Founder Track

Learn how to identify your ideal customer and target market, workshop your pitch deck to prepare for your first round of fundraising.

How to grow your business with a limited budget

Strategies and tactics for founders who need to grow their business with a limited budget. Discuss low cost growth strategies including sales, SEO, social media and more.

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Equity Crowdfunding - An Alternative to Traditional Fundraising

The traditional VC model of fundraising only works for a select group of companies; what about all the other companies that need funding? Equity Crowdfunding can provide an alternative funding mechanism, while also engaging and marketing to an audience in a public way. Learn the benefits and perils of equity crowdfunding with a panel of experts from the industry.

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4 things that will choke your business

As a business growth and turn around consultant, I will speak about my personal experience and the clients I have worked with in business and show by examples the most common 4 mistakes to avoid and what they can do to find that one thing that can get them and their business "unstuck" and grow. Having grown and turned around personally my own businesses I have a personal connection with the people I help and it makes my passion to assist them and find that one thing that they need to get their business to the next level. Thank you for the opportunity. Juan

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Measuring Progress: Hitting Milestones Will Determine Whether You Win Or Lose

According to Dun & Bradstreet, the primary reason businesses fail is due to a lack of business planning. You are more likely to succeed if you have a strict cadence and processes in place to set, measure and meet milestones. In this presentation, you will learn how to effectively set, measure and meet milestones so that you can ensure you and your team are making significant progress. Meeting milestones are proof you can manage risk, which is extremely valuable if you intend on raising money or bringing on key personnel to help grow your business.

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Digital democracy, to be or not to be!

Globalization and digitalization have irreversibly changed our life. Do you realize that your digital assets are coerced to be relinquished "voluntary" or deprived involuntarily? Even if you realize the detriment, what options do you have? What is the inevitable trend of such fast progressing global connectivity? Prepare ourselves and the next generations to brace for the impact of the digital living of A.I. and big data NOW, while we still can.

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From Debt to Domination

So you've started your business but you haven't factored in payroll, inventory or rent and equivalence? Debt is now tapping you on the shoulder. You quickly need to connect the unknown to the known in your business and go from debt to domination!

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Building and Scaling A Freelancing Business From Scratch

Freelancing is a powerful tool for growing your own consulting business, or even supporting yourself while focusing on another business that you own. Anyone with a full-time job can apply their skills to freelance in order to take charge of their time. In this session, two experts in their respective fields, marketing and software development, discuss how they freelanced in order to go from working full-time for someone else to running their own business. We will walk through the critical first steps, pitfalls, and lessons learned of building a freelancing business from scratch, including: - Setting the right goals for your business - Defining and finding your first clients - Developing your brand as you scale - When to say "no" In this unique format, you'll join us for a conversation about our overlapping and differing experiences. This session is great for founders, those interested in working for themselves, and those looking to make a little extra on the side.

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How to Increase Your Focus and Double Your Productivity

Many founders get stuck in place. They have a good idea... they have a unique service... they have a valuable offering, but they lack the clarity on their next steps and the ability to focus on what's important. Frustrated from spinning in circles, the excitement wears off.... the idea dies... the business folds. Their gift to the world never sees the light of day.In this increasingly more distracting world, your ability to focus on whats important and execute your highest priorities every day will be the single biggest determining factor of your business' success. In this session, I will demonstrate a life-changing, step-by-step process that will increase your focus and help you stay on task all day long. You will be able to tap into hypercharged productivity! Guaranteed, you will get more done in less time with less stress every.single.day.

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How to entrepreneur in an invisible industry

You’ve been thinking about a specific idea longer than anyone else. How can an entrepreneur with a novel idea find success with investors and customers? When MedCrypt was founded, the medical device and cybersecurity industries were well established, but the intersection of the two as a new market was nonexistent. Take the time to explain your thought process and bring customers along the journey. And if you’re told no - learn from that. Is it ‘no you are solving the wrong problem’ or ‘no I don’t understand the awesomeness you’re offering.” Reflect on where things go wrong as frequently as you reflect on the successes. This session shares lessons learned in navigating a new industry that is constantly evolving.

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How to set up your cap table and investment strategy for success.

You're not alone . . . As a do-it-yourself CEO, you've built out a simple cap table on a spreadsheet and you Googled what SAFE stands for, but you frankly have no idea how to set up the equity structure and investment strategy for your start-up. Moreover, you don't have a budget for Cooley or Wilson Sonsini to advise you at this critical stage. Not to worry, this presentation will give you a primer on how to set up your cap table and investment strategy for success pre-revenue.

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Grow, Scale & Exit in 24-36mo

The importance of strategic business planning for startup entrepreneurs should never be overlooked. A good idea with hard work is not enough to compete in today’s hyper-competitive landscape. Instead, entrepreneurs must have the foresight to plan for the future and account for every stage of the Startup Maturity Lifecycle. Whether you are just starting out or you have been at it for a few years, this workshop will provide a framework for:- Objectives to Strategy - Strategy to Execution- Growth to Scaleability - Investor Communication- Exit In this workshop you will learn a step-by-step process for planning your business and identifying your true growth potential. Attendees will be working within proprietary BOSS templates and worksheets to guide them through each stage of the Startup Maturity Lifecycle (Inception, Cleanup/Turnaround, Growth, Scale, Exit). The finished product is an Operating Plan to help you manage your business and catapult you to a successful exit.

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War Stories from the Trenches by Leading Startup Execs

Learn from seasoned start up execs how they’ve taken the war hits of the startup world along with the wins and lessons learned while in the trenches.· Hear what happened on the startup battlefield and what you can do to be prepared.· Find out their manufacturing challenges and supply chain secrets from these execs.· Learn the rapid-growth lessons from one startup that went from $0 to $300 million in just three years.· See how these execs have integrated sales, marketing and PR to exponentially increase visibility and value.

