No Startup Community is an Island

Prior to Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations, people had really weird ideas about how to grow an economy. They didn’t understand that trade (i.e. exchange between communities) was the great creator of wealth and prosperity. Instead, mercantilism and isolationism prospered. People tried to hold on to things like…

Learning Through Play (for Adults)

People ask: "I'd like to learn about XYZ thing. How?" The obvious answer is to go get some books and read. As we all realized in school, that's the opposite of fun. I use another technique: Invent a way to "play" with it. In other words,…

Biggest San Antonio Tech Wins in 2017

There have been some negative feelings in our tech scene lately. I agree that everything isn’t rainbows and unicorns. However, we’ve had some really amazing wins recently. I made a list of the most impactful things to happen this year. Biggest San Antonio Tech Wins in 2017 (most…

My 3 Best Travel Tools of 2017

I've been flying about 20,000 miles a year recently. This year, I made a few discoveries that have made a big difference in my travel experience. 1. Global Entry If you're not familiar, this is the US Customs program that gets you automatic TSA PreCheck so you don't have…

How to Email Like a Boss

Here's the secret to getting the highest ROI from email: Write less. That's it. This is easier said than done. It takes hard work as demonstrated in this clip from the great movie, A River Runs Through It: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXZxZxgouPo You'll see the most influential…

On Personal Planning

I'm in the midst of a weekend away to complete my plan for 2018. I did the same thing last year and it was a great habit to begin. Why Plan This may be obvious: when you have a plan with a vision, goals and a mission, it's certainly easier…

What Business Are You Really In?

I go to a CrossFit gym and have been for about 7 years now. During a stretching session, I asked him: "What business are you really in?" His response, "I'm in the business of fun." He continued that exercise doesn't have to suck. It can be…

Experienced Teams and Market Research

A founder posted a question in a startup chat group recently: My cofounders and I are all intimately familiar with our industry. Do we need to do market research? I firmly believe you should. In particular, the best research to do is direct research. Since customers are going to buy…

If You're Not the Next Uber

I get pitched three types of companies: Non-starters. The founders have made some wrong assumption about the way the world works. These ideas just won't work for some technical, market or team reason. Venture Capital Investable are the second and the rarest type. They are the ones with the potential…

The Startup Idea "Death Zone"

I spent a pleasant half-hour with a young man working on a food truck finder app last week. He'd coded it himself and done his best to hustle some customers and users. Sadly, after six months, he'd developed little traction. This man's idea (and many others that first-time founders dream…