How to Pitch a Startup Idea by Email.

By Tim Berry

How to pitch a startup idea by email? I scoffed a bit when I saw the question, on Quora. Nobody invests in ideas, I mumbled to myself. And pitching by email? Fat chance. But then I read the answer here, written by Bret Fox, former CEO of Touchstone Semiconductor, and now a CEO coach. Here... Read More »

Startup founder with child

What? Founders with Kids?

By Tim Berry

The question surprised me: “Is it a red flag for a founder to have a child while a startup is still in an early age?” It’s an odd view on startup founders with children. Enough to prompt me with this blog post. I could summarize my answer with simply, “absolutely not.” But here’s my more... Read More »

Drawing of pitch sessioin

What Makes a Successful Pitch

By Tim Berry

No, it’s not really the format, the pictures, or the design … although those help. Ugly, confused, or disjointed is never an advantage. But what makes a successful pitch in a pitch presentation to investors is not the cosmetics; it’s the content. Question: Is there one unique piece I’d seen in a successful pitch that... Read More »

Fraud

Horror Story of Small Business Fraud

By Tim Berry

If you’re a business owner, and especially if you’re in the expert business, you should know this small business fraud story. It involves a very sophisticated scheme, including a fraudulent cashier’s check, and a very well faked charity, that would have fooled me. This could happen to me or to you Melinda Emerson, a good... Read More »

Steps to Entrepreneurship

The Best Place to Start Your Business …

By Tim Berry

… is where you are. Sure, there are exceptions. Maybe you’re young, and have no roots. Or maybe you just want to move to somewhere else. But, barring special cases, look around you. The best place to start you business is where you are. In my email and on Quora I get a steady stream... Read More »

idea man bragging

Where Can I Sell My Business Ideas?

By Tim Berry

I get it. What a nice dream … just sell the business idea, and let somebody else take the risk, find the money, and do the work. Except that the work, the risk, and the money is what gives the business idea value. So nowhere. The answer to your question about where is: nowhere. Business... Read More »

7 Very Common False Assumptions in Entrepreneurship

By Tim Berry

These are very common false assumptions in entrepreneurship. “What gets us into trouble is not what we don’t know. It’s what we know for sure that just ain’t so.” — Mark Twain I answered a Quora question about this. Here’s my list of seven: That being profitable means having cash in the bank. Seems obvious,... Read More »

bar charts

Some Posts on Managing During a Crisis

By Tim Berry

I've been posting on the main bplans blog during the pandemic crisis. Here are six recent posts. Several focus on the economic crisis. Read More »

Startup Founder Compatibility is Vital

By Tim Berry

Please don’t ever estimate the importance of startup founder compatibility. It’s vital. And it may not be what you think. The relationship among founders of a healthy business is like a marriage. Compatible goals, thinking, values, and decision-making styles is really important. Even if a well-run and successful business, there will be a lot of... Read More »

plan-run-review-revise

Do those summaries, sure. Use those frameworks. But don’t think they replace business planning.

By Tim Berry

There is some bad advice floating around in the startup world. Useful as the Lean Canvas is, and despite some well-intentioned suggestions of summaries, those are not business plans. They don’t deal with the drivers and components of cash flow. They don’t set milestones, metrics, and tracking. You can’t run a business with them. And... Read More »