Archive for December, 2009

Underlying motivation

December 15th, 2009

Why I gave away my company to charityRecently, I’ve stumbled across a couple of powerful examples of prominent entrepreneurs explaining what drives them. I highly recommend this post by Derek Sivers where he explains the reasons he gave his companies away to charity. I’m deeply impressed by his willingness to create a greater benefit to society instead of simply accumulating wealth. As he puts it, “I get the deeper happiness of knowing the lucky streak I’ve had in my life will benefit tons of people – not just me.”

I also listened to a (religious) talk by Jon Huntsman, Sr.,  founder of Huntsman Chemical and 47th richest man alive, talk about what drives him. He mentioned Andrew Carnegie’s declaration of the law of accumulation of wealth (which hangs in his office), “We are to consider all surplus revenues which come to us simply as trust funds which we are called upon to administer in the manner in which in our judgment is best calculated to produce the most beneficial results for the community. Thus a man of wealth becomes a mere agent and trustee for his poorer brother.” Huntsman went on to explain how this sense of being a trustee has influenced him to found the renowned Huntsman Cancer Institute.

I admire those who start or run a business out of a deeper conviction to help society as a whole. Every entrepreneur should have a good understanding of what they’re underlying goals are and I think these two stand out as great role models.

A Face for a Brand

December 11th, 2009

Just a quick update, we finally decided on a logo. In the previous post I mentioned we were struggling whether to go with something that we thought would appeal to our target audience or something that appealed to our individual/collective personalities. Ultimately we landed more on our target audience with a sprinkle of collective personality.

It is interesting to note, however, that during our discussion I came to recognize the multiple customer groups that have different needs that would be touched by our company. I think we managed to go with something simple but different. So without further hoopla and since you already can see it here is the new logo for tshirts4hire.com:

Logo

 

Let us know what you think. Next up finalize specs and set up formal business structure.

CrunchPad observations

December 10th, 2009

In a previous post I argued that there was an upcoming trend of non-software related startups emerging. Along those lines, I’ve been watching the evolution of the CrunchPad with great interest. Tech Crunch blogger Michael Arrington saw a need for a simple, cheap tablet for browsing the internet and decided to bring his vision to life. See wikipedia for a good summary of the developments between then and now.

Then during the past week the CrunchPad as originally envisioned came to a screeching halt.  See TechCrunch for the sordid (and fascinating) details on how quickly the team and project collapsed. I listened to the 1st part of the most recent gdgt podcast to hear their take on the situation. They made a compelling argument that this mess is representative of the difficulties entrepreneurs face when bringing physical projects to market. They also point out that arranging bits is a lot less complicated than arranging atoms. I’ll keep watching and hoping for some non-software tech startups but this story shows the hurdles that remain for bringing physical products to market.

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