Baby Boomers Taking More Risks Than Gen Y, Study Shows

See on Scoop.itEntrepreneurship in the World

In 1975, a 20-year-old Steve Jobs and his engineering buddy Steve Wozniak began working on the prototype of the Apple 1 computer in Jobs’ parents’ garage. Nearly 30 years later, Mark Zuckerberg launched Facebook from his dorm room at Harvard College.

Samuel Pavin‘s insight:

More entrepreneurs, less risks ?

That might be true.

Web companies do represent a huge amount of startups but what about the actual risk of starting a website ?

Been there, done that already – crappy result I must admit – but the risk involved was nowhere near risky.

That is an easy view here though.

Anyway, having had the chance to visit various universities and business schools taking pride in entrepreneurship courses and so on, I could but think that these entrepreneurs-to-be tend to have the mindset of employees and not that of crazy, innovative, driven guys.

Startup is a job…


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B2B Rocks … The conference, in Paris, for B2B startups

B2B Rocks - The B2B Conference #b2brocks

B2B, B2C, B2Whatever … .

Speaking of startups the target customer might not be the first question asked.

It should come soon still with the “How do you make money” bit but look at a Twitter, an Airbnb, an Instagram and their pals, at first, they look sexy and their business orientation is not the urgent matter.

Startups are fun, entrepreneurs are crazy, business is boring.

My own reading of my early days in the startup world.

Still I was quite surprised, at that time, to find so little of them actually setting their sights on the business world.

For the first SmartCamp, held in Paris, I found myself getting applications from all over France but B2B startups would only amount to a very light 15 to 20% of the hundred+ applicants.

Also, as I mentioned from recent experience (see my “Camping” post) a noticeable number of French entrepreneurs still miss the actual business side of startups.

A move to the USA, for instance, does definitely help getting things right(er) on business planning and monetizing. That is the extreme (or lucky, from a startup side) solution.

Anyway, that said, it seems there is still a lack of regard towards business and B2B when it comes to startups. And the shadow of corporations and their corporate programs for startups loom in the back.

I am a supporter of corporations supporting entrepreneurship yet both do not go well hand in hand.

Just picture walking your teen kid to school. That is when there is no hand holding nor goodbye kissing anymore so to remain cool and strong in front of the crowd.

Startups and corporations do still face that kind of “It’s complicated” relationship.

Yet, the next business solutions are also to be found in startups. The B2B market is also still a field where opportunities are more than numerous.

Hence my happy face discovering the announcement of the B2B Rocks conference, due on March 27th, 2013, in Paris. See the dedicated site :

Organized by Alex Delivet and with a program strongly focused on the B2B approach (at least on paper), this event does appeal to me.

It sounds cool already, is dedicated and quite “open” (even if strongly supported by Microsoft).

Let’s see how this event delivers in the end but high-five Alex and the team already for putting this up.

Good idea, bad idea … Any difference for startups ?

Good idea, bad idea

Good idea, bad idea

What is the recipe for a startup ?
Usually, friends + beer + chill out + have an idea (or many weird/crazy/smart… really?/very stupid/whatever ideas).

That is the cornerstone of a startup building process.
Think of something, have an idea, good or bad, and build on it.

Then, one question I usually face when meeting with very early stage startups is : is my idea good ?

One point here, if you are an entrepreneur do not even doubt your idea.
Grow it, work on it, build on it and … fail! Or succeed, of course. Whatever your vision of success might be.
When failure is the worst possible outcome then there is no way not to take a step forward.

That is the expression of entrepreneurship at its best.

Now, Europe still suffers from one old-fashion disease, some entrepreneurial black plague having not yet disappeared from these parts : Failure is still not regarded as an option.

Mind you, the examples of the Valley, the mentoring, the incubating, etc … have all helped make failure look better but the extra mile is still missing before people see failure not as failure but as experience gained and a road for success in the future.

That said, it brings me to my second answer to the good/bad idea question.

There is no bad idea (anymore).

Whatever seems like being useless, very stupid, not innovative at all, etc … may be the next rock-star on the market.

Just have a quick look out there.

Facebook basically was an online yearbook (or so).
Instagram looks like an online restaurant menu.
Farmville and most games on FB have the look of those played 20 years ago and do not match the current quality – nor action or story – of the current proper ones (would you play “I do garden” on your latest XBox or PS3 ?).
French “”, yet another website for meeting one’s special half made a difference and strong start out of its look and marketing.
And so on … .

I was recently listening, with a smile, to a business school teacher (specialized in Entrepreneurship) speaking about answering the customers’ needs.
How many products/solutions/ideas out there do answer an actual need ?

Basic needs being food and shelter, those are answered .. or not for quite a number of people out there but that is another story.

Anyway. Back to the “needs” addressed by startups, they are more or less about comfort. Or are not actual needs in the end.

And, at worst, startups actually innovating (real innovation, not renovating existing bits) will be facing a non-existing market.
Novelty has to be discovered and understood.

In both case, the point is the same.
Whatever your idea, in most cases, there is not an actual “need” so the difference will be made by the product/service/etc .. provided and the “selling” of it.

What makes a product at the moment is not (only) its use, it is rather the buzz around it.

There is no need for your product … just create the need – or the feeling of need.

Your product is vulnerable or easily copied … make some noise and be the first out there.

You have just put some fresh paint on a copy of an existing product… Same as above. Just make more noise and/or create niche/focused needs.

One who is driven and convinced he/she is right, who can convince others and who does take risks is an entrepreneur.

That said, no idea can be wrong. The wrongdoing is only what you make of it.

Well then, beer anyone ?

Great Employees Are Not Replaceable – Forbes

See on Scoop.itEntrepreneurship in the World

One of the most important lessons I learned during my years as a CEO was that great employees are not replaceable. It isn’t the technology or the product that make a company great, it’s the people.

Samuel Pavin‘s insight:

A lesson to keep in mind. Hire good people but mostly keep good people.

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