Take a chance! All life is a chance. The man who goes farthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare - Dale Carnegie
image by: 401(K) 2012
"Windows of entrepreneurial opportunity can open unexpectedly and briefly, typically under conditions of risk and uncertainty. Founder entrepreneurs must therefore be alert, tolerant of ambiguity and able to respond quickly when opportunity knocks. But does this mean that founders´ brains work differently, compared to other people, when detecting and choosing opportunities? Our research suggests that they do.
To learn more about the way founders think, we conducted a laboratory experiment that measured brain activity during a simple decision-making task. A group of 30 founder entrepreneurs, as well as 30 non-entrepreneurs, participated in a classic experiment called the Stroop Test. In this experiment, people are shown a series of images on which the names of colors are spelled in discordant colors. For example, the word red may be written in a blue color. Participants must then distinguish between the word itself and the color used to print it.
We measured brain activity over multiple cycles of the task, each cycle lasting one second. The brain activity of founder entrepreneurs was significantly different, compared to the non-entrepreneurs. In the initial stage of brain activation, when people first recognize the problem, founders were quicker to respond and were less inhibited. They quickly absorbed and embraced the problem, despite its ambiguity, In contrast, the non-entrepreneurs were slower during this initial phase. They tried to resolve more of the ambiguity before continuing.
In the later stages of problem processing, also within a split second, the founder entrepreneurs were different again. They dedicated more brain resources—in terms of information processing and speed—to resolve residual ambiguities. In other words, the entrepreneurs thought more intensely about the problem after they had already embraced it. In contrast, the non-entrepreneurs used less brain resources during this latter phase, presumably because they had resolved more ambiguity during the initial stage of the process.
These results are surprising and novel from the perspective of neuroscience. But does split-second decision-making in a lab say anything about how entrepreneurs really think? Evidence suggests it does. Quick responses matter. Imagine a potential founder who is scanning for opportunities — maybe there are early signs of new customer needs in the mobile e-commerce market. If she or he is not ready to embrace and explore this ambiguous problem, the opportunity will go undetected.
Or consider a founder who is confronted with an urgent problem that must be tackled immediately. There is no time to resolve ambiguity and uncertainty. In fact, it may not be possible to do so. Instead, the founder must embrace the problem and move forward. In practice, we observe this kind of behavior often.
Entrepreneurs frequently dive into a challenge without fully analyzing it. Deeper understanding evolves over time as they experiment and discover more about the market and customer, as in the Lean Startup approach to venture creation: embrace the problem, discover the customer, experiment and prototype, be ready to pivot and if necessary fail fast. We believe we are seeing this process sped up. And for the first time, we show that the brain is fundamentally involved.
Another study confirmed our thinking. This time we interviewed founder entrepreneurs about their decision-making processes. Founders were clearly more inclined to quickly grasp an opportunity, using a set of simple tests: did the opportunity fit their core strategy; did they already know the market; could they trust the other parties involved; did they have a good gut feeling; and finally, was the worst case scenario not too bad. A negative answer to any question could be a reason to stop. In this fashion, the entrepreneurs used simple criteria to rapidly embrace or reject opportunities.
As one entrepreneur explained: “I think often I’ll make a tentative decision on gut, and I could do that almost immediately. I might within two minutes have the information that I’ll think, yes, this is worthwhile. Then I’ll go and hunt around for information that will help me to decide if that’s the right decision.” Just as in the first experiment, this entrepreneur responded quickly to the problem and was happy to delay the resolution of ambiguity and uncertainty until later stages of decision-making.
When combined, our studies add new evidence to support the view that founders think differently in decision-making, especially about problems and opportunities. Similar to the Lean Startup approach, founders embrace ambiguous problems more quickly, using simple rules to move forward, then dedicate more effort to resolve ambiguity and uncertainty during later stages of decision-making. In these respects, it appears that founders´ brains are wired differently.
We expect this difference will be explained by a combination of factors: a genetic component, early development and learning, and adult experience in problem resolution and decision-making. The brain is not hard wired, it is richly complex. For us, this is good news. Change and variety are part of being human, and so we shouldn’t be surprised that entrepreneurs’ brains are a little bit different."
Source: Peter T. Bryant and Elena Ortiz Terán, Entrepreneurs’ Brains are Wired Differently, Harvard Business Review, December 19, 2013.
