Part 5: The Dream Team

Raw entrepreneurial talent and a diverse founding team correlate strongly with improved startup success rates. In this blog, I’ll provide evidence for this claim and propose a way to measure the quality of a startup founding team by looking at prior startup successes and also the number of roles within the founding team. Data show that raw entrepreneurial talent has … More Part 5: The Dream Team

Part 4: Prior startup experience may not help much

Over the last while, I’ve frequently heard that serial entrepreneurs have a higher probability of success. Mistakenly, though, I’ve taken this statement to mean that entrepreneurs improve by learning from past experiences. Serial entrepreneurs do have a higher rate of success, but their success may have more to do with them having the raw talent than learning while on the … More Part 4: Prior startup experience may not help much

Can you teach entrepreneurship? Part 3: How to make better decisions

Have you ever tried to make a decision by writing down, weighting and then rating a few different factors you felt were important? Maybe it was while picking a job, maybe it was picking a university course or maybe it was deciding on an employee to hire. If so, I think there’s a better way … More Can you teach entrepreneurship? Part 3: How to make better decisions

Part 2: Check-boxes for startup success (inspired by Peter Thiel)

In this part, I’m going to combine some rules of thumb to predict the success of a startup. The model will be based on three of the four characteristics that Peter Thiel feels are important for a startup to achieve a monopoly (take a look at chapter 5). The model may give some insights into why it might be that venture … More Part 2: Check-boxes for startup success (inspired by Peter Thiel)

Part 1: Entrepreneurship is like evaluating a fancy bottle of wine

Based on taste tests, it turns out that experts are very bad at predicting the future price of fine Bordeaux wines – so realised Orley Ashenfelter, a Priceton economist. As told by Daniel Kahneman in Thinking Fast and Slow, when Ashenfelter built simple rules of thumb to predict prices he was able to achieve accuracy far beyond … More Part 1: Entrepreneurship is like evaluating a fancy bottle of wine

Can you teach entrepreneurship, part 0: The importance of seeing things much more than once

Giving advice on startups is really hard and I think this difficulty is frequently overlooked. It’s hard to advise on startups because, in the startup environment, you rarely see the same thing much more than once. To give good advice you need accurately recognise patterns, and, to accurately recognise patterns I think you need to have seen things dozens … More Can you teach entrepreneurship, part 0: The importance of seeing things much more than once