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Is Coding the New Literacy? - Mother Jones

Is Coding the New Literacy? - Mother Jones | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
Is Coding the New Literacy?
Mother Jones
In the winter of 2011, a handful of software engineers landed in Boston just ahead of a crippling snowstorm.

In the winter of 2011, a handful of software engineers landed in Boston just ahead of a crippling snowstorm. They were there as part of Code for America, a program that places idealistic young coders and designers in city halls across the country for a year. They'd planned to spend it building a new website for Boston's public schools, but within days of their arrival, the city all but shut down and the coders were stuck fielding calls in the city's snow emergency center.

To read the full article, click on the title or image.



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Via Bonnie Bracey Sutton, Gebeyehu B. Amha
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

The ways we think are changing. Computational thinking explained. Interesting article.

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10 Ways You Can Gain Trust Online

10 Ways You Can Gain Trust Online | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
Build your reputation and credibility with these tested tactics.

Trust is one of the most challenging things to earn and the easiest to break. When you’re first starting to build your brand, gaining the trust of your prospective new clients and keeping the trust of your current clients is life or death for your business.

When you add the extra dimension of building trust online, with a person you’ve never actually met or spoken with, establishing trust can be even more difficult. So what are some of the best ways to go about building trust? You might think it’s just a matter of having integrity, but there is a lot more to the complex relationship of trust than simply being honest. In fact, honesty is something your clients implicitly expect, so you’ll have to go beyond that basic building block.

Here are 10 ways you can gain more trust with your clients online.




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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Trust and Reputation are major factors in good business.

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16 Startup Metrics | Andreessen Horowitz

16 Startup Metrics | Andreessen Horowitz | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

We have the privilege of meeting with thousands of entrepreneurs every year, and in the course of those discussions are presented with all kinds of numbers, measures, and metrics that illustrate the promise and health of a particular company. Sometimes, however, the metrics may not be the best gauge of what’s actually happening in the business, or people may use different definitions of the same metric in a way that makes it hard to understand the health of the business.

So, while some of this may be obvious to many of you who live and breathe these metrics all day long, we compiled a list of the most common or confusing metrics. Where appropriate, we tried to add some notes on why investors focus on those metrics. Ultimately, though, good metrics aren’t about raising money from VCs — they’re about running the business in a way where founders know how and why certain things are working (or not) … and can address or adjust accordingly. Read more: click image or title.




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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Excellent explanation of what metrics are and are not. Take a good look and know what you are doing. Knowing your metrics will build trust with your funding sources.

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23 fascinating diagrams reveal how to negotiate with people around the world !

23 fascinating diagrams reveal how to negotiate with people around the world ! | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

You can't expect negotiations with the French to be like negotiations with Americans, and the same holds true for every culture around the world.

British linguist Richard D. Lewis charted communication patterns as well as leadership styles and cultural identities in his book, "When Cultures Collide," which is now in a third edition. His organization offers classes in cross-cultural communication for clients like Unilever and BMW.

Although cultural generalizations can be overly reductive, Lewis, who speaks 10 languages, insists it can be done fairly. "Determining national characteristics is treading a minefield of inaccurate assessment and surprising exception. There is, however, such a thing as a national norm," he writes.

Scroll down to see Lewis' insights on negotiating with people around the world.



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Via Fouad Bendris
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Interesting differences between cultures and good to know beforehand. Missing is the Arabic culture, which takes lots of time before getting down to business talk. Building a relationship is important there, getting to know each other.

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Fouad Bendris's curator insight, August 18, 3:43 PM

Key insights for international business ... 

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You’re Still Modeling Growth Incorrectly

You’re Still Modeling Growth Incorrectly | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

When I first got the job running marketing at Mint, founder and CEO Aaron Patzer told me that we had to get Mint to 100,000 users within six months of launching.

The number itself didn’t intimidate me: Before Mint, I had been Facebook employee No. 30. I’d witnessed crazy, exponential user growth first-hand. The difference was that at Mint, we were pre-product and certainly pre-repeatable-growth-engine. That meant we had to invent something from scratch.

