Category Archives: Entrepreneurship

Reflecting on My Failure to Build a Billion-Dollar Company

Failure in business is never easy however, what you learn from the failure and what you choose do with with that knowledge is what sets a good entrepreneur apart from a great one. Sahil Lavingia the founder and CEO of Gumroad, which is an online platform that helps creators sell their products directly to consumers is a prime example of this. In 2011, Lavingia left his job as being the second employee at Pinterest and used the profits of his stock to begin the creation of his own venture. Like many entrepreneurs, Lavingia had one goal in mind- building a billion-dollar company. During the beginning stages of his company, things were looking up for Sahil but as profits started to drop he had to start making tough decisions. Slimming down his company and firing more than 75% of his employees are what started to make Sahil feel like the scheme of this “billion-dollar company” were in the days of his past. However, if Sahil never had endured this set-back he may have never made the company what it is today. Read More>>

Looking to Innovate? Ditch the Startup Mentality and Adopt a Venture Capitalist Mindset

Once a company is up and running, many say that staying innovative and “acting like a start-up” is the only way to maintain this success. However, Joe Dwyer and Sean Johnson, adjunct professors of innovation at the Kellogg School and partners of Founder Equity are suggesting to these companies in this stage of maturity to act like a Venture Capitalist instead. This approach encourages companies to think big, take risks, and to look into a different cluster of opportunities at hand. Companies like Amazon have dove into some of these opportunities, which are very risky but have led to many great breakthroughs. Although, Amazon is an extremely successful company it is also possible for smaller companies to take on this approach.  Read More>>

How business-to-business startups reduce inequality

“Starting a business is not what it used to be” Sib Mahapatra stated, the founder of Bureau, an end-to-end office furniture startup in NYC. Startups like Shopify, Breather and Fiverr give other startups the opportunity to start and grow their business at a much more smooth and cost efficient pace, changing what we thought we knew about fixed versus variable costs. Opportunity in business does not just rely on access to capital now but instead, the ability and value proposition that you have to offer. Read More>>

HELP! I WANT TO PITCH VCs BUT DON’T WANT ANYONE STEALING MY IDEA

Two of entrepreneur’s biggest worries are how to acquire investors for funding and how to keep your business idea from getting stolen. Maynard Webb, longtime technology executive, investor, board member and best-selling author explains why you do not need to worry about getting your idea stolen and instead, the need to prioritize your time worrying about how to get investors. Sharing the right information about your big idea with Venture Capitalists and angel investors might just help to make or break the deal you have been waiting for. Read More>>

Why Social Entrepreneurs Are So Burned Out

Can entrepreneurs help address the society’s biggest challenges — without burning out? These are pressing questions. According to Deloitte, private businesses are increasingly expected to help solve the most challenging social problems of our times — health, poverty, and the promotion of sustainable development — in the absence of, or in conjunction with, government action. Read more>>

This Latina Founder Is Innovating The Baby Food Industry: Here Are 4 Of Her Biggest Lessons Learned

Saskia Sorrosa left her role as the Vice President of Marketing at the NBA for a mission-driven career opportunity of her own making. Over the last three years that she launched and developed Fresh Bellies, a baby food startup, she’s learned many lessons about entrepreneurship that a 20-year career hadn’t prepared her for. Read more>>

Your Startup Is a Story

I have conversations with lots of engineering students who want to become technology entrepreneurs. Engineering school does little to prepare my students for entrepreneurial ventures because engineering school is all about solving problems and a Startup begins by formulating problems. I wrote about the reasons why in What Problem Are You Trying to Solve? Read more>>