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The Endurance of Entrepreneurship

What does it take to succeed as an entrepreneur? Is it truly opportunity meets luck, or do we have more control of the outcome? Based on her experience as an entrepreneur and working with other entrepreneurs in the Silicon Valley tech scene and beyond, Arin deep dives into the personal leadership skills and tactical elements required for startup success. The talk revolves around the ability of an entrepreneur to endure and reinvent themselves or their ideas in any given situation to make them successful. Weaving in her personal stories, this is a no-nonsense and entertaining look at the reality of being an entrepreneur and who each founder needs to be in order to see their startup thrive.

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Born Global: From Ideas to International Impact

Forget starting small. If you want to jump make it a big jump. Discover how the right products or services, and strategic application of the abundant tools available today, can build a world class organization - right from your garage. Fred challenges startups to take full advantage of technology, global drop shipping, internationally known influencers, the best and brightest contractors in the world, and automation tools that give you a big presence - a small organization can make an international impact. Why rule your neighborhood when you can rule the globe?As Fred shares successes and failures he offers invaluable wisdom gained along way. Entrepreneurs will walk away with little known traps to avoid and the growth hacks to give their business the edge. This priceless presentation needs to be heard by the scores of entrepreneurs who work tirelessly towards making their visions a reality and make a great impact.

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Patent Protection for Startups

Curious about patents? Here's your chance to learn the basics of patent law from a patent attorney with over 20 years of experience. Topics to be discussed include how patents compare to other types of intellectual property protection, what makes an invention patentable, who owns an invention, and how patents are obtained and enforced. This presentation is perfect for anyone looking for a quick introduction to patent law.

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Raise seed funding and revenue through Investment Crowdfunding!

How to plan and launch online Title III Investment Crowdfunding seed capital campaign? Sign up new users and members who can become investors in your venture. I will help you in two important ways, growing revenue and raising capital. Join me for an amazing insight into this new way to advertise your investment offering on social media to achieve seed funding and revenue.

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Let's Clarify the Confusing Legal Advice Online

There are a tremendous amount of do it yourself options nowadays, for EVERYTHING, including legal services. Some services are great for some projects, but the varying definitions and advice on the interwebs can be very confusing. This session will help break down the most commonly confusing and scary topics in the startup legal world.

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Get better at building better products

There are three foundational things that most companies get wrong - it leads to unhappy customers, confusing products, and a laundry list of features that everyone argues about. Avoid that - learn what it takes to build better products every day right from the start.

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From University Lab to Market

This panel focuses on the pain points, successes, and failures of transitioning university born research into a commercial company. The panel will discuss:1. Licensing university technology: the pros and cons2. Raising early capital in San Diego: the importance of smart capital3. Securing lab space: When, where, and Why4. Building an effective team5. The transition from academia to industrial R&D6. Industrial collaboration The panel consists of two Founders from MIT and Harvard representing three companies including Debut Biotechnology and Rejuvenate Bio.

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IoT and the Third Epoch of our Digital Transformation

First came the internet, connecting the world and bringing about an unprecedented amount of information sharing, commerce, and tools for empowerment. Then came 3G networks and the smartphone, expanding the power of the internet to be available anywhere and everywhere.And now we are in the midst of the third phase of our digital transformation - the Internet of Things. Not only is our phone smart, but now so is the toaster oven. We’re in the process of putting sensors and network connectivity into all of our physical real-world things. If my toaster can talk to my phone, and my phone connects to the internet, my toaster is effectively now on the internet. This is the Internet of Things.In this session we will explore countless untapped opportunities with IoT. We’ll talk about the 4 main categories where we are seeing innovation with IoT technology, in the hopes that it will inspire some to develop new, exciting applications of this massive shift in the technology landscape.

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3 Steps to Achieve Startup Success

Lucas' signature talk on startup success is on:-How controlling sourcing, operations, and funding will significantly increase profits and propel your startup success-Giving direction on what specifically to outsource immediately to gain traction and time-Helping entrepreneurs thrive, not just survive, by focusing their daily efforts on revenue-generating tasks

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Understanding and Managing Technical Debt

To put it bluntly, technical debt is the cost to your business for cutting corners when designing / building / supporting software. Technical debt can occur from a variety of sources: bad strategic decisions, too junior of resources, poor development logic, lack of user experience research, uninformed design choices, bad customer data, improper testing, lack of standards / code reviews. This debt isn't just for development, you can incur technical debt from poor design or user experience decisions as well.Every business incurs technical debt, so it is important to understand and plan for this debt so that it can be managed and paid back when needed. Not properly managing your debt will absolutely come back to bite you, most often when pivoting, scaling, or migrating.This is a very important concept for startups to understand because in a culture of "move fast and break things" founders must ensure that they don't move so fast that they trip and fall from technical debt.

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Investment and Exit for Software Companies: How to Increase Your Chances for Success

This session describes steps you can take if you are a software startup to be more attractive to funding sources and suggestions for what to do now in order to line up your company for a lucrative exit in the future.

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The 16 Common Mistakes to Avoid When it Comes to IP Strategy

For 10 years we’ve beenworking with organizationsto build, protect and getthe full value out of theirintellectual property. Witha unique blend of IP andbusiness expertise we’venoticed that organizationstend to make the samemistakes causing costly orirreversible errors that leadto missed businessopportunities and lostinvestment dollars.Innovation is our passion,and we’d hate to seeanyone lose out on theirinnovation investmentsthrough IPmismanagement, so wethought we’d share withyou the 16 CommonMistakes When it Comesto IP Strategy. A must watch/read for any new founder!

