2016

Excited to be an Investor in The Wing

This is going to be BIG.

It means a lot to me to find financial opportunities investing in companies that I can be really proud of--education companies like Tinybop and Tinkergarten , or companies at the forefront of fair labor practices like Homer Logistics. There are others that haven't launched that I'm equally as proud and excited about--and now one more has launched. I'm thrilled to be an investor in The Wing --a Home Base for Women on Their Way.

How I Promise You One of the Most Meaningful Days of Your Life

Both Sides of the Table

I know the title “I promise you one of the most meaningful days of your life” sounds grandiose but I mean it and I hope you’ll read through to the end and choose to take one small, totally free action, that will change your life and likely those of others.

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From Accelerators to Venture Capital: What is best for your startup?

Gust

With startup growth up 61% since 2014 and more investment programs emerging, it can be overwhelming for founders to know just where to jump in. As the most startup-friendly accelerator on the planet, MassChallenge has helped 835 startup companies around the world, who have raised over $1.1 billion in funding and created over 6,500 jobs. We have seen startups at. Read more >. The post From Accelerators to Venture Capital: What is best for your startup? appeared first on The Gust Blog.

Pixar President’s Wisdom

Venture Hacks

Some highlights from Ed Catmull’s Creativity Inc. Ed is the President of Pixar. “If If there is more truth in the hallways than in meetings, you have a problem. The desire for everything to run smoothly is a false goal. The truth is, the cost of preventing errors is often far greater than the cost of fixing them. Rules can simplify life for managers, but they can be demeaning to the 95 percent who behave well.

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The Best Sales Forecasting Models for Weathering Your Goals

Every sales forecasting model has a different strength and predictability method. It’s recommended to test out which one is best for your team. This way, you’ll be able to further enhance – and optimize – your newly-developed pipeline. Your future sales forecast? Sunny skies (and success) are just ahead!

The lion and the ant: A managerial lesson

Berkonomics

This story has been making the rounds lately, and I confess that our research cannot find the source. So, with thanks to whomever created this great little parable, here it is: “Every day, a small Ant arrived at work early and started work immediately, she produced a lot and she was happy. The boss, a lion, was surprised to see that the ant was working without supervision. He thought if the ant can produce so much without supervision, wouldn’t she produce more if she had a supervisor!

More Trending

On the Road to Recap:

abovethecrowd.com

Why the Unicorn Financing Market Just Became Dangerous…For All Involved. In February of last year, Fortune magazine writers Erin Griffith and Dan Primack declared 2015 “ The Age of the Unicorns ” noting — “Fortune counts more than 80 startups that have been valued at $1 billion or more by venture capitalists.” By January of 2016, that number had ballooned to 229.

How Google is using Machine Learning and AI

Don Dodge

Machine Learning will impact everything we do at Google. You can already see the results in Google products you use today. Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Deep Learning, and Big Data are buzzwords we hear every day. What do these words mean? How will Machine Learning make my life better? Let’s take a look. What is Machine Learning? Isn’t that Artificial Intelligence? Not exactly. Let’s spend a minute defining the terms.

Insightful Study of 386 SaaS Startup Pricing Pages

OnStartups

Late last year, I combed through the Montclare SaaS 250 — a directory of the biggest SaaS companies in the world — to find common trends in what I thought would be a significant dataset. As it turned out, 80% of the 250 biggest SaaS companies didn’t have a pricing page at all. Expecting to find a set of data more representative of what I’m used to seeing around (essentially startups), I turned to a bigger sample, scraping information from the first 400 startups in AngelList’s ‘Trending’ category.

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Missing Quantative Easing for unicorns will change private investment markets

Thomas Grota

Some months ago I was arguing the end of the unicorn era?—?meaning meaning startup companies driven to +1bn. investing vc quantative easing Mergers and Acquisitions exit private equity startups

B2B Pocket Playbook: End-to-End Guide to Sales Enablement

Sales enablement is the strategic process of providing sales teams with the content, guidance, and mentorship needed to engage targeted buyers. It’s all about equipping sales professionals with the tools they need to put their best-selling foot forward. And if sales teams want to continuously sell better -- and faster -- their sales enablement process must have a game-winning strategy. It's time for you to start selling smarter - and hitting your sales number - with the best B2B database in the market. Get started today.

