At our core, startup Founders are all frauds. We’re forged from the fiery embers of uncertainty, guesswork and crippling self doubt. And the only way to beat the imposter syndrome that is being a “Founder Fraud” is to embrace the fraud.
When was the last time you changed how you communicate to your team and to your customers? The way you deliver your message is key to maximizing its impact or even reaching the intended audience. Don’t count on people reading your Annual Report for breaking news. Your team needs to hear from you on a regular […]
How do new things occur? New ideas? New words? New choices? Scientists have been studying this question for years. And now, through the work of a team of mathematicians in Rome, they may have found equations for innovation that describe the emergence of the new in the real world for the first time. For a […]
Entrepreneurs are usually highly creative and innovative, but many innovative people are not entrepreneurs. Since it takes a team of people to build a great company, the challenge is to find that small percentage of innovative people and then nurture the tendency, rather than stifle it. A few years ago I read a classic book […]
Have you noticed that more companies beg you to participate in their business today? It started with an email survey on your last stay at their hotel, but now includes requests for online product reviews, to social media input on the design of future products. They do it because engaged customers become loyal advocates and […]
We’ve made it — the last installment of our primer on startup investing for the non-startup-investor. We’ve covered the [b]asic plumbing, and we’ve covered [c]onstrained focus. That means we’ve earned the right to press our advantage with the most powerful force in private-market investing, [a]lignment. It ain’t Over till it’s Over First, we meet. Then we invest. And […]
By definition, most entrepreneurs are thought leaders. They have the ability to recognize a market need, the skills to design and implement a solution, and the drive to start a business from that solution. It all comes from within themselves. A business leader does the same thing and more, through the people around them. Most […]
We’re so damn distracted by “growth” that we rarely ask ourselves what it is about growth that even matters. You know who cares about growth? Our investors. The media. Our sewing circles of other Founders. You know who cares about quality? Our team. Our customers. Our partners. You know, the people that we should be […]
Every startup wants to be a predictable success, yet so few ever achieve this enviable position. In reality, getting there is not a random walk, and requires an understanding of the stages that every business must navigate and the organizational characteristics necessary at each stage. Les McKeown, in his book from a while back, “Predictable […]
Raising money, particularly in a VC round with outsiders planning to join a startup’s Board of Directors, is often a founder’s first real introduction to corporate governance. A Board of Directors – the head governing body of a classically structured startup – approves all of a company’s most important decisions (including hiring/firing executives). Boards have […]
A look at specific facts on demographic changes over the past few years, and what they mean for some of the major business segments out there today.