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Aligning your vision and values with investor expectations

In this session David J. Ferran provides CEO insights that could only have been gleaned many years in the trenches with Angels, VCs, Private Equity and Public Market investors. The goal is to help entrepreneurs ask the right questions and get clear on the key issues before pursuing or accepting money from potential investors.

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Culture Kills

Based on the latest book, Startup Culture Mindset, the session focuses on the critical nature and purpose of establishing the values, culture and mission at the same time you launch the startup. 95% of startups fail and the lack of culture and customer driven mission have a great deal to do with that.

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Pitching Your Commercial Cannabis Business

Challenges and opportunities in the legal cannabis sector go hand in hand. Making it one of the most unstable business environments since the market crashed over a decade ago. But within the instability of the legal industry, lie a plethora of opportunities which have yet to peak.In this session we will explore the different factors directly related to your success in pitching your business, raising capital as a cannabis entrepreneur, and strategies that can help your business remain stable as the tides shift.

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Ignite Your Passion Project: Ideate Your #Business4Impact

If you are an aspiring female founder who wants to create a revenue-generating business that makes a difference but need a clearer vision for your passion project, this workshop is for you!In a special workshop led by SheCatalysts Founder and Impact Business Coach, Charity Prado, you will be guided through exercises to help you identify a “Mission Meets Marketplace” problem and generate ideas for an impactful company that you’re inspired to wake up for every day!Join us as we help you develop a business idea that makes money AND changes the world. Best of all, do it all while receiving encouragement and support from like-minded women.With intimate sharing circles, this is your safe space - no judgement, only support. You’ll have the opportunity to: * Explore your passions and mission in life* Generate new and creative ideas* Find collaborators and friendsIt's going to be an exciting time to brainstorm ideas and connect with others who share your vision for change.

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eCommerce Approaches for your Startup

The talk will begin with a quick summation of the three main phases of the evolution of eCommerce on the web, and then will center around the main approaches that small and medium-sized startup enterprises and their founders can follow in order to enable new revenue and marketing streams on the internet with eCommerce.The talk will be technology and platform-agnostic and will not feature any software or commercial enterprise or company’s products but will instead concentrate on the history of the use of eCommerce by startups and medium-sized enterprises to reach larger audiences and expand their markets worldwide.

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What to Know Before You Go...Public, Merge, or Sell

Congratulations, you came up with an amazing idea and are successfully building a great business. What's the end goal for your company? This session will educate you on key strategies you should consider implementing prior to your liquidity event, merger, succession plan, or IPO to keep more of your hard-earned money. Hear from Vance Barse, former consultant to leading financial advisors and Founder of Your Dedicated Fiduciary®, introduce advanced financial planning, tax reduction, charitable planning, and other strategies that can have a big impact and bring tremendous value. Much of this value is by bridging the gap that often exists between the tax and investment worlds. This is a "must attend" session if you ever plan on selling, merging, transferring, or going public with your company.

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Why Purpose is So Important

This session will focus on educating early stage companies that having a purpose, and using their business to do more than make money, is critical for long-term success. As a long-time entrepreneur myself I've realized that making money is fun and enjoyable, yet making a difference in the community is a key element of true success. The Business Roundtable recently released their new purpose of a corporation. It focuses on the fact that a business is about serving its customers, its employees, its vendors, its community and their stakeholders. For the longest time we've focused so much energy on taking care of shareholders yet businesses have an obligation to be good corporate citizens. The concepts in this talk are outlined in the book I published in 2015 titled Success Redefined.

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Staying Sane as a Founder: Mental Resilience and Entrepreneurship

Learn from three Founders the strategies and tips for surviving the ups and downs of entrepreneurship -- and how to maintain resilience and mental focus.The session will cover lessons learned and will end with every participant receiving a digital library of tested mental health resources and a survival kit... specifically designed for entrepreneurs.

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Just Say No (to Funding)! How to Build (and Bootstrap) a Multi-Million Dollar Lifestyle Brand

Penny Bauder will share how she turned her bootstrapped start-up into a multi-million dollar company. Green Kid Crafts received and continues to draw investor interest, however, the company has made a commitment to decline future investment. Penny will share strategies on quickly becoming cash-flow positive, building a sizable and growing customer base, solving real problems for those customers, and techniques on building a company culture that can power consistent and sustainable growth. When you do not need to manage the expectations from investors, you can concentrate on the fundamentals — building a resilient business that lasts. Instead of encouraging you to chase investment, Penny will speak to the benefits of just saying "no" to funding. She'll talk about the benefits of retaining control of your company and schedule, deciding on your own goals and how fast you want to grow, maintaining your independence, and the gift of staying true to your original vision.

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Getting Your Business Started the Legal Way

Starting a business can be confusing and Google is not always your friend. Starting a business the wrong way can be pennywise but pound foolish.

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Successfully Navigating the San Diego Startup Ecosystem

How do entrepreneurs find the help that they need? The ecosystem has plenty of resources and in this session, hear from both those orgs and companies that have had success. Well give an overview of all the resources available from mentorship, talent, and capital.

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The Numbers Aren't the Most Important Thing- They're Everything

Matt Garrett enjoys teaching business owners what’s most important about their accounting and how it relates to their business performance. The presentation showcases ways to improve profitability and increase cash flow in their business through real-life examples. Attendees will learn the three most important financial metrics to track business performance.Matt will also reveal the realities of small business fraud and why accrual accounting is the only accounting for small business management.

