Five Startup Lessons from America’s First Cofounders

In the late 18th century, a motley crew of lawyers, farmers, merchants, and disruptive freethinkers had an idea for a startup. Few of them figured the fledgling startup had much chance of success…and yet here we are today.

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In the late 18th century, a motley crew of lawyers, farmers, merchants, and disruptive freethinkers had an idea for a startup. Few of them figured the fledgling startup had much chance of success. They came up with many names–including Columbia, the United Colonies, British America, and United Statesian–until they finally settled on the United States of America.

But how exactly do you go about starting up a government, especially if it is unlike any other that has existed before? It wasn’t as if they could go online and read up on how to do it.

The Founding Fathers were an exceptionally innovative collection of men. Not only has the government they conceived of lasted for more than 200 years, but it’s a model of democracy around the world.

It’s fascinating to realize that the political strategies the founders argued passionately about are still being argued today in business schools, boardrooms, and in the garages and basements of those aspiring to become the next Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg. Continue reading “Five Startup Lessons from America’s First Cofounders”

11 Tips for Having Great Meetings from
Some of the World’s Most Productive People

A recent U.K. study showed that the average office worker spends around 16 hours in meetings each week. That’s over 800 hours a year, for a grand total of 4 years of your life over your career. Here are 10 strategies to get your office meeting off life support. Plus a bonus tip on meetings from Mark Zuckerberg.

meetingsMark Zuckerberg, Richard Branson, Nilofer Merchant, Clay Shirky, Valentina Rice, Guy Kawasaki and others, know about getting things done, being productive and keeping a crowd engaged. So when they talk, we should listen.

recent U.K. study showed that the average office worker spends around 16 hours in meetings each week. That’s over 800 hours a year. For a grand total over an entire career of–are you sitting down?–37,440 hours of meetings. That’s more than 4 years of your precious time.

There are few tried and true strategies for running productive meetings: Be prepared, have a leader, an agenda, a fixed time to start and stop, a conclusion and plan to follow up. But if we have to sit around in a windowless conference room for 9,000 hours, can’t we come up with something more . . . engaging?

Here are 10 strategies to get your office meeting off life support. Plus a bonus tip on meetings from Mark Zuckerberg: Continue reading “11 Tips for Having Great Meetings from
Some of the World’s Most Productive People”