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Ernesto Verdugo

Lesson to be learned as an Entrepreneur

I found a great post about What I've learned as an entrepreneur.
I also found an informative article about Lessons to be learned as an Entrepreneur.

The right advice is always cost-effective. Cutting costs is a poor substitute for getting the best advice. Lawyers, accountants and consultants are expensive. If you have the right ones, they're worth every penny. The mistakes they'll save you can be worth their weight in cash flow. • Protect your intellectual property like your company's future depends on it. Because it does. One of the first things I needed to do to protect my ideas was to write patents. If you have intellectual property, it's important to consult with your counsel and decide how to protect it. Together, develop a strategic plan for IP protection that addresses the myriad options. You can opt for a patent, a trade secret or to do nothing. You can choose to file multiple patents. You can file domestically, internationally or both. The choices can be dizzying. Expensive, too. But ineffective IP protection costs much more. Owning "bulletproof" IP can afford you the best protection against companies that want to morph your idea or discovery into their bank accounts. • Make sure your company answers a key question or fulfills an unmet need. As an entrepreneur, it's important to know the problem you are addressing in a way that makes it central to your mission. Ask around and learn as much as you can about your audience or market. Get specific, granular responses about their perception of your idea or discovery. Just because you feel that something is "new and revolutionary" doesn't make it so. Making assumptions about the need for your product or the "cutting edge" technology you are developing can cost you valuable time and money. • Listen -- really listen -- to constructive criticism. Listening is hard. When someone's questioning your company's raison d'etre, it's even harder. When I'm asked to assess start-up presentations, I often see entrepreneurs get defensive when questioned. Let's face it -- in the early stages, you'll receive a great deal of unsolicited advice. In a room with five people there are often 10 opinions with few of them worthwhile. The best defense against ill-informed well-wishers is to cultivate a key circle of people whom you trust and consider their counsel carefully. Concentrate on the message without judging the messenger. • Think about tomorrow and focus on today -- at the same time. The landmines you don't see coming can undermine your company's future. While you're working at a furious pace, take time to think of potential obstacles or competitive challenges, even if they seem far-fetched. Looking ahead will help keep your company out of "crisis mode." It'll also increase the effectiveness of your resource allocation.

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