As we begin the New Year, 2014 holds so much promise.  I feel driven to recognize our gratitude.

Building a Startup is Like Running an Ironman

The Ironman US Championship race is being held in the greatest city in the universe this year, and it sold out in less than 11 minutes!

Champions from all walks of life make their home in NYC.  Ex-pats formerly from the east coast now living in the Bay area are flocking back home to NYC where exciting new startup opportunities exist like never before.  More than 8 million passionate New Yorkers, many of them knowledge workers, are, in their own way, building NYC into a thriving metropolis of digital innovation.

Startup People Can Do Anything

I did a seventh New York City triathlon a few weeks ago. It’s the same race that got it all started for me back when I was 40 pounds heavier and my doctor gave me the talk. I had grown up being pretty athletic, playing soccer, playing tennis, swimming, and running. And, like other entrepreneurs, I suppose it was the combination of falling in love, having successfully built & exited my first startup, living in the foodie capital of the world, buying a house and having babies that allowed me to put on the pounds with the plausible refrain that “there wasn’t enough time for getting in shape” that had my doctor concerned and proposing cholesterol drugs. And then something happened; I hired

I Had Dinner with Madonna

In 2010, I competed in Ironman Canada and had dinner with Sister Madonna Buder — an 80 years young nun who was running her 36th Ironman! We had arrived the day before, and Ironman Canada wouldn’t take place for another 2 days. The anxious anticipation and energy in the small town of Penticton was not unlike the minutes leading into a NY Tech Meetup or a ‘Demo day’ at any of the NYC incubators —the excitement was palpable. Confidence, persistence and positive mental attitude can carry you through any challenge. The physical limitations,

How can I recruit the absolute best talent?

I’m frequently asked by some of NYC’s sharpest entrepreneurs how and where I find strong talent. The question is typically followed by the assertion that it is hard to find enough good engineers in NYC and considerations about the west coast. I do some light questioning about their current methods and their approach towards recruiting after which the truth of the matter becomes clear; the best talent is rarely found—the people asking these questions are usually focused on the wrong problem.
Engineers are simply not waiting for you at the nearby Starbucks.

The Importance of Culture and Fit When Hiring

Culture and fit are among the most important things to vet future hires for, especially in the early days of a startup’s life.  Regarding organizational culture, it’s in the first 18 months that the cultural values and the essence of the organization’s DNA become established, and later can be very difficult to change.   To maximize the chances of establishing a strong culture with the kind of values that will endure for the long run, make sure that someone (preferably a co-founder) on the interview lineup team is solely responsible for cultural DNA evaluation, and that they are completely c

How do you avoid hiring the wrong people for your start up?

First of all congratulations on making this determination!  The truth of the matter is that the team with the best players in any particular industry wins!

People at startups succeed or fail for 1 of 2 reasons:

How do you hire developer talent for a start up in London?

Whether you are in London, San Francisco, New York, Tel Aviv or Boston the answer to how / where to hire developer talent is the same. It starts with your psychology. When you need to hire one developer or a whole team of engineers, it’s best to acquire the mindset of a hunter. The best developers or at least the kind that you want to hire are NOT going to come knocking on your door with hopes that you will make them an offer. Recruiting great talent is heavy lifting. It requires massive action (in the form of massive marketing outreach), personal effectiveness, investigative research, salesmanship and diplomacy, honest discourse, conflict resolution and other executive skills. To be clear, success in hiring great talent is a full-time effort and you should not enter the effort lightly. If you are not prepared to do it yourself

What is the most important aspect of a high performing team?

Alignment.  Alignment is the process by which a leader earns the will of the people and ignites a burning desire for those people both as individuals and as an organization to achieve its mission. The only way to get people to do something well is to get them to want to do it.  A leader must focus their energy on creating alignment through the use of:

2012-Best Year Ever

Wishing everyone a fantastic New Year’s weekend!

We’re pretty sure 2012 is going to be the best year ever.

More to follow in the new year. . . .

Some of Our Clients