US Navy image of sailor as consumer

June 12, 2013:  In the startup world one hears a lot of discussion about B2B versus B2C concepts.  Allow me please to expand those categories and opine on their relative appeal to entrepreneurs and investors.

Apollo 17 liftoff

June 10, 2013:  My two most recent posts have been about evaluating jobs from an employee perspective and about hiring that hard-to-find tech talent from an employer’s viewpoint.  Staying in that general topic area, today the focus is risk.  Startup entrepreneurs are generally pretty familiar with the notion of “de-risking” each aspect of the lean canvas.  However, once their companies have reached lift-off and have begun to hire beyond the original founding group, a whole new set of internal risks can come into play.  Most of those can be avoided if one is aware of them. 

BCS Championship trophy 2008 UF

June 4, 2013:  This post is the flip side of the previous post talking about finding a job from the engineer’s viewpoint.  Knowing that he or she may be working from that playbook, how do you recruit that person to your team?

Again, that engineer has very high odds of finding a job where the work is interesting, skills are a good match, and the colleagues are likeable.  That’s a given.   Here, though, is my list of five advantages you can offer as the prospective employer:

Bristol monument in Yellowknife Canada

June 2, 2013:  Today’s post is in response to recent conversations in person and on social media about recruiting technology talent.  The big hurdle for any employer is that qualified engineers have plenty of income alternatives in the current market climate, whether in Austin, Atlanta, Orlando, NY, or the Valley.  What does this look like from the job seeker’s perspective?

Porsche GT3 wallpaper

Today’s educational topic results from a mentoring session with an early-stage services oriented business.  In California and New York there are successful business models where you charge nothing, get millions of customers, and then exit before anybody has to worry about pricing and its cousin known as revenue.  For most of the rest of us, that is not the case.

President Obama wreath laying at Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

May 23, 2013:  As we approach the Memorial Day weekend, I can sense that people are catching their breath in our tech community.  The month of May has seen many signal events in both Austin and Atlanta.  It’s time for a well-deserved long weekend break; even my spam has slowed to a trickle.  If you’re a motorsports fan like I am, you’re looking forward to the High Holy Day of racing – Sunday’s trifecta of F1 at Monaco, the Indy 500, and NASCAR’s 600-miler at Charlotte.  Whatever is on your recreational agenda, this is a great weekend to enjoy your family and friends without even having to d

Capital Factory RISE office hours

May 20, 2013:  Last week during Austin’s RISE week of entrepreneurial activities I had the privilege of participating in an “office hours” event hosted by Capital Factory.  As you can see in the photo above this had a pretty sizable turnout, with a matching of some of the city’s technology leaders, both past and present, with what appeared to be a relatively fresh crop of startups. 

Metropolitan Breakfast Club coffee mug

May 15, 2013:  This morning I had the pleasure of speaking at the UT Club to the Metropolitan Breakfast Club, a diverse weekly networking group with maybe 80+ people on hand on this particular day.  Everyone in attendance introduced herself or himself with a very brief elevator pitch, and they were all crisp and upbeat.  The members had even memorized some of their colleagues’ pitches and occasionally provided the punch lines in unison.  I was impressed.  There were several tech entrepreneurs in the crowd, but only one from the usual tech startup regulars here in Austin. 

Mike Clifford

Those of you who read my post on President Obama’s visit to Austin last week know that I focused on the importance of that trip in terms of creating in the broader community a better awareness of the tech sector and its impetus toward educating and training a workforce that matches the long-term needs of that sector.  One of the responses to that post was the following email from Michael Clifford (photo above), for twelve years the CIO of Whole Foods until last September.  I thought it well worth passing along.

President Obama, Todd Park, Josh Baer

May 10, 2013:  Congratulations to Josh Baer and the partners, mentors, and numerous co-workers at Austin’s Capital Factory for graciously hosting President Obama yesterday on the first of his economic issues day trips.  The President and the United States CTO Todd Park saw presentations by some of our finest local ventures, were introduced to a group of angel investors, and interacted with personnel from the many startups who operate from the Capital Factory.  He was even invited to apply to Capital Factory when he needs a job in 2017. 


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