I won’t lie, I was nervous. I started by drawing up a marketing plan.

The result: After 12 months, Mint had more than 1,000,000 users.  We made it a whole extra comma above our target.

In the startup world, where growth is as essential to life as oxygen, falling short of your growth goals means your company dies.

Given the life-or-death importance of achieving growth, it’s ironic that growth teams, marketers and founders often treat it as a matter of faith. Their execution plans amount to working really hard, then dropping on their knees to pray to the growth gods that everything will magically work.

The mistake youre making is a simple but profound fix, and it’ll fundamentally change the way you approach growth. Read more: click image or title.


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Focus on what works and know what you're doing...

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The One Thing Every Great Company Has In Common

The One Thing Every Great Company Has In Common | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

Obscured in the valuation dust of the current unicorn stampede is a key question: What actually makes a great company great? What do the future Facebooks, Googles and Apples have in common — not to mention the current ones?

Let’s take Google and Apple. Both have reached the pinnacle of business success. And some of their flagship products — like iPhone and Android — can even be eerily similar (even before they’ve had time to imitate each other).

But the souls of each couldn’t be more different: Apple is notoriously secretive; Google is a pioneer in transparency. Apple began as a hardware company; Google started as big data research. Apple has a military-style top-down command-and-control org chart; Google has a Burning Man-inspired, bottoms-up chaos to it. Apple is driven primarily by vision; Google worships experimentation and data. Steve Jobs was a heart-centered designer; Larry Page presents himself as a Spockian engineer.

Yet, in terms of revenue and impact on the world, both are among the world’s most successful companies.

How can this be? How have they gotten to the same mountain peak taking such totally different paths? Shouldn’t one of those approaches be right and the other wrong? Shouldn’t one company be decisively winning and the other decisively losing? Read more and find the answer: click on image or title.


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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

What makes you #startup stand out and unique?

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9 Ways That Cities Are Creating Tech Communities That Support Civic Innovation - Co.Exist

9 Ways That Cities Are Creating Tech Communities That Support Civic Innovation - Co.Exist | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
These are the cities that are the best and worst at working with local startups for the benefit of all involved.

How can cities truly embrace technology to improve their operations and provide better public services? Despite no shortage of focus on this question, cities—with their entrenched ways of doing things and cautious approach—have struggled on this issue.

A new report called the Citie Framework attempts to provide answers. It advocates a link between local communities of tech companies and innovative governance—a kind of "feedback loop," if you will. "While city authorities can’t create tech communities or entrepreneurs, what they can do is optimize the policy levers that are within their control to design the best set of conditions for innovation to flourish," it says. Read more: click on image or title.




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Via Günter Schumacher
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Cities are catching on to the world of technology. How are they doing? Which ones create the best environment for startups and investors?


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The Key to Fitness for Startups: Advice, Best Practices, & Tools | Mattermark

The Key to Fitness for Startups: Advice, Best Practices, & Tools | Mattermark | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
It takes 2 minutes of walking every hour to improve your health. Let’s investigate a few habits and fitness startups that will make that easier.

Exercise is one of the most important, least utilized, tools in every founder’s toolkit.

Think about it. You already know how important it is for your happiness and overall health. But, some of the biggest benefits are ones that can help you and your team to level up at work.

Regular exercise is attributed with improving concentration, sharpening memory, speeding up learning, enhancing creativity, and lowering stress.

Paul Graham, of Y Combinator, probably understands this more than most. He makes a point to all founders entering YC that exercise is as key to a startup’s success as building product and talking to users. Read the whole article: click on title or image.


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"I wanted to take a moment to thank-you and your team for the incredible job on the Redux business plan. It was an absolute breeze to work with you and would look forward to working with you again in the future."
Hannah Kirby
Owner Redux Beverages, LLC

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

I have not created a 'fitness' topic on Scoop.it yet. However, fitness and health are on top of my list. A future website is in the making. Fitness is one of the most important requirements needed for success in business, and in life.

