Susan Amat’s Miami Herald Business Monday Articles
'A good idea': It's all in the execution
What makes an idea "good"?
I hear dozens of ideas for new businesses or products every week. After the pitch there is always a silence, heavy with hopes of validation. What many fail to realize is that almost any idea can be "good," just as any idea can be disastrous.
Cash isn’t the only kind of valuable investment
So you have an idea, you are passionate about the concept, but you don’t have a lot of money. You may have seen the opportunity in your business dealings, or you are your target customer and have been seeking this very solution for a long time. Now what?
Potential investors can be angels — or demons
To what lengths will you go to get an investment?
Many entrepreneurs who face this issue focus on the capital rather than who or what may be attached to it. Assuming investors are attracted, the entrepreneur may find that those investors are the wrong partners, both for personal and professional reasons.
Risky business: Knowing when to control growth
Many researchers cite risk tolerance as a key component of entrepreneurship, with the founder’s willingness to take on risk often setting the upper limits to the vision and scope of the business. The entrepreneur must decide to control growth even when faced with big opportunities or to let it ride and take a chance, which could lead to the end of the firm. Let’s review a case study of two firms as an example of the impact of risk tolerance on growth and success.
Entrepreneurship: Too many ideas? Pick one and go for
When the University of Miami’s entrepreneurship center, The Launch Pad, opened, a master’s degree student in engineering came to us with a new formulation for a muscle recovery system that seemed like a home run. When he decided to take a full-time job with a Fortune 100 corporation, I mourned his moving to the Midwest and what could have been. Almost two years went by before he decided to move back to Miami and try to pick up where he had left off.
Entrepreneurship Tools: Know when to walk away
“Never give up” is a common theme in boos and programs aimed at the preschool and elementary crowd. Kids are being taught that they can do anything if they try hard enough. The reality is that almost any business can be a winner with the right resources and timing or a loser if not managed correctly.
How to keep growing pains from killing your business
We have all heard the stories where growth almost kills a company — servers crashing when too many orders flood in, canceling orders because manufacturers can’t handle the volume, or losing opportunities because of existing engagements.
Making memorable business impressions — it’s all in the pitch
Communicating well comes naturally to some people. Knowing how to engage audiences, connecting a story to their interests, reading reactions and blazing that tale into hearts and minds is an art and a skill. Many of the most successful entrepreneurs I know have this skill. They can take a brief chance encounter and turn it into a partnership or an investment by succinctly detailing the opportunity’s attributes in an appealing way. What will make someone feel compelled to want to do business with you?
True entrepreneurs bring innovation to the table
Many people use the terms small business owner and entrepreneur interchangeably, but there are real differences between the two.
Business partners — 'Til dissolution do us part
Entering into a business partnership is very much like a marriage. It may be very easy to enter, but may be draining, both emotionally and financially, to leave. Choosing the right partner from the beginning and maintaining respect and open lines of communication seem to be the keys to making it work.
Bringing a tech vision to reality? Here’s help
During Miami Tech Week, which starts Sunday, developers, designers and hackers from all over the state will converge for more than a dozen events. The capstone event of the week is SuperConf (superconf.co), a two-day Web development and entrepreneurship celebration, including a super fun elevator pitch contest.
Communication key to spreading your message
Whether you are speaking with possible investors, your employees, real or potential customers, or your neighbor, as entrepreneurs you need a communication strategy to make people feel like they are in the loop — at whatever level you deem appropriate. Often, people who know about your start-up venture may be interested in helping you, in a sense becoming an unofficial sales force. With good communication, you can equip them with your message of choice.