June, 2020

Rising out of the Crisis: Where to Find New Markets and Customers

Steve Blank

The pandemic has upended the business models of most startups and existing companies. As the economy reopens companies are finding that customers may have disappeared or that their spending behavior has changed. Suppliers are going out of business or requiring cash-up-front terms. Accounts receivables are stretching way out. Revenue models and forecasts are no longer valid. In sum, whatever business model you had at the beginning of the year may be obsolete.

New Normal: A conversation with Bob Stutz of SAP

deal architect

I have been doing video interviews with a number of CIOs, software executives and practitioners about acrobatics they have been seeing in various vertical sectors during the COVID-19 crisis and the "New normal" they can expect as the economy wakes. Global and Vertical extensions Leadership during Crisis New Normal COVID-19 Vertical Markets (Banking, Retail etc

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8 Indications Of A Real Entrepreneur Versus A Hacker

Startup Professionals Musings

As a startup investor, I often see business proposals looking for funding that really look like expensive hobbies looking for donations. I recognize that entrepreneurs tend to substitute vision and passion for formal processes, but using no discipline or process in building something new is a sure way to spend money, rather than see any return and build a self-sustaining business.

Be Like Water – A Guiding Principle for Consumer Product

View from Seed

“Be formless, shapeless, like water.” – Bruce Lee. I was on a pitch video call the other day when the founder asked me what the guiding principle for product was at Blue Apron when I was leading the team there, and my response was that consumer product experience should be like water. At a first glance, that could sound pretty counterintuitive – isn’t the point of a product team to purposefully design and build? .

Building Healthy Innovation Ecosystems for Your Projects

Speaker: Nick Noreña, Innovation Coach and Advisor, Kromatic

In this webinar, Nick Noreña will walk through an Innovation Ecosystem Model that he and his team at Kromatic have developed to help investors, heads of product, teachers, and executives understand how they can best support innovation in their own ecosystem. He'll also go over metrics we can use to measure the health of our ecosystems as we build more resources for innovators.

3 Reasons Why Your Elevator Pitch Will Never Work


by Neil Gordon. The first time I ever went to a Chamber of Commerce meeting was also the last time I went to one. It was a fiasco. We started the meeting going around the table and were each given two minutes to share what we did – our elevator pitch, a way to present our work in such a concise way that it could be shared within the span of an elevator ride.

Venture Deals Online Course – Summer 2020 Edition

Feld Thoughts

We are running the Venture Deals Online Course again this summer. But before I get to that, I want to highlight a blog post from a Black colleague. I’m getting, and reading, many of these each day. For the foreseable future, I’ll highlight and amplify one at the beginning of each post I do, in case you are interested. Today’s post is from Ruben Porras , who is a Techstars alum (Director of Operations at CreatorBox.) He wrote Black Lives Matter. At Work. In Life.

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New Normal: Conversation with Sridhar Vembu of Zoho

deal architect

I have been doing video interviews with a number of CIOs, software executives and practitioners about acrobatics they have been seeing in various vertical sectors during the COVID-19 crisis and the "New normal" they can expect as the economy wakes. Cloud Computing, SaaS Global and Vertical extensions New Normal COVID-19

6 Entrepreneurship Advantages For Seniors In Business

Startup Professionals Musings

A popular myth that most of you probably believe is that startups are only for the younger generations. In fact, I see more and more evidence that new entrepreneurs are coming from the older age groups (age 45-64), and success rates move up with age. Is it possible that age and experience are more of an advantage in this business than young passion and fearlessness? Based on my own years of experience in big businesses, as well as startups, this is no surprise to me.

Why We Invested in Jumbo

View from Seed

After operating quietly for the past year, our portfolio company Jumbo made a couple big announcements yesterday, including the launch of Jumbo 2 as well as their $8M series A financing led by Balderton Capital. We were proud to be investors in Jumbo pre-product and to be working once again with Pierre Valade, one of the founders of NextView I portfolio company Sunrise.

3 Steps Brands Can Take To Boost Bottom Line By Creating Behavior Change


by Myriam Sidibe, author of “ Brands on a Mission “ As the US reopens after months of shelter-in-place, we’re seeing just how difficult it is to convince people to change long-established behaviors – or adapt to new ones, like wearing masks or keep physical distance. Yet change is the only way we’ll reach the “new normal.” And no one is in a better position to help make this happen than marketers and brands.

Kenya 168

#BlackLivesMatter and What I’m Doing

Feld Thoughts

So that I’m unambiguous about my perspective, #BlackLivesMatter. Amy and I have been philanthropically supporting Progressive Public Policy and Social Justice Organizations for over 20 years. However, just providing financial support is not nearly enough, and I’ve decided to put much more time and energy into understanding and helping eliminate racial inequity.

