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The Entrepreneur’s Library: Startup Central

Startup Central

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10 Things to Do Before You Start Your Start-up

Is your great idea good enough? Can it grow in this slow economy? Can it become profitable, and provide a meaningful return on investment?

11 Lessons From Venture Capitalist Fred Wilson

"Fred Wilson has been investing in tech companies since the late 1980s. We take a look at some of his most important lessons on product, management, and investing."

17 Mutable Suggestions For Naming A Startup

"Naming a startup is hard. Very hard. On the one hand, the pragmatic entrepreneur thinks: "I shouldn't be wasting time on this - for every successful company with a great name, there's one with a crappy name that did just fine. It doesn't seem like a name has much influence on the outcome at all. I'm going to get back to writing code." I sort of agree with this. You shouldn't obsess about your name. But, you also shouldn't dismiss it as unimportant. Part of the startup game is to try and remove unnecessary friction to your growth. Sure, you could build a spectacularly successful company despite having a lousy name - but why not stack the odds in your favor?"

50 Best Places in America for Starting a Business

Whether you're an entrepreneur plotting to launch a startup or a CEO strategizing where to put another office, knowing where the next hot city is would be a game changer.

64 Small Business Ideas for 2021

Whether you prefer to work from home, post up in a physical shop or be on the move, one of the 64 small business ideas just might take you from aspiring entrepreneur to a business owner.

A large, well-organized collection of entrepreneurial resources and advice, including business forms, news, and blogs. Geared towards smaller businesses and startups.

Before the Startup

Essay by Paul Graham derived from a lecture given at Stanford. It's intended for college students, but much of it is applicable to potential founders at other ages.

Business Trends and Insights by American Express

Original articles for entrepreneurs and small business owners covering leadership, digital tools, cash flow, marketing & sales, growth, productivity, and many other topics.

Choosing a Business Name FAQ

Answers to commonly asked questions about choosing and registering a successful business name.

CNN Small Business Success

News and original ideas for small business owners (formerly Fortune Small Business).

Co-Founder Equity Calculator

This is a nifty tool to help you figure out how much of the company each co-founder should have at the beginning. Of course every situation is different, but this tool should provide a useful starting point.

Creating the Lean Startup

This is a quick introduction to the Lean Startup methodology, which involves cheaply implementing a "minimally viable product," putting it in front of customers to see what they like and don't like, and quickly iterating. This approach is vastly superior to secretly (and expensively) developing a feature-rich product in a silo, and unveiling it to the world only to discover that you built something nobody really wants.

Eight Fallacies of Entrepreneurship

Essential reading for anybody thinking about starting a business: "People start businesses for all kinds of reasons. Other people don't start businesses for all kinds of reasons. Sometimes they are the very same reasons. I have compiled a list of frequently used phrases and comments that I often hear when people are discussing this decision and that I think reflect serious misunderstandings. At best, these misunderstandings can lead to a waste of time. At worst, they can lead to very bad decisions and very big losses."

Entrepreneur Scan

E-scan offers the potential entrepreneur, businessperson, self-employed or franchise owner a chance to see a detailed report about their most important asset: themselves. Results are compared with other successful businesses to indicate those business skills that need improvement.

Extensive entrepreneurial resources including startup guides.

Meet a network of local entrepreneurs to share tips, problem-solving techniques, get advice on profitability and business models and discuss mentoring.

Entrepreneurs' Organization

The Entrepreneurs' Organization (EO) is a dynamic, global network of more than 7,300 business owners in 42 countries. Founded in 1987 by a group of young entrepreneurs, EO is the catalyst that enables entrepreneurs to learn and grow from each other, leading to greater business success and an enriched personal life.


A collection of articles, video clips and other resources for new entrepreneurs.

Entrepreneurship as Disease

Entrepreneurship has many definitions, but I think this really embodies what entrepreneurship is.

An extensive directory of entrepreneurial resources provided by the Kauffman Foundation.

Failure: The Secret of My Success

While most entrepreneurs dread the failure of their businesses, sometimes it's their best option. Here's how to know when to throw in the towel, and the lessons that failure can teach.

First Round Review

A collection of entrepreneurial content expertly curated by VC firm First Round Capital. Content is subdivided into sub-magazines on Management, People & Culture, Product, Women, PR & Marketing, Engineering, Design, Sales, and Fundraising.


