Register | Login
Currently viewing the category: "Thought Leaders"

Icon of Money in the Hand on Digital Background.Let me start this post by stating how much respect I have for venture capitalist Fred Wilson.  He is easily in the top-5 influential thought leaders in the entrepreneur-investor ecosystem. His blog “AVC” is required reading for everyone on both sides of the table. But today he really pulled the trigger too quickly on a post.

He was postulating about a product idea – where entrepreneurs might pay for a report that lists what each venture capital firms’ investing criteria is, based on their track records  (something that arguably should be on their websites).  Let’s set aside for a moment that he is proposing a $100 fee for each entrepreneur seeking funding, here’s the crux of his argument:

Continue reading »


TLDR GraphicYet another “Lessons Learned” post from a first-time entrepreneur.  Except this one is incredibly wise beyond his years.  The insights are so in depth and valuable that even the most seasoned serial entrepreneur would be envious. The sad part is, since the article is not one of those pithy “10 secrets to building a successful venture” posts, it will be lost on the typical reader seeking quick-fix advice.


Worthless Advice?

I have a deep cynicism when reading first-time entrepreneurs pontificating

Continue reading »


18-Mistakes-That-Kill-Startups-THUMBInfluential and iconic venture capitalist and entrepreneurial though leader Paul Graham, known for his epic essays on entrepreneurship, recently penned an interesting one listing the 18 mistakes that kill startups.

While I wholeheartedly agree that there are many fundamental mistakes that can derail (or even kill) a startup’s chances for success, not all 18 of these are true “startup” mistakes.  Mistakes like “Poor Investor Management” assumes that your venture is far enough along that you have investors who need managing.  Like all advice – these 18 cannot be taken at face value.  Mr. (Dr., actually) Graham cites “Obstinacy” as a top-5 mistake –

Continue reading »


Brilliant and spot-on, as usual, from Scott Adams’ Dilbert:



Fragile Egg


I love reading Paul Graham.  Heck, everyone loves reading Paul Graham’s writings on entrepreneurship and investing.  The two best thing things about the Y-Combinator founder’s essays are:  1) They are intensely insightful – from his broad and deep understanding of the startup experience, and 2) They are indeed essays as opposed to the pithy, all-fluff-and-no-substance “5 things you need to know” posts that dominate the web – especially on the subject of entrepreneurship.

Below is a particularly insightful section from his recent “Do Things that Don’t Scale” essay:
Filed under the subheading,  Fragile:

Continue reading »


A surprisingly inspirational commencement speech, with important lessons – delivered humorously – from Twitter CEO Dick Costello:


Another day, another “eye-roll” moment. Sigh. Yet another article on the “rules” or “secrets” to becoming a successful entrepreneur – usually written by someone who has never been an entrepreneur, much less a successful entrepreneur. Entrepreneurship advice is getting similar to those late night get-rich-quick real estate commercials, or like weight-loss plans and diet books. And the demand for such packaged advice is just as great. There are just as many people looking for shortcuts as their are those proffering recipes, rules and ‘secrets’ to success.

Sorry, Inc.  I don’t mean to single out your popular publication.  And, Naveen Jain, the author of today’s article, is one of my favorite writers on entrepreneurship – one of the entrepreneurs whom I respect the most.  His articles on Forbes and Huffpo, and elsewhere, are always of the highest quality.  Pardon me, my friend, for deconstructing your article today titled:  10 Secrets of Becoming a Successful Entrepreneur | Inc.com.   It’s the genre of advice that I attack, not the messenger.  The “10 secrets” hit all the right points for me to illustrate my point.   I suspect that the editors of Inc. had more to do with the selection of the subject matter and content, than the author.

Today, as I’m feeling less professorial and more curmudgeonly than usual, I will throw some flaming darts at just a few of the ‘secrets’:

Continue reading »