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Your next job is being started right now

Your next job is being started right now

Are you interested in something new? Have you been working for a while in the same role and looking for growth? Well you need to pay attention to the start up scene. Here’s the deal: your next job is most likely going to come from a company that is starting right now. There’s a saying, “if […]

Dear Alabama entrepreneurs… supply what the state demands

Dear Alabama entrepreneurs… supply what the state demands

Last week, I went to the Alabama – Arkansas game with a few Venture For America Fellows. Driving in, I asked myself what I was going to do about parking… I mean how does Tuscaloosa handle 20,000 more cars on game days? Enter the entrepreneurial spirit of Americans. People who live in Tuscaloosa have figured out […]

Details from this competition cycle

On Tuesday, our judges met to review this cycle’s competition entrants. It was a very lively 4 hour discussion after roughly 2 weeks of review. Being in the room gives me hope for the creative and entrepreneurial spirit of start ups in Alabama. To that, we felt it would be appropriate to share some data from […]

The capital picture is different in Alabama

The capital picture is different in Alabama

Dear Entrepreneurs in Alabama, Let me tell you something you probably already know: there is not a lot of venture capital investment in Alabama. In fact, in 2016 there was only $47M invested according to PWC/ CB Insights. I hear folks complain about this. Don’t. It’s a waste of time. Rather, I think it’s good to adjust. Here […]

Setting the bar for a good start up idea

Setting the bar for a good start up idea

Are you honest about your start up’s prospects? The goal of Alabama Launchpad is to help entrepreneurs create high growth companies in Alabama. This is really important. Too often we’ve found, people are enamored with the idea of being an entrepreneur, but have lost sight of the fact that they are working on an idea that […]

Crunch time. 2 weeks left. Time to focus!

Crunch time. 2 weeks left. Time to focus!

Hey!!! This Alabama Launchpad competition round is closing soon! With just about 2 weeks left, you should be thinking less about doing more and more about clarifying and polishing. In fact, you should really be focusing on removing as many distractions as possible. Because, with a field of roughly 50 companies, distractions are a death knell […]

Making an overview video

Making an overview video

OK… let’s talk about making an overview video for your business plan. For many folks, this can feel daunting. And yes, making a video can get very complicated… but this one shouldn’t be. If you own a smart phone, you’ve already got the camera you need. And if you can describe your customers, their need, and how […]

Hand drawing Customer concept with marker on transparent wipe board.

It all starts with a customer

If there’s one thing you can do to get started right, it’s to really really really define your customer. Did you get that? I wrote “really” three times… in bold and italics and underlined. I mean it. To really define your customer, you have to get much more in depth than something like my customer is “men.” […]

Imaginative food to inspire at “imerge” event on Aug. 23

Imaginative food to inspire at “imerge” event on Aug. 23

Great food from a legendary Birmingham restaurateur and sage words from a legendary New York Times columnist are just part of an exciting evening to honor imaginative and inspiring entrepreneurs at the “imerge’ Innovation celebration by the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama. Yellow Bicycle Catering, owned by beloved Fish Market Restaurant owner George Sarris, will […]

Who’s your Yoda? err.. mentor?

Who’s your Yoda? err.. mentor?

Hey there! So one of the most important things you can do as a budding entrepreneur is get a mentor. In fact, you need one. Just like Luke Skywalker needed Yoda to develop his powers, you need a mentor to develop yours. That’s because starting a successful business without mentorship is about as hard as lifting your […]