It’s easy for us to gawk at the feet of successful people, but we often forget about the role chance played in their lives.
If you ask Chris Mifsud, the Executive Director of MPS.Ltd, for his two cents on business it’s to understand chance, keep your ego in check… and always make sure you’re the stupidest person in the room.
Lovin Malta sat down with Chris for our series Meet The Boss to pick his brain for all things business and success.
Chris is known for his work at one of Malta’s most established marketing agencies, MPS Ltd, and as the founding investor and strategist for success stories like ANCHOVY plc, Keepmeposted and iCity Malta, not to mention his position as CEO and co-founder of Ryde Technologies Ltd.
Here are five things we learnt from the interview.
1. He thinks success is half-chance
When it comes to successful people, it’s not just skills, talent or determination that play a role in their journey to top, but specific contexts that are out of control.
“We only look at being successful with hindsight. We only see successes like Steve Jobs, Robert De Niro, Bob Dylan… you don’t see all the people that got laid on the waste side. It’s a success bias. We don’t realise how much input chance has.”
2. He believes empathy is the key to success
To be empathetic is the only way one cannot lose in life, Chris believes. Whether it’s in business relationships, friendship, life, kids, animals… whatever the sphere, the ability to put yourself in other people’s shoes is essential. Whatever the situation may be, showing your humanity will serve you and it has clearly worked for Chris…even on the negotiation table.
“If I can’t understand why something is important to you, we’ll never reach an agreement. It applies to everything.”
3. In retrospect he wouldn’t have done anything differently
Before he was advising some of Malta’s thriving companies, Chris was studying to become a pharmacist and if he wasn’t doing business, he’d probably have tried to become a vet.
However, everything Chris has been through forms part of his journey and he wouldn’t change anything about it, even if he had the chance to.
4. He thinks you should always surround yourself with people who are better than you
“My advice to anyone is to make sure you’re not the smartest person in the room,” he says. “If possible, make sure you’re the stupidest person in the room. If you’re not – you’re in the wrong room.”
His advice speaks for itself – we always have something to learn, so make sure you’re tuned to listen more and talk less.
5. He thinks running a business is always a learning curve
“Sometimes you can take decisions which can be a bit harsh or the opposite – a little too soft and bad for the business. I’ve probably taken more bad decisions than good ones, but I’m always learning,” he said.
This is the latest episode of Meet The Boss, a Lovin Malta series in which we sit down with local CEOs to share their vision and business tips and discuss some crucial topics.
What do you think of Chris Mifsud’s interview? Comment below