Angel Investment Journal – Angel Investing and Entrepreneur Blog

Business Lessons from Harry Houdini

Posted in General,Marketing by angel on the August 27th, 2007

Having read quite a bit about Harry Houdini while growing up I enjoyed 37 Signal’s post today discussing 5 Business Lessons from Harry Houdini. They include:

– Focus on the killer bit
When he started out, he was doing a bunch of tricks and escaping from handcuffs was just one in the batch. A vaudeville bigwig saw him do his act and told him that no one cared about any of the tricks except the handcuff escape. Houdini dropped the rest of the tricks, did a show that focused exclusively on escapes, and flew to stardom.

– Give ‘em a story
Houdini knew the aura of escape was just as important as the actual escape. So he always gave people something to talk about. He’d often stretch easy escapes into lengthy affairs in order to build tension. When he finally broke free, the crowd would erupt in cheers.

The Business Plan’s lack of value

Posted in Startups by angel on the August 1st, 2007

Marc continues to make amazing posts on his blog. Check out this post talking about how a business plan really does not have much value as related to determining the success of a company. The main reason being is that you don’t know what it will take to be successful. The chances are you will need to revise the plan as you learn more about the industry.

He includes an excerpt from Randall Stross’s book about Thomas Edison, The Wizard of Menlo Park. I just ordered it from Aamzon as it sounds like a great book.