How to breed big innovation inside a small business – on Washington Post

See on Scoop.itEntrepreneurship in the World

To add to the innovation bit. Quite the fit for startups. How to breed big innovation inside a small business Washington Post (blog) You can improve your customer experience in a multitude of ways, but the best innovation delivers value to the market as soon as humanly possible.
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365 Days, $10 Million, 3 Rounds, 2 Companies, All With 5 Magic Slides | TechCrunch

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Editor’s note: The following is a guest post by Socialcast founder Timothy Young about how he raised 3 rounds totaling $10M in VC money in a year’s time with a 5-slide deck.

Samuel Pavin‘s insight:

This post by Tim Young is a late discovery of mine but how right is he!

Any founder out there should draw inspiration out of this very well bit brief.

I am also glad to see two of my favorite bits emphasized here :

Keep it short !

Speak to people ! (.. and look at them, of course).

A post, worth the read.

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Japanese startups struggle in a hostile environment – Fortune Tech

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One of the world’s most advanced economies is not very hospitable to technology startups.
By Michael Fitzpatrick, contributor

FORTUNE — Anyone looking for Japan’s legendary garage entrepreneurs should not start in the garage.

Samuel Pavin‘s insight:

A first look into Japan prior to furthering the topic and defining the key specifics of this country.

It does seem that the startup ecosystem, even if not vibrant, is growing anyway with more and more youngsters buying in and not willing to follow the traditional employee path.

Entrepreneurs meetings are developing, serial entrepreneurs tend to come and help develop the spirit .. and the companies.

I am going to look into it in details.

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Building a startup with friends … hurdles to face

A post usually draws its inspiration in recent experience or trending topics.

This one comes from experience and me finally opening my eyes or, well, just noticing that more and more startups I face are built by a bunch of friends.

I mean, usually early stage startups. I also mean young friends. The fact that I came to my senses during a startup contest held by a university might have helped emphasize this pinpointed view, I must admit.

Yet, my title theme remains valid anyway. Which is quite good, be it only for the sake of this post.

Building a startup is cool. Doing it with close friends might prove even cooler. Succeeding with them would be extreme.

Failing with them might prove difficult, at least.

Quick look at the process of giving birth to a startup:

Some guys (gender-neutral “guys” so my “guys” here is both guy-guy and girl-guy), sitting at a table, sipping some beers, discussing the World.

Idea pops up. Guys like it. Let’s work and build on it! A startup is cool. Let’s build a startup! I like marketing, I am to be the CMO. You had the initial idea and study business, you are our CEO. Open road to success!

When this works out, these guys have the best life and job ever and can enjoy speaker spots at the likes of SXSW, TNW, and so on.

When this does not work out, well, an increasing number of guys I meet are quite unprepared.

Failure sure is an option.

Now, the issue to be faced will occur when it comes to the actual handling of what failure includes.

A startup, be it the coolest one, the initially richest one, etc… is, at first, a company.

And a company has to be managed. And managed quite seriously.

Hurdles, faced by startup founders too

Hurdles, faced by startup founders too

That is where my friendly bunch of “guys” might fail. Talking to these people (various teams, various people, same issue), I asked them about how they were organized, who decided it would be organized this way and, more importantly, how they would handle crisis – and maybe the crisis that their organization would create.

Whatever the reason for failure or crisis, when startups are founded by half a dozen people, it means the revenue drawn from the product sold (assuming it is even sold) will have to cater for the lives of this whole bunch. The more people, the more money is needed. The sad bit is that numbers within the startup do not usually make bigger numbers on the market.

Call it the bodybuilder syndrome. The bigger the muscles, the more they need to eat. If the eating is too light, muscles will feed themselves out of their own selves.

For the startup, it means creating foundations for losing money even before making some.

Then, there is a second hurdle to face for those startups with numerous founders: the roles and responsibilities.

Even if everybody is basically happy to grant themselves C-titles, there might come a time when the skipper (e.g. the guy that everybody “smiled” to the CEO position in the first place) will have to skip.

During harsh times, the boss has to be the boss and act as the boss.

My question to this boss : “Are you ready to sack your friends ?”.

I have had little answers to this question.

As a reminder, a startup is a company. The CEO of a startup is the boss. The boss has to lead the company and make decisions even if the decision is about getting rid of lazy buggers (still friends) or laying off employees (yes, the CMO friend) to reduce costs and pressure on the company.

Too many lack that vision. That sure is the un-sexy part of startups but the sorry real-life though.

Actually, that is the “work hard” part (of the “Work hard, play hard“). A startup is a lot of passion and fun but a startup is also a real company.

So now, guys, work hard ! … And play harder !

[Picture credits : Phil Roeder]

Indiegogo’s Slava Rubin on the Myths of Entrepreneurship

See on Scoop.itEntrepreneurship in the World

The Indiegogo co-founder says anyone can be an entrepreneur and no project is too small. And, yes, it’s entirely possible that one day your mom might…

Samuel Pavin‘s insight:

Easy advice yet so valid advice. Basics are always right but so easy to forget.


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The kingmaker for lame startups ?

Startup as featured in

It is Friday !

Nothing special but the fact that in most of Europe weekend is upon millions of over-worked employees who should soon head out to enjoy a well-deserved pint, rest, party, weekend job or whatever else.

Well then, entrepreneurs and startups knowing no Fridays, nor weekends, nor vacation time, nor what sleep might actually be, they are and will be up and working. Possibly … .

This post then comes in between. Bit of serious content, lots of tired thinking and this funny discovery thanks to a certain @edmundas4 of my pals.

Lame startups, petty entrepreneurs, rock-stars in the building (forever) and all of you looking for the glittering stripes of success, rejoice !

Fame is key. Buzz is key. Fans are key. Recognition and legitimacy is indeed key for a startup and its founders.

Now, two options to achieve that :

– Work hard, be smart, network, get yourself, your product and your startup acknowledged for quality, innovation, etc … and reach your goal (and beyond).

– Second option; well, just cheat! Less work, not too much of a pain to achieve and results might be there. I had the chance to catch a glimpse of that kind of fake fans/followers scheme recently used (uncovered might be the word) by some guys on the French startup scene and it does not seem to deliver while making people look truly stupid (to say the least) once discovered.

There is a third option now. The very one way to pimp a shabby startup into the next golden child of the Valley by making it legitimate to the eyes of the world.

Let’s look classy and be featured in all those kingmakers of publications; let’s look like having been honored by posts in TechCrunch, TheNextWeb, Wired and so many more.

Let’s just play with “The Startup Legitimizer”.

That website is the bit which has definitely made my day today.

How cool is that ? Cheaters out there, cheat with style !

At the same time, the serious bit hiding behind the good looks is the fact that these publications I mentioned (and the many others I left aside for the sake of my laziness) are indeed a force to be reckoned when it comes to startups.

Maybe not kingmakers – a single post on TechCrunch might not be enough – but still enough to give credit and legitimacy (on top of visibility) to a startup.

Well then, back to option #1, work hard and get your cool startup and product running. No cheating but a featuring on those publications might come soon enough anyway.

From experience, these people, well, are people, can be reached and are startup-friendly basically. So any good-looking startup is worth getting attention from them. Any sh**ty one will get the stick though. Fair balance.

Now, the closing question is : Do you want your cool new startup to appear reliable and super legit ? (

Or do you want your cool new startup to BE reliable and super legit ? (Work, fail and succeed !)

A short closing note from the editor (me indeed), this post has never been featured on TechCrunch, TNW, BuzzFeed, Forbes, Wired or any of their counterparts … . Too bad for the editor I should say :)