How to be a startup Mensch

VC Cafe

Many Americans would be familiar with the term ‘Mensch’ According to Wikipedia, a Mensch is a person of integrity and honour. In this post, I wanted to share a few examples of what it means in practice in the startup world. The post is written in male figure but is intended for all sexes.

New Normal: A conversation with Grant Halloran of Planful

deal architect

I have been doing video interviews with a number of CIOs, software executives and practitioners about acrobatics they have been seeing in various vertical sectors during the COVID-19 crisis and the "New normal" they can expect as the economy wakes. Global and Vertical extensions New Normal COVID-19 Vertical Markets (Banking, Retail etc

9 Different Approaches For Motivating A Startup Team

Startup Professionals Musings

Entrepreneurs inherently understand that they have to be the initial leader of their startup, but often they don’t have the experience or the training to know where their leadership competencies lie, or how to build a leadership team. For new entrepreneurs, leadership development efforts may be more valuable for achieving startup success than business skills development.

Pitching in the Pandemic

View from Seed

We’re in a global pandemic. The simple truth is that all venture capitalists have told their portfolio Founder/CEOs that if they don’t absolutely need to raise capital now that they shouldn’t be out there attempting to do so. Wait until fall. Wait until 2021. Wait until the situation changes. So why should you follow a different approach?

Things To Consider When Choosing Ringless Voicemail Providers


Ringless voicemail or voicemail drop is a way of delivering voice messages to other people without even calling or ringing their phones. This method is often used by businesses to send voice messages to their prospects, clients, and customers without interrupting them. To put it simply, ringless voicemail is a type of software that allows you to send pre-recorded messages to other people’s phone voicemail.

Humans Just Don’t Understand Complex Systems

Feld Thoughts

A major incident has been declared in Bournemouth as crowds flock to the beach. Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images. My first reaction to this photo was “you’ve got to be f **g kidding me.” ” My next reaction was the title of this post, “Humans Just Don’t Understand Complex Systems.” ” The Covid crisis is a complex system.

8 Useful Digital Marketing Sites And Resources You Should Know About

YFS Magazine

Stay ahead of the curve. Here's a list of the eight websites that marketers visit to get a daily dose of digital marketing news. Grow Marketing & Sales digital marketing marketing online marketing recommended

New Normal: Conversation with Doug Belden of Hillsborough County, FL

deal architect

I have been doing video interviews with a number of CIOs, software executives and practitioners about acrobatics they have been seeing in various vertical sectors during the COVID-19 crisis and the "New normal" they can expect as the economy wakes. Global and Vertical extensions Leadership during Crisis New Normal COVID-19 Vertical Markets (Banking, Retail etc

5 Reasons Two Founders As A Team Are Better Than One

Startup Professionals Musings

It seems like every entrepreneur I meet these days is quick to proclaim themselves a visionary, expecting that will give more credibility to their startup idea, and improve their odds with investors. In reality, I’m one of the majority of investors who believe that startup success is more about the execution than the idea. Thus, unless the visionary highlights a cofounder who can take the vision and execute, I assume the worst.

How and Why the NextView Everyday Economy Accelerator is Different

View from Seed

It’s early into the launch of our 100% virtual NextView Everyday Economy accelerator , but indications point to early success. First, we were pleasantly overwhelmed with submissions over the past few weeks since we opened up applications. The NextView team enjoyed reviewing the literally hundreds and hundreds(!) of teams’ online pitch decks and recorded videos, as well as loved the dozens of second-round video conversations which we had with Founders working on quite compelling startups.

How To Properly Record Your Business’ Finances


Keeping track of your business’ finances will help you manage them effectively. However, not all business owners have a knack with numbers. According to Preferred CFO, 82% of businesses fail due to a lack of cash flow management skills and poor financial management in general. To address this issue, some business owners need to understand and record finances on their own.

You are Not Alone

Feld Thoughts

On Wednesday 6/3 at 11am Energize Colorado will be launching our Mental Wellness initiative. While we already have a Mental Health Resource section up on the Energize Colorado , we are starting a weekly webinar series called Wellness Wednesdays. One of our goals with this initiative is to destigmatize mental health and support those in need of engaging in service during the Covid crisis.

What Does Your Content Say to Customers?

Rembrandt Communications

When was the last time you reviewed your content? Your current impression on customers may surprise you! What does your content say to customers? As a small business owner, you probably have all kinds of content going out to current and potential customers including social media, articles, newsletters, emails, sales messages, and more. That’s fantastic, but when was the last time you reviewed the results? Your content can make raving fans or end up in the waste basket within seconds.

