What’s the Secret to Successful Product Naming?

How Personification Led to a Market Winner

That’s a catchy product name, I thought. I was running a software house which was building and selling software to CPAs. Sales growth was slowing so we decided it was time to move to other vertical markets. After all, the thinking went, we are selling accounting software. We Had Lots to Learn Accounting is accounting […]

My Personal Criteria for a Startup Investment

From 30 Early Stage Investments Over 24 years

I love visiting startup companies in a mini trade show environment. It gives me an opportunity to meet the people who are working at the companies. I much prefer this as an initial introduction. To me, it is much more revealing, more intimate, than a formal seven-minute stage presentation. Such was the case at the […]

Discover Your Uniqueness, Harness It for Good

“My superpower is connecting dots other people don’t see,” said Benj Miller, founder and chairman of Syrup Marketing. Benj is impressive. He asks the questions you know you should have asked, just after he asks them. Those deeply thought-provoking questions. The ones that get to the real problem you are trying to solve. The questions […]

Getting to Know Other People’s Stories Expands Your Perspective

“All the movies up for Oscar nominations this year are focused on women’s narratives,” Bryan said. I’m a REEL Fan I was meeting with my friend Bryan Coley. From time to time, he asks me to advise him. Bryan founded and leads an organization called REEL. They help people better understand who they are based […]

5 Steps to Finding the Right Business Partner

How to Know You’ve Found “The One”

“I am not going to join you unless we can become partners,” I said to Richard Brock. I was a twenty-two-year-old with no experience in business and lots of ambition working as a junior accountant in a CPA firm. Was I nuts saying that? When I think back to that moment, I can’t believe I said […]

15 Critical Steps for First Time Job Seekers

(Or for anyone wanting to make a positive first impression)

My son Nick is graduating from Georgia State in May. He is all about finding that first professional sales job and is ready to begin his career. He is hungry to learn, make money, and make his mark. I remember a few years ago when I would give him the name of a friend to […]

13 Reasons Elon Musk Is an Exceptional Entrepreneur

And How He Sets the Bar for Founders

I was meeting with my friend Jim Grady. Jim worked with me back in the early eighties. He was so taken by the culture, speed, and success of the startup we were a part of, he decided he wanted to be an entrepreneur. Over the years, I’ve backed Jim in the companies he’s created. I […]

Know When to Be Impatient

Getting the Most Good (Not Harm) From a Vital Entrepreneurial Gift

Impatiently, I looked down at my watch: 8:42 pm. I was having dinner with my wife and sister, Kathy and Janet. I finished my entree. I looked at Kathy’s plate. She had finished, too. My sister was still eating, ever so slowly. I looked at her plate, and she was only halfway through her entree. […]

How to Become a Legend in Football (or Business)

Monday night I saw one of the most incredible displays of leadership. Plus, it was the best college football game I’ve ever seen. There was tension right from the beginning. In spite of the 13-0 score at the end of the first half, we all knew the second half was going to be amazing. And […]