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A Checklist For Writing Code


Ever since I studied Total Quality Management in college, I’ve been a bit obsessed with documenting processes.  I was particularly influenced by Dr. Atul Gawande’s “Checklist Manifesto”, which underlined for me the value of collecting, documenting, [...continue reading]

The Tiger Mom vs. Serious Research On How to Be A Good Parent


Like a lot of our peers, my wife and I read Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, Professor Amy Chua’s explanation of her aggressive “Tiger Mom” “Chinese” approach to parenting.  She makes a strong argument for being a ‘tiger mother’, though her argument [...continue reading]

How ff Venture Capital Works With Universities And Students


I meet with a lot of people from the academic world, so I thought it would be helpful to summarize how ff Venture Capital works with universities.  Our main goals are: to understand the cutting edge of new disciplines; meet potential [...continue reading]

How to Create Competitive Market Maps With


At least ¼ of the investment proposals I get have a "market map" of some sort: a graphic analysis of the competitive landscape.  I think competitive analysis is critical.  Any useful startups is trying to perform some useful job for a client, and you [...continue reading]

Ten Experiments To Test Your Startup Hypothesis


You know that a new idea has gained dominance when it becomes practically a cliché.  That is what I’ve seen happen with the “Lean Startup” philosophy of viewing your startup as a scientific experiment in search of a business model.  This started as a [...continue reading]

Feedback Is A Gift; Should You Ask For It?


It’s rare to find someone who is insightful about you and your business ... and rarer to find someone confident enough in their relationship with you to give you honest feedback.  I treasure these people, and have paid a coach to do this for me [...continue reading]

Please Don’t Pitch A Venture Capitalist Without This Checklist

I’m surprised at how many funding pitches I get which lack some of the basic information which investors require before funding.  I think this stems from two causes: 1) Lack of basic knowledge of the information investors require.  But I would [...continue reading]

Seeking Investors to Participate in Study on Disruption of Asset Management


I’ve written in the past on how the investing industry is overdue for disruption.  I’m now launching a research project to better understand the emerging investment opportunities. We are seeking Partner-level investment professionals at hedge funds, [...continue reading]

The Best Movies About Real Business, Not Hollywood’s Idea of Business


Eric Ries likes to asks audiences who has seen a movie about a startup.  Normally everyone has seen “The Social Network”. But, quoting a recent profile: “Perhaps Ries’ most important message was that the same democratization of entrepreneurship [...continue reading]

Ultimate Pushup Videos / ffMASSIVE Conference at SXSW


We’re now gearing up for the 2015 version of ffMASSIVE, ffVC’s annual conference as part of SXSW.  If you’d like to participate as a sponsor or in some other capacity, definitely please contact my colleague Katie Frankel, katie(at) !  Last [...continue reading]

Raise Capital With The Skin You’re In: Blunt Truth from Don Charlton, CEO, The Resumator


How do you raise capital for your company when you’re not in the traditional social circles of the money people?  In particular, the VC industry is 76% white male and overwhelmingly straight; what if you do not fit into that bucket? I’m speaking [...continue reading]

Design Your Company Culture Like The World’s Largest Hedge Fund

Ray Dalio, Founder of Bridgewater Associates, the world’s largest hedge fund, is a man after my own heart.  A few years ago he publicly set down his core Principles for living, managing, and investing.  Bridgewater uses these codified rules for [...continue reading]

Lose Weight and Get Strong Without Leaving Your House


My family and I are in the process of moving to another apartment, and we are thinking through how to design it to promote active living for us and our children.  Both at work and at home, we’re trying to make it as easy and natural as possible for [...continue reading]

How To Pitch An Entrepreneur And Persuade Her To Take Your Cash

strijker arjen

With the rise of a trillion-dollar crowdfunding market, angel investors bundling their investment offerings, and family offices doing more direct investments, venture capitalists are no longer the only available source for entrepreneurs seeking [...continue reading]