Covered in Collaboration Skills

  • Common challenges startups face 
  • How startups discover their business models 
  • How to work well with young companies

think like a startup

What is Paul Graham's Best Essay? - Quora Discussion


Paul Graham is a founder at popular startup accelerator Y Combinator. Over the year's he's written a series of essays on startup life that have been very well received by founders. Paul's essays will help you empathize with startup partners more than any other piece of writing. This Quora discussion will help you navigate his archives.

Start here - How to Start a Startup - Paul Graham Article, 2005 

Four Steps to the Epiphany - Steve Blank, Book  

This was the Lean Startup Book before the Lean Startup Book. Four Steps introduces the concept of "getting out of the building" and learning from customers. 

The Startup Pyramid : Sean Ellis, Article  


The optimal startup go-to-market approach. Sean Ellis coined the phrase "growth hacker".

Search vs. Execute - Steve Blank, Article


"If your business model is unknown - that is just a set of untested hypotheses - you are a startup searching for a repeatable business model. Once your business model (market, customers, features, channels, pricing, get/keep/grow strategy, etc.) is known, you will be executing it. Search versus execution is what differentiates a new venture from an existing business unite." 

80-minute Virtual Crash Course on Design Thinking : Stanford's D School, Videos

"We know not everyone can make a trip to the to experience how we teach design thinking. So, we created this online version of one of our most frequently sought after learning tools."

The 18 Mistakes That Kill Startups - Paul Graham, Article 

"In a sense there's just one mistake that kills startups: not making something users want. If you make something users want, you'll probably be fine, whatever else you do or don't do. And if you don't make something users wants, then you're dead, whatever else you do or don't do. 

Customer Discover Interviews: How to Interview Your Customers - Justin Wilcox, Article

 Talking to customers helps inform young companies on which new features and services to focus on, expand or dump. What do your customers really value? What will they actually pay for? Find out with Customer Discover Interviews. 

Jobs-to-be-Done Framework : Intercom, Articles


Jobs to Be Done is the concept that customers don't buy products, they hire them. Everybody has a job to do. They look to products and services to do that job. Intercom's team wrote up a free, step-by-step guide to understanding this framework so that you can help startups toward their full potential. 

Next Stop -> Startup Launch List - Another beautiful time suck. "Articles you need to read before launching a startup." Simple as that. 



Business Model Canvas - Alexander Osterwalder, Tool

The BMC is a tool used to map entire business models, from key partners to the channels used to distribute your product or service. The Canvas will help you think about all the moving parts. This is a free Google Template. 

Strategyzer's Value Proposition Canvas - Tool

All "value" for a customer is broken down to 3 elements: less pain, more gain, and problems solved. Strategyzer's VP Canvas helps teams understand what really matters to the people they're building for. 

Assumptions Mapping Worksheet - Tool


Is your idea desirable? Feasible? Viable? Before you have answers you have assumptions. So, what are they? With Precoil's assumption map you'll jot every one of them down. 

How to Get Started with Assumptions Mapping 

A video tutorial from the team at Precoil on how to use the Assumptions Map. 

Next stop - > Startup Stash: A time suck of resources spanning fundraising, productivity, books, and anything else you might find in a startup office stash. 


Work with a Startup

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15 Pitfalls for Startup / Corporate Collaboration - Dan Toma, The Corporate Startup: "The list of these 15 pitfalls started after being involved with some multi-corporate backed accelerators, but it was crystallized after conversation I had with Joe Scarboro about his company Touchpaper."


Links to Authors Mentioned


A Newsletter for Corporate Innovators: actionable insights from the field.