to page content
to site navigation
The Resource Center has all the info you'll need From content to user feedback, the resource center has the information you need for every level of the entrepreneurial process.
During my years at the Kauffman Foundation I have seen firsthand the effect that education can have on the development of entrepreneurs and their companies. The entrepreneurs with whom I have worked have taken the lessons they have learned and applied them to great effect in their endeavors as founders. These entrepreneurs benefited from opportunities to learn critical skills, and from gaining an understanding of crucial decisions or junctures that often can derail entrepreneurial businesses.
Some of the very first decisions founders must make early on in their ventures are crucially important to the future of the business. Many of these decisions concern the ubiquitous "people problems" that challenge even experienced entrepreneurs. When should I found? Should I co-found with someone? With whom? How should we split the equity? Bad or ill-informed choices at critical junctures could have significant consequences for startups. In fact, research has suggested that 65 percent of new firm failures were related to problems within the management team.
Once you've heard the insight--that startups are different from big companies--it seems so obvious. Yet too often entrepreneurs, and those that teach them, approach the building of new companies with the same goals, staff structures and assumptions that motivate the management of large companies. Startup founders build teams to focus on engineering, and on the process of creating a product and bringing it to market.
When I read Meg Hirshberg's book "For Better or for Work: A Survival Guide for Entrepreneurs and Their Families" I knew instantly that I wanted Meg to join our slate of Founders School experts. The goal of Founders School is to provide entrepreneurs with crucial skills and knowledge, and to do so with an eye to topics that are important but rarely discussed in typical entrepreneurship education programs. The subject of Meg's book is just such a topic. We all know that entrepreneurs have to juggle a variety of considerations when founding a company: team building, assessment of product/market fit, intellectual property, and how to get that first important customer. What many entrepreneurs and, more importantly, their families, know is that there's a juggle on the family side of the equation as well, but it's one that many entrepreneurs may be reluctant to talk about.
"No business plan survives first contact with customers," Steve Blank says. What? Isn't the point of planning that you maximize the likelihood of success in the marketplace? Well yes, but perhaps not the kind of planning you might be thinking about. A business plan conceived on paper, powered by a great idea or invention, enhanced by research on the size of the market and a customer profile, has great potential. But it also has a crucial flaw.
SBTV.com is the first and only video news and information destination site for America's small businesses. It is also one of only a few women-led media resources in the country.
Because life sciences entrepreneurship thrives on harnessing new technologies, spurring innovation, and growing companies, the Kauffman Foundation met in 2003 with the Panel of Advisors on the Life Sciences to help advance those goals.
More than 6 percent of Inc. 500 firms work in the health and drug space, making it the No. 5 industrial sector for these fast-growing companies from 2005 to 2010. But these medical innovators aren’t all concentrated in the Silicon Valley.
The vision at Bioarray Therapeutics, a biotechnology company in Boston, is to improve cancer detection and treatment. By finding genes associated with cancer, the company is developing a diagnostic for breast cancer that can help doctors and patients choose the best treatment.
As a biomedical informatics researcher and biotechnology entrepreneur in the Silicon Valley, Atul Butte has big ideas for the future of life science entrepreneurship. His Butte Lab works to solve genomic medicine problems through new developments in translational bioinformatics.
Want to get connected? Sign up to receive regular news, polls and updates from The Kauffman Foundation.