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2 items from 2011

Steve Blank On The Broken Relationship Between Investors And VCs

14 July 2011 12:10 PM, PDT | Fast Company | See recent Fast Company news »

Veteran entrepreneur of Silicon Valley shares his funding stories, what he's learned about the entrepreneur/investor relationship over the years, and the best way to pitch to a venture capitalist.

Funding Stories

When I was at E.piphany, my last startup, I was negotiating with a company called Infinity Capital at the time. They really wanted to invest, but it was the beginning of the bubble and I wanted an absurd number. All we had were six slides and I wanted a $10 million post-money valuation. Back then, all you got is a couple of slides. But it was my eighth startup and my partner had been around for a while too. We've had done this before. We had gone back and forth, but this was a new firm and they wanted us.

We're in their conference room. I say, "Why can't you guys do $10 million?" Finally they admitted, "Steve, we're »

- Steve Blank

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Entrepreneurship Is an Art Not a Job

31 March 2011 1:50 PM, PDT | Fast Company | See recent Fast Company news »

Over the last decade we assumed that once we found repeatable methodologies (Agile and Customer Development, Business Model Design) to build early stage ventures, entrepreneurship would become a "science," and anyone could do it.

I'm beginning to suspect this assumption may be wrong.

Where Did We Go Wrong? It's not that the tools are wrong, I think the entrepreneurship management stack is correct and has made a major contribution to reducing startup failures. Where I think we have gone wrong is the belief that anyone can use these tools equally well.

Entrepreneurship is an Art not a Job For the sake of this analogy, think of two types of artists:creators andperformers (think music composer versus members of the orchestra, playwright versus actor etc.)

Founders fit the definition of a creator: they see something no one else does. And to help them create it from nothing, they surround themselves with world-class performers. »

- Steve Blank

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2011 | 2010

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