Embarking on the entrepreneurial journey is inherently challenging, with conventional wisdom often advocating for a gradual, localized approach. However, Ikkjin Ahn, the co-founder and CEO of Moloco, a machine learning company, stands as a testament to a different philosophy—one that champions thinking globally right from the inception of a business. 

In a recent interview with CNBC’s My Biggest Lessons, Ikkjin Ahn shared profound insights derived from his decade-long experience steering Moloco. For him, the key to a successful business lies in cultivating a global perspective from the outset. 

“Building a global team needs a very strong cultural foundation, and better communications and collaborations. This stuff is hard to build later,” emphasized Ahn during the interview. 

Ahn’s emphasis on fostering a global mindset is grounded in the belief that establishing a robust cultural foundation early on is essential. The intricacies of effective communication and collaboration, particularly on a global scale, are not easily retrofitted into a business model after it has taken root. This proactive approach, according to Ahn, lays the groundwork for seamless expansion and collaboration as the business evolves. 

The Moloco CEO finds joy in working with companies, even if their current projects are confined to domestic markets. The ability to keep a global perspective, irrespective of the immediate geographical focus, is a strategic asset. It allows for adaptability, ensuring that the company is well-positioned for international endeavors when the time is right. 

The lessons shared by Ikkjin Ahn extend beyond the geographical scope. They underscore the importance of foresight, strategic planning, and a commitment to building a resilient organizational culture. Thinking globally, as advocated by Ahn, is not just a business strategy; it’s a mindset that permeates every aspect of Moloco’s operations. 

Moloco’s journey under Ahn’s leadership exemplifies the success that can be achieved when a company embraces a global outlook. The machine learning company has not only thrived in its domestic market but has also made strategic strides on the global stage. This achievement is a testament to the efficacy of the global mindset instilled by Ahn from the company’s inception. 

Ikkjin Ahn’s lessons are invaluable for aspiring entrepreneurs and established businesses alike. By emphasizing the importance of thinking globally, he offers a blueprint for long-term success and resilience in an increasingly interconnected and dynamic business landscape. As the business world continues to evolve, embracing a global perspective may well be the key differentiator between stagnation and sustainable growth. 

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