The best entrepreneurs I know (1) know their top 2-3 challenges and (2) constantly ask for advice. Want to build your relationships & get instantly credibility? Ask for lots of advice.
Make the most from getting help and giving help.
The Lean Startup Conference hosted an amazing webinar today called Beyond Silicon Valley: Applying Lean Startup Around the Globe. Justin Wilcox, Takashi Tsutsumi (aka “The Steve Blank of Japan”), and I shared our experiences helping entrepreneurs worldwide apply Lean Startup principles. Video streaming by Ustream I’d like to share with you the key points I took […]
Summary: With worldwide explosion of entrepreneurship educational programs and accelerators, more and more of us are mentoring startups. In our eagerness to help, sometimes we can distract entrepreneurs from the most critical issues they need to address. Hence the Mentor’s Oath: Primum non obturba – First, don’t distract.
Summary: There will NEVER be a “Next Silicon Valley”. Geography is becoming irrelevant for startups because best practices are available online, capital flows freely to talent, and Silicon Valley will come to you.
Summary: I just returned from a fantastic and fun week of mentoring at the Joyful Frog Digital Incubator (JFDI) – Singapore’s first startup accelerator. They don’t just talk Lean – Customer Development is the very foundation of their program. I was really impressed with JFDI and had a blast working with Ray Wu & Justin Wilcox.
In Part 1 I covered some basic guidelines for getting good startup advice. These are a few additional tips. Forget “Startup Gurus” – Ask Smart People for Advice Nobody knows nothin. Mark Andreesen, at a speech I heard him give in 2001. Listen to a micropodcast about “startup gurus” on Soundcloud. When I first started in […]
Summary: Asking for startup advice is a skill, one that I haven’t always been very good at. If you ask for lots of advice constantly, know your top 1-2 business challenges, ask 1-2 specific questions each time, and ignore a lot of what you hear you’ll be on the right track.
Summary: “Expert” is a myth our complex, rapidly-changing world, yet most people feel like they’re not experienced enough to offer advice and help to others. They’re wrong. Everyone has experiences that can help others and novices are often in the best position to give advice because they recently experienced the beginning challenges. But expert or novice, being truly empathetic is the real key to being helpful.
Summary: Anyone who reads my blog can get additional startup help by booking office hours with me. In these meetings we talk about their day-to-day challenges – conversations that are inspiring my most popular blog posts. Office hours have helped me realize that seemingly obvious solutions to me are not obvious to everyone.