blog

What Are The Two Killer Fundraising Mistakes You Have To Avoid?

I’ve worked with a lot of startup CEO’s, and I see the same two killer fundraising mistakes made over and over again. One of them will kill you before you get started, and the mistake will kill you when you’re raising money. What are these killer mistakes, and, more importantly, how can you avoid them?…

Read More

Why You Need To Know What Your TAM & SAM Are

“Tell me about the whole market first,” Jack Gifford, Maxim’s CEO, said to me. We were meeting at the Peppermill in Cupertino like we always did for our Tuesday morning breakfast meetings. For this meeting it was me, Ziya who was my boss, Dave Fullagar who was the VP Engineering, and I believe Len Sherman…

Read More

When Do You Consider Your Business Ready To Launch?

I used to meet with my cofounders a few times a week. We were each working on parts of our business plan. “John” was working on the engineering model, “Jim” was working on the marketing model, and I was working on the overall financial plan. After about two months of staring at each other across…

Read More

How Do You Deal With An Employee That Can’t Scale?

It’s inevitable. You’re going to have an employee that did a great job for you early on in your company, but now that same employee is having trouble as the company grows bigger. What you do when you face this inevitable challenge will determine more about the fate of your company than you might realize.…

Read More

What You Learn From How Non Technical CEOs Succeed

“Don’t try and be something that you’re not,” that was the advice I gave to myself when I started my company. Even though I have a BSEE and a few patents, I’d been on the “dark side”, as my wife calls the business side of a technology company, for years. I wasn’t going to be…

Read More

How Do You Compensate A Part Time Cofounder?

“You should stay at your job until we get funded,” I said to Jeroen. It was September 2008 and Jeroen had just agreed to be our VP Engineering. The economy was sinking like a stone and VC funding appeared to be drying up. The last thing in the world I wanted was blood on my…

Read More

What’s Different Between Successful & Failed Startups?

“VC Fund A just signed the term sheet,” “Ray” said to me this morning. “That’s great news! Congratulations. That’s a great achievement on your part,” I said. A month ago, things weren’t looking as good. His two existing investors were doing everything they could to prevent the round from closing. The valuation and deal terms…

Read More

What If Facebook Enters Your Market?

“Welcome.” That was Steve Jobs’ famous response when IBM entered the PC market in 1981. Maybe Jobs should have been more worried. After all, by 1984 IBM sold $4B worth of PCs versus Apple’s $2B. The question of “What if Facebook/Google/IBM/Texas Instruments/Intel/(name your tech behemoth here) enters our market?” has been around forever. And it’s…

Read More

How Much Equity Should You Give Your Investors?

Have you ever wondered what’s the right amount of equity to give your investors? Well, you’re not alone. Figuring out how much equity your investors should get is next to impossible to figure out. I have a simple methodology that I share in this short video that you can use to figure out the equity…

Read More