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StickyNote Strategy© for Innovators

Hands-on workshop: Attendees will learn how to apply Lean and Six Sigma principles through the use of StickyNote Strategy© -- to help them make better/quicker decisions about their innovations (and when to pivot), scaling their business, and/or balancing financial goals with social impact (depending on time allotment).

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Working with university technology transfer offices

Universities are often the source of a foundational patent portfolio which is out-licensed to entrepreneurs seeking to jump-start innovation in their companies. Issues, benefits, and common processes of working with university technology transfer offices (TTO) will be discussed by a former TTO employee and present patent attorney.

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Starting From Zero: Getting From Idea to Launch in 3 Weeks.

We all have business ideas, some good, some...not so good. It's time to break through the personal and mental obstacles that prevent us from launching these ideas into the wild. You will leave this session empowered to launch an idea you may already have in less than 3 weeks with little funding required.

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Protecting Your Brand in a Global Marketplace

Brand counterfeiting has become a $1.2-plus trillion industry and now accounts for 2.5% of world trade. Yet, for many business owners, a discussion of brand protection occurs only after an attempted theft, sabotage or infringement. Brands are typically protected and enforced under federal trademark and unfair competition laws. In this workshop, we will have an interactive discussion exploring the various elements of a brand that can be protected under trademark law and how trademark rights can be expanded beyond brand names and logos, we’ll also discuss when to use TM and when to use (R), the benefits of pursuing federal trademark registrations, why a brand guideline is important and how to implement one, cost-effective approaches for policing trademarks online, how to assess whether your trademark is being infringed, and must have provisions in your employment agreements and policy handbooks

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How to Take a Vacation Without Everything Going to Sh!t

When was the last time...- You went on vacation without your laptop?- Shit hit the fan because you weren’t there to supervise?- You thought, “if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself?”It doesn’t have to be this way.What could your startup become if you had a smart, capable, reliable team? How would your business grow if you didn’t need to supervise every detail of the work?It’s not magic. Take an hour this week to learn some new approaches and simple tools for effectively communicating tasks to your team, holding them accountable for executing, and increasing everyone’s output without adding more hours to your already packed days.You should be able to take a vacation. They should be able to work without you checking up on them. Level up your management so that you can level up your company AND get a good night’s sleep.

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Why cyber-security should be on the start-up radar

Ransomware and data breaches can kill a company before it even gets going. Every startup entrepreneur has product development and marketing in mind but often puts off cyber-security. This discussion will highlight the importance of including security as a consideration early to help the company avoid disastrous consequences. Focusing on the CIS20 Critical Security Controls, one of the easiest frameworks to understand, the presentation will detail how putting in basic security doesn’t need to be difficult or expensive.

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The Future of Healthcare & San Diego's Role

Healthcare is in a crisis globally. It costs too much, is often unavailable to those who need it most, is not personalized for even those who can afford it, uses legacy software systems or paper, pencils & fax machines, creates walls between patients & their care teams, is driving physicians to burn out in their peak years... should we go on? We stand at a moment of monumental change. For the 1st time since the advent of the vaccine or clean water we have the opportunity to develop Healthcare solutions leveraging Software & Data that can improve outcomes and lower costs. Digital Healthcare has the potential to & is transforming how, where & to whom healthcare is provided, the quality of that care, bending the cost curve & putting patients & their care teams at the center of healthcare. Daniel Haders II, Ph.D. will be joined by a panel of Healthcare experts where they will explore the future of Healthcare & discuss how San Diego is poised to lead the charge in the Healthcare revolution.

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Navigating the "C's" of a Successful Startup

Yes, having a valuable idea with a solid business plan is important to a startup's launch, but the keys to a successful early company are the "adjectives" of that company and not the "nouns". In this session, we'll discuss the "13 C's of a Fundable Founder", the "7 C's of a Successful Investor Pitch" and the "7 C's to Finding the Right Co-Founder". These attributes can be used to measure your company's story from the point of view of your audience, which is essential for getting the results you're looking for.

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How to Negotiate a Founder-Friendly Term Sheet

Standard term sheets are only 38% founder-friendly according to Founder Friendly Standard. Dan Flanegan, startup veteran and co-author of Founder Friendly Standard, flags the areas in a term sheet where founders should negotiate hard. Punctuated by war stories over his 20+ years of startup experience, Dan presents step-by-step methodologies to avoid handing investors control of your business and your career. Welcome to the session investors don’t want you to attend.

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Lean Systems: Trim the Fat in Your Business

Where should you focus your time and energy on sales and lead generation? Funnels? Prospecting and pipelining? Accounting? Marketing? Relationship building and networking? It’s all so much! Let’s learn to strategically combat the “sugary sweets” that can plague a business and start to nourish ourselves with satiating “proteins” that will keep us fuller (and more profitable) for longer.10 minute Modules:-The 5 Side Effects of Entrepreneurship That No One Talks About ["The Business Diet" Activity]-Damned If You Don't Delegate [SWOT Analysis]-Prioritizing to Avoid Burnout [80/20 Worksheet]-Q&A + Group Discussion

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Patenting without a lawyer?

Considering applying for a patent without a lawyer? Learn from someone who's done it. We will cover if you should even try, the mentality required, the best DIY resources, how to leverage information from successful applications, negotiating with the examiner, and other practical tips. This session assumes the attendee already has a basic understanding of patents. The information presented will also be useful for those who do ultimately decide to use a patent attorney.

