Guy Kawasaki; Don’t let the bozos grind you down

Guy Kawasaki je jedan od najpoznatijih business blogera. Jedan je prvih zaposlenika Applea, a danas je jedan od najpoznatijih venture kapitalista i autor cijelog niza knjiga. Kawasakijev blog je zanimljiv jer govori o cijelom nizu tipičnih poslovnih tema koje mogu biti primjenjive svima, puno tekstova se odnose na funkcioniranje tvrtki, međusobne odnose, prezentaciju i prodaju.

Guy KawasakiHow does typical life of American entrepreneur look like? Do you start your company, develop it, sell to the VC and move to another project, or do you stick with your original idea (in the case it worked)?

Mathematically, most entrepreneurs start a company and then stick with it for years. They never sell the entire company to venture capitalists because venture capitalists are in the business of investing, not managing, companies. A very small percentage of entrepreneurs are fortunate enough to sell their companies to another company. An even smaller percentage takes their companies public on a stock exchange. An even smaller percentage of that achieves Google-like success.

Sometimes you fail, idea might not work, powers_that_be were against you or maybe unique blend of circumstances lead to your ultimate failure. You regroup and start again. How does a history of failure(s) influence your decision as a VC to fund the project or not?

I cannot make the case that failure is a good thing when we look at entrepreneurs, but it isn’t necessarily a deal killer. Failure in Silicon Valley is common and creating a successful company after failing also happens. Hope springs eternal here!

Few months back you have mentioned tipping point and long tail; what if our country due to its small size and poor economic power of our citizens is basically one very long tail. What are your thoughts on playing/working on really small market?

Israel is an example of this. There are only 5-6 million people there, and yet it has had huge success with technology startups by selling products outside its countries. Clearly, it can be done. I’ve given a lot of thought to the economic power of regions. Your readers should check out this blog entry: How to Kick Silicon Valley’s butt

I guess that VCs hang out together from time to time. Which industry is currently fashionable? Can you name few of your current investments, particular fields in which they operate and at which point (size of the company, revenue) you jumped in and when do you expect to get out?

Social networking is hot here. However, by the time venture capitalists believe something is hot; it’s probably too late to jump into that sector. Despite the myth, venture capitalists don’t predict the future. Most are fast followers.

Two of our more recent investments are FilmLoop and Cfares. We invested in them when they were prototypes with no revenue. Generally, a venture capitalist would like to achieve at least a ten times return on investment – if not more.

Art of presentation; while reading your blog I have decided that I need to focus on just two basic items needed to promote my business; first is my company web site which have to generate interest (and stay in the memory) of my visitor – and that I have to develop killer presentation and sales pitch for the moment when I receive opportunity to present my self to the potential customer. How much attention should entrepreneur give to the web site and his sales pitch opportunities?

This is a difficult question to answer because it depends on the business you’re in. Clearly, both are very important, but they are not as important as the actual product or service that you’re offering. It’s easy to fix a web site or pitch; it’s much harder to create a great product or service.

And last; do you have any particular message you wish to share with Croatian readers of your blog and books?

Don’t let the bozos grind you down. Entrepreneurship requires ignoring the naysayers who tell you what you’re trying to do can’t be done, shouldn’t be done, or isn’t necessary.

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  1. Oba intervjua su bila odličan potez. Tek nedavno sam otkrio tvoj blog i već mi je u top favoritima, prvenstveno zbog konciznosti. Inače pratim radove i Godina i Kawasakija, kao što vjerujem da to radi i većina tvojih čitatelja (poduzetnika), pa s nestrpljenjem očekujem vidjeti kuda namjeravaš dalje

  2. studena, razumijem pitanje, ako ima netko koga interesira što piše a slučajno ne govori engleski neka se javi pa ću prevesti

    fora je da imam još četiri intervjua u pripremi (ne doduše ekonomske prirode) i da je to puno posla, a osim toga kvalitetno prevesti je vrlo teško, pa ja eto šaljem originalnu poruku as_is

    sorry, no blog je ipak slobodna aktivnost (koja ponekad zauzima nezdrave količine vremena)

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