What’s next?

Lokesh Kannan
4 min readFeb 14, 2023

Someone asked this question to Steve Jobs when he was fired from Apple, he went back to the drawing board and came up with his startup idea and called it “Next”

For some reason everyone who want’s to start something new is still attracted to Steve Jobs long after he is gone because he is relevant till date.

What’s next is not an easy question to answer. It’s such an open ended question that few people ever try answering. I’ve always wondered what’s next for me. Will I be relevant 10 years from now. For, life seems to be non-stop. Technology surpasses all dimensions and if we slowed down or failed to recognise the future, we will go out of context too.

I’ve never wanted to do anything with computers as a teenager, that led me into taking Biology in high school and Mechanical Engineering in college. In 2015 when I graduated from college, I brought Walter Issacson’s Steve Jobs and I was fascinated by the sheer idea that Steve Jobs was a better sales man. I took up sales and sold Ecommerce and digital marketing services for two years.

In 2017, a friend referred me to apply for a job at Zoho. I interviewed there and got through. Getting into Zoho was the best experience I’ve ever had in life. It introduced me to the fascinating world of SaaS and more importantly I learned more about economics and profitability in Zoho than anywhere else. In the last 6 years, fate has brought me closer to technology than I ever thought I would get in life.

I’ve been keen to understand more about software. The more I learn about new software companies and their value proposition, the more I realize, the gap between innovation, problem solving and the future. I personally know a lot of organisations that burn 3X or 5X cash than their actual revenue and that is seriously a longer problem causing bloated software organisations with more emphasis on sales and marketing than building deep tech. SaaS companies are the new norm and the solutions they offer are very generic and almost everyone want’s to compete with spreadsheets till date. Isn’t that a problem? In my own personal opinion “If you are replacing spreadsheets, then you are not doing much!”

Saturation also means that the future for SaaS is getting bleak and I hypotheise this happen in the next 5 years. Thinking of this problem makes me relook into the future and I can only see SaaS companies becoming AI heavy or deep AI tech companies totally taking over the baton.

I thought IOT was the next big thing 5 years ago and was very curious to build something on the IOT terms but again being a non-tech person has its own demertis and I couldn’t keep up with the IOT tech that is vast.

Even before ChatGPT became a global phenom, back in 2019, I enrolled in a short course called Data Science and Business intelligence where I learnt a bit of Python and Tableau. I dropped out of it. Honestly I was not a data scientist anyway ( I hate coding) but looking at the way Chat GPT is changing the landscape and conversational AI becoming more powerful, I have a feeling that the next wave is going to be the AI wave and this time I am sure of it.

I am trying to connect the dots here and I know that I am not a ML scientist or a AI nerd, but someone who’s been in SaaS sales and marketing. Collectively I’ve been exposed to GTM for a longer time and that’s my strength.

I am taking a step back and trying to understand how I can add all that I’ve learnt to the AI tech world and hence my idea to come up with a community that will focus on GTM strategies for AI tech companies. While SaaS was already a thing in the early 2000’s, it took 15 years to reach me here is south of India while still at its prime. The SaaS wave is already at its acme and I can see the next upcoming wave from where I am.

Outside of my current job, I am planning to start a small community and organize, interview, talk and meet folks from leading AI companies about their GTM strategies. There are so many communities coming up today that talk about ML and AI but they’re mostly for techies. I wish to create a platform for equipping non-tech folks that want to oversee and run GTM for these AI companies in the future.

And yes co incidentally, its valentine’s day and my love for organising and collaborating with people towards a greater goal has never faded and something that I still love second to my beautiful girlfriend.

Manifesting this post from my thoughts so that it’s no longer a thought buried deep down my head but already a reality and hope it attracts the right people, situations and vibrations . Wish me luck!

Image Source — Google

— Love, Loki

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