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If I was…setting out to be an entrepreneur

Posted on Jan 15, 2014 in Authored, Financial Times

Originally published in Financial Times on January 15, 2014 By Daniel Isenberg Daniel Isenberg has several roles, including professor of management practice at Babson College, founding executive director of the Babson Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Project, and founder and chief executive of Entrepreneurship Policy Advisors. He has just published “Worthless Impossible and Stupid: How Contrarian Entrepreneurs Create and Capture Extraordinary Value”. Here, he uses his experience to set out what he would do if he planned to be an entrepreneur: If I were setting out as an entrepreneur today, I would buy an existing company to scale up rather than build a start-up from scratch. I would make incremental tweaks of improvement rather than innovate, exercise cool judgment rather than hot passion and build my departure plan from day one. Why would I not launch a startling new start-up from scratch?...

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Why big business failure is a good thing

Posted on Aug 25, 2013 in Book Coverage, Financial Times, Print

Originally published in the Financial Times, August 25, 2013 By Jonathan Moules Should we be worried when large companies fail? High quality global journalism requires investment. Please share this article with others using the link below, do not cut & paste the article. See our Ts&Cs and Copyright Policy for more detail. Email ftsales.support@ft.com to buy additional rights. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/eff8477e-09a9-11e3-8b32-00144feabdc0.html#ixzz2d6GFSyFS That may seem an odd question to be asking in a column devoted to small cap businesses, although the troubles that have befallen once-mighty brands like Blackberry, Tesco and HMV have made it a regular news theme since 2008. However, I would argue big business failure is an issue for small companies – for two chief reasons. Firstly, smaller companies often rely on their larger brethren for contracts, shelf space and even for growth finance. So Therefore what happens to one affects the other. Secondly, there has been a marked difference in...

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On dispelling the myths about entrepreneurs

Posted on Jul 1, 2013 in Book Coverage, Financial Times, Print

Originally published on Financial Times, July 10, 2013 Worthless, Impossible and Stupid: How Contrarian Entrepreneurs Create and Capture Extraordinary Value, by Daniel Isenberg, Harvard Business Review Press, $27/£17.99 This is a good time to be an entrepreneur. As the global economy has teetered on the edge of collapse, and former pillars of society from bankers to politicians have become mired in scandal, business founders have been lionised across the world as the saviours of capitalism and a source of hope for the future. The general interest in the subject means that it is also a good time to be writing a book about entrepreneurship. Daniel Isenberg is the latest to do this with what he regards as an alternative look at the subject. Isenberg is a widely respected authority on the subject, having spent the best part of three...

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A spirit for enterprise

Posted on May 8, 2013 in Financial Times, Interviews and Media Quotes, Print, Quote

Originally published on Financial Times, May 8, 2013 By Joe Leahy When Linda Rottenberg moved to Latin America in the 1990s, she was surprised to find there was no word for “entrepreneur” in the local Spanish or Portuguese. Ms Rottenberg, president of Endeavor, a global non-governmental organisation that supports entrepreneurship, says every university student she met wanted to work for the government. Over the years, however, with the opening of the region’s economies and the rise of its stock markets, that attitude has changed so much that a Portuguese word for entrepreneur has emerged: empreendedor. “One of my favourite days was when the editor of a Portuguese dictionary told me he was adding the word for ‘entrepreneur’,” Ms Rottenberg said recently, before the Global Entrepreneurship Conference, a summit for service providers in the field, which was held in Rio...

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New Orleans start-ups and all that jazz

Posted on Apr 9, 2011 in Financial Times, Interviews and Media Quotes, Print, Quote

Originally published on Financial Times, May 9, 2011 By April Dembosky Jonas Deffes, a New Orleans-based personal trainer, has a business model that is as well-defined as his biceps. He has about 200 clients at any given time, never sets foot in a gym and works no more than 20 hours a month. But, he says, he is earning enough to hop on a cruise whenever he fancies. Last month his peers voted him one of the top fitness entrepreneurs in the industry. The accolade is all the more welcome because his success has been recent, built in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina. When the hurricane hit New Orleans in 2005, Mr Deffes lost everything. Like others, the single father fled the flooded city, with his baby daughter and just two bags of clothes. His other possessions were destroyed...

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