Start-ups vs. Established Businesses

(Established) Businesses are all about 3 fundamental things:

  1. Production (be it building hardware, software or whatever),
  2. Operations (i.e. administration, human resources, management) and
  3. Marketing and Sales

Money is made in ONLY step 3 (Marketing and Sales). Operations is ONLY about moving (effectively and efficiently) from Stage 1 (production) to Stage 3 (Marketing and sales).

Start-ups are also quite similar but different in ONE key aspect from established businesses:

  1. Production,
  2. Operations, and
  3. Learning & Discovery (of customers & market)

The customers are unknown in start-ups and as Steve Blank in “The Four Steps to the Epiphany” asserts the emphasis for start-ups in early phases MUST be on Learning & Discovery (of your market, your customers, what problems they TRULY value and so on).

Only after a start-up has truly figured this one out, does it transit to Marketing and Sales.

Hazem Awad



The question is which one helps you better in entrepreneurship, an MBA or MFA?

  • The market for beauties never dies out.
  • Whatever you make, make it beautiful!
  • Entrepreneurship is about making a meaning, not money“, Guy Kawasaki, watched on IEEE TV
  • Never lose the big picture (to make life easier and more beautiful) — need to train your right brain!

Two Advertising Lessons

  1. Honest
    There is this ad on TV about [Proactive] face lotion (?), and in one spot they have Jessica Simpson (?) saying “I use [face lotion] to keep my skin clean” — I don’t recall the exact wording , but something in that line– but she never mentions the brand name of the product she uses!!! This is very a misleading and negative advertisement.
  2. Customer oriented
    Enterprise puts a sticker on the bumper of each rental car, indicating that the car is rented from Enterprise. What I hear is that many people do not want to show that the car is actually rental and prefer other car rental companies for that one reason (negative advertising).