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Competitive Edge
Creating your Unique Value Proposition to gain your Competitive Edge.
Curated by Marc Kneepkens
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Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Startups!

3 Dirty Little Habits That Will Kill Your Entrepreneurial Dreams

3 Dirty Little Habits That Will Kill Your Entrepreneurial Dreams | Competitive Edge |

If it seems like everyone else is succeeding but you -- you might be sabotaging your success with these bad behaviors.

If you look around and see other entrepreneurs who are succeeding where you are not, you may want to look deeper. Sometimes our lives simply don’t progress at the same rate as others.

However, if you’re noticing a trend that your ship never seems to be coming in, you may be guilty of unconsciously engaging in one, or even all, of these three dirty little habits that will hold you back from greatnes.

Do a self-assessment and see if you are practicing any of these destructive behaviors. Read more: click on image or title.

Get your Free Business Plan Template here: http://bit.l/1aKy7km

I downloaded your business plan template ...It is  great!!! we have a successful delivery service already running today ...This plan is for a new liquor store idea tax consultants say your plan is amazing..Thanks Dave!!!
Aja Noyes
Shift Gear Deliveries

Via StartupYard
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

The main obstacle to success is yourself. If you can believe you can do it, you will. Stop putting it off, get started, line up your ideas, make a plan, weigh your options, and get going.

Chrissie Webber 'Powering Business Potential''s curator insight, April 28, 9:35 AM

1 More Dirty Little Habit id 'Priority Inverting'. By that I mean concentrating on doing very busy work that you have given a high priority to. This is work you love doing but no clients have requested it and no short or medium term sales will be generated from the activity.

Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Ideas, Innovation & Start-ups!

This Woman's Revolutionary Idea Made Her A Billionaire — And Could Change Medicine

This Woman's Revolutionary Idea Made Her A Billionaire — And Could Change Medicine | Competitive Edge |

She created an amazing blood test that can be done without a doctor and is incredibly cheap. The new testing methods developed by Holmes' startup Theranos, that lone drop can now yield a ton of information.

The next time you get a blood test, you might not have to go to the doctor and watch vials of blood fill up as the precious fluid is drawn from your arm.

No more wondering to yourself, "Ah, how much more can they take before I pass out?"

Instead you might be able to walk into a Walgreens pharmacy for a reportedly painless fingerprick that will draw just a tiny drop of blood, thanks to Elizabeth Holmes, 30, the youngest woman and third-youngest billionaire on Forbes' newly released annual ranking of the 400 richest Americans.

Revolutionizing the blood test is a golden idea.

Because of new testing methods developed by Holmes' startup Theranos, that lone drop can now yield a ton of information.

The company can run hundreds of tests on a drop of blood far more quickly than could be done with whole vials in the past — and it costs a lot less.

A Billion-Dollar Idea

Holmes dropped out of Stanford at 19 to found what would become Theranos after deciding that her tuition money could be better put to use by transforming healthcare.

Traditional blood testing is shockingly difficult and expensive for a tool that's used so frequently. It also hasn't changed since the 1960s.

It's done in hospitals and doctors' offices. Vials of blood have to be sent out and tested, which can take weeks using traditional methods and is prone to human error. And, of course, sticking a needle in someone's arm scares some people enough that they avoid getting blood drawn, even when it could reveal lifesaving information.

Holmes recognized that process was ripe for disruption.

It took a decade for her idea to be ready for primetime, but now it seems that her decision to drop out was undoubtedly a good call. Last year, Walgreen Co. announced that it would be installing Theranos Wellness Centers in pharmacies across the country, with locations already up and running in Phoenix and Palo Alto, California. And Holmes has raised $400 million in venture capital for Theranos, which is now valued at $9 billion (Holmes owns 50%).

The other two 30-year-olds on Forbes' List, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his former roommate and Facebook CEO Dustin Moskovitz, also have access to a wealth of information about people — but their data is less likely to directly save a life.

