It is a cold, hard fact of business life that most startups fail. Even many of those entrepreneurs who ultimately succeed have stories of personal challenges, unsuccessful companies, and difficulties along the way. The founders of TechStars, a mentorship-driven startup accelerator, have worked with entrepreneurs and companies over the past twenty-five years, and have seen a number of the same issues come up again and again.
In Do More Faster, the founders of TechStars identify the key issues that first-time entrepreneurs encounter, and offer proven advice from successful entrepreneurs who have worked with the TechStars program.
The authors organize the most critical issues into seven themes: Idea and Vision, People, Execution, Product, Fundraising, Legal and Structure, and Work and Life Balance. Many of the examples are personal experiences from the entrepreneurs themselves, integrated into a cohesive narrative - while at the same time able to stand on their own. Throughout the book, they debunk numerous myths about startups and reveal some surprising truths. They explain, for instance, that the core of a startup is not always a world-changing and earth-shattering idea - in fact, it is often the case that successful startups started out doing something else.
They also underscore the efficiency of execution: great entrepreneurs know how to synthesize data, make a decision about the path they are going down, and execute. And they offer some alternatives to traditional ways of raising money, while stressing that you shouldn't start with the assumption that you need to raise money.
Mastering the seven themes may not ensure success, but understanding the issues, reading the stories, and getting advice pertaining to these issues will increase your chances dramatically. And if nothing else, you'll realize that you aren't alone in facing these challenges.
©2010 Brad Feld, David Cohen (P)2011 Gildan Media Corp
"Remember when experience mattered? Thanks to this book, no matter how new to your field or how young or inexperienced you are, you can learn from people who have actually done it. Sure beats failing." (Seth Godin, author of Linchpin)
The authors of this book run a well-respected program for high tech entrepreneurs, but even if you're a not a software person, the tips in this book about starting, running, and planning a business are extremely valuable. So many of the chapters stick with me months after I listened, especially "fail fast." Some tips are complex and structural for how to set up a business. Other tips are light such as "don't suck at e-mail." A great education.
I think learned the most from Alex White's multiple stories. No wonder he features so prominently in the book--he's a really smart businessman.
Everyone in the startup world and every entrepreneur regardless of whether you're in tech, bio, green, industry, or lemonade stands, should read this book. Each chapter is a lesson learned the hard way by a TechStars company founder. Plus, after each chapter David Cohen & Brad Feld (founders of TechStars) give their thoughts.
Completely disagree with the reviewer that said this is an infomercial for tech stars. It's a case study format, and the case studies come from tech stars experiences.
Probably, these are smart, successful guys, but the format of this book (a bunch of blog articles that are pretty obvious and not very insightful) didn't work for me.
I guess if you are really just thinking about entrepreneurship for the first time and don't want to do some simple searches on the internet, there are some take aways here.
Just not enough deep insights, seemed really superficial and obvious.
These guys are putting this book out to promote their company. Which is fine when done subtly, but they say Techstars so many times it becomes noticeable. Very few entrepreneurial principles being expressed compared to other entrepreneurial books.
I would recommend this audiobook. It is going to especially be good for people who are not familiar at all with getting involved with a start up. If you do have some family already, then it's not as good of an experience. The beginning section I felt was a little repetitive. It was saying the same thing over and over again. However, the later sections started having some really good takeaways.
One of my favorite chapters was the one about not getting screwed twice. And there's another good chapter about a form to make sure you have otherwise if you get acquired, you will have a lot more income tax to pay.
Just for those main lesson learning chapters that really stood out to me, I intend to buy this book to keep it on my bookshelf.
This book is not a sales pitch. It's very informative and easy to listen to.
Overall good use of practical examples that were helpful.
Lots of references to tech stars but I thought it was relevant and helpful
I went into this book thinking it would teach me about how to increase productivity, however it was more about general guidelines for any startup. It is definitely a book I would loved to have read before my first startup. All the advice in there is from experience and if you heed it, you will be leaps and bounds ahead in your startup career!
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