It helped me understand my customers and revolutionize my firm

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During university, one of my classmates was the son of a fertilizer industry billionaire. Once we were in a marketing case class, analyzing the case of a certain jeans brand whose trousers cost more than $300.

This wealthy friend told me:

Whoever buys jeans for 300 dollars has a serious need for something else, not only for jeans. I would never pay so much for a pair of trousers.

It amused me that this phrase came from the mouth of a billionaire. But the point was right. Nobody who buys a pair of jeans with a price tag 900% higher…

Knowing about the other 84% may be a turning point in your life.

Image from the author.

There are plenty of questions to answer when you are moving out:

● Will my money, or salary, be enough?

● Where will I live?

● Can I speak their language, or at least learn it without a headache?

● What will I do with my belongings? Should I sell or ship it?

● What about the bureaucracy or the visa procedures?

● What should I do in case of getting sick or needing emergency care?

I had been in these situations several times in my life. In another article, I wrote some of these troubles that most expatriates, including…

The ultimate butterfly-effect: a man falls from his carriage, and decades later we are flying over continents.

A scale model of the Santos Dumont 14-bis at the French Air and Space Museum in Le Bourget, Paris. Image licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0.

A popular concept of chaos theory is the butterfly effect, thanks to a movie with the same name starring Ashton Kutcher. The film, however, distorts what the idea is in reality.

The American mathematician and meteorologist Edward Norton Lorenz created the metaphor. It comes from the analogy where a butterfly flaps its wings in Japan, and because of the many interactions from the wind displaced by the insect, a tornado occurs in Tennessee. Lorentz used this example to explain how weather is hard to forecast since minimal changes can have a significant impact.

History, just like the weather, is hard…

My father told me this same when I was a teenager, and I lived by it.

At my first job. Back then, I was too green (and beardless) to start my own business. Photo from the Author.

Days ago, I saw an executive from a prized tech company complaining that there is an increase in what he calls the senior amateur.

He defined them as young professionals expecting vertiginous climbs in the corporate ladder at the very beginning of their careers. People that, either by chance or by outstanding work, had 2 or 3 promotions in consecutive years and now think that this is the norm.

In his opinion, this is creating crowds of inexperienced (although some talented) seniors. It is opening breaches for skewed expectations.

I agree with him on this and on something else.


By breaking failed patterns and protecting their heritage, they succeed where everyone else fails

Photo by Justice Hubane on Unsplash

Sometimes, the best role models are not noble prize winners or Olympic athletes, but entire societies. This is the case of South Korea and its education-fueled development. It is also the case of Poland and Lebanon, countries that presented tremendous resilience in the aftermath of destruction.

There is, however, an often ignored African country with great lessons to the next generations. A little nation besieged by many difficulties and a myriad of obstacles. A society that, despite all odds against it, shone on the world stage.

I am referring to the Tswana People.

They are an ethnic group from southern…

Cheers and Congrats Tim! "Going Big and Getting into Debit is overrated" -> Indeed it is! I had a small marriage, for a bit more than 50 people, and it was the best day of my life! My brother alerted me that in huge cerimonies, the bride and groom worry more than enjoy the party, and that is true. Unfortunately, in my country, Brazil, people still fail to understand that you don't need to take a loan to have a nice wedding.

The competition for funds increased, but crowdfunding is still attractive and low-risk.

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In the middle of 2019, I started to work on a new book, something different from all my other experiences. I had a hidden fear that, after spending days writing it, no one would read.

There was a curious thought in my head “What if people could buy my idea before I even write the book? At least this would avoid writing 200 pages of something that only my family would read?”. After reflecting on it, I realized that this is what Crowdfunding is about, so I started a campaign!

It was successful, although not enough to grab the headlines…

Using their insights, my businesses endured a tough year.

Photo by Christina @ on Unsplash

The 2020 crisis (which insists to continue into 2021 so far), was the second time that I applied valuable information from Internet videos to my own businesses.

I remember how it was in the beginning of my first business. After years of working as a specialist at multinational corporations, many aspects of entrepreneurial life were alien to me. I looked for some lessons, courses, all material that could be helpful in my new venture.

Surprisingly, some of the best insights I found were free and made by other entrepreneurs. …

Deep-Practice turned poor Italian boys into painters. It helped me too.

Image from the Author.

End of 2019, I was getting married in less than three months, and I had a challenging task.

In fact, to call it challenging maybe is an understatement. I needed to dance the perfect waltz with my fiancée during our marriage celebration. To make it more complicated, it was not any waltz. It was Dmitri Shostakovich’s Waltz Number 2. It is a dramatic rollercoaster in the form of music, demanding an equally powerful presentation.

The person responsible for this task couldn’t be worse.

It was me. A former airline pricing specialist, a nerd. Someone that could barely give two steps…

How you can improve yours too, even as a non-native English speaker

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I started writing in Medium in the middle of 2020. My idea was to express here some lessons I learned as a small entrepreneur surviving the Covid-19 Crisis — and since both my businesses rely on international transit, the crisis hit us hard.

In the beginning, most of my articles had less than 50 views. Curation? For me, it was just a myth. Of my first 40 articles, Medium curated none of them.


Fast-forward 3 months later. Of my last 20 articles, 16 were curated by Medium. That is not all: I became a top writer in four very…

Levi Borba

Former 5-Star airline specialist, founder of Small Business Hacks and

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