Ask a Mentor: Paul Berberian

Paul Berberian is a Techstars mentor as well as is the CEO of Sphero (Boulder ’10, Disney ’14). He is an experienced chief executive and entrepreneur who has founded and run high-tech companies over the last 12 years. Paul is the former CEO and co-founder of Raindance Communications (NASDAQ: RNDC) and Market Force Information. Follow him on Twitter @pberberian

What do you love most about mentoring startups? Why do you do it?

I love mentoring because many wiser people mentored me and it is a way to give back, plus I always learn something new — you’d be amazed how many approaches there are to solve the same problem — until you see six companies all solve it differently.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received? What’s the worst?

Best: You can’t save yourself to succeed — you must grow.

Worst: Don’t worry about the stock price (as we began to trade below a dollar and below our cash account value with the real threat of being delisted).

How do you prefer that founders follow up with you?


What is the most common mistake you see startup founders make?

They get the founder dynamic all wrong. They fail to chose a leader and they mess up the equity.

What is your favorite quality in a founder?

The sheer will of a founder to create something out of thin air — even when the world is against them.

This was originally published on the Techstars’ blog.

— —

Subscribe to get our new posts straight to your inbox. We publish fresh content almost daily, stay in the loop with an easy email digest sent twice a week.

Like what you read? Give Techstars a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.