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Accelerators Are The New Business School

Accelerators Are The New Business School | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

It’s no secret that most startups fail. What’s a bit less obvious is that most startup accelerators also fail. While a few top-tier programs get the cream of the crop unicorns of the future, the hundreds of others struggle to attract teams that will produce the investment-grade companies on which their models so depend.

As the true business school of the future, most of them provide tremendous educational value to these budding entrepreneurs — who very well may produce a valuable company some day. Overwhelming odds are, however, that those initial projects that accelerators get a piece of, for their cash and time investment, aren’t the ones with which the entrepreneurs will ultimately succeed. For accelerators to survive long term, their business model has to change. Read more: click on image or title.




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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Some history and evaluation of the start up accelerator model.

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Solopreneur: 8 Ways To Stay Motivated When Working For Yourself

Solopreneur: 8 Ways To Stay Motivated When Working For Yourself | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
Be excellent at one thing rather than mediocre at many.

It was fall 2014, and I was stuck.

You may be able to relate.

When you’re building something – a business, a blog, a website – you’re constantly learning and taking in information, and all of that information can easily become overwhelming.

I wanted to research so many things and incorporate them into Unsettle and test different theories, but my brain was on overload.

And what resulted? Nothing. I didn’t do anything, except “research.”

I didn’t produce (though I told myself I was being productive), and I realized a few weeks before my launch date that I didn’t have much prepared.

When I realized this, I stopped myself from researching any further and wrote down all of the principles I knew about creating a successful lifestyle business.

Thereafter, I referred to them when I’d get lost, overwhelmed or feel unmotivated.

These became my guiding principles in creating this website, and they take the pressure off my mind by guiding it in the right direction.

Maybe they’ll help you, too:

Read more: click on image or title.





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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Working alone has its own challenges. You're your own boss with your own schedule, aspirations and dreams. How do you manage yourself? Sarah Peterson gives some guidelines to get you there.

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The Startup Shrink Will See You Now

The Startup Shrink Will See You Now | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
In Berlin’s startup culture, consulting overlaps with therapy

Julia Derndinger is Berlin’s startup therapist. Each week, she sees a dozen company founders at her apartment on Oranienburger Straße, where €200 ($227) an hour buys advice on spending, expansion, and hiring, plus hot tea and, occasionally, relationship counseling. Derndinger also helps navigate the extra layers of danger and anxiety that come with running a fledgling business in Germany. The local financial press has dubbed her die Gründertrainerin, “the founder trainer.”

As many as 1,000 startups have begun life in Berlin in the past year, and the local tech industry employs about 60,000 laptop jockeys in conventional offices or huddled at cafes and co-working spaces with Fritz-Kola and craft beer. But the “fail fast, fail often” ethos of Silicon Valley is at odds with the notoriously cautious German business culture. Germany ranks 25th out of 29 high-income countries by new-business formation, according to the World Bank. Among other factors, shuttering the local equivalent of a limited liability company takes a year or more and lands directors on a banking blacklist.

Discretion is paramount for Derndinger, a startup veteran who began taking on clients two years ago after encountering a wave of founders in need of hand-holding. She says most are in their early 30s, manage at least 50 employees and €10 million in annual revenue, and take more than a year to publicly admit they meet with her. “We don’t talk about problems in Germany,” Derndinger says. “It’s just not sexy to be coached.” Read more: click image or title.





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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Good to have an outsider mentor you. Being a founder puts a lot of pressure and responsibility on you.

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Lessons From Dave Goldberg: An Open Letter To Aspiring CEOs And Young Entrepreneurs

Lessons From Dave Goldberg: An Open Letter To Aspiring CEOs And Young Entrepreneurs | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
Silicon Valley and corporate America would be a better place if more people led their companies like Dave.