How Mark Zuckerberg Should Give Away $45 Billion
Zuckerberg’s ability to remake the world in his own image, in his own lifetime, is unprecedented. Andrew Carnegie opened his first library when he was 68, and only managed to get around $5 billion in today’s dollars out the door before he died.
Top 10 Crowdfunding Sites For Fundraising
Unless you’ve been living in a remote island for the last few years, you’ve heard about crowdfunding or stories of people raising thousands or millions of dollars online.
In fact, there’s been so much chatter out there about crowdfunding that people love to throw out the line “yeah, I’ve heard there are something like 500 crowdfunding sites.” While hundreds of sites may be popping up, not all of them have real communities and funding successes under their belt.
Blueprint Health has the largest network of mentors with healthcare expertise of any accelerator and co-working space. We believe pairing talented entrepreneurs with experienced healthcare entrepreneurs and venture capitalists can provide you with warm introductions and the strategic and tactical advice you need to succeed.
Connecting entrepreneurs with investors around the world to help fund their business and fuel economic growth.
The world's #1 fundraising site for medical bills, volunteer trips, amazing and fun causes, and over 1.5 million charities.
Microryza is an online crowdfunding platform for research, where donors learn and share discoveries through updates in real-time. It's simple: Microryza gives donors the ability to discover a great research idea, support it with a contribution, and learn by connecting directly with the researcher.
Frazier Healthcare is one of the nation's leading providers of venture and growth equity capital to emerging healthcare companies.
Health Capital Investors
Our mission is to provide capital to a nationwide network of healthcare providers including, but not limited to Group practice physicians, nursing homes, hospitals, home healthcare companies, mental healthcare providers, rehabilitation / physical therapy companies, dme providers, MRI and radiology centers, laboratories and others.
Health Care Investment Visions
Health Care Investment Visions is a venture management, funding and governance firm driven by deep industry knowledge and proven management principles.
HealthTech Capital is a group of private investors dedicated to funding and mentoring new "HealthTech" start ups at the intersection of healthcare with the computer and mobility worlds. HealthTechCapital is creating a new ecosystem with leading edge clinical providers, venture firms and other strategic industry players.
We support entrepreneurs who are expanding the possibilities of human life through the creative application of technology. Our portfolio reflects our interest in both fearless solutions to daunting problems and the invention of new consumer experiences. We believe that inevitable ventures emerge at the intersection of the rational and the radical, and we'd love to learn about yours.
Life Science Angels
Life Science Angels is a not-for-profit corporation created for the benefit of its members. We have established two separate committees to review biotechnology and medical device investment opportunities.
Life Sciences Angel Network
LSAN provides early stage life science companies with the operational support, mentorship and financial and professional network to grow and succeed.
We’re here to build heroic new businesses to improve people’s lives. To inspire change. To embrace experimentation. To do something that matters.
Millions of Patients around the world are standing up and taking an active role in their health, including supporting the care innovations that matter most to them. MedStartr enables patients, doctors, institutions, partners, and investors to find and fund the best ideas in healthcare and bring them to life. Join us today!
MedVenture Associates, founded in 1986, is a Venture Capital firm focused on seed and early stage investments in the field of medical technology, including medical devices, instrumentation and medical diagnostic technology.
New Media Ventures
We are the first national network of angel investors supporting media and tech startups that disrupt politics and catalyze progressive change.
Revolution invests in people and ideas that can change the world. Our mission is to build disruptive, innovative companies that offer more choice, convenience, and control for both consumers and businesses. We bring a unique approach to investing.
We're powering the future of healthcare. Rock Health funds and supports startups building the next generation of technologies transforming healthcare. Join us and build something useful.
At Social Capital, our mission is to transform society by using technology to solve the world’s hardest problems. We do this by utilizing our people and capital to help bring the most promising and disruptive ideas worldwide for maximum impact.
Social Capital Partnerships
We help local, national, and global nonprofits raise funds by providing strategy focused on great impact, creative that brings it to life, and executional support that makes it happen.
The Social+Capital Partnership
The Social+Capital Partnership ("Social Capital") is a partnership of philanthropists, technologists and capitalists utilizing venture capital as a force to create value and change on a global scale. The Partnership is based in Palo Alto, California.