How It Works

One closely guarded secret is what MedCityNews calls "the most interesting part of [the Theranos] story": how exactly the technology behind its blood test works. The company's methods are protected by more than a dozen patents filed as far back as 2004 and as recently as last week.

In an interview with Wired, Holmes hinted at some of the key ideas behind Theranos.

"We had to develop ... methodologies that would make it possible to accelerate results," she said. "In the case of a virus or bacteria, traditionally tested using a culture, we measure the DNA of the pathogen instead so we can report results much faster."

While we can't yet assess independently how well that method works when compared with traditional blood tests, it already seems to be upending the old way of doing things.

Why Blood Tests?

Holmes told Medscape that she targeted lab medicine because it drives about 80% of clinical decisions made by doctors.

By zeroing in on the inefficiencies of that system, the Theranos approach completely revolutionizes it.

The new tests can be done without going to the doctor, which saves both money and time. Most results are available in about four hours, which means that you could swing by a pharmacy and have a test done the day before a doctor's visit, and then the results would be available for the physician.

Quick tests that can be done at any time are already a total change, but the amount of data the company can get from a single drop of blood is amazing.

Blood samples have traditionally been used for one test, but if a follow-up was needed, another sample had to be drawn and sent out — making it less likely that someone would get care. The Theranos approach means the same drop can be used for dozens of different tests.

It's cheap, too. One common criticism of the healthcare system is that the pricing structure is a confusing labyrinth that makes it impossible to know how much anything costs. Theranos lists its prices online, and they're impressive.

Each test costs less than 50% of standard Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates. If those two programs were to perform all tests at those prices, they'd save $202 billion over the next decade, Holmes said in an interview on Wired.

Plus, people get access to their own results.

As an example of how helpful that can be, Holmes told Wired that Theranos charges $35 for a fertility test, which is usually paid for out-of-pocket and costs up to $2,000.

But she also said that this data could be useful for anyone looking to gain a better understanding of his or her health.

"By testing, you can start to understand your body, understand yourself, change your diet, change your lifestyle, and begin to change your life," she said.

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Via Justin Jones
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Great idea and lots of work: 10 years.

malek's curator insight, October 5, 2014 12:53 PM

The "Steve Jobs"  of blood analysis innovation.A woman, entrepreneur and youngest Forbes 400 self-made billionaire. 

M. Philip Oliver's curator insight, October 6, 2014 7:24 PM


Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Ideas, Innovation & Start-ups!

The Startup Curve

The Startup Curve | Competitive Edge |

oh no ... the trough of sorrow

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Via Justin Jones
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

It's a learning process. When reality hits, the 'work' comes. Mastery and success are much later. The work needs to be done.

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StartupVitamins: Quotes for Startups & Offices

StartupVitamins: Quotes for Startups & Offices | Competitive Edge |

Startup Vitamins provides inspiration and motivation for startups - and supports them too!
Startup Vitamins is a recently launched project, which offers inspiring posters with sayings from industry leaders such as Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs, Jason Fried, and more.

Profit from sold posters goes towards supporting various organizations, which develop and bring value to the startup community. Currently profits are split between StartupWeekend and Garage48, both of which help ideas come to life around the world.

See more Quotes? Want it in your office? Order a Poster, Canvas, Mug, Sticker or Framed Print from StartupVitamins . Click here, support Startups, motivate yourself.

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

A great idea? Don't keep on thinking about it, turning around in circles, start somewhere. Jot down your main bullet points, sketch, find partners, create, start, do it. Once it's moving it's like a train: hard to stop.

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21 Things You Need to Know to Validate Your Startup Idea

21 Things You Need to Know to Validate Your Startup Idea | Competitive Edge |

This is from a talk I gave today at Lean Startup Machine (LSM) in Silicon Valley. LSM is a three day workshop for learning customer development and Lean Startup techniques. I founded the workshop series five years ago and it’s been hosted in over one hundred cities around the world.

