Posted by: alexswallow | December 28, 2013

Overestimate the Next Two Years and Underestimate the Next Ten

A really interesting and useful concept!

David Cummings on Startups

One of my favorite big-picture quotes comes from the Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates:

We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten.

I’ve seen it play out so many times with new technologies, organizations, initiatives, etc. Things start slow, as they always do, and then eventually pick up momentum such that you look back a few years and are blown away by how much has changed. Coming from the startup world, this quote is especially applicable as the first couple years are always overestimated by entrepreneurs (think about how revenue and progress is always below expectations).

Here are a few examples of overestimating the short-term and underestimating the long-term:

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