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.

Inside the mind of great entrepreneurs

April 1, 2011
What distinguishes great entrepreneurs? By eavesdropping on the thinking of the country’s most successful entrepreneurs, Professor Saras Sarasvathy discovered that master entrepreneurs are like Iron Chefs: They’re at their best when presented with a spread of ingredients, then challenged to push their imagination to the limit.

Tyson’s bare-knuckles businessman

March 8, 2011
Donald J. Tyson was an entrepreneur with a vision when he dropped out of college and built his father’s Arkansas chicken business into one of the world’s largest producers of poultry, beef and pork. But his risk-taking style often led him to the limits of the law—or just beyond. Where he got it right:

Under Armour’s road to sweat equity

February 15, 2011

For Kevin Plank, founder and CEO of Under Armour, the journey to leadership began with a vexing problem he had personally experienced: As a walk-on player with the University of Maryland football team, he perspired a lot. So, after he finished playing with the team, he decided to find a solution to his sweat problem. His mission: to create a no-drip T-shirt.

Ben Franklin: The ultimate Renaissance man

January 26, 2011
Ben Franklin was a real promoter of unity, hard work, scientific progress and a pluralism way ahead of its time. Here’s a time-machine interview with Franklin, adapted from The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin.

Leadership Tips: Vol. 111

January 10, 2011
Stay professional at virtual meetings … Get free advice about running a business from Ask.Inc.com, launched last fall by Inc. magazine and answer site Mahalo … Here’s a suggestion for airport security … Google co-founder Sergey Brin, having conquered search, has set his sights and his money on finding a cure for Parkinson’s disease.

Blockbuster owners knew when to fold ’em

December 14, 2010
In business, as in card games, it’s hard to quit when you’re ahead. But Blockbuster’s first two owners, David Cook and Wayne Huizenga, played their end games early. Today, of course, the market is resetting again.

Cartoon great Chuck Jones’ success tips

November 24, 2010

Cartoon creator and producer Chuck Jones credits his success to a lack of constant supervision early on and his father’s string of business failures. Every time his father launched a business, he’d print new stationery and pencils. Using his cast-offs, Jones drew and drew. Here are his six success tips.