Dave Goldberg was a fantastic leader and his untimely passing was tough for those of us who worked for him at SurveyMonkey.

He was not only a great boss, which many can confirm, but he also was a visionary on a new, better way to build a high tech business.

A lot of young entrepreneurs think a CEO should be like Steve Jobs and try to emulate him. In my opinion, you would be much better served emulating Dave. He was the type of leader we need in high tech and one you rarely see.

Here’s what I learned watching Dave. Read more, click on image or title.





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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Not all successful CEO's are like Steve Jobs. There are different ways and opinions on what you can be like when being a leader. This article is refreshing and enlightening.

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So, About That Uber Ruling

So, About That Uber Ruling | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

Some bad news broke for Uber today — the California Labor Commission ruled that one of the company's drivers was an employee. Uber has long insisted that those drivers are independent contractors, not employees, and that’s a key part of the business model. However, Uber’s situation isn’t nearly as dire as it first seemed.

The initial story from Reuters suggested that the decision applied to all Uber drivers, and some follow-up articles made the same mistake. (We’re guilty. Our story is now corrected.) However, Uber released a statement saying that the decision is “non-binding and applies to a single driver.”

And while you’d expect the company to downplay the significance here, I also spoke to several lawyers and legal experts, who confirmed that that’s the case.

For example, startup-focused lawyer George Grellas wrote on Hacker News that “this ruling has basically symbolic importance only.” That’s particularly true since Uber is appealing the commission’s decision, so this case will be decided in court (and with further appeals, that process could take years).

“This doesn’t mean that Uber doesn’t have a huge battle on its hands, both here and elsewhere,” Grellas wrote. “It just means that this ruling sheds little or no light on how it will fare in that battle.”

Read more: click image or title.




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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

After reading the whole article it appears that this is not the end of it. This case can go on for years, it can be duplicated with other people in similar cases, and it is not a general ruling.

The significance of this to me is that of the 'contractor'/'employee' status. The labor department and the IRS have created rules for many years to create more income for the government. In my opinion there should be a choice for the employee and for the company. Which status do you choose, and which system do you want to follow, based on how you approach the task at hand. The economy can use some streamlining. Of course, established industries that are being disrupted, such as in this case the taxi industry, will not let this happen without a big fight.

Technology and the internet are changing the world rapidly. Old models will change, one way or the other.

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In the Future, Employees Won’t Exist

In the Future, Employees Won’t Exist | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

Contract work is becoming the new normal. Consider Uber: The ride-sharing startup has 160,000 contractors, but just 2,000 employees. That’s an astonishing ratio of 80 to 1.

And when it comes to a focus on contract labor, Uber isn’t alone. Handy, Eaze and Luxeare just a few of the latest entrants into the “1099 Economy.”

Though they get the most attention, it’s not just on-demand companies that employ significant contract workforces. Microsoft has nearly two-thirds as many contractors as full-time employees. Even the simplest business structures, sole proprietorships, have increased their use of contract workers nearly two-fold since 2003.

Four trends are converging to make contracting more attractive for both employers and workers, and reshaping how businesses and employees look at the traditional full-time model.

Read more: click on image or title.


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"Hey Dave!
I bought one of your business planning templates and have been receiving your emails and videos for a few months now…
I just wanted to say thanks for cranking out such amazing work!
You're doing an incredible job, and I know entrepreneurs everywhere are benefiting from it!
Please, keep it up!
Wishing you all the best!"
Colin Pape
President
ShopCity.com, Inc.


Marc Kneepkens's insight:

The fight to get contract workers approved isn't over yet. Both the IRS and Dept of Labor want the government to take their share out of employment. May court battles will be fought over this.

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Next-Gen Cybersecurity Is All About Behavior Recognition

Next-Gen Cybersecurity Is All About Behavior Recognition | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

In the wake of devastating personal information leaks, like Target’s back in 2014 affecting more than 70 million customers and the more recent Ashley Madison data breach, concerns over cybersecurity are at an all-time high.

