This is a public service announcement sponsored by Jumpstart Foundry and the good folks at 12th & Broad. Fellow Nashvillians, it is with the utmost pride and sincerity that I present this blog post as a living testament and recollection of history in the making during our generation.
We're excited to announce that we have partnered with Nashville business services firms to create Starting Blocks, a new offering that gives cohort companies, alumni, and Micro-Accelerator™ clients access to the best vendors in Nashville at pre-negotiated discounted rates.
One of the most consistent questions we get is about competition. With Jumpstart’s move to healthcare everyone seems to be focused on our competition with Healthbox. As the EC has grown and demonstrated the market need, several new co-working concepts have sprung up. Every time a new one is announced, there is a buzz about the competitive threat to the EC’s business model. These are logical questions, and of course, Americans love a good competition. However, for both JSF and the EC, we view competition differently.
In 1999, I launched a B2C education technology startup to complete and utter failure. I lost 100% of the investment and worse not one parent or student found value in my tool.
It is time we all start talking about our failures. They are part of the process.
Guest post by Eric Mathews
One of the hardest parts of entrepreneurship that new founders face is the drag, push back, and beat down by friends and family, customers, employees, investors, and others that surround them. It is manifest in the short cuts, rejection, decisions by committee, negative feedback, the social pressure to conform to norms, or the pressure to do something the way it has always been done. It is battling human nature and the resistance to change.
I’ve been a VC for the last 14 years. Prior to that I was a software entrepreneur. In 1999, we sold our technology startup in the craziness of the dotcom bubble. I was successful as an operator, but the day-to-day grind was tiring. I thought the VC role looked like a lot more fun.
The Lean Startup methodology is a great way to build products. Unfortunately, it is widely misunderstood and very challenging for humans to actually implement. There are several problematic aspects, but the least understood and biggest killer is confirmation bias.
Five years ago, we started as a skunk works… experimenting with various programs and strategies in an attempt to re-invent the way innovations are turned into products and launched in the market.
Over the years we have been serious about helping our entrepreneurs, but most of our efforts have been in experimenting with the JSF platform itself. Yes, we have helped build some great companies, but we have mostly been sharpening our swords and getting ready to change the innovation game completely…..Now, we are ready.