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Most Common Early Start-up Mistakes

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my ongoing series “ Start-up Lessons. &# If you want to subscribe to my RSS feed please click here or to get my blog by email click here. Imagine you pour 5 years of your life into your next gig and it starts to become successful. Many times the answer is ‘no.&# The problem is that you’re opening yourself up to a claim by one of these people that you somehow stole their ideas. Starting with 25% is even harder.

Austin Start-up MailLift Joins 500 Startups

Tech Zulu Event

I met fellow hustler Brian Curliss about 2 years ago at a Startup Weekend event that I was covering. It came as no surprise whatsoever when I found out that his new company MailLift was called up to the big leagues to join the 500 Startups accelerator.

Start-ups are all Naked in the Mirror

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my ongoing series Startup Lessons. I started my first company in 1999 in London at the height of the dot com craze. It didn’t add up to me. Bad morale is the enemy of any company let alone a start up.&#. Because I had started reaching out to competitor CEO’s. Good PR can help slow down your competitors initiatives as they naively try to follow you. They then start to think sinister thoughts.

The seven attributes of a highly successful start–up CEO

Berkonomics

Dave’s note: This week we welcome guest author, David Friedman, to tell us about his favorite startup CEO, and his take after interviewing her – asking for her list of attributes for startup success. . Seven attributes of a highly successful start-up CEO.

Wearable World Labs Partners With Technicolor to Accelerate Wearable Tech & IOT Start­ups

Tech Zulu Event

This partnership will bring one of the most influential media companies together with today’s most promising emerging startups in the Wearable Technology and Internet of Things (IOT) space.

How to Work with Lawyers at a Startup

Both Sides of the Table

If you’re a startup and you don’t have a close relationship with a few law firms you’re really missing one of the most important relationships that any entrepreneur can have. Many people start companies arse backwards.

The best advice startups will never follow

Berkonomics

Email readers, continue here…] Don’t take money, especially start-up loans, from unsophisticated investors. I was a co-lender and assumed the chairmanship of a young startup where the entrepreneur’s cousin also loaned money under the same terms.

The Fallacy of Channels: Startups Beware

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my ongoing series on startup advice but also filed under my sales & marketing posts. No advice I give will ever apply to 100% of companies, 100% of startups or even 100% of tech startups. So Should I Avoid Channels at all Costs When I’m a Startup?

Want to Know the Difference Between a CTO and a VP Engineering?

Both Sides of the Table

I recently did a post for startups on understanding sales people. A few people have asked me to try and define the perfect startup organization chart. But I do have more insight into understanding your startup team. Let’s start with the basics.

Don’t be a Grin Fucker

Both Sides of the Table

I grew up in the US but lived in England for so long I can never remember from which country my slang comes. But then I started to see it happening internally. So we (and by we I mean “they&# ) at Accenture decided to come up with our own bull shit. All startups are hard.

After 20 years: Updating the Berkus Method of valuation

Berkonomics

There is a universal truth: fewer than one in a thousand start-ups meet or exceed their projected revenues in the periods planned. I should have done more about this subtle interpretation when first seeing this, and will attempt to make up for that now. Well, it had to happen.

Should Your Startup Have an Advisory Board?

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my ongoing series Startup Advice. Many startup companies hire advisory boards. If you plan to set one up – no problem. come out of the gate strong and never let up) then you might get some attention. So you set up advisory meetings.

Who Should you Hire at a Startup?

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my ongoing posts on Startup Advice. There are people who tell startups that they should hire the most senior people that they can find. Bringing in a senior person who’s “done it all before&# is often a mistake in a startup.

How to Not Suck at a Group Presentation

Both Sides of the Table

Francisco Dao came up with the idea of letting 10 companies that weren’t selected for Twiistup to do a presentation the night before to a group of people and let the audience pick one company to win the final slot at Twiistup. Stories have starts, middles and ends.

How to (re) Approach People (Advice on the Eve of LeWeb)

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my ongoing series with Startup Advice. With the LeWeb conference about to start in Paris I thought the timing of this post would be appropriate. But don’t assume that I have a Minority Report like machine that can invisibly and instantly gin up my memory.

