Setting High-Level Goals & Becoming a Lifelong Learner with Jon Herlocker

“What I realized, which is so powerful, is that people burn so much stress all day long on these micro decisions. And by picking a high-level powerful goal, they can use that as a navigating light as to all of these little micro decisions they make all day long.”

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Episode Summary

Jon Herlocker is the Founder and CEO of Tignis, a company that provides a physics-driven software solution for managing industrial assets, processes, and operations. Jon is a technology entrepreneur, an experienced executive with a long leadership history in big data analytics and artificial intelligence. Before building his company, he was CTO of VMware’s Cloud Management, and CTO of EMC’s Cloud Services division. Jon is a former tenured professor of Computer Science at Oregon State University.

In this episode, Jon and Aviv engage in a deep conversation about entrepreneurship, the power of setting big, hairy, audacious goals and the future of machine learning and artificial intelligence. Jon speaks to his unique ability to enable others to achieve extraordinary breakthroughs and how this trait has been a critical tool for him as a leader and CEO. Finally, Jon shares the importance of being a lifelong learner and the one insight he values above all else.

Essential Learning Points:

  • 00:39 – Aviv introduces today’s guest, Jon Herlocker who speaks to what he enjoys the most about his work and his experience enabling others to achieve extraordinary breakthroughs
  • 11:12 – Jon tells the story of where his fascination with giving people vision started
  • 15:38 – Jon shares the origin story of Tignis, the initial problem he set out to solve when he launched and how Tignis has evolved since then
  • 25:35 – Jon speculates on when we might have fully autonomous industrial plants
  • 27:53 – Jon explains Industry 4.0
  • 30:36 – How Jon addresses concerns that automated plants will lead to social challenges such as job loss
  • 32:54 – Aviv and Jon discuss the Overshoot Undershoot Syndrome and Jon provides an interesting Control Systems analogy
  • 36:50 – Jon expounds on common misconceptions that people have about machine learning and artificial intelligence
  • 41:25 – Jon speaks to his entrepreneurial origin story
  • 46:26 – Jon shares the top lessons he’s learned throughout his career
  • 50:36 – Core management practices that Jon established in his company
  • 53:29 – Aviv breaks down The Four Stages of Adult Learning
  • 55:38 – How Jon continues to learn and evolve as a CEO and a leader
  • 58:05 – Advice Jon would give to his twenty-five year old self
  • 1:00:31 – The one insight Jon values above all else
  • 1:01:40 – Final words of wisdom from Jon

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