"Flevy is a marketplace for premium business documents. Download documents to expedite your projects or upload documents to generate passive income."

Founder Institute

The Founder Institute is an early-stage startup accelerator and global launch network that helps entrepreneurs create meaningful and enduring technology companies. Through a four month program, you can launch your dream company with expert training, feedback, and support from experienced startup CEOs - while not being required to quit your day job.

Getting Started with Your Own Software Company

An old but excellent article for techies planning to start their own software company.

GoDaddy How-To Guides

GoDaddy offers free online courses that teach you about starting, marketing, growing, and managing your business.

Growth Company Guide

"The best corporate finance guide on the market today... for the entrepreneurial manager."

HERO Foundry

"HERO Foundry is a globally-connected business incubator network and virtual idea laboratory committed to awakening heroic souls around the world and inspiring change through personal responsibility and transformation."

How Not to Die

Great essay by Paul Graham: "So I'll tell you now: bad shit is coming. It always is in a startup. The odds of getting from launch to liquidity without some kind of disaster happening are one in a thousand. So don't get demoralized. When the disaster strikes, just say to yourself, ok, this was what Paul was talking about. What did he say to do? Oh, yeah. Don't give up."

How To Get Startup Ideas by Jared Friedman, Partner at Y Combinator

"This is a tricky topic because startup ideas are subtle. No one, not even YC knows for sure which ideas will succeed. But at YC they have seen thousands of startups try thousands of ideas and have learned that there are some powerful statistical trends, certain kinds of ideas, and certain ways of generating ideas that are much more likely to succeed than others."

If I Launched a Startup

A checklist of key legal steps to take when starting a new venture (written by Ryan Roberts, a startup attorney).

Inc Magazine

News, reports and business advice for any breed of entrepreneur.

Innovation: Ten Commandments from Guy Kawasaki

This article summarizes a recent speech by Guy Kawasaki at a University of Pennsylvania technology conference.

Interviews With Entrepreneurs on Khan Academy

"Personal lessons and insights from accomplished entrepreneurs are the basis of this interview series produced by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and Khan Academy."

Killer Startups

" is a user driven internet startups community. Entrepreneurs, investors, and bloggers are staying informed on up-and-coming internet startups using our blog platform, where internet entrepreneurs submit their startup to see what others think about it."

Lessons Learned

A blog by Eric Ries covering startup lessons.


Tips, tricks, and downloads for enhancing productivity.

Mark Cuban's 12 Rules for Startups

"Anyone who has started a business has his or her own rules and guidelines, so I thought I would add to the memo with my own. My 'rules' below aren't just for those founding the companies, but for those who are considering going to work for them, as well."

Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub

Microsoft for Startups provides product, technical, and go-to-market benefits to help accelerate the growth of startups

Articles covering topics from legal issues and finance to marketing and management. In addition the website holds tips, templates, and other resources for details such as licensing and employee timesheets.

National Association for the Self Employed

All kinds of benefits for the self employed. An essential resource if you're going solo; if you expect to have employees, check out PEOs as an alternative.

National Business Incubator Association

Learn about incubators and how to get into one.

National Federation of Independent Businesses

"NFIB's mission is to promote and protect the right of our members to own, operate and grow their businesses. NFIB also gives its members a power in the marketplace. By pooling the purchasing power of its members, the National Federation of Independent Business gives members access to many business products and services at discounted costs. NFIB also provides timely information designed to help small businesses succeed."

Pick a Winning Name for Your Business

Here's how to choose a legal business name that will qualify for trademark protection and help identify your company's products and services.

SBA Learning Center

The SBA offers a variety of online courses to help you start and run your business.

Small Business Administration

All kinds of resources for startups and small businesses.

Small Business Planner - From Start to Finish

"Careful planning is fundamental to success. The Small Business Planner includes information and resources that will help you at any stage of the business lifecycle."

So, You Want to Be an Entrepreneur

Some questions to ask to ensure that you have what it takes.

Springwise - New Business Ideas from Around the World

"Springwise and its network of 8,000 spotters scan the globe for smart new business ideas, delivering instant inspiration to entrepreneurial minds. Time to start the next big thing!"

Stanford Technology Ventures Program Entrepreneurial Resources

An outstanding collection of entrepreneurial education resources, including video clips (of thought leaders like John Doerr and Guy Kawasaki), podcasts, and presentations.

