Opinions

Thinking of Launching a Food Startup? Lessons From Two Tech Entrepreneurs

Boston has long been known as a tech hub, but there’s a green field of food startups sprouting up in the area. You could argue this is a food startup renaissance 12,000 years in the making...

 

My Thoughts on the Venture Capital Industry

One of our investors is updating his POV on the VC environment and reached out for my 2 cents. After thinking about it, I would describe my observations of VC with this headline: “steady as she goes.” Here’s why.

22 Ways To Make Email Not Suck

If what Alexander Graham Bell invented in 1876 was email – and if the technology invented 95 years later was the telephone – the immediacy of a telephone call would have been seen as an improvement over the delayed back-and-forth communication of email.

Boston Startup Talent: Leaky Bucket or Everlasting Spring?

One of our portfolio companies, Plastiq, announced yesterday that they raised a $10M Series B led by Khosla Ventures and are planning to move their headquarters from Boston to San Francisco.

Just Pick Up The F*#@ing Phone

Like most people, I send dozens of emails a day. Pretty much anything that I work on can be dealt with using email. But is that always the right choice?

Small Perks Can Make a Big Difference to Overworked Employees

Nearly half (48 percent) of employees indicate they work late nights and weekends some or all of the time, according to our recent survey of more than 1,200 professionals. For office workers, the 40-hour work week seems to be a thing of the past.

The Boston Tech Mafias

I commented on a piece recently in the Boston Business Journal regarding what successful entrepreneurs and technology executives are doing with their wealth and how this impacts...

Why, How, What – Startup Brand Positioning

The founders here at Baked & Branded stumbled, again, upon a TED video that we had watched years ago that has influenced, tremendously, the ways in which we view brand positioning for our clients, and ourselves.

Nobody Gets Consumer in Boston

Everyone knows that nobody gets consumer in Boston. If you want to invest in the next great consumer company, you better be in Silicon Valley or New York. It’s just a given.

Getting the Co-Founder Decision Right

In my recent list of #ifiwereafounder tweets, I started with the assertion that "I would aggressively seek out one, but no more than one, co-founder to complement my deficiencies".  This generated a number of questions from founders about the ideal composition of a founding team.

The Unexpected Downside of Becoming an EIR

Not sure why, but over the last few years, quite a few people I know took on EIR roles at various VC firms in both the East Coast and in Silicon Valley.  Overall, there are positives and negatives to being an EIR.  The positives are kind of obvious...

#ContinuedSuccess - Random Startup Thoughts of Late

Over my career, I’ve worked at a small sports marketing agency, co-founded BrandMatch Score and now wear lots of different hats here at VentureFizz.  I’ve always maintained a passion for startups. 

Making the Most of a PR and Social Media Brainstorm

In a world that embraces creative content, one of the best ways to leverage the many smart and savvy resources in an agency like Matter is to hold a brainstorm. Inviting a group to discuss new and exciting ways to bring a message, product or platform to key audiences always yields valuable results.

Probability Distributions and the Brute Force Approach

I’ve been thinking a lot about the outcome distributions in different circumstances.  The dimensions that I think about are...

The Demo

The best part of any interaction with an entrepreneur (whether it be a pitch, an informal meeting, or a massive presentation) is without a doubt the demo.  The demo invokes nostalgia...

The Battle for Boston’s Students is Being Fought Right Now

The fall semester may have only just begun, but the fight for Boston’s young talent is well underway. Silicon Valley and New York are invading with an armada of startups, emerging...

Microsoft, Near Death, & Enterprise Cloud

We all woke up to the news yesterday that Microsoft is buying Nokia for ~$7B (ok, not the carrier infrastructure biz but the main part of Nokia that anybody cares about).  This isn’t totally...

Business School Rankings Need a “Start-up Upgrade”

Each year, I watch while some business school or recently minted MBA Facebrags about their school’s ranking in the latest survey ― and every year it bugs me that these surveys do...

3 out of 4 Venture Backed Startups Fail….. Well, Not Really

This recent article from the Wall Street Journal suggests that there is a “Venture Capital Secret: 3 out of 4 start-ups fail”.  Failure, however, is defined as not returning...

What Happened in 2Q12…

An interesting report from the law firm Cooley crossed my desk this week titled “Cooley Venture Financing Report” – ok, maybe not that interesting – but the report looked...

Apple Stores: Brilliant Branding but a New Product Speed Bump

Apple TV is an aberration from every other Apple product. Rather than being an all-in-one device, Apple TV is a component that plugs into televisions manufactured...

Social and eCommerce

In the wake of the Pinterest round valuing the company at $1.5B from the Japanese ecommerce giant Rakuten, it is hard not to notice that social and ecommerce have...

Why do bad deals happen to good people?

Every technology investment is made in the belief that this will be the big one. The deal that will produce not just a great return but a stark, raving, mad return with multiples that...

The Biggest Problem Facing Consumer Web Companies in Boston

A lot of ink has been spilled about the challenges of building large scale consumer internet companies in Boston. Here’s a recent example that is quite thoughtful although misses...

How to explain being fired

Being fired is one of the hardest things to explain to a potential employer and how you explain it will be critical to your future career search.  There is no silver bullet on this...

To Leave or Not to Leave as Your Startup Grows

A few weeks ago, a very good friend who works at a growing startup emailed me with the following question (in which I’ve masked just a few of the identifying details)...

Why Innovation Needs Design Thinkers

Instagram created a better way for people to share photographs.  Their innovation was worth $1B to Facebook (even without revenue).  Why couldn’t Facebook...

The Secret Sauce: Community, Culture and Collaboration

It’s fun to work for a tech company. Actually – it’s really, really fun to work for a tech company: people work hard, play hard, and have a strong sense of camaraderie...

Rage Against The Machine - Boston's War on Mobile Retail and the Renegades Who are Fighting Back

I remember the first time I heard about the Green Street Vault. I was hanging out with my buddy Chris Yim and I asked him what...

Why Product Management Should Be Its Own Department

In my 15+ years in technology I have had the privilege of working as a product manager who reported to various department heads. In some cases I reported to engineering...