Jack was in Austin promoting his new book
. Bootstrap had a good turnout and a mention up front!
Jack made some great points directly to bootstrappers:
1. Be narrow in your focus! Don't do a million things. He responded to a person in the audience who was writing 2 books and starting 2 companies - all at the same time.
2. On the compensation difference between investors and entrepreneurs - it's a wrestling match that happens every time. It's a supply/demand issue. If you have a quality idea, you have control. Eat sandwiches for as long as you can - then you have the negotiating power.
3. NEVER give equal equity to everyone. It creates all the wrong results - it offends the good people and keeps the bad people on board longer. And it will become a dental plan overnight, which is the last thing you want.
4. How to work with with large companies? Your job is to communicate how you can make those companies more competitive. You've got to make the proposition simple and clear. Don't worry about showing how smart you are, how deep you are, etc. - focus on a simple, clear and laser-focused message.
5. Drucker is the only business writer Jack reads or recommends.
Another example of an incredible bootstrapper. He started his company when the studios did a bad job with one of his early films. All his ventures (THX, LucasArts, ILM) came out of being in the Valley of Death and the need to create effects that matched the vision he had for Star Wars. In fact, it would have been a much more boring path if he remained just a director, like so many of his peers. He certainly wouldn't have a multi-billion $ empire! One of his genius moves early on, was to secure the merchandising rights to Star Wars. This itself is a gigantic business. Pixar was born here too.
The recent article in Wired is especially good: http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/13.05/