This year I have been very focused on learning about what it takes to build a successful Startup. I’ve always found that I learn the best by finding mentors or experts in a space that I want to learn more about. So I’ve picked three mentors that have helped me immensely throughout the course of this year, I still have a lot to learn but can honestly say I see the world differently because of these three people. Along with reading just about everything my mentors write, Daina and I put it into practice every single day with Xelot so also learn by doing which is absolutely critical.
The funny thing about these mentors is that none of them know who I am or could pick me out of a crowd. I’m not saying this in a negative way, this is the nature of the Internet. That being said, I do hope that through practicing what they preach, we cross paths more in the coming years…and something tells me that we will. Hey you have to believe right? Okay, so here they are – my three Startup mentors, in no particular order because honestly I learn something different from each of them:
Fred Wilson – Fred is a Venture Capitalist living in New York City. He has helped fund some of the most interesting software companies on the planet and is extremely gracious by sharing his thoughts on his blog AVC.com. Fred has a great series called MBA Mondays that I’ve been following since it started, along with great articles every single day about how Venture Capitalists view entrepreneurs and Startups. This year Fred was one of the main VC panelists at Tech Crunch Disrupt, one of the coolest conferences in the Startup world.
Eric Ries – Eric is often thought of as the founder and leader of the Lean Startup movement. I had the chance to attend the Startup Lessons Learned Conference earlier this year in San Francisco which really gave me more exposure to Eric. I’m a big fan of the Startup movement and have been doing everything I can to learn more about how to run a lean Startup as I think this is the model I am most interested in. Eric has a new book which I’ve read (actually got one of the early draft versions!) and highly recommend.
James Altucher – James is one of my newest mentors as I discovered his blog a few months ago and now read every single thing that he writes. Along with being a successful serial entrepreneur James isn’t afraid to tell it how it is. He is brutally honest on his blog and isn’t afraid to write wildly controversial posts, everything he writes sounds like he is giving the advice to a close friend, nothing to prove, no guard up, the 100% pure James – and I love it!