what I learned this summer

50 things I learned summer ’17 about business, tech, and life.

  1. Even when you are busy with work, make time for friends.
  2. If you’re a college student, use your .edu email when sending cold email…guaranteed higher response rate.
  3. Never hurts to ask (especially for the aux cord in your friend’s car).
  4. Your brand is your second most valuable asset. Your first? Integrity.
  5. You overestimate what you can accomplish in the short term and underestimate what you can accomplish in the long term.
  6. There is nothing more fulfilling than helping others.
  7. Talent is universal but opportunity is not.
  8. Travel as often as you could afford. You’ll never regret it.
  9. A single Chipotle bowl with double meat and beans can be both lunch and dinner.
  10. Watch a show on broadway. And get discounted tickets.
  11. Wendy’s is the most underrated fast food.
  12. Call your mom and dad more, they miss you.
  13. You should be on Twitter. (Nick)
  14. Marketers always seek to turn new means of communication (text, email, phone, social) into marketing channels.
  15. Facebook Messenger is underrated for lead generation.
  16. Every business should have Drift on their website.
  17. Remember to smile, always 😊 (Thanks Debi!).
  18. Entrepreneurs shouldn’t feel bad for going corporate. In fact, some of the best founders I know went corporate first.
  19. “You never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them” — To Kill A Mockingbird
  20. When your startup is tabling at a conference or showcase, have a sign-up sheet and tape that sheet to the table (had ours taken once, probably by accident).
  21. In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (and many other states), it is illegal to have unpaid interns or pay them under the minimum wage.
  22. #LoveTrumpsHate.
  23. Don’t pour bacon grease down the sink. (Dhruv)
  24. Even founders should get at least 7 hours of sleep. Health is important.
  25. Depression destroys founders quicker than competition (Stat: 1 out of 3 entrepreneurs lives with depression)
  26. Faking traction and metrics may help win pitch competitions but not customers.
  27. Successful individuals tend to undersell themselves.
  28. Customers are the best source of capital — when you can get it.
  29. Avocado toast is a status symbol. (Kyle)
  30. Always do daily stand-ups, no matter how small your team is.
  31. College is the best time to start a business (or non-profit) and summer break is the best time to work on it.
  32. Gen Z is coming. Is your company ready?
  33. Join a community, or help build a new one.
  34. Your company might need a CMO (Chief Meme Officer) soon.
  35. The right mentorship is worth more than any amount of capital.
  36. Higher education is still relevant — nothing beats the network a college provides.
  37. Sleeping on the floor in an office is uncomfortable, even if it is on carpet.
  38. Build a product that 100 customers love rather than 1 million customers kinda like.
  39. Pasta is underrated (affordable and quick), especially when done right.
  40. Love is hard to find, but hold on to it when you do. (Prabha)
  41. Emojis are the universal language. 🔑💯🔥
  42. Focus on the variables within your control; don’t worry things out of your control.
  43. Be bullish on crypto in the next 5 years, bearish on it in the next 3 months.
  44. Remember to say “Please” and “Thank You.”
  45. As a founder, you’ll hear 99 no’s before you’ll hear even 1 yes.
  46. Life is not fair. Be thankful and play the hand you’re dealt.
  47. Competition can be good. It could mean you actually found a market.
  48. Everyone misses scheduled calls and meetings occasionally. We’re all human.
  49. Lack of funding for women founders hurts the entire ecosystem.
  50. Relish uncertainty.

What did you learn this summer? Tweet at me.