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Bulletproof Your Business - How to Automate Your Business to Dominate Your Industry

Entrepreneurship is a funny thing. You find your passion and even find a way to make a great living doing it. And suddenly you don't have time for yourself anymore - Workaholics unite. This talk is for the digital entrepreneur tired of hustling day in and day out - ready to use technology to be more efficient, grow and work well with your team. You probably think you don't have the time to do all the things and implement all the systems... Let me tell you, life is too short for you not to! Let's make you the Hero in your business and for your clients.This is for you if:You don't want your business to run youYou want to have time for other thingsYou don't want to get stuck doing “busy” work You’ll leave knowing:How to plan your day to be more efficient rather than productiveHow to use technology to automate your business, saving you time and moneyHow to prepare to successfully start outsourcing tasks

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Demystifying Legal and Tax Issues for Business Entities

Should you create a C-corp, and S-corp, or an LLC? In this session, jointly presented by a business lawyer and a CPA, you will learn the basics of the legal and tax considerations that go into making those decisions (and will sound much smarter, and save money, when you go to hire a lawyer or CPA later).

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Product Launch 2.0

Do you have a new product or app you want to launch? Do you want to know the step-by-step plan that we used to launch over 100 projects? Launching is a formula like anything else. Reduce your risk and give yourself the best chance for success by following this system.

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The Element Technology Left Behind

Humans alone are inefficient. Technology alone is inauthentic. Tech + Humans = Superhumans.Businesses need to bridge the gap and combine tech + human efforts to create the most impact, efficient, and scaleable processes at scale, that ultimately will drive the most authentic connections between businesses and their consumers.Based on my Forbes article, https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2017/09/25/the-element-technology-left-behind/#2ea429cb42a9, my session would be about how technology has left behind the human touch, and why businesses need to find a way to bring that back, and make business personal again.

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Pitching to robots: Fundraising process in the era of data and AI.

The AI robots are taking over everything, even investment banking and VC. What does this mean for founders? Is fundraising any different now? Which parts of the process can be automated? How does it look from the VC’s perspective? Is project scouting any different? What about project due diligence and investment decisions?I will answer the above questions and present my insights into the current state and the future of the industry based on the experience we’ve gained creating VCfund.me - an AI driven private investment platform, (or “a tinder for startups” - depending on the audience).

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Does 'Fail Fast' Really Make Sense?

There are a number of things wrong with the idea 'fail fast'. First, it starts with the word fail, and entrepreneurship is about winning. In this session, we will explore the idea of failing fast, what it means, why learning isn't failing, and when it may make sense. Then, through some real world examples, we will look at key characteristics and practices that are essential to win in innovative startups. I'll reveal some of the key strategies and mental disciplines that I've used in my career that resulted in raising over $200 million in capital, driving over $2 billion in M&A, and having multiple exits with my companies.

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From Cradle to Heaven - A Startup's Journey

Startups will solve the greatest challenges of this century, dedicate your life accordingly.This panel session, moderated by Nex Cubed CEO Marlon Evans, will explore the growth trajectory of a high-flying startup. The discussion will cover the different stages of a startups lifecycle and the metrics that measure its success along the way. In addition, the panel will be joined by experts who will share tips, tricks, and resources that they've previously employed to achieve their success along the way. This session will also share perspectives from that of investors, accelerators and startup founders themselves.

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How to Reach Your Full Potential with an Alignment Map

If you’re not organized, I can almost guarantee that something will fall through the cracks.Alignment Mapping your path before you invest time and money will uncover productivity opportunities. In an alignment map you rank the condition of your product / market fit, your organization / market fit and your finance / market fit to identify how to reach your objectives. It will also help you scale. Every business has two top priorities: 1) sustainable revenue growth and 2) quality of earnings.Your alignment map’s value is two-fold. First, it provides a solid visualization of everything you have on your plate and the relative complexity of each initiative.Second, it helps you cut back on less important tasks. By visualizing each sub-task, you can easily identify duplicated tasks, tasks that can be delegated effectively or areas for efficiencies. It also helps you to focus only on the essential items, lest your alignment map become overly burdensome.

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Session with Neal Bloom

Neal and I co-host a presentation on how to build a sales and marketing projections based on limited data. We've given this presentation at UCI's Wayfinder Incubator, SDSU's Zahn Innovation Platform, USCD's Ignite Conference, The Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation, and for multiple CEO Executive Forums. The talk is informative, pragmatic, humorous, easily consumable, and engages audiences through audience participation.

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Building a Software Company From Scratch

I will help founders navigate obstacles on how to start a software company from idea to development to launch to gaining traction.Obstacles like choosing the right idea, choosing the right founder, choosing the right problem. Finding the best way to build an MVP. What an MVP should be. Launching and every thing in-between.

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Succeed by not failing, and other valuable words of wisdom

Have you ever wondered what it takes to succeed as an entrepreneur? Have you read all of the books, listened to the podcasts, and attended all of the conferences? Forget it all and follow this one, basic simple rule to ensure your success.

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Don't forget the accounting!

Accounting is at the heart of an organization. Learn how to utilize AI and cloud technologies to keep your books in tip-top shape.* Introduction to what a business needs to track* Best practices for healthy books, records and finances* Overview of cutting edge tools for the entrepreneur* Keeping it real

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How to make best use of Mentors

San Diego has great startup services available, mentors being available for free. But how do you find them and what is the best way for founders to make use of mentors. How do you filter the advice and how do you make decisions. What questions should you ask and how should you respond to answers. This panel will lead with a presentation, followed by hypotheticals or having volunteers from the audience ask questions to the mentors. We will also clarify what are differentiates advisors, board members and mentors. The final part of the session will be a mentoring session of the panel with a person chosen from the audience, so everybody can understand what really needs to be asked at a mentoring session.

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How to attract to a technical cofounder (How to communicate an idea into technical requirements)

One of the greatest challenges for non-technical entrepreneurs is communicating their startup ideas to developers or technical cofounders. In this workshop you will learn how to attract legit technical cofounders (or save thousands in development costs when hiring a development team) by learning to communicate ideas into technical requirements and what documents you can create to excite a technical cofounder.

