1995. In 2001 we got our first salary cheque. I started The Do Lectures back in 2007. Neither Clare nor myself have taken any salary from it. Sometimes in order to get something off the ground, that is what has to be done. You can’t do that forever, I know. But it sure is one way to start. 99% of all businesses fail because they never... Continue reading
Posted Feb 7, 2015 at david hieatt
I live in a house that has never had central heating. It has an open fire. And two log burners. Each morning I light 3 fires. And each night I light 3 fires. All winter long. What I have learnt from lighting fires is the importance of every detail. Good wood is important. Seasoned. And with moisture content below 20% is best. But no matter how good the wood is you can’t start a fire without kindling. The job of kindling is to easily light and transfer that heat onto the logs so the fire takes hold. But kindling needs... Continue reading
Posted Feb 6, 2015 at david hieatt
We have had our battles. Some you won. Some I won. I have learnt a lot from you. I learnt always to respect you. I have also learnt I must never fear you. Because that is what you want. Fear is your weapon. It’s the seed of doubt that you plant. And once planted, it just grows. That’s how you win. I take that knowledge with me to every battle now. I am a football fan. And I am always intrigued by who steps up to take penalties. And who misses. The most talented players don’t always make the best... Continue reading
Posted Feb 5, 2015 at david hieatt
1, If you find something that you want to change, you have two options. One, is to talk about the change you are going to make. Or, two, stop talking. And begin. 2, Avoid easy deadlines. Deadlines serve you best when they are short, hard and, at first glance, impossible. Urgency gets things done. 3, All teams want to be part of history. Have something big that you want to change. Your strength of purpose multiplies the teams stubbornness to get this thing done. 4, Focus on the task. If you are doing something that isn’t pushing the task forward,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2014 at david hieatt
At the Do Lectures this year was a guy called Rohan Anderson. He is a grower, hunter and gatherer. He wrote the very successful book and blog: Whole Larder Love. He did an amazing talk at The Do and silenced everyone listening, which doesn’t happen too often. After speaking to him I could tell he was on the edge of doing something that was incredibly important to him. But like all dreams that we keep to ourselves, sharing them with others is scary. Because we are vulnerable then, we can be judged and criticised. And we can fall flat on... Continue reading
Posted Oct 27, 2014 at david hieatt
In terms of using social media to grow your business, we are all looking for the next new platform or app. We want to find that magic ‘Multiplier’ that gets our story out to the world. But there is a danger that by doing just that, we are ignoring the tried and trusted tools right under our noses that, well, just work. Take the simple newsletter. It is one of the best ways I know to build the community and culture of your brand. Like a tree needs roots, a brand needs to build its roots too. A great newsletter... Continue reading
Posted Oct 26, 2014 at david hieatt
The days you will look back on will be the days that tested you. Business can be a rollercoaster ride. One minute you are up, the next you are down and out. How well you walk through the fire to quote Charles Bukowski, will say a lot about you. If the ride isn't going as well as you want, you have remember that it is your ride. And you chose that ride. If you can switch your mind set to think of obstacles as the thing that are going to make you different, refine your thinking and ultimately the very... Continue reading
Posted Oct 4, 2014 at david hieatt
Books. Purpose Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman Yvon Chouinard (Penguin, 2006) Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action Simon Sinek (Penguin, 2011) Small Giants: Companies That Choose to be Great Instead of Big Bo Burlingham (Penguin, 2007) Brand The Republic of Tea: The Story of the Creation of a Business, as Told Through the Personal Letters of Its Founders Mel Ziegler, Patricia Ziegler, Bill Rosenzweig (Crown, Random House 1994) Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography - Walter Isaacson (Little Brown, 2011) Product The Lean Startup Eric Ries (Crown, Random House, 2011)... Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2014 at david hieatt
Running a startup can soon end up running you. While you're finding strategies to beat the other guys, you will also need to make sure you develope a strategy to look after you. That is why sport is important. Whatever you do, take time out. Whether it’s a run, a walk, a bike ride, or daily meditation. The brain needs some rest. Work the body, and while the body is so busy doing its stuff, the brain switches off. You feel fresher physically and mentally. Feel the burn of sport. There are no emails to send, no bills to pay,... Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2014 at david hieatt
When you are involved in a startup, life can quickly go out of control. If you allow it to. Yes, there will be times when a deadline means burning the midnight oil. And yes, adrenaline is the fuel of startups but mostly because it is cheap. But not because it is the best fuel to build a long-term business. So your job is to look after the team because they look after the business. So you have to make sure that those crazy times do not become the norm. You have to create a culture where people take their holidays,... Continue reading
Posted Oct 2, 2014 at david hieatt
Great businesses are built on huge amounts of energy. Even more important than huge amounts of funding. You can burn the candle at both ends for a while, but there comes a point where you get diminishing returns. You job is to lead. Your job is to make decisions. Your job is to be a bundle of energy and enthusiasm. It may sound boring, but if you are going to give your company its best chance of success, you need to get the amount of sleep that your body requires. There is no badge of honour for who is the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2014 at david hieatt