Financial advisers overwhelmingly cite cybersecurity as their number-one concern, with business owners and everyday consumers sharing in those worries.

There are a few ways to approach this problem, but the one on everyone’s mind is the most straightforward; we need to protect companies’ records from ever being breached in the first place.

There are many ways a criminal could potentially acquire this information; for example, they could use weak passwords to fraudulently log in to a given system, or find an application vulnerability in the backend to find stored data. Breaches like this are startlingly common, and many go unreported in the news.

Recognizing this, many have suggested the proper way to fight back and improve cybersecurity is to improve backend systems to have fewer vulnerabilities, or train consumers and employees to do a better job of keeping their login information secure. Either way, the goal here is to slow criminals down by making it more difficult for them to obtain or use the necessary information. Read more: click image or title.



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"I wanted to personally thank you for all of your hard work and dedication in developing the Broadway Remix business plan and the long awaited financial plan for our project.
We finally have the final and revised financial plan to date and will send it to everyone this coming Monday. Once I walk everyone through the document we will all realize the tremendous amount of research that was involved over the course of the last 3 months to prepare this document.
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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

#CyberSecurity has become a very big deal. Many #startups are bringing new solutions. This one is very creative...

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Katharine Cognard-Black's curator insight, August 24, 11:43 PM

This Article was about the next big thing in the world of online security, recognition based of your mouse movements or typing patterns. This was created as a final stand against hackers, it eliminated them because instead of creating walls to keep them out it just creates a person file on the hacker when they try to hack into a system, and does not let them see the information guarded. In theory this is a productive Idea that can lead us into a safer future however my concerns are that the computers might make mistakes verifying someones movements and therefor block the correct recipient of the information, which could lead to problems.

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5 Things Every Millennial Entrepreneur Should Know About Startups - Huffington Post

5 Things Every Millennial Entrepreneur Should Know About Startups - Huffington Post | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

Startup life conjures images of warm, innovative workspaces, community game areas, catered gourmet lunches, laid-back dress codes and generally positive working atmospheres. Perhaps it's this glamorization of the entrepreneurial lifestyle that draws so many millennials to the prospect of launching their own business.

The desire to ditch the traditional career path and pursue solitary business ventures is prominent among this youngest generation of adults, with 66 percent of millennials reporting a desire to start their own business in a 2014 Bentley University survey -- compared with just 13 percent who cite climbing the corporate ladder to become CEO or president as their career goal.

But it's not all glamour, glitz and game rooms in startup life. Fortune reports the less publicized failure rate among startups at 90 percent. To become part of the 10 percent who succeed, here's what millennial entrepreneurs should know about startup reality. Read more: click image or title.




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Via ventureLAB
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Few are cut out for this tough extreme of entrepreneurship: the startup.

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Seth's Blog: The interim strategy

Seth's Blog: The interim strategy | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

We say we want to treat people fairly, build an institution that will contribute to the culture and embrace diversity. We say we want to do things right the first time, treat people as we would like to be treated and build something that matters.

But first... first we say we have to make our company work.

We say we intend to hire and train great people, but in the interim, we'll have to settle for cheap and available. We say we'd like to give back, but of course, in the interim, first we have to get...

This interim strategy, the notion that ideals and principles are for later, but right now, all the focus and resources have to be put into the emergency of getting successful—it doesn't work.

It doesn't work because it's always the interim. It never seems like the right time to stop doing what worked and start doing what we said was important.

The first six hires you make are more important than hires 100 through 105. The first difficult ethical decision you make is more important than the one you make once you've (apparently) made it. The difficult conversation you have tomorrow is far more important than the one you might have to have a few years from now.

Exactly how successful do we have to get before we stop cutting corners, making selfish decisions and playing the short-term game?

All the great organizations I can think of started as great organizations. Tiny, perhaps, but great.

Life is what happens while we're busy making plans. The interim is forever, so perhaps it makes sense to make act in the interim as we expect to act in the long haul.



