Contact Us Now for a Free Assessment

Gen-Y is Changing the Face of Business

December 28, 2010 by Marty Zwilling


How Gen Y Employees Can Save You Money and Grow Your Business

A lot of executives have noticed that the workplace is being flooded by a new generation of workers, and they are questioning who will be the winners, and who will be the losers. In reality, Gen-Y is here, and they are already inheriting our businesses, so let’s figure out how to make them winners, or we will all be losers. By definition, Gen-Y is the generation born between 1977 and 1995 (synonymous with Millennials). There are about 80 million of them, and nearly two-thirds of them are already in the [Read More]

Back to top


The Fundamental Differences Between Angels and VCs

December 27, 2010 by Akira Hirai and Marty Zwilling


The Fundamental Differences Between Angels and VCs

Most startups desperately need an investor and thus you may feel that you are willing to consider any source of funding, regardless of the type of investor. Both so-called “angel” investors and venture capitalist (VC) are able to provide the financial resources that your startup requires. I have found, however, that the decision process for choosing the best investor is very complex so it is especially important to make well-informed and carefully-timed choices as these can have a major impact on your long-term success. The basic distinctions between types of [Read More]

Back to top


Five Reasons to Establish Your Game Plan Early

December 23, 2010 by Akira Hirai


Five Reasons to Establish Your Game Plan Early

Many startups are founded simply on the basis of a new and exciting technology, a problem that will result in surprise and frustration while waiting for funding and for customers to materialize, which represents the “solution looking for a problem” and “if we build it, they will come” syndromes. Rather than focusing on the technology, a successful startup will begin by solving a problem for a large number of customers who are willing to pay for a solution. After identifying the problem, you must develop the solution with your technology [Read More]

Back to top


Assessing Roles and Assigning Startup Equity

December 22, 2010 by Akira Hirai


Assessing Roles and Assigning Startup Equity

One of the first tough decisions that startup founders have to make is how to allocate the equity among co-founders. A seemingly easy solution to this problem would be to split it equally among all co-founders, since there is minimal value at that point but this is usually the worst possible decision, and often results in a later startup failure due to an obvious inequity. An equally problematic response to the situation is to overly value the “idea person,” believing that the idea is 90% of the value (and thus [Read More]

Back to top


Don’t Fall for Work-at-Home Scams

December 21, 2010 by Akira Hirai


Don't Fall for Work-at-Home Scams

Back to top


Ten Awesome Customer Service Upgrades

December 17, 2010 by Akira Hirai


Ten Awesome Customer Service Upgrades

I wrote recently about the importance of a “sustainable competitive advantage,” in which I outlined the value of a business plan and the limitations of patents and competitor feature comparisons. Once you start selling products, however, all of these factors pale in comparison to your level of customer service. John Spence, in his book “Awesomely Simple,” makes a compelling argument that in a world of nearly limitless product options and highly educated consumers with instant access to price, features, and benefits of almost every product, delivering consistently superior customer service is the [Read More]

Back to top


Opportunities in the Biotech Sector

December 13, 2010 by Marty Zwilling


Opportunities in the Biotech Sector

In addition to the “green” sector, which I outlined a few weeks ago, I see biotech as one of the places where startups can always go for real opportunities. Recession-proof products with innovation continue to come from the biotechnology industry. Plus, it was the top industry attracting VC money in the most recent quarter of 2010, with a total of $944 million. In its most general sense, biotech is used to refer to any sort of technology that uses biology or other medical technology to accomplish its end. It includes [Read More]

Back to top


Ten Simple Rules For Reaching the Top

December 8, 2010 by Akira Hirai


Ten Simple Rules For Reaching the Top

Tough economic times have encouraged more and more people to try entrepreneurship as an alternative to traditional employment. There are positive aspects to this trend, but entrepreneurship must be approached with caution because this path is fraught with challenges. One element necessary for success that is emphasized by experts is having a process by which to  judge your own situation and your own temperament and then make a rational decision about whether this is a suitable option for you. An important for resource for making this determination is described in [Read More]

Back to top


Six Ways to Win the Hearts and Minds of Investors

December 7, 2010 by Akira Hirai


Six Ways to Win the Hearts and Minds of Investors

Some entrepreneurs seem to have no trouble attracting investors, while others—even those with a great business plan—may struggle with it. The reality is that angel investors are human beings, a fact that makes personal traits a critical component of any business relationship even before the investment is considered. An important priority for angel investors is to finance entrepreneurs that have an unwavering passion and sense of urgency. In the business, this is commonly called “fire in the belly.” If you do not have the drive to succeed at all costs, [Read More]

Back to top


Turning Startup Failure Into a Future Success

December 3, 2010 by Akira Hirai


Turning Startup Failure Into a Future Success

If you have not experienced failure, you are not pushing the limits. If you are really an entrepreneur, you will have to take risks and exhibit less caution than others, which means that some failures should be expected. Accept your startup failure as an indication of your courage: failure should not be pursued but you can embrace it when it does happen and learn from it. People who are anxious about failing should not become entrepreneurs. Those who cannot overcome the psychological fears of making a mistake and losing money are [Read More]

Back to top