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When we think about the startup life we're often occupied with visions of long days and late nights in the office and the all consuming passion that overtakes a life as someone takes a vision and turns it into reality. An entrepreneur certainly has many things that can easily engulf his or her life as they balance product creation, customer development, hiring, sales and financing, to name but a few. But what about the other side of the life equation? Entrepreneurs have families, friends, spouses, and partners who play an important role.
"If you truly believe in the potential of your company to change the world for the better, there’s no excuse for settling for an acquisition."
I was reading through this month's Inc. magazine earlier when this quote caught my eye. My first thought was to challenge the notion. There are specific occasions when an acquisition is exactly what a company needs to move forward or to move on. This is just how things work, but the bold words sparked my interest enough to turn the page. I flipped to Issie Lapowsky’s feature with Vimeo founder Jake Lodwick. Lodwick was fired a year and a half after selling Connected Ventures, the parent company of Vimeo and College Humor, to InterActive Corp, an Internet company that owns the likes of match.com, Urbanspoon, and dictionary.com. After the acquisition, he felt stripped of his creativity. Where innovation once dwelled, process was introduced. Lodwick was fired a week and a half before he planned to quit. This experience backs his words of advice to entrepreneurs who think an acquisition means nothing will change within the mission of an organization. Lodwick bitterly states that "in fact the mission was lost, and everything will change."
I was having a beer with a friend the other night when he mentioned a startup in our community that had recently announced a “pivot” in its business model. He said that it was now pursuing a different “value proposition” in an effort to “monetize its client base.” I nearly showered him with beer while admonishing him for being a bad cliché of Valley speak.
Many things can make you a better entrepreneur. But here's one that certainly helps: networking. So every week eMed is going to highlight some healthcare and life science entrepreneurs on twitter you should consider following. This is not an endorsement, but an encouragement. Entrepreneurship is better when everyone joins the conversation. So please join us by following @emedcommunity and participating on eMed at Entrepreneurship.org
There are some lessons that no amount of reading can teach an entrepreneur. Sometimes, you just have to learn by doing.
Check out eMed's 6 to follow this week
I was in my element last weekend at the Kansas City Maker Faire. This "Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth” celebrates the things people create and the people who create them.
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