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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Yes, decisions need to be taken now, not for 'the time being'.

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Not Just An App: The Front End Of The Trillion-Dollar, Full-Stack Revolution

Not Just An App: The Front End Of The Trillion-Dollar, Full-Stack Revolution | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

Stop calling Uber, Airbnb and Munchery just apps. These apps are the front end of a full-stack revolution powered by cloud, mobile, drones, robots and AI. These apps started as simple solutions to match demand and supply, but they have the potential to reinvent entire industries.

Today’s apps can best be compared to websites of the last tech revolution (or bubble) in late ’90s. The best of them, like Amazon, started as simple websites, but today invent drones, build robots and invest billions of dollars in all kinds of innovation and research to transform retail, logistics and even computing. Uber is beginning to show signs of that transformation with its move into driverless cars and maps — the other Uber-like winners will follow. Those that minimize what these apps do don’t understand that a full-stack revolution is afoot. Read more: click image or title.




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"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:

Simple #apps are re-shaping the world we live in and transforming entire industries. Pay attention, change is accelerating.

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Facebook has given birth to a bunch of startups who want to change how Businesses use Tech

Facebook has given birth to a bunch of startups who want to change how Businesses use Tech | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

Facebook makes nearly all of its money from ads. It's also begun investing in moonshot projects from virtual reality headsets to drones and laser communication systems.

One area it doesn't talk about: the $3.5 trillion enterprise tech market. That's how much money businesses spend on tech every year to run their companies and help employees do their jobs. 

Although Facebook did recently introduce an experiemental Facebook At Work service which lets teams use Facebook to communicate and share stuff, it's not much of a focus for the company.

All of which might make it seem as if Facebook has been completely absent from that that $3.5 trillion market.

But it hasn't. 

Facebook has actually helped cook up a whole bunch of startups that want to change the way enterprises use tech.

They were inspired by how Facebook uses technology to run its massive social network, often giving away the technology it invents for free, everything from data center hardware designs to databases.

Here's a look at some of the unusual enterprise startups from Facebook.Read more: click image or title.



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"Hey Dave!
I bought one of your business planning templates and have been receiving your emails and videos for a few months now…
I just wanted to say thanks for cranking out such amazing work!
You're doing an incredible job, and I know entrepreneurs everywhere are benefiting from it!
Please, keep it up! Wishing you all the best!"
Colin Pape
President
ShopCity.com, Inc.



Via TechinBiz
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Facebook funds startups through its own corporate culture. Solutions were created for them and taken to another level. Great example of corporate funding.

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Mzos Pune's curator insight, August 7, 5:36 AM

MZOS News! IT and Business Trends as it happens. Read to get the latest updates. Click now: http://bit.ly/1IV2sjM

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5 less-than-flattering traits that can make startup founders great

5 less-than-flattering traits that can make startup founders great | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
The best startup founders may need patience, resilience, perspective, and zen to run their businesses. But they also need some less flattering characteristics they may not want to admit to.

It’s 2015. Have you founded your startup yet? If not, it may be time to join the club. With 50 technology startups launching each day in Beijing alone, it’s clear that it’s past time to jump on the bandwagon. Accelerators, incubators, and VC funds splash around so much cash that it’s no longer worth counting the number of tech startups with million-dollar valuations. Indeed, as of this writing, 100 unicorns have received billion-dollar valuations.

With all that capital floating around, you might be feeling confident about that bulletproof idea you had. You know, the one for an app that irons your dress shirts for you? You can name-check your all-star forefathers — Jobs, Musk, Armstrong — and you’ve flipped through Art Of The Start. You’re ready. Right?

Wrong. There’s a reason 90 percent of startups fail. So before you start mapping The Iron Fist’s path from beta to billions, let’s take a step back. Having spent nearly 20 years working for a variety of startup founders, interacting with many more in the community, and serving as one myself, I’m constantly disappointed with a lot of the startup founder advice out there. Of course, any successful founder needs to be a savvy leader, an able communicator, a nimble problem solver, and a really really smart person. To run any business, you need patience, resilience, perspective, zen — the list goes on.

