Spotlighting Prospectify

Our Geekdom Fund portfolio company, Prospectify, is the focus of this post. We first met the founders, Noah and Matt earlier this year. I felt that startup-love immediately. The video of their Techstars Austin Demo Day pitch is online now. Take a look! And if you’re a B2B sales model business needing leads, give them a try.…

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So you want to sell to a monopsony..

Most of us are familiar with the concept of a monopoly. A single vendor has controls an entire market. Buyers suffer because the vendor can raise prices as much as they’d like. There is an inverse to this concept: A monopsony. It is where there is only one buyer in a market. The vendors suffer because there is only one buyer for their good. Every market is on a continuum from monopoly at one extreme to monopsony at the other. In selling to discount retailers, for example, the market…

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The "All Commission" Early Startup Hire

Young startup founders often feel uncomfortable with B2B sales. It’s especially daunting in “old boy” industries like construction, education or banking. These teams often want to bring in a “gray hair” experienced professional in that industry to help them with intros and do sales. Makes sense. Given the startup has little to no money, it will often come up with a structure like: Gray Hair works at startup for no salary. Makes a huge percentage of any sales (40, 60 and even 100%) Gets a salary once the company…

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Finding Great People: Cleaners, Closers and Coolers

As an investor and employer, I’ve learned the hard way to exclusively work with highly resourceful problem solvers is the way to go. Great employees seem to make the company better and make their manager’s life easier every day. Until now, I didn’t have a language to refer to those people. The book, Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable was recommended to me last month. The author, Tim Grover, was athletic trainer for Michael Jordan and other NBA greats. Tim describes three types of people: Coolers…

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Is yours the best team in the world for your business idea?

This article made the rounds today: https://www.fastcompany.com/40410584/this-is-why-your-startup-will-fail It reminded me of a question I ask about every startup or business venture: “Is this the best team in the world to pursue this idea?” Lionel Messi. Best in the world at football.The answer needs to be yes. To illustrate, when Chris, Jason and I started the coding bootcamp Codeup, we indeed were the best people to work on it in San Antonio. Chris had a background in software engineering from a degree perspective and also…

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