Thursday, August 2, 2007

Lies, lies, lies

There are lies, and then there are lies. Fibs and fumbles. Tall tales and exaggerated extrapolations. All entrepreneurs have a little PT Barnum in them, an ability to engage and feed the imagination while – intentionally or not; perhaps naively – stretching the truth. It’s a lovable characteristic.

A few weeks ago I chortled in a post about entrepreneurs. A few years ago I chortled (out loud and through the nose, if memory serves) during a talk by Bill Reichert, managing director with Garage Technology Ventures. His topic: Top Ten Lies of Entrepreneurs (click here to access the pdf). His opening: There are lies, there are damn lies … and then there are business plans.

Drum roll, please …

  1. “Our projections are conservative.”
  2. “Our market is $56 billion.”
  3. “Our contract with [Big Company] is going to be signed next week.”
  4. “If we only sell 40 pct of the company, we’ll still have control.”
  5. “There’s no competition in our space.”
  6. “We’ve assembled a world-class team.”
  7. “Our sales cycle is three to six months.”
  8. “We have the first mover advantage.”
  9. “All we have to do is get 2 pct of the market.”
  10. “I’ll be happy to hand over the reins to a new CEO.”

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