Michael Asshauer, tech founder, mentor, business angel and podcaster already lives New Work today. Through his diverse background and his podcast and magazine "Machen!", he tells us what “doing” means and how everyone can become a “doer”. You will also learn how to motivate employees for the long term and how positive self-marketing works.
1. How did you become a tech founder, mentor and podcaster?
There has always been a kind of gene in me to create things to bring other people together to create value together. I started building my own small businesses at a young age and have since become a serial entrepreneur. Even back when I was a teenager, I tried a lot of things. For instance, I built a small gym in our backyard, started a village newspaper with friends, and played with my band as the opening act for Tokio Hotel. I have always enjoyed implementing ideas and projects. Later, I founded my first technology companies and start-ups in the mobile tech sector. I sold one of my companies to Daimler and worked with them for a few years to develop new digital products.
Today, I am back working on my own projects and new start-ups, which together form a kind of media start-up. These include my podcast and magazine "Machen!" and some books and online training. So what do all of these areas have in common? I like working with people to create new things and solutions to problems. I can get excited about many new topics. For this, I get the right people by my side and I'm happy when we create something new and help people with new solutions at the same time.
2. As a business angel and founder, how do you define New Work?
I hardly ever use the term New Work. For me, New Work is not really new. It is part of my normal way of working, which means being on fire for my projects. There are no rigid hierarchies in my companies. We try to give our employees a certain amount of personal responsibility - by giving them freedom and independence, they can act on their own. This allows them to live out their own creativity, which keeps them motivated. Therefore, leaders should not dictate every step, but trust their employees and act as an inspiring coach. So New Work describes our corporate culture pretty accurately - we are already living this way of working in the now and not just in the future.
3. Your podcast and magazine are called "Machen!", what is it about?
Whether listeners or readers, both projects are aimed at makers. This includes leaders, founders and anyone who has ambitions and wants to achieve results with their team. However, my podcast and magazine address all those who are just on their journey towards it, such as students, for example. They deal with questions such as "Permanent employment or starting your own business after all?" or "How does founding work at all? Can I even combine the two, if so, how?"
I am firmly convinced that "doing" makes us happy. Those who pursue their own ideas and can even help others with them can create great things. Those who follow their inner drive and are motivated develop self-determination and independence. These are two things that can make us very happy in life in the long run. Nothing is worse than regretting not following your dreams and desires and living the lives of others.
In my podcast, I discuss one of the 7 categories every day: Entrepreneurship, Productivity & Motivation, Personality, Recruiting, Leadership & Management, Marketing & Sales, and Investing & Money. They are, so to speak, the daily business punk and manager magazine for your ears.
4. How does "doing" become easier?
The start is always the hardest. But if you start your heart's project and pursue it for a while, you'll quickly get into a flow. So my secret and tip is: jump in the cold water and don't wait too long! If you feel like doing something and see potential in it, then listen to your gut feeling. So: Just do it! If everything is always weighed rationally before you start, you will probably never start. Therefore, the best rational solution is not always the ideal way - but with your inner fire you will always reach your goal!
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5. What is the best way to motivate employees?
We all have our emotional highs and lows and we can't stay motivated the same way every day. So it's all about the mean. For me, the biggest factor for success is that good leaders know the personal goals and drives of their employees, which keeps them motivated in the long run. There are various methods for finding out what drives people in the first place and what position suits them. No one starts a job already demotivated.
The best combination for motivation in the workplace is consistency between personal goals, personal drive and team or company goals. This motivates employees to come to work every morning.
My second tip is to give employees freedom to try things out and responsibility in their work. If the manager is looking over the employees' shoulders every step of the way, there is no room for creativity and the joy of the task is lost.
I call managers in my companies natural positive authorities and are rather a kind of account and exchange partner. That means employees can contribute and implement their own ideas - which is motivating both in the office and remotely.
6. What advice do you often give as a mentor?
It's important that doers understand that the next 10 - 20 years will probably be rougher rather than easier for all of us. However, wherever disruption happens, new opportunities emerge, with the Internet, with the Web 3.0 revolution, being one of the greatest resources.
The biggest success driver for companies and every individual in the future will be visibility to the outside world. Everyone has to become a kind of "small media company" themselves to ensure their own visibility and positive media self-promotion. Since most will change jobs in the future after about 5 years, they will continue to compete in the market and need to provide digital visibility, the same goes for companies. TikTok, Instagram, LinkedIn - it's not about social platforms, it's about content production and visibility. Many people are overwhelmed with constantly producing new content.
My tip on this is from Gary Vee: "Don't create, document." You don't need to design new documents for visibility, just document the things you already do. Highlight online why you are an expert in certain areas. People will automatically take notice of you.
Thank you very much, dear Michael, for the many exciting insights on the topic of New Work!
You can also download the e-book "66 Talente Hacks für Leader" for free.
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