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How to Split Founder Equity

Dividing startup equity continues to be a problematic and sometimes divisive topic. Get it right and everyone wins. Get it wrong and you lay the foundation for discontent, caustic debates, founder fractures, and startup failure. Come learn about: 1) important factors to consider in creating a healthy equity allocation among founders and early employees, 2) various approaches to splitting equity, 3) specific methods to determine who gets what, and 4) how to determine which approach is right for you and your startup.

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Solo Founders - Let's beat loneliness!

Being a solo-founder can feel like being on a crazy roller-coaster ride - all alone. It does not have to be! In this presentation, I will first explain why it is important for solo-founders to build a support network early on. Then, we'll discuss ways to leverage this network to get constructive feedback, connections, suggestions and feel like we are working with a full team on our side!

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Experiential Salon-Exhale, Explore, Experience

Experience your greater humanity beyond the "walking, talking mind with a professional identity mask", connecting to your body, heart, deep mind and subtle senses in the company of professional peers to explore and push boundaries that keep us small. What many seek at retreats, we can experience where we are at, creating deeper connections between peers and colleagues, humanizing relationships and creating the foundation for bringing our true selves to work. Join in experiential exercises followed by a discussion about showing up at work as our true selves, stepping out from hiding our spark, expressing our desire to create greater impact and meaning from where we are at. Guided by recognized industry leaders and leadership experts.

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Tech for Good: Founders’ Success Stories

Tech giants may get a bad rap, but leaders in San Diego have built tech startups that foster positive changes in this world while making a profit. San Diego founders have created new ways to address different social issues we face, and this community nurtures and supports these flourishing startups. Join DonationMatch.com, Aira, and Measurabl as the founders of each startup share their success stories of building tech for good.

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Angel & Venture Capital Disrupted. Picking Winners Every Time?

Winning data and rules engines have now come to start-ups, growth companies and investors and has propelled an entirely new investment class of capital emerging right here in San Diego, called Venture Science Capital. Core business archetypes and strategic operations are everything. Learn and understand the 4 core archetypes and the rules-based best practices that drive them to create winning companies.If you are an Entrepreneur looking to win, or an investor looking for winning companies that understands the paradigm shift of Venture Predictive Analytics in today’s highly competitive and fast-changing marketplace, then this is a must-know.The old world of Angel and Venture Capital investing will be completely disrupted by its own technology discovery. This is great news for Entrepreneurs, Investors and leaders and will save billions of dollars and time, creating fundamentally better companies and higher returns.You will learn Venture Science Capital 101

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Power Dressing for Success. Command Respect, Attract Opportunity, & Increase Income

As a stylist, Lorena understands how an outfit contributes to your brand and the message that you want to send to your target audience, whether that be customers, colleagues, investors, or partners. In this informative session, learn the tips to feel confident in your outfits to be better prepared for pitching, photoshoots, and all other professional appearances pertaining to building on business brand.Topics to be discussed:-Shopping tips-Best wardrobe options for your body type-Investing in your wardrobe-Style Branding 101-Color Palette-And so much more!

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Founder's Dillema - How to Sustain Your Motivation for Business for More than One Year

While serving as a startup mentor in Stanford's course Technology Entrepreneurship for more than 2 years I met many inspiring teams, many potential ideas. But... Most of them did not last for more than 6 months. This question inspired me to find the answer - is there any way at all to sustain the founder's motivation? Luckily, I found the answers and today startup founders can be sure - there is a scientific way to create neuron connections in your brain to sustain the intrinsic motivation for a longer period of time. Even if the new venture brings challenges every day, and doesn't make the profit.

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Fundraising Deadly Sins

One of the main challenges for any founder is to raise capital. In my 15 year career in tech and venture capital, I have often observed early stage founders make the same mistakes when raising money. The session will focus on the obvious and subtle mistakes when fundraising and at the end will leave each founder with a clear roadmap on how to maximize their chances of getting funded the right way.

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Goal Setting to the Now

Knowing the destination and then working backwards to today, this week, month and year allows you to focus on the smallest actions leading to the largest goals. Who you are in business with, casting a vision, finding talent, setting expectations. We control these by knowing our "One Thing" in the our personal life and business life. The One Thing – workshop outlineGeometric ProgressionYou are the 1st Domino (joules/exponential momentum)The Focusing Question – break it downThe 7 Life Circles – write one thing in eachThe 6 Lies -Everything Matters Equally5 things to accomplish exercisePareto Principal/Extreme ParetoYour Choices triangle-Multi-taskingClifford Nass Stanford studyInterrupted vs. Focused WorkflowA Balanced LifeIn the middle/at the extremes/counter balanceBig is Bad Big Outcome box Big enough questionsThe 3 Commitments -Follow the path of mastery -E to P -The Accountability Cycle

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What Does It Take to Lead a Cleantech Startup?

This session features a panel of local startup founders who are developing breakthrough clean technologies that are shaping our clean energy future. Learn from their experiences what it takes to run a cleantech startup, including the varying challenges faced by companies with hardware versus software products and the opportunities and obstacles that come from selling these products in a market that is highly influenced by policy and regulation. Best of all, hear directly from these cleantech entrepreneurs what inspires them to hustle each day in pursuit of innovations that have the potential to positively impact our world.