Momstamp Looks To Connect Mothers, Help With Referrals

socalTECH

A new, Los Angeles-based startup, MomStamp , recently said it has launched, to help mother connect with their extended network and better get referrals from "friends of friends" to local service providers. momstamp referral mother friend refer startup friends facebook

People Management: Startup Teams Should Dip but not Skip

Both Sides of the Table

We all like to think of startups as “non hierarchic&# organizations and to some extent that should be true. I see two common mistakes in companies (not just in startups, in fact). Let information flow up but direct your staff and execute through hierarchy.

The Power of “In Person” – Why Distributed Teams are Less Effective

Both Sides of the Table

In the era of Skype, web conferencing tools and collaboration software conventional wisdom says that distributed startup teams can be just as effective as those that are in person. There reality is that a certain magic that happens when you’re in person is critical in a startup.

Are MBAs Necessary for Start-ups or VC?

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my ongoing series called “ Start-up Lessons.&#. I came across this blog post about getting a computer science degree as the best degree for getting into venture capital or working at a VC-backed start up. Like Chris Dixon I grew up programing.

Colony Logic: Helping The Enterprise Overcome Legacy Systems

socalTECH

It''s not often that startups come out of the gate, backed by a private equity investor. Ultimately, we also offer up all the analytics to help them make better decisions for their business.

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The One Key Person That Will Help You Improve Sales

Both Sides of the Table

No product sells itself no matter what startup companies like to think. Not everybody who is nice or helpful to you is your “champion.” In order for somebody with IA to be your champion he has to be actively helping you through the sales process. Startup Advice

Help 83

How Amavitae Wants To Help Youth Find A Career They'll Love

socalTECH

To help fix that, the startup has created a mobile app to guide people through their strengths, interests, key skills, and more to guide them along the way to a career they'll love. Deborah Ramo: Amavitae, which means "love life" in Latin, is a mobile-first platform to help the emerging workforce find a career that they will love and have a natural aptitude for, and to help them understand what careers are growing and will be around in the future. How did this start?

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Staff Ranker: Helping Hospitality Businesses Better Manage Workers

socalTECH

However, Redondo Beach-based StaffRanker (www.staffranker.com) has rolled out a system to help those companies better manage what is a notoriously difficult segment of the labor market, which has a lot of turnover and which just doesn''t match existing, corporate performance management systems.

Arborbridge Helps International Students With Test Prep

socalTECH

Hoping to help foreign students better prepare themselves to get into U.S. colleges, a new, Santa Monica startup, ArborBridge , has recently begun to ramp up its online tutoring service for the standardized SAT and ACT tests. Arborbridge, founded by Tim Urban and Andrew Finn, connects those foreign students with one-on-one, live online SAT and ACT test preparation help from tutors.

Help 64

Tips to Help you Think About Sales at Your Startup

Both Sides of the Table

It’s the lifeblood of any organization and yet most startups don’t have any sales DNA on their teams. It’s important enough that I dedicate a tab on my blog to startup sales & marketing. 24:00 Selling a startup today. Startup AdviceSales.

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How Card.com Is Helping To Power The Branchless Banking Revolution

socalTECH

One of the startups looking to help power the "branchless banking revolution" is Los Angeles-based Card.com. The startup--which offers up a wide range of branded, Visa cards--is one of a growing number of finance related technology startups in Southern California.

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Running More Effective Board Meetings at Startups

Both Sides of the Table

We started with our financial statements. So I changed things up and became much happier with my results. But they were in a slide and people asked you questions so it ended up chewing up 30 minutes. Harder to do that when you have an 8am start.

Paul Kim | Alpha Trainer, Fitness, & LA Tech

Tech Zulu Event

Paul Kim may be able to help you with that. We caught up with Paul to see his views on LA tech, fitness, and his Alpha Trainer app. TechZulu: Since you are stationed up in North California, What is the tech scene like in LA for you? So how did Alpha Trainer all start?

