Blogs, Weekend Reads

Down in The Valley

Oliver Milman /

Ilya ZhitomirskiyIt sounds like your typical, syrupy American TV series. The characters include Noel, who has a “secret past and a Robin Hood complex” and Joel, a “slick Harvard MBA”.

 

This duo is joined in the series by Evita, a “street-smart, smoking-hot hipster who can’t decide whether to try to make the world a better place or get a new tattoo”.

 

Why is Weekend Reads mentioning this rather formulaic-sounding series? Because it is the first TV series based on the start-ups of Silicon Valley.

 

Created by former Yahoo! staffer Fernando Pizarro, The Valley has been guided to the screen by the likes of Ycombinator and MTV.

 

Want to know more about this tale of “egomaniacal billionaires, scheming get-rich-quick artists (and) double crossing bloggers”? Go for it.

 

A slightly less entertaining, but potentially more valuable, addition to the world’s start-up community is the new $20 million Harvard Innovation Lab; 30,000 square feet of entrepreneurial incubation.

 

Even if you do manage to get a spot at such a leading start-up accelerator, there will be certain hurdles to growth as your business progresses.

 

As this informative post on the three barriers to innovation explains, there is a systematic way of identifying these bumps in the road and overcoming them.

 

A vital part of any business venture is, of course, sales. However, if your sales motto is “ABC – Always Be Closing” then it’s possible you are doing your business harm.

 

There is a right way to close a sale and plenty of wrong ways. Here are the five worst closing techniques.

 

Finally, a note of condolence to those who knew Ilya Zhitomirskiy, co-founder of Diaspora, considered one of the US’ leading tech newcomers, who has passed away at the age of 21.

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