It may pay to add yourself as a friend of the millionaires network

Wednesday, 14 December, 2011

The Facebook public share float, when it happens, will not only make millionaires of employees currently holding shares and options in the social network, but will also be of benefit to all sorts of business owners who happen to be in the vicinity of those newly well off.

The imminent flood of Facebook dollars is sure to provide a welcome boost to local businesses in Silicon Valley, from high-end car dealerships to wine merchants. Buff Giurlani, founder of car and wine storage service AutoVino in Menlo Park, is looking forward to an acceleration in already-brisk trade. “If a Facebook guy buys a house and wants to remodel it, maybe the contractor will buy another car,” he said. “Maybe the realtor will put a car in. There’s a trickle-down effect.”

For those seeking some of this Facebook trickle down action locally, there are a bevy of Australian ventures for you to consider.

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Age shall not weary them, older people make better entrepreneurs

Friday, 24 December, 2010

Mid-career workers, possibly looking for new direction in the new year, need not shun the idea of creating a start-up, thinking it is only ground that undergraduates and 20-somethings tread… as it turns out, older workers are often more successful as entrepreneurs than their younger counterparts.

There are a number of structural factors that make it easier – and possibly better – for older workers to start companies. First and foremost, older entrepreneurs are more likely to have long, solid credit histories – vital for getting the credit cards and loans vital to new businesses. Older folks are also far more likely to have assets – like retirement savings or housing wealth – they can tap to fund their own startups. Furthermore, and less tangibly, older workers are more likely to have the management experience necessary to set up a company and keep it running.

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You say you want a revolution? Build up a customer base first

Friday, 19 November, 2010

Comparing the Beatles to a lean start-up. The band took the smart path in “reinventing pop music”, by first building up a following, then commencing to experiment and innovate.

Early successes like “Love Me Do”, “I Want to Hold Your Hand”, the Ed Sullivan Show performances, and their first few US tours created enough traction (both in terms of profits and listeners) to enable the later, groundbreaking work that would define their legacy. In 1966, or so, with a large and loyal following, happy record executives (VC’s, if you will), and significant learning under their belts (from the 1,400 live shows they performed between 1962 and 1966) they found themselves in a perfect position to try to reinvent pop music.

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Innovation and entrepreneurship not an age exclusive club

Friday, 27 August, 2010

Entrepreneurs are not always those aged 25 or under… in fact most startup founders are usually around 40 when they set up by themselves.

It turns out that many of the most common stereotypes about aging are dead wrong. Take the cliché of the youthful entrepreneur. As it turns out, the average founder of a high-tech startup isn’t a whiz-kid graduate, but a mature 40-year-old engineer or business type with a spouse and kids who simply got tired of working for others, says Duke University scholar Vivek Wadhwa, who studied 549 successful technology ventures.

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What coders won’t do makes it onto my job description

Wednesday, 13 January, 2010

I love this list of 20 things a non-coder can do – as work – in a tech startup. Barring about five items, this list makes for a pretty good facsimile of my job description.

Via Hacker News.

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Entrepreneurs deserve the celebrity status they are accorded

Thursday, 5 November, 2009

It had to happen sooner or later, with the number of startups – and subsequently – entrepreneurs in circulation, it was only a matter of time before they began to assume celebrity status.

What’s warm, fuzzy and the perfect recession-era pitchman for everything from iPhones to laptops to credit cards? If you ask some of the country’s big advertisers, the answer would be: the entrepreneur. Trying to tap into the popular belief that entrepreneurs are somehow more authentic – and more innovative – than big corporations, a handful of the country’s highest-profile employers are tapping small businesses as spokesmodels.

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The role of good luck in startups, also an important ingredient

Wednesday, 4 November, 2009

While skill, motivation, and some money are essential for starting up any new business, the part that luck plays is often vastly underestimated, writes Paul Graham.

Actually the best model would be to say that the outcome is the product of skill, determination, and luck. No matter how much skill and determination you have, if you roll a zero for luck, the outcome is zero. These quotes about luck are not from founders whose startups failed. Founders who fail quickly tend to blame themselves. Founders who succeed quickly don’t usually realize how lucky they were. It’s the ones in the middle who see how important luck is.

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Fund your startup (or retirement) by getting rid of your TV

Wednesday, 29 April, 2009

Watching TV becomes an expensive past time if you take the hourly rate of your present job and calculate it by your number of viewing hours.

To put it into perspective, if you watch an average of 31.5 hours of TV each week (which the average person in the US does) and you value your time at minimum wage of $5.85 an hour, you are spending nearly $800 a month ($798.53) to watch TV. That comes to nearly $10,000 ($9582.30) a year. I would imagine that most people reading this value their time well above minimum wage, so the cost is likely several times that number. When you look at it from that perspective, watching TV is an extremely expensive and financial draining habit to have.

While I’m stretching it to make two hours a week, it does put an interesting perspective on the amount of time spent watching TV.

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Lifestyle and life balance: success is what you make it

Friday, 24 April, 2009

Does working long hours mean you’re a success? I always thought working fewer hours was a way of saying you’ve made it…

It’s been a long time since there was a direct correlation with the number of hours you work and the success you enjoy. It’s an antiquated notion from the days of manual labour that has no bearing on the world today. When you’re building products or services, there’s a nonlinear connection between input and output. You can put in just a little and still get out a spectacular lot.

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Ugly dumps and startups, a recipe for success

Monday, 20 April, 2009

Startups can save a fortune if the founders decide to setup both their residence and workplace in the same place.

Also in Boston are Dan Haubert, 25, and Tom Davis, 24, who moved in together to launch TicketStumbler.com, which aims to be the Expedia of sports and concert tickets. The “ugly dump,” says Haubert, lets them “live and run a business on a few thousand a month.”

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