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Raising Capital from Angel Investors

Benton Moore is a member of Tech Coast Angels and leads a venture fund that's designed to invest in San Diego founders.Mysty Rusk is the Director of the San Diego Innovation Center and runs the San Diego Angel Conference. Justin Renfro is the head of growth at Wefunder, a platform that allows companies to raise investment capital via equity crowdfunding. They will collectively discuss traditional and non-traditional pathways for founders to access investment capital from different angel-investor networks in San Diego

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Social Enterprise: Lots of Flavors to Enjoy

There is lots of buzz around social enterprise, but not a lot of people understand how they make money and how they create value. This hands-on workshop is about to change all that. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:Develop social enterprise business models within provided constraints Understand the social business model canvasArticulate 1-2 "flavors" of social enterprise when explaining to others

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finding appropriate investors and turning them into satisfied investors

I will discuss how to identify investors that may be interested in your opportunity and how to bring them through the funnel from contacts to leads to prospects to forecasts to investors to satisfied investors.

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Lean Business Canvas - Dynamic Planning

A lean business development workshop that teaches the practical application of the Lean Business Canvas, a one page "business plan" optimized for team planning and building shared understanding. As a group we will disrupt a well known industry. We will ideate solutions, identify risky assumptions and design experiments to rapidly de-risk our plan. Participants will leave with enthusiasm and basic skills to use the Lean Business Canvas or the Business Model Canvas to evaluate startups or new initiatives in existing companies.Spoiler: Slides available at https://bit.ly/2YbcLvs

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Making San Diego to be hub of robotics and AI

San Diego is becoming one of the hub for robotics and AI. We are calling it "Robot Beach". There are various companies/startups (including an unicorn startup), universities, and community that's supporting it be the hub. Please join us to contribute how to make San Diego a better place to attract more talents and create an ecosystem for robot and AI.

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From Concept to Creation...Innovation is the Name of the Game

As an Award Winning Inventor, Intentional Living Expert and Reinvention Specialist, Diane explains the critical 3 Step Process you must know before moving ahead with any product or service idea, saving you time, money and other valuable resources.This talk is for anyone looking to take their inventions and innovative ideas to the next level. Diane's inspiring talk will leave you wanting to unleash your inner "creator" and take ideas you've been sitting on for years and bring them to life! You'll learn:The 5 Questions You Need to Know the Answers to First.How to Find Your Unique, Right Positioning.No Cost and Low Cost Market Research Strategies.This talk infuses inspiration into innovation and removes the fear and trepidation most people experience when it comes to the invention and creation process. You'll be inspired to be more innovative today!

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Unlock Unshakeable Confidence

Learn the game plan that will help you unlock unshakeable confidence, take command of every room you step into, and positively influence others while becoming a leader in your field. Sandra will inspire you to develop a warrior's mindset so you can build that business, safeguard your positivity, and learn to listen to what "CALLS" at you, not what "CLAWS" at you. She served 20 years as a U.S. Marine and will share the weapons you need in your arsenal to have more control, focus, and persistence. Worriers are manipulated by memories; whereas, warriors are motivated by meaning and purpose. Be a warrior not a worrier!

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Five Sins Not To Commit As a Startup!

The session will address highlight five things a startup/entrepreneur should think about: 1. Business structure - LLC or Corporation (and tax)?2. Business name, did you think about a domain name and trademark availability? 3. Business Contracts and negotiating what's best for your business. 4. Partnerships and investors- creating your winning pitch deck. 5. Vision and execution - Setting up for online sales, email marketing, and more.

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The Future of Startups

The world faces massive uncertainty, due to structural economic changes, globalization, and digital transformation, yet our institutions, their systems, processes, and structure are organized by the Industrial Age. In this thought provoking discussion, Brant will share how bringing an "entrepreneurial spirit" to business, education, and government will result in new systems, processes and structure that deal with uncertainty. Startup founders, often taught big company execution methods, must boldly apply the lean innovation principles in order to successfully create sustainable businesses.

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Receive funding without giving up equity: The rise of revenue based financing

Revenue based investing (RBI), is quickly becoming a frequent source of capital for early stage revenue generating companies looking for growth funds without giving up additional equity. Founders First Capital Partners will share how their model works, a snapshot into the funds' portfolio performance, and why RBI is a good option for early stage companies and angel investors to diversify.

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Best Lessons Learned for Entrepreneurs After Advising 700 Companies

The advisors from The Brink Innovation Center have provided mentoring for more than 700 companies to help them launch, grow, and raise tens of millions of dollars in funding for their companies. This panel consists of several of these advisors from a variety of specialties and industries to share their best tips, tricks, and lessons learned to help early stage companies, drawing from their own entrepreneurial experiences and the companies they have helped grow to success.

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Grit, Perseverance, Tenacity and Funding

Entrepreneurship sounds exciting and glamorous…and it is...sometimes. However, it is tougher than you imagine, even after you double and triple the time and cost requirements. Icarus has come a long way in three years on a shoestring. Most people could never take barrage of challenges and give up too soon. Are you prepared to live off of your spouse’s income after you burn thru your savings? Is your spouse prepared for that? How about borrowing money from friends and family, or convincing people to work for free for a couple of years or more? Are you sure you will pay them back if everything fails? Anderson will discuss fundraising, grant writing, accelerators and incubators and personally financing your startup…and what to expect. Most of all he will address the pluses and minuses, the peaks and pitfalls and the joys and sorrows of entrepreneurship…and how to manage the way.

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How to bridge the corporate culture gap when engaging larger companies

You've defined your business strategy, have seed funding and your product or service is on its way to MVP. Now you are looking to engage a large, established company either for collaboration as a potential customer. Long established, public companies have a culture, a business rhythm, and a process to select who they work with or buy from. Having a great product is no sure bet you will secure a deal; this presentation will help startup founders and sales people identify the skills and techniques needed to position themselves for success when engaging a larger, more mature entity.