Startup 101: How to Build a Startup

"Startup 101 is a serialized book about the thrills and spills of starting a Web technology venture... Startup 101 is for first-time entrepreneurs who want to go through the whole startup life cycle - including raising money, building a valuable business, and making a lot of money by selling the venture or taking it public."

Startup Checklist by Atomic Squirrel

A list of 162 essential tasks to complete as you build your startup.

Startup Journal

The Wall Street Journal's entrepreneur resource center presenting original suggestions to address issues startups face.

Startup Weekend

Startup Weekend is a global network of passionate leaders and entrepreneurs on a mission to inspire, educate, and empower individuals, teams and communities. Come share ideas, form teams, and launch startups.

Startups Anonymous

Startups Anonymous is a community for startup enthusiasts to share stories, ask questions and offer advice free from retribution. Kinda like AA for startups.

Education, Community, and Tools to help startups launch faster.

Stop Looking For A Technical Co-founder

Another good article explaining why it's nearly impossible for an "idea guy" to attract a technical co-founder, and what you can do about it.


TechCrunch provides news, reviews of product developments and a database of individuals including investors. TechCrunch offers an Elevator Pitch section that gives startups the opportunity to have their 60-second pitch voted on and critiqued by peers - see

The Future of Web Startups

Just as agriculture, steel, energy, and computers went through a revolutionary process that made them widely available at low cost, Paul Graham believes that web startups are going through the same process, changing the way the American and global economy works.

Vator is an emerging company social network that allows entrepreneurs to connect with investors and get discovered by the media. They also provide entrepreneurial news and competitions.


The latest buzz in the startup, entrepreneur, and investor worlds. The site focuses on the digital media, life science, clean tech, and mobile / telecom industries.

Wall Street Journal Startup Guide

The Wall Street Journal's entrepreneur resource center presenting original suggestions to address issues startups face.

YC’s Essential Startup Advice

"A lot of the advice we give startups is tactical; meant to be helpful on a day to day or week to week basis. But some advice is more fundamental. We’ve collected here what we at YC consider the most important, most transformative advice for startups. Whether common sense or counter-intuitive, the guidance below will help most startups find their path to success."

Recommended Books

Business Plan Book - The Art of the Start 2.0:  The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide For Anyone Starting Anything

The Art of the Start 2.0: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide For Anyone Starting Anything
Guy Kawasaki

If you buy only one book on the art of entrepreneurship, this is it. Packed full of insights and useful advice, this book will help you avoid many mistakes, even if you're already an experienced entrepreneur. (Paid link)

Business Plan Book - The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses

The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses
Eric Ries

Most startups fail. But many of those failures are preventable. The Lean Startup is a new approach being adopted across the globe, changing the way companies are built and new products are launched. (Paid link)

Business Plan Book - The Monk and the Riddle: The Art of Creating a Life While Making a Living

The Monk and the Riddle: The Art of Creating a Life While Making a Living
Randy Komisar

An interesting chronicle of one entrepreneur’s experiences in Silicon Valley during the middle of the dot com bubble. A fun, quick read. (Paid link)

Business Plan Book - The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Story

The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Story
Michael Lewis

A look into the mind of Jim Clark, founder of Silicon Graphics and Netscape. (Paid link)

Business Plan Book - The Startup Owner's Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company

The Startup Owner's Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company
Steve Blank

More than 100,000 entrepreneurs rely on this book for detailed, step-by-step instructions on building successful, scalable, profitable startups. The National Science Foundation pays hundreds of startup teams each year to follow the process outlined in the book, and it's taught at Stanford, Berkeley, Columbia and more than 100 other leading universities worldwide. Why? The Startup Owner's Manual guides you, step-by-step, as you put the Customer Development process to work. This method was created by renowned Silicon Valley startup expert Steve Blank, acknowledged catalyst of the "Lean Startup" movement, and tested and refined by him for more than a decade. (Paid link)

Disclaimer: Inclusion in this directory does not constitute an endorsement. The materials linked to from this page are copyrighted to their respective owners.
FTC Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on the links, Cayenne Consulting will receive a small commission. We are dedicated to finding the best resources for entrepreneurs and we never recommend something we wouldn’t use for our own business.

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