Do More Faster – Part I

by Scott Edward Walker on March 9th, 2011

Introduction


I just finished reading the book Do More Faster, which is a collection of blog posts/articles by successful entrepreneurs and investors edited by David Cohen, the founder and CEO of TechStars, and Brad Feld, the managing director of Foundry Group.  As Brad noted on his blog: “Our goal was to write a unique book full of useful information for any early stage entrepreneur.  Rather than give advice or simply tell an entrepreneurial success story, we decided to blend the experience of the TechStars entrepreneurs and the TechStars mentors in an organized fashion.”

Below are a few nuggets from the first half of the book; I will share some second-half quotes in my next post.  Cheers, Scott

Solid Quotes

  • “There are few things as rewarding as starting a business from nothing, creating jobs and building something that matters.” –Mark Pincus, co-founder and CEO of Zynga (Foreward, p.xi)
  • “If you have a brilliant idea, it’s safe to assume that a few very smart people are working on the same thing….” –Tim Ferriss, best-selling author and serial entrepreneur (p.4)
  • “When you’re selling a solution to a problem and you find that nobody is saying no to your prices, you’ve found some serious pain.” –Isaac Saldana, founder and CEO of SendGrid (p.11)
  • “Getting feedback and new ideas is the lifeblood of any startup.  There is no point in living in fear of someone stealing your idea. . . . [Y]ou can steal ideas, but you can’t steal execution.”  –Nate Abbott and Natty Zola, co-founders of EverLater (p.15)
  • “Usage is like oxygen for ideas.  You can never fully anticipate how an audience is going to react to something you’ve created until it’s out there.  That means every moment you’re working on something without it being in the public arena, it’s actually dying, deprived of the oxygen of the real world.” –Matt Mullenweg, founder of Automattic (creator of WordPress) (p.21)
  • “Focus on the smallest possible problem you could solve that would potentially be useful.” – Ev Williams, co-founder of Twitter (p.24)
  • “Instead of just assuming that we knew what our users were doing, we figured it out by carefully monitoring our logs and studying our analytics.” —Darren Crystal, co-founder and CTO of Photobucket
  • “As long as I listen to my customers, I never need to have another original idea.”  –Niel Robertson, founder and CEO of Trada (p. 35)
  • “Build the smallest possible product that allows you to test assumptions and answer questions about your business, and then get it out there.” –Sean Corbett, co-founder of HaveMyShift (p.37)
  • “Creating a company is really hard and there is way more work than you can even begin to grasp.  Having someone to share your burden, walk side by side with you into battle, and sing you show tunes when you’re feeling blue is invaluable.” – Mark O’Sullivan, founder & CEO of Vanilla (p. 65)
  • “I was so obsessed with the idea for oneforty that I literally couldn’t quit.  I had to see it come to light…  If you can’t quit no matter how hard you try, then you have a chance to succeed.” –Laura Fitton, founder & CEO of oneforty (p.80)
  • “Salespeople hunt pink Cadillacs. Startups seek friends.” –Micah Baldwin, CEO of Graphic.ly (p. 88)
  • “You can literally feel it when you walk into a great startup culture. The room has energy.  There’s a buzz. Doors are open. Whiteboards are filled with hieroglyphics.  People are getting stuff done.  Meetings are short and to the point.”  —Greg Gottesman, managing director of Madrona Venture Group (p. 98)
  • “[L]iving the startup life requires both art and science and is simultaneously qualitative and quantitative.  Take all the inputs you can gather and then make the decisions that feel right to both your head and your gut.”  –Ryan McIntyre, co-founder of Excite.com and Managing Director at Foundry Group (p. 130)
  • “For a startup, having great sales DNA is a wonderful asset.  But at the early stages, it can devour the company’s future.” –Eric Ries, author of The Lean Startup Methodology (p. 134)
  • “Remember that human nature has a tendency to admire complexity, but to reward simplicity.  Complexity has an inverse effect on the ability to scale your business.  The more complicated you make your business, the harder it is to expand it.” Ben Huh, CEO of The Cheezburger Network (p. 146)
  • “[D]on’t hide your failures. Wear them as a badge of honor. And most of all, learn from them.” –Fred Wilson, Managing Partner at Union Square Ventures (p. 160)

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2 Responses to “Do More Faster – Part I”

  1. Brandon says:

    Looking forward to the day the book arrives at my doorstep. They don’t sell it here in Malaysia.

  2. Definitely worth reading.

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