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Notes on working with VCs.
Image credit.

Starting up is really hard.

By the time you find yourself with an investor, you feel a bit more seasoned to nail the pitch and leave with positive results. However, there are no guarantees and raising capital is nearly impossible, especially for underrepresented founders.

Fundraising is a mode that requires constant attention and a whole lot of grit. With preparation, founders can achieve greater results and leverage every investor interaction as an opportunity to build the business.

Here are a few of my initial reflections from Mastering the VC Game by Jeffrey Bussgang.

Lettuce for Days — Image Credit

Every story has its hero.

There is a sound like that of a crowded marketplace. If you listen closely, you’ll hear a beat of enthusiasm and measured confidence as people come together around the innate possibilities of entrepreneurship and startup community building. There is no shortage of headlines and excitement in today’s 21st century global landscape as founders, educators, students, civic leaders, investors, and influencers embrace the possibility of growth.

The key to success is to understand the game you’re playing and the movement of the board.

Building a thriving startup ecosystem in Northern Santa Barbara county or anywhere else for that matter takes grit…

History has a way of teaching some valuable lessons. Experience is the ultimate history professor. Proven methods and insights from those who have come before us can help keep us on the right path and ensure a safer journey on the road to success and impact. Few areas factor in as vital as that of the power of community and being truly networked.

Founders oftentimes find themselves alone simmering on an idea or potential game changing project. One of the keys to breaking the silo of alone is to step out of your comfort zone and get networked.

Here are…

In just a few more hours, I’ll have embarked on another mission to help spark community, ideas, and impact by attending Startup Weekend Santa Barbara as a mentor and co-facilitator. If you’re not familiar with Techstars Startup Weekend, here’s a primer. We’re talking 54 hours of blazing entrepreneurial thinking, team-building, and the ultimate playground to push your own limits. Startup Weekend is just one of many variations of a hackathon to push you beyond your comfort zone.

Just What Is A Hackathon?

They come in all shapes and flavors from two-day sprints to week long marathons. …

You’ve been there right? A founder with an awesome idea and 10x potential sets out on a journey to go from zero to unicorn status in breakneck speed. Some call that Blitzscaling.

Blitzscaling is a specific set of practices for igniting and managing dizzying growth; an accelerated path to the stage in a startup’s life-cycle where the most value is created. It prioritizes speed over efficiency in an environment of uncertainty, and allows a company to go from “startup” to “scaleup” at a furious pace that captures the market.

Enjoyed the leadership lessons offered by Liane Hornsey, Chief People Officer at Uber, during yesterday’s 10th Annual Central Coast Business Symposium hosted by Andre Morris & Buttery.

Here are a few of my favorite highlights:

Treat your people like people no matter who they are or where they come from.

Find a way to involve them in decision making. Let them take an active role in shaping the future of the company.

Consider burning the boats. A.k.a. the old methods of tracking and rewarding performance.

Be accessible. Get rid of the silos!

Find a way to tie your Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives to the heart of your business model.

Sergio Zepeda and Guillermo Chavez of Women’s Economic Ventures

A recent visit to the Santa Maria Business Development Center (MIYB Spaces), a hot bed of resources for small business owners on the Central Coast, led to a dynamic encounter with folks hungry for knowledge. In a room full of a dozen plus Latino entrepreneurs and small business owners, I found myself faced with another exciting opportunity to directly engage with a rising sector of the United States.

It shouldn’t come as no surprise that Hispanic business owners are a continual force and relevant piece of our Nation’s economic makeup. The U.S. Hispanic market makes up the 7th largest economy…

A hub for all things tech and entrepreneurship in the Santa Maria Valley.

SantaMariaValley.Tech is built by and for the community at large. Our goal is to help fuel new growth within the Santa Maria Valley’s tech and entrepreneurial ecosystem.

We believe in the pillars of startup community building that make for a vibrant entrepreneurial hub. It’s amazing what can happen when people, technology, access, and ideas come together. We believe in you, the architect of fresh possibility.

We invite you to help us write our next chapter.

The Santa Maria Valley is a perfect basecamp for ideas to thrive.

Our region is rich with culture, aesthetics, options, history, and opportunity. At the tip of Northern Santa Barbara County, Santa Maria plays home to a variety of existing clusters that have fueled traditional economic development throughout the region. In today’s post-industrial America, there is a rising influx of communities proving that you don’t need to reside in Silicon Valley to play catalyst to startup growth and innovation. Ideas can and will continue to thrive from the West Coast to the East Coast.

Emergence is defined as the process…

Jose Huitron

Believer. Founder at Hub 81 and

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