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360 foundations and visibility every founder needs when starting a SaaS

A defensible startup strategy is more important than ever for founders. The barriers to build tech are low but the competition and ability to differentiate are tougher than ever. We will cover, how to structure a company, understand the market opportunity and how to establish a tech team and how they all intertwine with one another.

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Pricing with Purpose to Pump Up Profits

Profitability isn't just about price tags! Learn how Knowing Your Numbers, Selecting Your Markets, Building Your Brand, Planning for Profit, and Pricing with Purpose fuse together to MAKE the MONEY!In this content rich, fun fueled, edu-taining workshop, Nikkie will cover how to:• determine your "survive" vs "thrive" income needs so you can better understand how those numbers effect the pricing of your products and services• choose your markets wisely for maximum marketability• build a BOSS-worthy Brand that matches the money you want to make• dial in a Profitability Plan that smoothly moves prospects from interest to top dollar income• create value-based pricing that stops the treadmill of "time for money" and empowers you to finally level up from business worker to Savvy CEO

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Is your Use of Funds Fundable?

You want investors to write a check. Investors want to know what their investment will buy - they want to know your Use of Funds. So, you itemize $x for engineering, $y for sales, and so on. This standard approach seems to check a box in your pitch deck; however, it fails to deliver what investors are looking for. What investors really want to understand is how you will use their investment to increase the value of the company. They want to know you have a smart strategic plan—a plan for investing your scarce resources of time and money that will maximize future valuation.A New Way to Rapidly Create a Strategic Plan for Early-Stage Companies. The process is called Risk-To-Value (R2V).The R2V process helps you accelerate value creation:• Raise money faster by connecting the dots for investors.• Increase strategic alignment to speed forward progress.• Maximize valuation and minimize dilution.• Increase probability of a successful exit.

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Tangible Advice for 1st Time Founders

This session is for first-time entrepreneurs within their first year of starting their business; specifically, entrepreneurs looking for tangible advice that they can easily implement into their daily practices. This energetic session draws from personal experience and hours of research on the following topics: how to find priceless mentors, tips for splitting equity, domains for which to register, pros and cons of different project management software, business email services, G Suite vs OneDrive, how and when to send pitch decks, which business structure to choose (C Corp, S Corp, Benefit Corp, LLC), managing an advisory board, and nondisclosure agreement (NDA) advice. I will also provide a list of resources I have found useful when starting my business.

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A Treasure Map to Product-Market Fit

This presentation will cover experiences from portfolio. We’ll share what we’ve learned and our strategy for finding product-market fit faster.A young startup is a wonderful environment where you can turn on a dime. When a new idea comes up, you get to jump on it immediately! Every feature or customer you add is exciting and is good news. Right? If you have nailed your product-market fit, yes. But if not, these customers and features can be what slows you down. Much more often than not, the first plan wasn’t perfect and it is important to discover why and adapt. Discovery requires something that most startups don’t have, observability. And metrics are the treasure map to help every startup find their product-market fit.

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Lessons Learned or 3 ways to prevail as an entrepreneur

1) Take the high road no matter what is thrown at you. Stay above the fray. Don’t let the drama affect who you are and what you stand for. Be true to your values.2) Always be professional/careful of the things you say. Be even more careful of the things you put in writing/email3) Lastly, something is immensely important is making sure you keep your equity. Don’t give up control if you don’t have to, and especially for the wrong reasons.

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Student Startup Entrepreneur's Panel.

Get an insiders look at how university startups are building new ventures and gaining traction while they are still students. Learn how these student startups are leveraging university resources to create new businesses and launch their products into the market. Hear directly from student startups and discover what they are working on.

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Investor personas, know the RIGHT investor for your startup

Similar to developing a "customer persona" to reach your target customer/market with your product, developing an "investor persona" to identify, reach and refine the ideal investor for your startup/business is essential. Work through an Investor Persona worksheet and develop an investor thesis of your ideal investor. Instead of taking a broad approach to investor sourcing & research, you will be targeted and know exactly what they are looking for in their portfolios. You will walk away with:1. A clear understanding of how an investor thinks when sourcing deals and startup business2. An "investor persona" framework from which to get focused on your ideal investor3. Understand and build out an "investment thesis" of your ideal investor, so you really are in the shoes of your investors.

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New approaches to start-up funding, new business models, new scalability potentials

In this speech Olga will introduce a new outlook on startup financing and introduce to the audience a new capitalization landscape, a new micro-cap capital economy.It will be inspiring, eye-opening for both entrepreneurs and investors. Attendees will leave this presentation with easily executable plan of action.

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When to pivot

This is a discussion of startup pivots and the decision making process that goes in on when to pivot & when to stay the course. It's based on experience advising numerous startups as well as undergoing a major successful pivot of Loveseat from a retail platform to an auction marketplace.

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Practical Aspects for Customer Discovery Interviewing

Essential to the lean startup process is effective customer discovery. However, many entrepreneurs do not learn to identify the right customers and to conduct effective interviews. This session is taken from the cross-campus entrepreneurship certificate class at UCSD where Dr. York serves as a lecturer and recently conducted at the University of Tsukuba and Mission Bay Capital, this session aims to address these critical skills. Dr. York will lead an interactive session focusing on the following areas: customer targeting, personas, interview strategy development, conducting an effective interview, and identifying good and bad questions (and techniques). Content will pattern that Dr. York has published (https://www.dropbox.com/s/yandob9ofhn98kn/ABAM-124Final.pdf?dl=0; https://www.dropbox.com/s/81rs3neou1aesu9/ABAM-126Final.pdf?dl=0). The session will include practice exercises to hone skills.

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Early Stage Pitch Competition

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Later Stage Pitch Competition

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