Corporate Catapult Blog Offers Good Tips For Bootstrappers Too

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Corporate Catapult Blog Offers Good Tips For Bootstrappers Too

Matt Cameron, who attends our San Francisco breakfasts, recently launched his new startup, Corporate Catapult aimed at career planning and mangement by employees. For an interview with Matt see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VnQ-fsWrBIo

He writes a companion blog at that also has good advice for bootstrappers. One recent post on “deadlines and lists” at
is particularly appropriate. Some excerpts

[with my comments in square brackets]:

One of the key differences between the people at the top and the “also rans” is consistency and aspiration.

  1. Set goals with strict deadlines: Whether it be a competition, an academic exam or an arbitrary date selected by you, having deadlines is one of the surest ways to get things done. Set goals that are a stretch. When you have a large task to accomplish (write an opinion, launch a product, achieve a sales quota, design something) there is nothing more effective than breaking this task down into mini-milestones that have strict deadlines. [Note: A Goal Without a Deadline is a Wish]
  2. Make yourself accountable: If you don’t have an external deadline for a task or objective (eg your daily mini-tasks), then do what I do and tell someone else what you are going to achieve. [Note: this works both within your own team and taking advantage of groups like Bootstrappers Breakfast.]3) Make a checklist: There are some things that we have to do on a repeatable basis and as you gain experience, you will figure out what the best steps are. Something I did very early on was make a checklist of things to do.

Matt cites Atul Gawande’s New Yorker article on medical checklists and his book “The Checklist Manifesto” for further inspiration for developing checklists. I think Frequently Asked Questions lists and checklists are two keys to saving time.

  • What checklists have you developed in your startup that have saved you time or prevented errors?
  • What processes are you doing repeatedly but unreliably that would benefit from a checklist?

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