Political Parties Are Out of Touch

Watching both parties election races has been interesting.  Let’s ignore the statements and politics from both sides and focus on something else.  Clearly, when #resistCapitalism is a trending Twitter hashtag on the Democratic side, and all Republicans can do is …






Access to Venture Capital Deals

Does it make sense for everyone to have access to VC backed deals?  It’s a good question because VC backed deals are fraught with risk.  But, taking the risk comes with very high reward.  If you invested $25,000 in Uber …






Learning Curve Effects

People talk about learning curve effects.  Not a lot of people understand all the ways they fit into businesses.  In business school you memorize the curve.  It looks like this. The learning curve manifests itself in different ways depending on …






The Government is After Your Retirement

Yesterday, the Department of Labor released a new set of regulations regarding retirement accounts.  Amazing that the DOL has the jurisdiction to get its fingers into monetary regulatory policy ahead of the US Treasury and all the other financial regulators …






Changes, Don’t Be Afraid of Them

It has clearly been established that inventing, creating, and executing a startup is really hard. I have heard others say that they have never been invested in a company that hasn’t had a near death experience. I can speak from …






Sales is Everything

Over and over I see a pattern repeat itself in startups relating to sales.  Do they have the skill or not?  Yes, selling is a learned skill.  It is euphemistically referred to as “business development” or “customer acquisition” or “customer …






Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely #PanamaPapers

I don’t know if you saw the Panama Papers released yesterday or not.  It’s a treasure trove of government official tax avoidance and corruption.  Vladimir Putin and his cronies have skimmed billions from Russia and it’s planted in banks outside …






Why Film Production is Just Like A Startup

Yesterday during the bipolar weather in Chicago, my daughter and I went to a seminar on film making.  When we looked out the window it was alternatively a blizzard, or bright sunshine.  We saw all four seasons during the seminar. …






Is It Socially Just?

Yesterday, Chicago public school teachers marched in the Loop.  They made noise. They clogged the streets.  They diverted police attention from fighting crime.  Yesterday, I lectured at a University of Illinois EMBA class about entrepreneurship. Did the Chicago public school …






Let The BlockChain Go

Wednesday evening I was on a Fin Tech panel at 1871 in Chicago. One of the reasons I love investing in Fin Tech is because innovation can smooth the speed bumps that exist in the system which stop people from …






Density and Mass Are Needed For A Startup Community

You can build a startup community anywhere.  But, if you want it to be sustainable, it has to grow mass and density.  It can’t be an island. Your idea or business has to be validated by the masses in order …






No More Junk In My Food

If you want to know how screwed up government has become, all you have to do is look at the Farm Bill.  It’s totally messed up and creates all kinds of bad economic incentives that make their way into your …






Entrepreneurs Do Stuff

Yesterday I talked about how entrepreneurs are observant.  They go through life and look at it differently than most people.  They solve problems. The other thing entrepreneurs do is “stuff”.  They don’t sit still.  Once they get their idea, they …






Half the Battle is Simply Being Observant

One of the things I like doing is simply shooting the bull with entrepreneurs.  Why?  They are idea people.  They look at the world differently.  What can’t be can become what can be. How and why are they like this? …






Yes I Went To Texas, And I Shot Guns

When I was in Texas, a couple of people asked me if I wanted to go to a shooting range and shoot some guns.  I told them “for sure”.  For a lot of reasons, I am not going to identify …






Fundamentals Are Important

The NCAA tournament is excellent.  It always surprises.  Cinderella captures our fancy for a while and there is hope for the underdog.  I watch it avidly every year.  Yes, my bracket is so blown up it looks like it was …






Trump In The Shark Tank

If you made a startup analogy to the Presidential campaign, right now we are in the pitch phase.  Each candidate is pitching the sharks-and you are one of the sharks. I have been watching it with interest because we haven’t …