Make sure you check out #19, which is a key point. Since this post is somewhat of a rant, I’d like to confess I’ve been guilty of not doing almost everything below. I’m sharing this knowledge to help others who are about to walk the same path of entrepreneurship.

Read more:

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

"The team at Growthink delivered exceptional quality service in every aspect of their client services. Their staff of professionals were extremely instrumental in fine tuning my creative vision into a well developed business plan."
James E. Spence, Jr, Founder & CEO
At Bread Boutique

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Having a great idea is one thing. Testing and validating is the next step. You can't just fantasize on paper and jot down numbers. The idea needs to evolve. Trevor Owens describes the process in a very clear way. This is part of the information that you will put in a business plan, eventually. Highly recommended read.

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Will your new business idea succeed?

Will your new business idea succeed? | Competitive Edge |

"What if you can test your idea without wasting time and money?"

That's a question worth thinking about. 

Many of people have ideas, and every now and then they come across ideas that might be worth pursuing. Most however, do nothing with those ideas due many reasons such as:

They simply don’t know where to start -  

“I have a great idea! but no clue on what to do with it”. The thought
process of turning an idea to a product can be daunting to certain
individuals, especially when it exists outside of their field of knowledge.

They’re afraid of FAILURE -

The word “failure” above is in all-caps because thats how much people get intimidated by the idea of it. Will my idea work? Is this going to be worth all my time and money? What if I fail?

One way of finding out if an idea is feasible and worth pursuing is to
produce a MVP (Minimum Viable Product). 

QuickMVP is a website that does just that. It helps you test any business idea in just five minutes, without writing any code. Through building a landing page and creating a Google Ad, you can see how real customers respond to your idea before investing precious time and money.

Here's the basic setup:

Landing Page

* Get it live in 3 minutes
* Plain and simple--test your idea, not your design
* Connect any domain name
* Customize the CSS and add your own HTML (optional)
* Test unlimited ideas

Google Ad Creator

* Takes 2 minutes with no expertise necessary
* Add keywords and a budget and you're done
* Automatically optimized for Google's Algorithm

QuickMVP is designed specifically for validating new business ideas and it helps you identify the important metrics to decide if an idea is worth pursuing.

Let us know in the comments if you try QuickMVP. Did it work out for you? 

Get your Free Business Plan Template here:

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Sounds like a great tool for testing new ideas and startup businesses. Give it a try.

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Rescooped by Marc Kneepkens from Ideas, Innovation & Start-ups!

$1 Million for a Great Idea

$1 Million for a Great Idea | Competitive Edge |

Behold the world's largest business idea competition. Eyes on the $1 million prize. Come and collect your cash ...

With $5 million in cash prizes, including a top award of $1 million, six $500,000 awards and four $250,000 awards, 43North is setting out to turn the best new business ideas from around the globe into reality.

Winners also receive free incubator space for a year, guidance from mentors related to their field and access to other exciting incentive programs.

43North is open to applicants in any industry, with the exception of retail and hospitality. Winners agree to operate their business in the Buffalo, New York for a minimum of one year and provide 43North with 5% non-dilutive equity in their company.

The competition includes three rounds of judging:
        1.  Feb 5, 2014 to May 31, 2014: 43North accepts applications via – apply here.
        2.  Sept 15, 2014 to Sept 20, 2014: Semifinalists present their plans via webinar
        3.  Oct 27, 2014 to Oct 30, 2014: Finalists present their plans during a weeklong series of events in Buffalo, NY

43North is part of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Buffalo Billion initiative, which is driving new economic opportunities throughout Buffalo and Western New York. The competition operates through the support of New York Power Authority and Launch NY.

To see the site with full information, click on the title or image.

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Via Justin Jones
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Ideas finally get rewarded! This needs to be done everywhere, not just in the Buffalo,NY area.

Don't forget your business plan.

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