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October 30, 2009

9 common mistakes to avoid as a startup

jimchungMtech.jpg At the University of Maryland Start-Up Boot Camp last week in College Park, Jim Chung, left, presented his list of common mistakes to avoid as a startup.

Chung is director of the MTech Venture Accelerator program at the university.

Here's his list (paraphrased):

Common Mistakes:

*) You have technology that's looking for a solution (as opposed to tech that immediately solves an existing problem).

*) You make too many assumptions about market share you stand to gain (you engage in top-down assumptions vs. bottom-up validation and lack customer understanding).

*) You have a "nice to have" vs. a "need to have" solution.

*) Thinking: "We have no competition."

*) You have no clear revenue model or path to profitability.

*) Your team is incomplete.

*) You don't have any metrics to measure your progress.

*) Lack of focus.

*) Failure to address the risks head-on.

This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location:
Posted by Gus Sentementes at 7:58 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Big Ideas, Events (Baltimore area), Startups, University Tech


The only thing worse than not having enough money is having too much money (whichever stage you are in).

It becomes too easy to do X or continue to do Y merely because you appear to have the cash to afford that. You can't and you don't.

Very good point. -gs

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About Gus G. Sentementes
Gus G. Sentementes (@gussent on Twitter) has been writing for The Baltimore Sun since 2000. He's covered real estate, business, prisons, and suburban and Baltimore City crime and cops. He was one of the first reporters at The Sun to use multimedia tools and Web applications -- a video camera, an iPhone -- to cover breaking news. He hopes to cover Maryland geeks and the gadgets and Web sites they build, and learn -- and share -- something new every day.

Gus has a wife, a young daughter and two feuding cats. They live in Northeast Baltimore.
This is an archived version of the technology blog. For updated coverage, see the current baltTech location:

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