But what about the less obvious — and to some, less flattering — traits that make up the remainder of the startup founder DNA? Startup founders tend to be culled from the outliers, the obsessives, the oddballs. Those who find success manage to take what would otherwise be a shortcoming — the inability to sit still, workaholism, pigheadedness — and with a strong vision, mold it into something constructive. Let’s take a look at five of the least-touted traits found in some of the best-performing startup founders. Read more: click image or title.





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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Founders need a lot of qualities. They are tough and sometimes relentless characters. This article highlights some unusual traits.

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9 tips for how big companies can compete with startups (hint: Innovate or die)

9 tips for how big companies can compete with startups (hint: Innovate or die) | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

The startup landscape can be a double-edged sword in the business world: either the company is going to disrupt the entire landscape or it's going to inspire. But what seems to have corporations terrified is how to wrap their heads around the impact startups are having on the traditional model. Is internal research and development enough? Or is outside assistance needed? And just where should these corporations start? 

To read more, click image or title.



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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Startups are a real threat of corporations. #Innovation is happening through startups now, and disruption is the threat.

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kelvin dsuja's curator insight, July 24, 5:14 AM

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Startups Serving The 99 Percent Will Be the Next Billion-Dollar Companies

Startups Serving The 99 Percent Will Be the Next Billion-Dollar Companies | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

Many fast-growing companies in Silicon Valley have one thing in common: they cater to a small, affluent, urban population -- the 1percent. 

Residents in high-cost cities like San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles can order an array of goods and services from their mobile phones.

These startups, including Uber, Instacart and a host of food delivery apps like Munchery, GrubMarket, Blue Apron, and Postmates, eventually have plans to broaden their offerings to attract middle-income consumers. This is the classic trickle-down business model.

As Farhad Manjoo wrote in The New York Times, “The rich subsidize the rest of us — were it not for the suckers who spent more than $10,000 on early versions of the Mac, Apple might not have survived to build the iPhone.”

As a venture capitalist who has invested in both Chinese and U.S. startups since 2005, I’ve backed several companies leveraging the trickle-down model, such as GrubMarket. But, now I see it also makes sense for some founders to take the opposite approach: mass market first. Read more: click image or title.




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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

It makes sense: catering to the masses is immensely more profitable than to the happy few. Come up with the great ideas now and start executing.

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7 wearable technology roles that will change the world

7 wearable technology roles that will change the world | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
As the world of wearables continues to grow, Adecco has created an infographic of 7 wearable technology roles that will change the world.

Wearables, wearables, wearables. Along with words like ‘cloud security’ and ‘internet of things’ that’s all I seem to hear about at the moment.

Not that I’m complaining, I love wearables and I am definitely not the only one who does. Wearable devices in the form of smartwatches and fitness trackers have taken the world by storm, with 10 million devices sold in 2014.

There are wearables in the market now that can change your mood, track your sleeping habits and bring an end to jet lag and that’s just in the consumer side; wearables are also being deployed in the enterprise with a host of use cases available.

This industry boom – which is only just beginning – brings with it a wide variety of job roles, some of which are yet to be created, such as IoT trainers, technology implementation managers and IoT-specific engineers.

To shed some light on the new job roles that will become available, Adecco has created an infographic of 7 wearable technology roles that will change the world, which can be found below. Read more: Click image or title.




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Via Richard Platt
Marc Kneepkens's insight:

Technology is creating more applications in wearable, IoT, cloud security and more all the time. The new jobs resulting from that are well paid and will need to be filled in the next few years. Follow the trends and be in demand.

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Richard Platt's curator insight, June 28, 3:40 PM

The infographic on the webpage is like an all-in-one, definitely a good capture of what is getting traction in the world of wearables.