AOL Ventures provides an entrepreneurial environment to attract and develop innovative initiatives.
appbackr’s mission is to index the world’s apps, enabling app users to make informed and inspired decisions, and making apps accessible to everyone through the App Anatomy™ Project.
Bain Capital Ventures
Our networks and relationships across our hundreds of employees within Bain Capital and our hundreds of portfolio companies throughout the world gives us an unparalleled ability to make potential customer introductions, create partnership opportunities and assist in helping find the right executives to help grow our companies. Let us connect you to the best in your industry.
For two decades, Canaan Partners has invested in innovative, early stage technology and healthcare companies. Our mission is to catalyze next generation market leaders.
De Novo Ventures
Our unique background of leading companies as entrepreneurs and operating executives from start to exit enables us to advise entrepreneurs and management teams over the full life cycle of the company.
We invest in smart people solving difficult problems.
Fundable is an online funding platform for small businesses.
The World's #1 Personal Fundraising Websites.
GV provides venture capital funding to bold new companies...We‘re looking for ambitious companies in every field, but we have a unique focus on machine learning and life science investing. Our team includes MDs, PhDs, and the world’s top computer scientists.
Highland Capital Partners
At Highland we work hard to build value in each of our companies. That value is reflected in our track record, our organizational structure, our team-oriented approach and in the way that we operate every day.
Hinge Ventures is a private investment firm focused on long-term investments in growth-oriented, profitable, small to mid-sized service businesses with positive cash flow.
Indiegogo is the world's funding engine. We empower people to fund what matters to them.
Our business is about helping entrepreneurs the people who change the way we live and work by creating new products and services convert their ideas and ambitions into reality.
We offer an enterprise level crowdfunding platform allowing businesses to quickly and efficiently deploy their own white label crowd funding website...
Each and every Kickstarter project is the independent creation of someone like you. Want to know more about how projects happen, or start your own?
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers are passionately committed to helping our portfolio companies succeed. We know that it takes more than solid financial support to get a company off the ground - we help make things happen. We deeply believe that teams win.
Medwell Capital Corp. is a Canadian-based service provider of capital and advisory services with a focus on investing in the healthcare industry.
Microsoft Ventures is a global initiative empowering entrepreneurs around the world on their journey to build great companies. We work with startups at every stage of maturity to provide the tools, resources, knowledge and expertise they need to succeed.
Montreux Equity Partners
Healthcare has never been as exciting as it is today. Montreux invests in leading high growth companies that offer the most promising products, technologies, and services.
National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance
The National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance fosters invention, innovation, and entrepreneurship in higher education as a way of creating innovative, commercially viable, and socially beneficial businesses and employment opportunities in the United States.
National Venture Capital Association
National Venture Capital Association
The NVCA represents the public policy interests of the venture capital community, strives to maintain high professional standards, provides reliable industry data, sponsors professional development, and facilitates interaction among its members.
The goal at Prism VentureWorks is a simple one: to work with talented entrepreneurs and management teams to develop new technologies disruptive to the status quo and build substantial business enterprises around them.
Prospect Venture Partners
Prospect Venture Partners is a Palo Alto, California based venture capital firm with over $1 billion of capital under management. The firm is dedicated to investing in outstanding biomedical technology and life science companies.
We make invention accessible.
We believe the best ideas in the world aren't actually in the world, they're locked inside people's heads.
We exist to solve that problem.
Sanderling is among the oldest investment firms dedicated to building new biomedical companies. Sanderling demonstrates that significant companies are best built in close working partnerships with entrepreneurs.
The Vertical Group
The Vertical Group is a venture capital firm that is focused on the fields of medical technology and biotechnology.
Vanguard Ventures is a leading early stage venture capital firm that helps entrepreneurs build pioneering technology and life science companies.
Versant Ventures is a leading healthcare-focused venture capital firm specializing in early-stage investments in medical devices, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, healthcare services, and healthcare information technology.
Some companies may need no more than seed funding. Others will go through several rounds. There is no right answer; how much funding you need depends on the kind of company you start.
At Y Combinator, our goal is to get you through the first phase. This usually means: get you to the point where you’ve built something impressive enough to raise money on a larger scale. Then we can introduce you to later stage investors—or occasionally even acquirers.