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VC use with Caution

Published February 16th, 2006 edit replace rm!

Good quick overview from Jeff Cornwall about why you should be wary of venture funding:

Use With Caution

None of the reasons are new, but they are all good and it is always good to see these reasons once every 6 months or so lest thee be tempted.

Guy and the Art of Bootstrapping

Published January 26th, 2006 edit replace rm!

Guy Kawasaki has one of his always great lists: The art of Bootstrapping, like many of his recent posts this is a summary of some of his advice in his excellent book “The Art of the Start”.

Also remember to (re)read my Bootstrapping AntiPatterns for advice on what Not todo as a bootstrapper. They complement Guy’s list nicely.

I've quit my 9 to 5

Published October 11th, 2005 edit replace rm!

So I ended up quitting my nine to five job. In Denmark you have to give 30 days notice to the end of a calendar month, so I actually did it a couple of weeks ago, but I couldn’t write about until today for various reasons.

It became more and more difficult to do what I wanted to do next to a steady job, so it was time to go.

I will be starting freelancing again around Nov. 1. This suits my temprament more. I think it is more honest and transparent. This was my first perm job in more than 10 years and I wont be doing another one unless it is something I really believe in. You know a job with a mission at a company with a mission.

I do have a few things lined up mostly Java (unfortunately), I also aim to put a lot more time into my own projects. If you need an experienced rails freelancer please let me know and I’ll send you my CV/Resume.

Feel free to email me at [email protected] or skype me at berserkertooth.

Thanks to everyone for your kind words and encouragements.

BAP #8 - Focusing on an imaginary 3 year revenue goal

Published September 19th, 2005 edit replace rm!

Focusing on a large long term abstract revenue goal makes you loose focus and morale. Instead focus on building the first $50K of revenue. Just saw this by Wil Schroter, The First 50 Plan via Ken.

The problem with trying to think in terms of “how do we get to $10 billion in revenue in 2050” is that you lose sight of the fact that your resources are very limited today. Staying focused on earning the first $50K of revenue allows you to concentrate your resources on a very well-defined short-term goal.

This is a brilliant little trick Wil came up with. Following the same logic I was also thinking that a better or maybe earlier goal of $2k pm in regular revenues might be better for a small bootstrapped web startup. For a frugal bootstrapper this may be sufficient to break even. Once you have proven to your self and others that you can make regular monthly cashflow and not just a burst of big sales. This could be an easy metric to yourself. Lets say your $2k revenue comes from 100 sales at $20. That is something you can understand and focus on. Our goal is to reach 100 monthly sales.

Updated, Thanks to Peter for noticing a slight math error.

Bootstrapping and the Sales Learning Curve

Published September 7th, 2005 edit replace rm!

Excellent advise today from David Cowan: The Best Startup Advice I Have which is about the Sales Learning Curve as defined by Mark Leslie the founder of Veritas.

In a nutshell as far as I understand it you need to expect a certain learning curve between you and your customers with regards to your product/service before it becomes sellable. In other words until you have let customers show you how they want to use your product and you have adapted to this reality, don’t bother traditional sales routes or funding.

In many ways this fits in with the whole agile approach of releasing early and changing even earlier.

Thus it is something to remember when bootstrapping. We bootstrappers are uniquely able to handle the Sales Learning Curve, but we need to be aware of it and not re-mortgage the house for 6 months living expenses to only find we haven’t got the sales we need at month 6 to keep in the game.

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About me

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My name is Pelle Braendgaard. Pronounce it like Pelé the footballer (no relation). I live in wonderful Managua, Nicaragua. I work with Clojure, Bitcoin and Ethereum.

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