TheUC 019: The View from the Venture Capital Investor’s Chair

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Venture capital investing and entrepreneurship one of the riskiest business paths to take. The great irony is that most of the folks involved in venture capital investing are perversely risk adverse. When raising money from venture capital investors, it helps to know what the view is like from their side of the table and what ultimately drives their decision making process. … [Read more...]

TheUC 016: Sell to the RIGHT Customers at the RIGHT Price at the RIGHT Time

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Making money depends on getting your product sold to the RIGHT customer at the RIGHT price at the RIGHT time. Business development means developing a pipeline of business so that you can ultimately sell to them. Many business development and sales people think they are good at their jobs, but the proof is found in actual and profitable transactions. Building the most valuable, long-term customer base that generates tangible revenues takes time, persistence, and availability at the right time … [Read more...]

TheUC 009: Spending Marketing and Sales Dollars Wisely

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Marketing and sales dollars are expensive, and need to be spent wisely and judiciously.  There is a lot of literature out there and well intentioned advisers goading entrepreneurs to just get their product out there in a "fire, fire, fire" approach and forget about "aiming" or being "ready." But well intentioned or not, marketing and sales dollars are expensive and throwing everything at the wall to see what sticks is too costly and can be detrimental.  Depending on your product going "viral" … [Read more...]

TheUC 004: Why Do I Need A Business Plan?

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Does having a Business Plan really matter?  The truth is that you can still get lucky without one, and many are teaching and advising entrepreneurs to just get out there. But it is dangerous and costly to throw a whole bunch of stuff at the wall just to see what sticks if anything sticks at all. It might get you into a market place faster, but it may very well be the wrong one, and all you’ve done is to pave the way for someone else to step over your carcass and garner the value of your … [Read more...]

TheUC 003: Set Goals for Success & Build a Network to Achieve

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It is important to set a tangible goal. If you don’t set this stake in the ground, how do you know you are going in the right direction?  Don’t worry, the stake can be moved as your opportunity evolves.  However, there is an important distinction between a "goal" and a "desired outcome."  A well conceived goal that is appropriately ambitious yet potentially attainable will give you your most likely chance at achieving your desired outcome.  Setting up a goal that depends largely on 'luck' will … [Read more...]

TheUC 002: Is Your Idea An Opportunity?

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I get asked all the time whether or not I think an idea is ‘good,’ and my answer is always the same: "I don’t know & frankly, I don’t care." An idea just doesn’t matter all that much to the financial success of a venture. All things being equal, I’d rather invest in an idea that is ‘good,’ but that is for the market to determine not any one person.  A lot of businesses start out with an ‘idea.’ But ideas don’t make money. What matters is an opportunity to potentially earn significant long … [Read more...]

Forget Oz! What’s Wrong with the Old Man Behind the Curtain?

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          We are all familiar with the famous phrase from The Wizard of Oz, “pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.” After all, Oz is awesome. So why look at any other image? At some level don’t we all want to be perceived as this omnipotent presence? Wouldn’t that be lovely? And don’t we all feel that magnanimous when we start a new venture or even fall in love? There are those flashes in time where we actually see and believe in the best version … [Read more...]