New Normal: A conversation with Paul Greenberg and Brent Leary on Sports

deal architect

I have been doing video interviews with a number of CIOs, software executives and practitioners about acrobatics they have been seeing in various vertical sectors during the COVID-19 crisis and the "New normal" they can expect as the economy wakes. Global and Vertical extensions New Normal COVID-19 Sports Vertical Markets (Banking, Retail etc

8 Learning Principles To Keep You Ahead Of The Game

Startup Professionals Musings

Aspiring entrepreneurs who rely only on traditional learning vehicles (teachers, classrooms, and risk-free practice) are doomed to failure in anticipating change today. Either they are never really ready to commit, study an opportunity until it has passed, or fail with tools and techniques from a bygone business era. The Internet and the current information wave have changed everything.

What do you need for a VC to properly evaluate a pitch?

This is going to be BIG.

One of the most difficult conversations I have with founders is when they haven’t quite given me enough of a story for me to make a proper evaluation. A VC’s default is “no”, so without enough information to be convincing, it’s going to wind up being a pass. If I wind up asking for more info, it might result in a founder feeling like they’re getting the runaround, given what the founder believes to be an obviously good idea.

How To Have A More Efficient Small Business


Now that you’ve put in the hard work to create your small business, you’ll want to ensure that it lasts a long time. To do so, your organization must have efficient operations. That involves changing with the times and adapting to trends, as well as adjusting how you do certain activities as your business grows. Here are ways to have a more efficient small business than your competitors. Create a Powerful Website.

Most Warning Systems Do Not Warn Us That They Can No Longer Warn Us

Feld Thoughts

Since mid-March, I have received endless letters from companies and funds I’m an investor in with their thoughts on the Covid crisis. One of the best was from Paul Kedrosky and Eric Norlin of SK Ventures (one of our Partner Fund investments ). Paul and Eric have given me permission to repost it here. . First published May 15, 2020.). Greetings-. To start, a few quotations as markers: Then he heard the sand rumbling.

10 Entrepreneur Podcasts Every Founder Should Listen To


Podcasts are one of my favorite content mediums, and I know I’m not alone. Podcasts are inexpensive, typically free, they’re incredibly diverse, they’re usually updated on a daily or weekly basis, and you can listen to them while doing other things—like driving, doing chores, or exercising. Here are ten entrepreneur podcasts every founder should listen to. As an entrepreneur, podcasts are even more important, since they’re perfect ways to feed your ever-growing hunger for more information.

SapphireNow Keynote: Professional, but in synch with the times?

deal architect

I listened to Christian Klein's keynote from the virtual Sapphire event today - watch replay here. It was his first as CEO and he came across very well. Energetic, professional and very comfortable in a digital setting. His keynote focused. Enterprise Software (IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP) New Normal COVID-19

7 Ways To Optimize Passion And Energy In Your Startup

Startup Professionals Musings

Most of you will start your business with plenty of passion and purpose, but all too often I see both disappearing after months of facing unanticipated setbacks and challenges. Indeed, it is even more critical that you keep your key team members energized with a high level of passion and purpose, or burnout rears its ugly head, putting the future of your whole business in jeopardy.

Impact Investing: a time for problems to become opportunities

VC Cafe

“As big businesses begin to measure their impact, they begin to show it is fundamental to their future business models.” Sir Ronald Cohen. COVID-19 has undoubtedly further highlighted the social challenges across the world, as the economic recession’s aftermaths are expected, yet not fully known.

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Ways To Adopt AI In Your New Business


If you’ve not been keeping up with tech news in the last decade, you probably should learn this fact: AI has been completely changing the face of business in the US and around the world. Most new businesses and startups heavily rely on AI to power their products and services, and if you don’t join them, you’ll likely fall behind and lose out on potential revenue. Thanks to professional agencies like LogicAI , adopting AI in your business has never been easier.

The Valence Funding Network: Connecting Black Talent with Capital

Feld Thoughts

If you are a venture capitalist, I strongly encourage you to join the Valence Funding Network to provide Black founders with direct access to VCs. I’ve joined along with a number of my peers. Kobie Fuller at Upfront Ventures started Valence in the fall of 2019. Valence launched our beta platform to provide a digital home for Black talent to connect, access opportunities, and aggregate their power.

Startup Funding – A Comprehensive Guide for Entrepreneurs


I have often been asked about Startup Funding by entrepreneurs. Many myths surround the subject of startup funding. Here is Startup Funding, a Comprehensive Guide for Entrepreneurs. Pre-Requisites of Funding. Gone are the days where you can get funded based on an idea. To secure your funding, you must establish the feasibility of your idea through proper planning and implementation. You must have a prototype or a minimum viable product (MVP).