Archive for February, 2010

Entrepreneur: The American (and Global) Dream

Entrepreneur/academic Vivek Wadhwa writes Can Entrepreneurs Be Made? Based on his research, the answer is a clear Yes.

His focus is on the lemming-like fallibility of investors.  But don’t let that cloud the real news.  It’s the confirmation of  the American dream … and the Indian dream … and indeed the Global dream.  You CAN start your own high-growth startup.

You don’t have to come from a family of entrepreneurs or have a personal history of starting your own businesses.  But you do need to have a scalable idea, commit yourself fully for a few years, and be or become an expert in your field and business.

That’s exactly what we’ve been committed to the past five years.  We now have multiple to ways to help.

  • Personal Consulting.  Our staff provides direct coaching and consulting, from raising money to building your business. Contact us to learn more.
  • Group consulting. The Tribe Blue Business Accelerator combines group facilitation, coaching, consulting, and accountability with a structured goals and commitment program.
  • Networking.  Meet other entrepreneurs MORE effectively … at LESS cost … in LESS time with Hardcore Networking.
  • Roundtables and Seminars. Join DallasBlue Entrepreneurs.

Here are the first two paragraphs from the article.

Silicon Valley investors often have a picture in their heads of the type of person who is worthy of funding: young, brash, stubborn, and arrogant. They believe that successful entrepreneurs come from entrepreneurial families and that they start their entrepreneurial journey by selling lemonade while in grade school. Angel investor and entrepreneur, Jason Calacanis said as much in his recent talk to Penn State students. And after meeting Wharton students, VC Fred Wilson expressed shock when a professor told him that you could teach people to be entrepreneurs. Wilson wrote, “I’ve been working with entrepreneurs for almost 25 years now and it is ingrained in my mind that someone is either born an entrepreneur or is not.”

Jason, Fred, and Silicon Valley VCs, I’ve got news for you: you’ve got it all wrong. Entrepreneurs aren’t born, they’re made. And they aren’t anything like you think they are. My team surveyed 549 successful entrepreneurs. We found that the majority didn’t have entrepreneurial parents. They didn’t even have entrepreneurial aspirations while going to school. They simply got tired of working for others, had a great idea they wanted to commercialize, or woke up one day with an urgent desire to build wealth before they retired. So they took the big leap.


Printing Money – The Revenue Typhoon

At Tribe Blue and our on-on-one consulting we teach that building your business is a process. Strategize, plan, execute, measure, and reload. Generating revenues is the same.

Sales consultants like to talk about the funnel. A bushel of leads enters the funnel. The leads are winnowed after qualification and prosecution until only a few exit the funnel as actual sales.

But the focus on a funnel is short-sighted. Let’s say you’re the guy in charge of sales. Your goal is 10 sales this quarter. You’re damn good and know that you can close 20% of qualified leads. Marketing generates 50 leads. So you’re set, right? No. That’s a separate funnel. If 20% of gross leads are qualified, you can only expect 10 qualified leads and to close 20% of that, or 2 sales.  Marketing actually needs to generate 250 leads for you to make quota.  Uh-oh!

Tactical funnels don’t exist in isolation. There are a series of operational marketing and sales funnels that encompass and qualify markets, prospects, leads, and accounts. Indeed there is one huge funnel that stretches from mass markets of tens of millions of business or consumers to the individual customers that trickle out the other end.

When you build a manufacturing plant, you don’t just engineer one machine. You design the entire layout, including machines and production line, from raw materials to finished product.

It’s the same in marketing and sales. Each step in the master funnel must be managed to ensure maximum sales. We call it the Revenue Typhoon because it’s the secret to printing money.

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