What was Nike like as a startup?

Unvalidated Learnings

And what you can learn from it Can you imagine Nike was a startup once? A lone guy in his parents’ garage hustling his way through importing cheap running shoes from Japan and selling them door to door (or rather race track to race track). Such is the company’s current scale and standing in popular culture that it’s hard to imagine it once was nothing more than a scrappy upstart with chronic cash shortages.

How come VCs are. jerks?

This is going to be BIG.

That was a question posed to me by a new analyst at a venture capital fund. Admittedly, I finished this person's sentence after their long pause. but the word "jerks" was agreed to as the direction they were taking the question. While there are lots and lots of really kind, generous people working in venture capital--the recently retired Howard Morgan, Hunter Walk, Brad Feld, and Karin Klein for example--it's really tough to argue that there isn't widespread jerkery.

How I Invest

Both Sides of the Table

I was speaking recently to the team at NuOrder , an LA-based company we’re an investor in about “realism in startups” — an impromptu talk I have given to any of our portfolio companies who ask. During the Q&A I was asked about how I make investment decisions in early-stage businesses. I was asked again in an LP meeting later in the week and then again at a founder breakfast gathering we hosted yesterday. I answered in the same way I always do so I thought I’d just write it publicly. “I

Valuation Part I: Peeling the Onion, or How Top Investors Value the Startups They Invest In

Gust

Early-stage technology company valuations are generally a crap-shoot. Bill Payne did a great post about this in October 2011. This post builds on top of his work, and attempts to shed additional light on the valuation process. New founders may think that startup valuations work like this: I figure out what the value of my existing company is I figure. Read more >. The post Valuation Part I: Peeling the Onion, or How Top Investors Value the Startups They Invest In appeared first on The Gust Blog.

Pressure Points: How to Ensure Your B2B Pipeline Passes Inspection

This eBook highlights best practices for developing a pipeline management process that helps sales leaders and their team C.L.O.S.E (you’ll see what we mean in this eBook) more revenue through data-driven prospecting, stage analysis, and subsequent sales enablement.

Conscious Capitalism

Fink About It

In June of 2010, something really extraordinary happened in the world of Philanthropy. Bill Gates and Warren Buffet began recruiting for what is known as “The Giving Pledge.” ” As many of you know, the giving pledge is a promise made by the wealthiest individuals in the world, mostly billionaires, to give away the majority of [.]. The post Conscious Capitalism appeared first on Fink About It. Investing Life Start-ups VC

Eye of the needle? Why worry over your bottlenecks.

Berkonomics

Think for a minute whether there is any process or person that could be classed as the eye of the needle in your organization. Is there anything, process or person, that stalls the flow of work from start to finish? A CEO once told me that she was ‘the eye of the needle’ in her organization, purposely controlling quality of service and making sure all of her direct reports let her know of each . decision and action they undertook. Her intentions were pure and admirable.

Land, Expand, Retain

Tomasz Tunguz

In ServiceNow’s Q1 Investor presentation are the first semblances of SaaS metrics in public company reporting. If you sift through the 40+ public SaaS businesses, you won’t find mention of annual recurring revenue, churn, account expansion, or cash collection cycles in most of them - even though these are the the metrics the management teams employ to evaluate and steer their businesses.

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Benchmark’s New General Partner: Scott Belsky

abovethecrowd.com

The partners at Benchmark are delighted to announce that Scott Belsky has joined the firm as our newest general partner. It is rare for us to encounter a partner candidate who has so much experience as an operator, investor, and advisor at such a young age. We have confidence that Scott can be one of the best investors of his generation, and we are excited by the opportunity to have him as a member of our team.

