Entrepreneurship

Recipe for success: Repeat and repeat again

August 10, 2012

One principle of commando business operations: Repeat your successes. Restaurant chains are good at replication.

Russell Simmons: Keeping that entrepreneurial spirit alive

July 26, 2012

The chief purveyor of hip-hop culture saw opportunity everywhere, even in the earliest days of rap. “You’d be happy to work with somebody,” he says, “but nobody wanted to work with you.” Since then, Simmons has made millions launching businesses nobody else believed in across media, fashion and banking, all catering to an underserved market.

Aspiring leaders: Kick your own butt

July 22, 2012
Success is not about having more money or connections than the other guy. It’s about being willing to “outwork and outlearn everyone when it comes to your business,” says Mark Cuban, the tech billionaire.

Thinking outside the building

May 7, 2012
Teman and Teran Evans were headed into a buzz saw as they faced the recession with bachelor’s degrees in architecture. Fortunately, they did graduate work in design at Harvard and then founded their own firm, Dioscuri. Now they’re celebrity designers. They say you have to adapt to survive.

Big plans, small parts

March 29, 2012
As chief financial officer at Waste Management, Don Flynn raised millions so that the company could acquire hundreds of little haulers and build itself into an empire. When he died in 2011, his baby, LKQ, had $2.5 billion in sales.

What’s in your waste can?

March 8, 2012
“Most of the things in your room right now will eventually become garbage.” That’s the simple idea that in 2001 drove Tom Szaky to launch Terracycle, a company that collects waste and converts it into new products. He says, “Right now is the time for innovation.” Skittles wrappers become a kite; Honest Tea containers become a laptop case …

David Kahn: serial entrepreneur

February 6, 2012
David Kahn, once owner of Blockbuster and Subway franchises, not to mention a mansion and a Hummer, watched his profit assumptions go down the tubes. But he never cashed in his dreams:

Flirting with Groupon

January 30, 2012
Chicago-based Groupon has spawned an industry of deeply discounted coupons. If its model catches your business’s fancy, try it, with precautions. Make sure you’re solid on Yelp. If you’re afraid of a customer deluge, cap the number of coupons. And never take your eye off quality.

Got an idea? Light the fuse now

August 29, 2011
Media mogul Jim Dolan’s signal characteristics include becoming easily bored and getting a thrill from taking calculated risks. In fact, he took his company public in 2007, having long ago learned about timing investments—that lesson came when he was a little kid selling fireworks.

What’s your defining moment?

April 5, 2011
When Bill Rasmussen borrowed $9,000 on his credit card for a new venture in 1979, he didn’t realize he was making a decision that would define his career—and the future of sports broadcasting. ESPN aired for the first time because of that defining-moment decision by Rasmussen.