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I wrote a book and will be releasing the the first few chapters on Medium in the coming weeks. The first half of the book centers around what I call “The Startup Hero’s Pledge”. You can read chapter one ,chapter two, and chapter three. This is chapter four.

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Photo by Ethan Weil on Unsplash

Leadership is a skill, and it requires commitment.

Great leaders are fair, just and honorable. Great leaders allow their team to shine. Great leaders lead by example. Great leaders know when to be there for their team, and when to let the team drive the task.

When an entrepreneur starts a company, he or she rarely has any idea that in 10 years the company they started may be employing thousands of people. And even fewer entrepreneurs understand that those employees will pick up their memes (A meme is like a gene, but it is a learned character trait rather than a born one. The word meme is now used to describe a short video or GIF that spreads quickly). We have seen very positive memes spread throughout the best of companies. …


I wrote a book and will be releasing the the first few chapters on Medium in the coming weeks. The first half of the book centers around what I call “The Startup Hero’s Pledge”. You can read chapter one and chapter two. This is chapter three.

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Logo. Your logo should mean something. The initial logo for Draper Associates, designed by my cousin, Phyllis Merikallio was a blue globe in front of a black triangle. I liked this for a lot of reasons. The triangle represented “change,” and the globe represented “the world,” so together these images said, “Change the world.” Apple’s logo was a rainbow-colored apple, which was both eye catching and meant that the products were for everyone. Nike’s logo was a simple black “swoosh,” which implied that Nike shoes would make you active, maybe even a better athlete, and a faster runner.

But your brand is not just a simple logo. Your brand permeates your organization. My friend, the late Don Hitchens was perhaps the best brand advisor I ever met. He told me, “Tim, your brand is everything. Your brand is what you wear, who you work with, how you treat and incentivize your employees, how you treat your suppliers, and of course how you treat your customers. Don changed my life. I took brand to heart. …


I wrote a book and will be releasing the the first few chapters on Medium in the coming weeks. The first half of the book centers around what I call “The Startup Hero’s Pledge”. You can read chapter one here. This is chapter two.

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The first time I ran into the concept of virtual currency was when I was talking to a wealthy Korean industrialist in 2004. He said that a new massively multiplayer video game (MMOPG) was taking Seoul by storm. …

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Founder of @DFJvc, @drapervc, @Draper_U, @IYS_Org

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