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Best Kickass Advice For a 1st Time Entrepreneur

Best Kickass Advice For a 1st Time Entrepreneur | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

Make Sure You Buckle Up Before You Hit Top Speed :)

Entrepreneurship is a total roller coaster ride and if someone has told you to just take it easy, well buckle up and gather all you can to prepare for this crazy ride.

So whats that kickass advice for a first time entrepreneur ?

Henny Kel asked this fantastic question in the Startup Specialists Group on LinkedIn and gathered some really interesting and fantastic answers from across the globe.

Some of the awesome insights were :

Michael Felix added this fantastic thought :

Focus on your strengths and hire people whose strengths are your weaknesses". Too many entrepreneurs try to do it all, and it causes them to see entrepreneurship as this daunting venture

Read more great advice here: Best Kickass Advice To A First Time Entrepreneur




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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

My take: when creating your first entrepreneurial venture, stay focused. It requires and incredible amount of effort to create something of value that will last for a long time. That initial effort will take everything you got, give it all...

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6 Ways to Get a Fanatical Customer Base

6 Ways to Get a Fanatical Customer Base | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it
Passionate customers are the most critical component of building a brand, but you won't gain followers by sitting on your hands.

Entrepreneurs long to see the telltale signs of a passionate customer base: lines around the block on product launch day, pushing and shoving as the doors open and celebrations at the checkout counter. But gaining a legion of loyal followers doesn’t happen by accident.

Companies such as Apple and Tesla Motors that owe their success to passionate fans gained these followers with a formula for product lust. They knew their target customers intimately, then gave them a product that exceeded their expectations in four dimensions: innovative technology, simplicity and design and features that ignite conversation. In return, customers flocked to product launches and became brand evangelists.

Passionate customers are the most critical component of building a brand, but you won’t gain followers by sitting on your hands. Building a passionate customer base requires hard work and a focus on exceeding customers’ needs in simple ways. Read more: click image or title.



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"Hey Dave!
I bought one of your business planning templates and have been receiving your emails and videos for a few months now…
I just wanted to say thanks for cranking out such amazing work!
You're doing an incredible job, and I know entrepreneurs everywhere are benefiting from it!
Please, keep it up!
Wishing you all the best!"
Colin Pape
President
ShopCity.com, Inc.

Marc Kneepkens's insight:

When starting a new company you lay the foundation of a long term relationship. Those first customers are essential for your success. They'll be your 'evangelists'. Treat them right. Enjoy the rewards for years to come.

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Uber Driver Deemed Employee By California Labor Commission

Uber Driver Deemed Employee By California Labor Commission | Competitive Edge | Scoop.it

It would appear that the California Labor Commission has ruled that at least one Uber driver is an employee.

As it stands now, Uber employs its drivers as third-party contractors, operating as a logistics company that provides access to customer demand and directions, transactions, etc. for the drivers. Uber has argued repeatedly in various courts that it is not a transportation or taxi company, but rather a software platform that matches customer demand with supply.

This ruling changes all that, turning Uber into a transportation startup instead of a logistics software company. That puts the company in a position to face a number of legal obstacles, as well as rising costs of employing those drivers directly and offering them benefits, etc.

As BI points out, one of Uber’s main costs is its full-time employees that work out of Uber corporate offices. If Uber drivers are deemed employees, the business model shifts drastically.

Uber is said to have more than a million drivers using the platform across the globe.

Uber driver Barbara Ann Berwick filed a claim earlier in the year for not being paid out for her work. Through the course of that lawsuit, the California Labor Commission decided that Uber is far more than a logistics software company that matches supply with demand.

“Defendants are involved in every aspect of the operation,” reads the ruling, noting that Uber controls the tools drivers use and the transactions made through the app. Read more details: click image or title.





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Marc Kneepkens's insight:

There is a huge legal battle going on right now, not just in California, but all over the US and in the world. Are these 'contractors' working for themselves, or are they just employees? Rulings like this are extremely important and set precedents. They may be instrumental in the success of failure of companies like Uber and their likes.

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