Archive for September, 2009
This blog is more than a labor of love. It is the result of insights gained in over fifty years as an entrepreneur, fifteen of them investing in other entrepreneurs with world-changing ideas and passion enough to move mountains. Over seventy times I’ve bet on one or a group of those entrepreneurs, each time finding new stories and new insights to add to my caldron of entrepreneurial goop. When I speak as a keynoter at entrepreneurial or investor conferences, or when I conduct one of my half day seminars in early stage corporate governance, I weave some of these epoch stories of entrepreneurs good and bad into my presentations (of course leaving the names out the stories). And universally, my audiences come back to me with comments that they remember and internalize the stories – and these short insights.
Along came the social networks and the tolerance for a story-in-a-second, or if not in a second, then in 140 characters or less. The entrepreneurial success stories didn’t get shorter, but the insights became sharper. Is this the new communication norm? Should all professors of business now find ways to communicate in the verbal shorthand of the Twitter generation? Can a teacher push out enough information and expressed passion for a subject in such a short burst?
I thought it was worth a try. And so Berkonomics was born, partly of necessity to adapt to the shortened attention span of a young generation of entrepreneurs, and partly in an attempt to create memorable, repeatable, viral transfers of insight to this new audience of easily distracted but completely dedicated business professionals.
Like a small stream feeds the rivers into an ocean, these short bursts have been parsed into arbitrary, random groups of 101 insights further divided into eleven stages of a business from ignition to liquidity (startup to sale). The sum of these, the ocean of insight, is Berkonomics. How do we feed the streams into the rivers that roll into the ocean of content? We start with a tweet, a Facebook posting, a Plaxo or LinkedIn post. Each leads to a link to www.Berkonomics.com, where a bit more space is devoted to each burst for those with the time and inclination to explore more. The ocean in this case is my book, Berkonomics, containing the same 101 compact ideas further expanded with stories about entrepreneurs and their businesses that have embraced or violated these rules, these insights, and created an opportunity to tell yet another story to reinforce one of the lessons in business insight represented by the whole of this effort.
Every one of us has a story to add to this mix, one of passionate entrepreneurism, sometimes inside an existing larger corporation, sometimes alone on a kitchen table or back room desk. And it is a sure thing that many of us will have cogent, insightful additions to this caldron, culled from their own experiences. There’s a place for these in the blog, and I welcome any and all for others to read and learn. This adventure we call Berkonomics should be fun and informative. Let’s all try to add a bit of each and stir the brew in the process.