Noramay Cadena, Make In LA: Accelerating Hardware Startups

socalTECH

One of the big advantages of starting up a new company in the region in recent years has been a large number of startup accelerators, who have been driving a lot of the new startups in the area. Do you make an investment in those startups?

How ContractSafe Wants To Help You Get Your Legal Docs In Order, With Ken Button

socalTECH

To address that disaster, Ken Button and Randy Bishop�two veterans of the startup industry�created ContractSafe (www.contractsafe.com), a new online service aimed at helping companies to tame that mess and manage and store their contracts in the cloud. So how'd you end up starting the company? Ken Button: I am a corporate attorney, and started in private practice at O'Melvany and Myers, and later served as General Counsel for a software business.

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Good Judgment Comes with Experience, But Experience Comes from Bad Judgment

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my Startup Advice series of posts. but whoever is responsible I just want to help spread it. I’m fond of saying that I F’d up everything as a first time entrepreneur. I believe that it helped me succeed in my second company.

Startup Helps Blind With iPhone App

socalTECH

Not satisfied with creating just another mobile application for the iPhone platform, Santa Monica-based startup, IPPLEX , this week introduced an application to help the visually impaired or blind.

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2015 LA Investor Startup Forecast

Tech Zulu Event

TechZulu is excited to invite you to the 2015 Startup and Entrepreneur Forecast taking place Thursday, January 29 from 7 p.m. Our line-up of panelists include many of Southern California’s top VCs, Angels and Startup Accelerators.

Guardian Circle Taps Your Social Network For Help In A Crisis

socalTECH

Just having one of those days, when you need some help--ie your car broke down, you can't get to daycare to pick up your child, you've got a medical emergency? 911--to provide help. The app was created by startup veterans Mark Jeffrey and Chris Hayes. guardian circle help panic button smartphone

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A Hard Post to Write. Helping @MattLauzon Bring Justice

Both Sides of the Table

I was contacted today by Matt Lauzon, the founder of Dunwello , who I had met previously when he was running his startup Gemvara. Matt brought to my attention an issue that deserved increased awareness on multiple front: Police abuse, police cover-ups and child molestation. Aside from wanting to help out a colleague and decent person – I also can imagine how hard it must be for somebody in our society to be public about something as traumatic as sexual abuse.

Help 45

Startup Founders Should Flip Burgers

Both Sides of the Table

This is part of my ongoing series Startup Advice. When you’re an early-stage startup that hasn’t raised any institutional money you end up doing almost every job function of the company yourself. We had to ramp up our team quickly and ramp we did.

Why ADD Might Actually Benefit Startup Entrepreneurs

Both Sides of the Table

In the article the author talks about the condition of the brain – which affects up to 11% of American children in which people with ADHD (or ADD, which doesn’t have hyperactivity) – in which people with ADD have a low tolerance for routine tasks and thus they seek out “novelty” The author believes this may have had an evolutionary advantage. If I’m not stimulated rather than rush the presenters or ask 10 questions I often start taking notes.

How Thrively Wants To Help Your Child Reach Their Full Potential

socalTECH

Kraft, who co-founded Thrively with fellow startup veteran Girish Venkat, sat down to talk to us about Thrively, as it emerges out of beta. Jon Kraft: Our mission is to help kids discover and pursue their passions in life.

Startups and VCs Should Avoid “Pier” Funding

Both Sides of the Table

Often when startups who have raised venture capital need another round of financing they will turn to their existing investors to give them money before raising from outsiders. It starts as a debt instrument (e.g. And it adds up.

WTF is Traction? A 6-Step Relationship Guide to VC

Both Sides of the Table

Many entrepreneurs make the mistake of thinking that funding is something you do in “funding season,&# some mythical 2-month period when you’re ready with a great Powerpoint deck and you hit up all of the VC’s at the same time so that you can quickly raise money and get back to the job of building a business. Schedule a follow up meeting. Tags: Pitching VCs Start-up Advice startup technology vc venture capital

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