Marketing-Led Post-COVID-19 Growth Strategies

Businesses are laying off workers, shutting their doors (some permanently), and struggling to react to the radical destruction that coronavirus (COVID-19) is doing to our society and communities. Most have already sustained massive damage, and we still have yet to see the scope of impact of the global pandemic that has upended the globe. Any return to normalcy may seem far-off, but sales and marketing are on the front lines of restarting the economy. When the dust settles, we have a responsibility to turn our shock and grief into fierce determination, and lead the charge of responsible, strategic, sustainable future growth. However, there’s no team better suited to lead that charge than the marketing department. Marketers are uniquely positioned to provide creative solutions to aid their organization in times of change and chart a course for navigating success.

Cities Building Community Wealth

Surdna Foundation

In cities across the nation, a few enjoy rising affluence while many struggle to get by. This situation is created in part by the practices of traditional economic development. Current trends threaten to worsen, unless we can answer the design challenge before us. Can we create an economic system—beginning at the local level—that builds the wealth and prosperity of everyone. Published By: Democracy Collaborative. Download Related Document(s) : Cities Building Community Wealth.

Why This New Chatbot Is More Likely To Get You Promoted Than Fired

OnStartups

Confession: For the past several months I've been furiously coding away on a new project as part of HubSpot Labs. It's called GrowthBot. It's a chatbot for marketing and sales people -- and anyone looking to grow a company (like startup folks). The launch has gone well, and my bot is currently happily handling thousands of messages. Things like "show me companies in california that use HubSpot" and "who are the top influencers about landing pages".

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Next phase of #Fintech and #Insurtech is coming in 2017

Thomas Grota

Beginning of the year I blogged about the Outlook on #Fintech and #Insurtech in Europe here. insurtech fintech venture venture capital invest market ai big data

The Toastmasters Secret Sauce On Running Successful Meetups

Unvalidated Learnings

8 Tips To Onboard New Users And Keep Old Users Engaged Following a friend’s recommendation, I attended my first Toastmasters event last week. Having no idea what to expect, I left amazed by how well thought out and choreographed the event was. Here are 8 tips I took away from it on how to run effective meetups, onboard new users and keep old users engaged.

How ZoomInfo Helps Overcome the Top Pain Points of Inside Sales

Recent digital transformation has shifted the B2B landscape by ushering in the era of buyer empowerment. With more access to user reviews, analyst opinion, and industry research, decision-makers are more informed than ever while navigating what is now known as the “buyer’s journey.”

How to Perform Inception on a VC

This is going to be BIG.

One of my favorite phrases is "performing inception". Inception is one of my favorite movies and I love the idea of meticulously planning out the placement of an idea in someone else's head. That's basically what founders have to do when they fundraise, because you'll never be more successful with an investor who thought it was their brilliant idea to invest in your company, not yours. Remember what we learned from the movie.

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Venture Capital is About Human Capital

Both Sides of the Table

Gregg Johnson, CEO of Invoca For the first 5 years or so after I became a VC I didn’t talk much about what I thought a VC should be excellent at since frankly I wasn’t sure. I was mostly doing my job and trying to figure out how to be better every day. After a decade on the job I’ve started to speak more openly when newer industry colleagues now ask me what I’ve learned. The number one advice I give is “stop trying to be too smart”.

The Expanding World of Accelerators

Gust

In some ways, it is now difficult to imagine a world without accelerators. Many of the globe’s most well-known and disruptive startups were propelled from the hallways of legendary accelerators such as Y Combinator, TechStars, and 500 Startups. AirBnb, Dropbox, Zenefits, Stripe, DigitalOcean, Heroku, Optimizely, Intercom, Reddit, and hundreds of other startup success stories were all briskly brought to life. Read more >.

Welcome to The Unicorn Hedge

500 Hats

Yeah, There’s a Bubble… But it Ain’t in Tech Continue reading on 500 Hats

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Marketing Ops: The New Revenue Hero

As data continues to play a starring role in today’s B2B organizations, both marketing and sales operations professionals are poised to solidify their place as critical revenue drivers. In particular, the evolution of the Marketing Operations (Ops) role has created a new standard in marketing and has become a vital component of an organization’s success.