Dave's Essay Collection

How to Get Investors to Actually Read Your Updates

I receive a lot of monthly update emails from CEOs I’ve invested in. It takes real discipline to update stakeholders regularly and I admire those founders who keep it up.

While I do open all the updates I receive, I must...

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A Founder's Guide to Sales Meetings

My very first significant sale came over a decade ago, when I sold equity to investors in my first company. Armed with a pitch deck, I reached out to dozens of potential investors to present my startup. They’d listen to my...

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How to Ask Your Team The Right Questions

At University, I studied Mathematical Sciences. Each week, we were given tough maths problems to solve as quickly and elegantly as possible. When somebody didn’t know the answer, they were told the right answer. That’s...

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How To Pitch Your Startup With A Story

Facts tell but stories sell. The following storytelling techniques will transform your pitch narrative from flat to fantastic.

Do you know the most effective way to present your business idea?

I’m not talking...

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The 3 Daily Mantras Every CEOs Should Repeat

If you’ve ever worked at a startup, you know how chaotic it can get. New issues, new opportunities, and new ideas come out of nowhere. Like a roller coaster, it’s fast and it gets the adrenaline pumping.

But...

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How to Lead a Team Through a Crisis

As a young founder, my heroes were the leaders of great tech companies—CEOs like Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk. I’d watch them being interviewed and admire how they seemed to have it all figured out....

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The Key Elements of a Startup’s Vision

We expect our leaders to have a ‘vision’. If you’ve ever felt your vision was hard to capture, you’re not alone.

The term vision was always too fluffy for my liking. It...

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How to Deconstruct your Customer's Need

They say that every great business addresses a real customer need. If expressing your customer need has ever felt slippery, this is for you.

As Steve Jobs said: you have to start with the customer experience...

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How to Spot Bad Startup Ideas

Have you ever met a founder who’s convinced they’re solving a problem . . . but it’s a problem that doesn’t exist? Here are some ways to tell if you’re kidding yourself (if you’re...

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How to Make Your Product Idea Sound Genius

A look back at early interviews with Facebook and Uber CEOs illustrates an ingenious way to communicate hard-to-describe products.

As a founder, I spend countless hours refining my elevator pitch and practising it every...

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