O’Reilly Radar post började detta år med samtal om vad han kallar ”proverbs” som han under årens lopp har plockat upp. Det är en hel del sanningar som varje entreprenör bör känna till. Posten ger bra förklaringar för varje sanning.

De är alla värda att läsa!

Starting

  • It’s good to be king — being an entrepreneur is the best job I’ve had.
  • Losing sucks — shutting down a company is unbelievably difficult.
  • Building to flip is building to flop — this is taken from Jason Fried, and he’s right.
  • Prudence becomes procrastination — it’s great to research your market and talk to potential buyers about your ideas.
  • Momentum builds on itself — just start.
  • Jump when you are more excited than afraid — lack of fear is irrational, and too much fear is debilitating.

The Idea

  • Pay attention to the idea that won’t leave you alone — this is taken from Paul Hawken’s Growing a Business. .
  • If you keep your secrets from the market, the market will keep its secrets from you — entrepreneurs too often worry about keeping their brilliant secrets locked away;
  • Immediate yes is immediate no — does everyone immediately tell you your idea is great? Run away from it.
  • Build what you know — this is the most basic advice of idea generation: scratch an itch you have yourself.
  • Give people what they need, not what they say they need — interviews are tricky.
  • Your ideas will get better the more you know about business — engineers hate to hear this, but you can generalize up quite far from here: the more you know about everything, the better all of your ideas will get!

People

  • Three is fine; two, divine — having too many co-founders makes decisions hard to reach; if you’re on your own, you have to bear all of the stress and worry about the success of the company.
  • Work only with people you like and believe in — I once heard Eric Schmidt say something along the lines of, ”The older I get, the more I think all that matters is working with people you like.”
  • Work with people who like and believe in you, just naturally — maybe you are very persuasive, and can talk people into working with you against their better instincts.
  • Great things are made by people who share a passion, not by those who have been talked into one — a corollary of the last; you can spark a passion in someone, but you can’t do it without some fuel to catch.

Product

  • Cool ideas are useless without great needs — this is the classic engineers’ entrepreneurial mistake (or at least I’d like to think so, since I’ve made it). Build the simplest thing possible — engineers have the hardest time with this, with not overdesigning for the need they’re addressing.
  • Solve problems, not potential problems — you can waste a lot of money implementing solutions for problems you don’t have yet, and may never have. Test everything with real people — it’s unbelievable how helpful this is.

Money

  • Start with nothing, and have nothing for as long as possible — small budgets give big focus (probably another line I’m stealing from Jason Fried: it sounds like something he’d say…)
  • The best investor pitches are plainspoken and entertaining (not in that order) — think about what this implies.
  • Never let on that you’re keeping a secret — telling an investor ”I don’t want to talk about that” is terrible.
  • No means maybe and yes means maybe — you should never take a ”no” from someone you want to work with.
  • For investors, the product is nothing
  • The best way to get investment is not to need it — if you have a running business with real customers and you’re paying all your bills, you are much more likely to get a funding round than if you need the round in order to survive or succeed.

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