Tag Archives: Guy Kawasaki

Top 10 Lies of Entrepreners – and Investors

March 12, 2012

This is straight from Guy Kawasaki’s blog.  He’s seen it all.

Top Ten Lies of Entrepreneurs

  1. “Our projections are conservative.”
  2. “Jupiter says our market will be $50 billion in ten years.”
  3. “Several Fortune 500 companies are set to do business with us.”
  4. “No one else can do what we’re doing.”
  5. “Hurry up because other investors are about to do our deal.”
  6. “Our product will go viral.”
  7. “The large companies in our market are too big, dumb, and slow to compete with us.”
  8. “Our management team is proven.”
  9. “We filed patents so our intellectual property is protected.”
  10. “All we have to do is get 1% of the market.”

The average number of these ten lies that I hear in most pitches is ten. At the very least, tell investors new lies.

Top Ten Lies of Investors

  1. “I liked your company, but my partners didn’t.”
  2. “We are patient investors who want to help you build a great company.”
  3. “If you get a lead, we’ll invest too.”
  4. “There are no companies in our portfolio that conflict with what you’re doing.”
  5. “Show us some traction, and we’ll invest.”
  6. “We love to co-invest with other firms.”
  7. “We’re investing in your team.”
  8. “We have lots of bandwith to dedicate to your company.”
  9. “This is a plain, vanilla termsheet.”
  10. “We will get other companies in our portfolio to work with you.”

Best books for entrepreneurs

The November 14, 2011 Wall Street Journal has an article entitled “The Best Advice Around, From Those Who Took It.”  It includes a list of self-help books cited by certain entrepreneurs as being useful.  After reviewing the list I would have to agree with the selection.  I especially found The E-Myth to be especially useful.  Here’s the list along with the quip from amazon.com:

“The E-Myth,” by Michael Gerber – (NOTE:  This snippet is from The E-Myth Revisited) – In this first new and totally revised edition of the 150,000-copy underground bestseller, The E-Myth, Michael Gerber dispels the myths surrounding starting your own business and shows how commonplace assumptions can get in the way of running a business. He walks you through the steps in the life of a business from entrepreneurial infancy, through adolescent growing pains, to the mature entrepreneurial perspective, the guiding light of all businesses that succeed. He then shows how to apply the lessons of franchising to any business whether or not it is a franchise. Finally, Gerber draws the vital, often overlooked distinction between working on your business and working in your business. After you have read The E-Myth Revisited, you will truly be able to grow your business in a predictable and productive way.

“Who: The A Method for Hiring,” by Geoff Smart and Randy StreetIn this instant New York Times Bestseller, Geoff Smart and Randy Street provide a simple, practical, and effective solution to what The Economist calls “the single biggest problem in business today”: unsuccessful hiring. The average hiring mistake costs a company $1.5 million or more a year and countless wasted hours.

“The Art of the Start,” by Guy KawasakiAt Apple, Kawasaki helped turn ordinary customers into fanatics. As founder and CEO of Garage Technology Ventures, he has tested his iconoclastic ideas on real- world start- ups. And as an irrepressible columnist for Forbes, he has honed his best thinking about The Art of the Start.

“Little Bets,” by Peter SimsBased on deep and extensive research, including more than 200 interviews with leading innovators, Sims discovered that productive, creative thinkers and doers—from Ludwig van Beethoven to Thomas Edison and Amazon’s Jeff Bezos—practice a key set of simple but ingenious experimental methods—such as failing quickly to learn fast, tapping into the genius of play, and engaging in highly immersed observation—that free their minds, opening them up to making unexpected connections and perceiving invaluable insights.

“Start With Why,” By Simon SinekIn studying the leaders who’ve had the greatest influence in the world, Simon Sinek discovered that they all think, act, and communicate in the exact same way — and it’s the complete opposite of what everyone else does.

“Mastering the Rockefeller Habits,” by Verne Harnish – ...this book is a compilation of best practices adapted from some of the best-run firms on the planet. Included is an instructive chapter co-authored by Rich Russakoff, revealing winning tactics to get banks to finance your business. Lastly, there are case studies demonstrating the validity of Harnish’s practical approaches.

“Street Smarts: An All-Purpose Tool Kit for Entrepreneurs,” by Norm Brodsky and Bo Burlingham –  People starting out in business tend to seek step-by-step formulas or rules, but in reality there are no magic bullets. Rather, says veteran company-builder Norm Brodsky, there’s a mentality that helps street- smart entrepreneurs solve problems and pursue opportunities as they arise. 

So what book would you add to this list?