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Commentary & Insights on Entrepreneurship The Top of Mind blog brings an array of editorial views to current events shaping the world of entrepreneurship. Engage, exchange, and expand your own view of the world!

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How Higher Education is Killing Entrepreneurial Thinking

A few weeks ago, at the National Association of Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) Conference, I took part in a panel discussion on the subject of preparing our future workforce for entrepreneurial thinking. As companies increasingly express an interest in creative, innovative employees, one of the hottest questions in entrepreneurship education has become, "How do we prepare graduates to solve real problems and find opportunities for their employer rather than just show up to a job?"

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Diana Kander
on October 29, 2014
Is There Such a Thing as Too Much Capital?

Just like in everyday life, money doesn't solve all your problems when you're an entrepreneur. Sure, not having enough can make it hard. It can even make it seem impossible to get your business started and keep it growing, especially if your company is in a capital intensive market such as healthcare or clean tech. However, having too much can be more detrimental at times.

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Taylor Brown
on October 24, 2014
Work and Life: Is it a Balance or an Integration?

"The Monday-through-Friday, nine-to-five is a pipe dream." That's how writer Stephanie Walden introduces her piece, "The 'Work-Life Balance' Misnomer: Is Work-Life 'Integration' the New Norm?" featured on Mashable last week. I think she's spot on.

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Taylor Brown
on October 15, 2014
Who Will Save the Economy? Scale-Ups or Startups

Last week, the Washington Post article, "More businesses are closing than starting. Can Congress help turn that around?" grabbed my attention. My response was whether or not all the startup support power laid in the hands of our nation's policy makers.

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Taylor Brown
on October 08, 2014
Why the Seven-Year-Itch Comes Even Sooner for Startups

In marriage, there's a so-called "seven-year itch" that takes the blame for so many doomed relationships. In entrepreneurship that same destiny occurs at year five. That's according to a research based infographic featured on Entrepreneur.com last week. The piece focused on the funding routes and failure rates of startups over the past few years. According to the data, most startups don't make it beyond five years, with only one third making it to ten years.

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Taylor Brown
on October 02, 2014
What's More Important to an Investor? The Company or The Founder

You've probably heard the age-old startup investing debate that pits the horse against the jockey. Basically, when VCs and angel investors evaluate a young company's potential, do they place more weight on the horse (the company) or the jockey (its founder)?

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Taylor Brown
on September 18, 2014
Increasing Popularity in Angel Funding Gets Help From New Educational Platform

It might not hit the national news like big venture capital deals or trendy crowdfunding, but good old fashioned angel investing is on the rise. These individual investors, who usually invest before a company is VC-ready, fund more than 67,000 startups every year and in 2012, their startup contributions reached nearly $23 billion. That amount represents a 36 percent increase compared to 2008.

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Taylor Brown
on September 11, 2014
Naps in the Workplace: Productivty or Slacking Off

Progressive work atmospheres are getting a lot of attention lately. From Daniel Pink's video on Founders School where he talks about motivating with autonomy, to the summertime buzz about the importance of extended vacations, it's on everyone's mind. Next subject: naps.

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Taylor Brown
on September 05, 2014
Women Outpace Men in Raising Money Online

The stats on women in entrepreneurship can be depressing. The Kauffman Foundation has done a lot of research on this topic. But simply put, women aren't starting many high tech companies and they aren't raising much venture capital. A recent Chicago Tribune article reiterated all this, despite any "lip service" to the contrary.

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Taylor Brown
on August 29, 2014
Top of Mind's 5 Must-Read Articles in Entrepreneurship

At the Kauffman Foundation, we know that senior entrepreneurship is booming. In his testimony before the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging and the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, Kauffman Foundation Vice President of Research and Policy Dane Strangler filled the senate committee members in on this little known fact, stating that entrepreneurship is not exclusive to the young and hip.

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Taylor Brown
on August 21, 2014

Twitter Updates

  • RT @italianangels: The art of #startup finance: "you need to understand your numbers" says Bill Reichert on @eshiporg http://t.co/BjfH38P9Oo
  • RT @ChrisFryFD: Is There Such A Thing As Too Much Capital? via @eshiporg #startup #sme #finance http://t.co/ifetCBK9aT
  • Students are pitching to professors, not customers | How Higher Education is Killing Entrepreneurial Thinking http://t.co/vKl33KS5bJ
  • What is the difference between self-insured and at risk? http://t.co/rDudMZMdrl
  • RT @absolut_zer0 celebrates one-year anniversary, creates growing community for local entrepreneurs. http://t.co/UlvJz9a5D2