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Altucher: The Ultimate Cheat Sheet For Starting And Running A Business

I came across this today, and thought it was worth passing along. My favorites below -
  • 7) How much equity should you give a partner? Divide things up into these categories: manage the company, raise the money, had the idea, brings in the revenues, built the product (or performs the services). Divide up in equal portions.
  • 9) Should you barter equity for services? No. You get what you pay for.
  • 21) Should I ever focus on SEO?No.
  • 22) Should I do social media marketing? No.
  • 25) Having a powerpoint that doesn't show me arbitrage. I need to know that there is a small chance there is a 100x return on money.
  • 30) Should I do market research? Yes, find one customer who DEFINITELY, without a doubt, will buy a service from you. Note, I don't say buy your product because your initial product is always not what the customer wanted.
  • 36) What other reasons should one fire an employee? (All points apply)
  • 51) What is the only effective email marketing? Highly targeted email marketing written by professional copywriters and the email list is made up of people who have bought similar services in past six months.
  • 56) Should I blog? Yes. You must. Blog about everything going wrong in your industry. Blog personal stories that you think will scare away customers. They won't. Customers will be attracted to honesty.
  • 57) Should I care about margins? No. Care about revenues.
  • 59) Should I hire people because I can travel on a seven hour plane ride with them? Don't be an idiot. If anything, hire people the opposite of you. Else who will you delegate to.
  • 63) Should I negotiate the best terms with a VC? No. Pick the VC you like. Times are going to get tough at some point and you need to be able to have a heart to heart with them.
  • 68) When should I give up on my idea? When you can't generate revenues, customers, interest, for TWO MONTHS.
  • 71) Should I hire a head of sales? No. The founder is the head of sales until at least ten million in sales.
  • 82) Should I expand geographically as quickly as possible? No. Get all the business you can in your local area. Travel is too expensive time-wise.
  • 83) How do I keep clients from yelling at me? Document line by line every meeting and send your document to the client right after the meeting.
  • 96) Investors want to meet me and customers want to meet me. Who do I meet if I need money? You should know the answer to that by now.
  • 97) If an acquirer asks me why I want to sell, what should I say? That you feel it would be easier for you to grow in the context of a bigger company that has experienced the growing pains you are just starting to go through. That 1+1 = 45.
  • You create your luck by being healthy and not regretting the past or being anxious about the future.
That's quite a few points, but I clipped those from my Evernote account. The full list is great, too.
http://jamesaltucher.quora.com/The-Ultimate-Cheat-Sheet-For-Starting-And-Running-A-Business

5 Replies

Duane Nickull
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Duane Nickull Entrepreneur • Advisor
Chief Marketing Officer, Co-Founder at Cheddar Labs
To add some bits to this conversation, here are the slides from a keynote speech I did last year at the Technical University of Vienna entitled Startup Heaven or Hell: 15 years of start-ups, blunders, karma and luck.

http://www.informatik.tuwien.ac.at/i2c/Uberity-StartupLecture_000.pdf

Don't repeat my mistakes, it is very expensive. Learn from them ;-)
Aravind Nirmal Kumar
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Aravind Nirmal Kumar Entrepreneur • Advisor
CTO / Tech Co-Founder / Product Manager / Customer Development Expert / Agile Web & Mobile Developer Ninja
Luckily I have had the privilege of working with James Altucher, wow he is full of energy, ideas and passion.
Alfred Lui
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Alfred Lui Entrepreneur
UX and Digital Service Designer, Community Builder, Speaker of UX Design for the Internet of Things
Great find. Thank you for sharing!
Andrew Tischler
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Andrew Tischler Entrepreneur
Serial Entrepreneur & Consultant, McKinsey & Co Alum, Lawyer
Thanks very much for these.
Brent Goldstein
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Brent Goldstein Entrepreneur • Advisor
Bold, Multi-Disciplined Software Engineering Leader - I’ll transform your organization and deliver the products you need
This is really great. I've seen similar advice from veterans, but this is dead to-the-point and cuts through all the bullshit. Get customers, generate revenue, get over yourself and keep getting new ideas. A lot of the best advice is hard to swallow at times because building a business is an emotional investment; this reminds you that being successful means making business decisions.
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