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A Tale of Two Cautious Entrepreneurs

Google+Back in 2008, I was finishing up my MBA at Purdue University when an opportunity presented itself. I was the teaching assistant to Scott Jones (yes, that Scott Jones) who was, at the time, teaching an entrepreneurship capstone course.

A PhD student approached me with a demo of patent pending technology that had already received $50,000 of funding and asked if I’d be interested in putting together a business plan. I said yes. We entered three competitions in the area and placed first in one and third in the other two.

Here’s the first paragraph from that business plan (from March 2008, unchanged): Continue Reading »

Retailers: Don’t Ask for Info When You Already Have It

So I bought a new monitor from Staples the other day and, of course, the sales associate pushed the extended warranty on me. Sure, why the hell not, for $20 it covers dead pixels plus another year on top of the manufacturer’s warranty. But it was only after I paid that I heard, “be sure to register your product to activate your warranty.”

Great. A new task to do, and this was just after I finished filling out a paper form for the “Staples Rewards” program. You know, the other thing that gets pushed on you when you buy something. “Fill out this form, and you’ll get X% back the more you buy.” It doesn’t cost anything, and who knows, maybe I’ll shop at Staples again at some point, right? Either that or I’m just a push over in person.

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