News & Blog

Jack's Blog

Our collection of relevant and interesting material to help you become more successful.

My 10 Commandments for Start-Up Entrepreneurs

billionphotos-348218

Since, over the past decades, I have evaluated a thousand or more proposed #start-ups and early stage companies plus started 8 of my own new businesses I want to share 10 “Must Haves”  that entrepreneurs need to pay attention to when they head off to launch their own start-up ventures. They are, MAKE CERTAIN:

You have the stomach and personal qualities to be a successful entrepreneur. I have seen too many start-ups and early stage companies fail because the Founder really was not cut out to be on her or his own and belonged with a bigger organization working for someone else.You have unqualified support at home from your family. Your chances of succeeding launching a new business, if your spouse or significant other isn’t 100 percent in your corner, are pretty dim.Your product or service really has a market, i.e. enough people will buy it. I have seen many, many new ventures fold because their product or service really wasn’t important to the target market. It is amazing how often this happens.To be creative funding the new venture. There are lots of sources and ways to fund the launch and early pre-revenue stages of a new business besides selling equity and taking out personally guaranteed loans. Think outside the box.You are prepared personally to sell for your new company. Too many #entrepreneurs, particularly “techies” start their new companies thinking they don’t have to get involved selling. Wrong! At some point, you will have to be your best salesperson.You have clear, unwavering passion for launching and trying to grow your new business. If you don’t love every aspect of your new venture, don’t even start. Being an entrepreneur simply takes too many hours and too much energy, dedication, and sacrifice to try building something you are not totally committed to and passionate about.You can handle risk. A large percentage of new ventures fail. Are you mentally and financially capable of handling that risk? Can you sustain yourself until the new ventures breaks into cash flow positive?You can attract a talented team. Being an #entrepreneur is a lonely, energy draining, tough lifestyle. To have any shot of success you need to surround yourself with quality advisors and quality team members which is not easy given the limited resources you have available to attract them. You need great leadership skills to develop a winning team for a start-up.You have a viable business plan and business model and the timing is right. Among other things, this means creating multiple revenue streams for your new venture. Sometimes a new company’s timing is off. It’s possible to be too early before a market has been established. It’s also possible to be too late to market and the competition is too well established. For Uber and Airbnb the timing was perfect.You anticipate everything taking longer and costing more than you planned and expected. Assume almost any key aspect of your new business is going to take a year (at least) to happen which includes finding the right partner initially, putting together critical strategic alliances, finding the funding needed, developing your product or service and recruiting and building your winning team.

 

  238 Hits
  0 Comments
238 Hits
0 Comments

Your network can benefit your college age daughter or son

billionphotos-2843126

Why not help your young daughter or son get the critically important guidance they need as they get ready to graduate college and make their mark in the real world. We helped our son Jonathan network to the type of quality guidance he needed when he started his senior year at Georgetown University.

Jonathan invited three top people (actually two family friends plus me!) to act as his team in finding and landing his first job out of college. One of the other two previously headed direct mail marketing globally for a Fortune 500 multi-media corporation. The second was an investment banking friend who had been an assistant to the Chairman of Coca Cola before going to work for Disney and playing a major role in developing the park in France after which he headed M&A in Europe for U.S. Surgical. He was the best networked person we ever met. Sadly he passed last year, remaining a good friend of Jonathan’s until the end.

This team of three, all through Jonathan’s senior year, networked Jonathan to a long series of important business contacts including one of the founders of NetJets that was sold to Warren Buffet in the late 1990’s for $725 million. Spending time with exceptional business leaders that the team could provide access to only sharpened Jonathan’s already strong, evolving networking and relationship development skills.

Besides making important introductions Jonathan’s “career advisory team” also helped him develop a high impact resume, practice and sharpen his interviewing skills and taught him effective ways to follow up on opportunities with his networked connections. Obviously they also were strong references. Jonathan had a choice of quality first job opportunities before graduating.

Putting together a life team

Continue reading
  261 Hits
  0 Comments
261 Hits
0 Comments

If You Only Had $500 to Spend/Month to Grow Your Business or Career How Would You Spend It?

b2ap3_large_billionphotos-1210431-1

Recently I was asked this question which I thought was really a good one.What a great question. How would you answer it? Think about it before you read further.

I think the answer is crystal clear and applies to any size business, from a one-person start-up to a Fortune 100 corporation. It applies equally to developing a career as it does to accelerating the growth of an organization. I cover my answer in my recently published book

I would spend (“invest”) the $500/week by I having a business-related networking breakfast meeting at least 5 mornings a week.

Let’s say the average tab for two people having some eggs or pancakes will be $20. Assume also that maybe occasionally the other person splits the check or picks it up in total. So a week’s worth of breakfast meetings should cost you less than $100, leaving a few bucks left over that you can use to have some fun.

Why meet over breakfast?Almost everyone will agree to do this before their work day startsThese discussions are typically to the point and under an hourThey cost less than doing it over lunch or dinner. Networking at dinner meetings cuts into your quality family time.You are meeting on neutral grounds without lots of interruptions.It won’t disrupt your day. You can still get to your job by 8:30 or 9 (or earlier if you are both early risers).Who do you meet with?

Meet with all the various stakeholders and business related contacts you have which means meet with current customers, potential customers, current and potential suppliers, industry experts, the media in your industry, your professional advisors (lawyer, insurance, accountant), current and potential strategic alliance partners, employees at all levels in your organization, leaders from your community, members of your various clubs or charities you support. and others.

Continue reading
  245 Hits
  0 Comments
245 Hits
0 Comments

Jack Killion Discusses His New Book “Network All the Time, Everywhere with Everybody”

b2ap3_large_Jack_Killion_networking_photo_imageDetailSize

Our own Jack Killion was interviewed by Esther Surden who publishes a Blog on New Jersey Tech Weekly.

Her article discusses the Power of Business Networking and why Jack wrote the book. It answers many questions including how Jack and Andy Bluestone formed the partnership Bluestone + Killion. It closes with Jack quoting the three key take a ways from his book:

Network all the time, everywhere with everybody. That’s why I titled the book that way.Incorporate these efforts into your lifestyle, and help others around you develop their own skills.Forget about what you can get from networking. Concentrate on what you can contribute to others. I equate successful networking to rock climbing. When you meet people, you try to find finger holds. Once you find finger holds where you have some areas of common interest, dig in and try to figure out how to help someone’s personal or professional life.

Lets all congratulate Jack and read the article in full at NJ Tech Weekly

  162 Hits
  0 Comments
162 Hits
0 Comments

Subscribe to Our Blog

Tag Cloud

No tags has been created yet
jack-killion-logo-v2-white.png

©2019 Jack Killion
All rights reserved

Search