Turning entrepreneur can be an exciting adventure—one that demands an incredible amount of perseverance and hard work. But one of the biggest startup challenges is fundraising. VCs are getting pickier and pickier, so tapping the right fundraising strategy can make or break your business. Here are four ways to tackle that.
1. Bank On Microloans:
Many entrepreneurs take to Kickstarter too soon, before even gauging other options. Microfunding—an SBA-backed program that’s been around over 25 years—is a much easier and quicker to get funding vs. a traditional loan. (And it’s a great way to build your credit score, as well.) Here’s a brief and somewhat-informative video that explores how small business loans work:
What’s more, Microlenders also offer flexible payment options, and may mentor entrepreneurs to help them succeed.
2. Get A Partner:
When you’re looking for a little extra capital or technical know-how, seeking a co-founder and establishing a partnership can drive capital and planning. If a co-founder isn’t in the works, building strategic partnership with complementary businesses is a great avenue to fuel growth.
You don’t have to vie for a business’ CSR initiative or do charity work to get sponsored. As long as your idea sells and you’re building a great product, you’re on the grind. Sponsorships are largely done through advertising or media appearances. And sometimes by adding their brand to yours for a while.
4. Using Charge Cards:
Charge cards can be a powerful tool to obtain capital for your business. Unlike credit cards, charge cards do not come with a preset spending limit. The perks? It allows you to meet large expenses swiftly. What’s the catch? The lender requires you to pay the balance in full every month. If you’re financially responsible, charge cards are a great way to meet your costs.
CHART: Has WeWork Peaked?
After being the darling of tech, it looks like WeWork’s news coverage is taking a less friendly turn.
Up until circa mid-2018, co-working giant WeWork—the most hyped startup in the world—enjoyed a constant stream of positive news about everything they did.
The positive coverage peaked in July 2018 following the release of its first financial report, which showed $342M in revenue from the quarter prior.
Since then, WeWork’s been losing brownie points with the media. After expecting a $20B commitment in January, SoftBank came out and said they’d “only” invest $2B into WeWork, which triggered rumors about trouble ahead.
Check out our friends CB Insights’ proprietary analysis of WeWork news sentiment.
4 Benifits Of Disconecting Your “Always On” Culture
(Editor’s Note: The following article is a guest post by superstar entrepreneur and tech investor Jonathan Schultz.)
Technology is always in the palm of our hands – literally because it seems like every single person always has their phone in their hand or within feet of them. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve bumped into walking down the street with their heads in their phone … what a shame.
This has caused us to shift to an “always-on” work culture because we have immediate access to work emails via our cell phones along with files and everything else stored in the Cloud. It’s become an addiction, which has made us more productive —but has also created gigantic stress that needs to be re-looked at.
With this constant work mode, the lines are blurred between working hours and personal time. Is this a bad thing? Should we disconnect from this “always-on” work culture? I say … yes! If you can’t rejuvenate and shut down, it will always end badly. One of the positive impacts of AI and machine learning is that it can serve this role for us. A time saver, if you will, so we don’t have to lose our sanity.
DISCONNECTING HELPS REDUCE STRESS
A study by Kansas State University found that disconnecting from work is vital for the brain to function properly. Team members feel they always need to be available in order to show they are dedicated to their jobs, but this leads to high levels of both psychological and emotional stress. Work ends up draining your team’s energy and will easily burn out and become fatigued. It is so stressful to continue working around the clock with no true break.
DISCONNECTING IMPROVES RELATIONSHIPS
While checking your email outside of work may not seem like a huge deal, it does add up and takes away time with your friends and family. You’re never present when you’re being present to your devices. You don’t have the mental capacity to invest in important relationships and you also don’t have the time if you are constantly attached to your phone or computer. When you get home, put your phone down and focus on what is in front of you.
YOU WILL BE BETTER AT YOUR JOB
You are probably wondering how you could possibly be better at your job if you aren’t constantly tuned in, but it has been proven that constant multitasking decreases the quality of work. When your brain is always at work, it eventually takes a toll on your motivation. When you have the degree of separation, you can really focus on work at work and then focus on your personal life at home. Think about how much longer it takes you to accomplish a task when you feel burnt out and like you have never had a break from it.
DISCONNECTING CREATES BALANCE
Regularly disconnecting from work can reduce stress, increase the quality of your work, improve relationships and maintain a healthy emotional state. It is difficult, but it is also possible, to set aside time without your phone or laptop. You may need to set a cutoff time at night, for a specific day or just a few hours in the early morning. You need to make sure you have time for yourself.
We know there’s a problem when there are apps to help you stop spending so much time with your phone (apps)!
The answer is, yes, we do need to disconnect from our “always-on” work culture. Separate work from home and your life will improve in both aspects.
Jonathan Schultz is an entrepreneur, real estate tech investor and influencer. He’s the co-founder of Onyx Equities, a leading private equity real estate firm, and has been voted one of the most powerful people in real estate. Follow Jon’s blog here.
Lyft Loses Over $2B In Its 2nd Day Of Trading
After debuting with a splash, Lyft shares have lost over $2 billion of market value in its second day of trading.
The stock ended at $69.01, 22% below its Friday high of $88.60.
The news came on the heels of an insanely hot IPO, one that saw Lyft shares oversubscribe (i.e. “sell out”) while jumping to a $26.5B valuation. But as of press time, Lyft’s valuation has shrunk to $22.25B.
“Falling below its IPO price is a gut punch for investors and Lyft,” Wedbush managing director Dan Ives told CNBC, who then proceeded to say little else. “This is a pivotal few weeks of trading ahead to gauge Street demand for the name as valuation and profitability continue to be the wild cards for tech investors.”
The ride-hailing company had a historical first day on the stock market with a market cap of $22 billion.
But today the road is rough for Lyft and investors with a valuation of $19.8 billion.
Despite the early volatility, experts are still picking Lyft.
And let’s be honest. Tech IPOs take time to settle in. Just ask Facebook.