Category: Startup Business (Page 2 of 18)

Management Advice: Do Nice Guys Finish Last?

My friend has a startup, and he hired someone to help him boost sales. When we talked a year ago, he told me that his sales guy wasn’t closing deals.

I told him that it was probably time to let the person go. But my friend is such a nice guy that he gave the guy a second chance, then a third chance, and even a fourth chance.

Why is 996 a Really Bad Idea?

I do lots of business in China, and I can tell you, most Chinese work 996, which means from 9 am to 9 pm six days a week. Many employees are compelled to work 997. And people in the tech industry often work even longer hours. Mike Moritz, the famous VC from Sequoia Capital, said US workers should do the same, but I totally disagree.

Why Startups Fail: Lessons Learned from Juicero’s Implosion

The startup Juicero proved this. In 2016, they launched a high-tech juicing machine. It was a marvel of engineering, complete with a camera to scan QR codes on packs of juice and an internet connection to verify if each pack had expired or not. The company’s founder, Doug Evans, compared himself to Steve Jobs and touted that his juice press wielded four tons of force.

8 Things VCs Won’t Tell You

VCs never like to say…

1. “I can’t remember what you do.”

Always give the VCs a quick refresher when you meet them.

2. “I don’t get your product.”

Always check to make sure the VCs understood what you said.

3. “I’ve seen this before.”

Always ask the VCs if they’ve seen similar products.

4. “Let me introduce you to more investors.”

Always ask if the VCs can make any introductions. You may be surprised.

Motivational Tips for Salespeople

Here are my motivational tips:

1) Tell your sales team not to sell. Their job should be to educate, inform and help customers. Customers will love them, and they will love their jobs.

2) It’s not how many leads you generate that counts. It’s the quality of the leads.

3) A great salesperson cares about their customers, not their commission, and will always do what’s best for the customers.

4) Show the customer the value, and the customer will buy.

Employee Advice

Here’s some advice for employees who want to get ahead.

1. What could someone 2-3 levels below you do to earn your respect?

Ask the right questions in a meeting, and you’ll earn my respect. Lots of people want to show off how much they know, but few people listen, think and inquire. Those are the truly valuable people.

2. What could someone 2-3 levels below you do to get time on your calendar?

STARTUP ADVICE:  Fortune Favors the Brave

The one thing every entrepreneur must be is bold. You cannot hesitate. You cannot give in to your fears. You must drive yourself forward, relentlessly, no matter what the cost. Even if it means risking everything for which you have worked so hard.  Even if it means losing your company and reputation. You must stretch yourself and seize the day. That is only way dreamers can make reality conform to their will.

Killer Stress

Stress is a killer for entrepreneurs. If you are feeling stress, a good strategy is to think deeply about the cause. Then make a list of actions you can take to address the underlying issues. What can you do to solve the problem.

If there is nothing you can do, you need to train yourself to stop thinking about it. You should have a list of things that make you truly happy in your life, and whenever you feel stressed, sit back and think of those things. It actually works.



STARTUP LESSON: I find myself creating a lot of videos for partners overseas. This is one where I’m talking to investors in Shanghai. I’ve done videos for conferences, signing ceremonies, startup pitches, and even weddings.

Making a video can take a lot of time, so I’ve optimized the process. I do every video in a single take, so there’s no editing. I also try to use a background that looks professional. Lighting is key. If you’re stuck in a hotel room, stand in front of the window, angel the camera upwards so the bed doesn’t show, and move your face close to the camera.

STARTUP LESSON: Eat Less, Do More!

I love eating, and I eat way too much. It’s a freaking miracle I don’t weigh 300 pounds. But I’ve learned that the less I eat, the more energy I have. When I cut my food consumption in half, I have double the energy.

I just need to start doing this on a regular basis.

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