Last week we gathered our portfolio companies for a network day. This is something we do every year with the aim to connect our portfolio companies with each other. It’s a chance for our portfolio companies to get to know each other, and exchange experiences or views on topics and challenges that they are faced with as entrepreneurs. It’s also a chance to come together and discuss matters outside the daily routines and hopefully get some new perspectives or insights to bring home to the organization.

This year we had two very impressive speakers to add to the mix. One speaker was Måns Hultman who is the Chairman of the Board and previous CEO of QlikTech – the fast growing Swedish business intelligence software company that is one of the very few European software companies that have managed to grow revenues to more than €100M revenue / year.

Måns told an engaging and inspiring story of how QlikTech at several occasions was close to going down the drain but came back stronger every time. What I found particularly interesting were the company’s strong attention to details and very heavy sales focus. They have developed a strong sales process and every employee is taking part in sales training. QlikTech works hard with building the sales pipeline and then knows exactly how to work the process to get as many customers at the end as possible and they know in detail how many percentage of potential customers leave at given phases in the sales process.

The other speaker was Gurra Krantz who’s one of the most well-known Swedish sailing skippers. He’s been competing in 2 America’s cup and 4 around-the-world races. Gurra was speaking about what it takes to win, the determination that goes into being out at sea competing for 9 months, and how to create a winning team that is ready to be focused on the matter at hand for such a long time. A lot of it comes to really knowing why we are doing things and then relate most matters to this. As an example, since the sailing boat won’t go faster just because you have clean underwear, then it is not really a question for discussion wether or not to bring extra underwear for the race. Because it’s all about how fast the boat can go. This sounds extreme of course, but Gurra’s determination, focus and ability to get everyone on board for a common purpose is probably something which relates him to many successful entrepreneurs. Unfortunately, I don’t have the presentations available for upload but I did find a short excerpt from Gurra talking about team performance which I hope you will enjoy.