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Showing posts from November, 2008

Startup Lessons from Obama - By Sanjay Anandaram

The world exploded in media fuelled hyperbole on November 4th when Senator Barack Obama became the 44th President elect of the United States. How a black man (actually he’s half white) finally got to the most powerful position in the world became fodder for myth-making and over-the-top expectations. But what got lost in the frenzy, as often happens in cult-building, are the details.

How did a young (Obama’s 47), inexperienced (he’s a first time Senator with less than 3 years experience as a US Senator), half-black man with no pedigree take an established political structure (both in his own party as well as in the opposition) manned by very experienced and canny people and finally deliver a resounding victory? There are lessons that can be learnt especially for entrepreneurs around the world:

1) Understand the opportunity and the need: In 2004, George Bush defeated John Kerry by harping on the theme of national security. Kerry helped by being a less than inspiring leader. By 2006, the m…

"Time is the greatest enemy"

Chris Douvos, Co-Head of Private Equity Investing at The Investment Fund for Foundations, has an open letter to the CEOs of the portfolio companies of the funds he's invested in.
Indeed, the ingredients of any business are: ideas, people, capital, and time. And of those elements, time is the most immutable, the most obstinate, the most tyrannical. They’re just not making any more of it!

You have but one weapon against this cruel oppressor: focus. In good times, managers don’t have to focus as acutely because the creation of good stuff outstrips the slouching to disorder. The great all-weather managers, on the other hand, have to focus because they realize that time is really expensive and when the creation of good stuff slows, entropy lies in wait. Choose what to do and what not to do. Just choose quickly and be explicit about your choices.

We’re all in this together. Your success becomes my success (less, ahem, the GP carry) and I’m rooting for you. You guys are the beatin…

Sunil Mittal Interview to Knowledge@Wharton

Inspiring Stuff! Must see.

Couple of nuggets:

* It's a good idea to try and partner large cos.

* As a start-up, when there is a choice to be made between speed and perfection, always go for speed.

(Hat Tip:

Arun Natarajan is the Founder & CEO of Venture Intelligence, the leading provider of information and networking services to the Private Equity and Venture Capital ecosystem in India. View sample issues of Venture Intelligence India newsletters and reports.