logo
Beyond HumanBig PictureCatalystsConnected WorldExchangeMarketing MixNew MoneyNew SchoolPeople SciencePulse

Subrah Iyar sold Webex to Cisco for $3.2 billion in 2007. He is now running his next startup, Moxtra. Here are his 3 pieces of advice to entrepreneurs.

Broadly speaking, my three main pieces of advice to entrepreneurs are the following:

The first is clarifying the vision, what your business is about.

The second is around how to execute on your vision.

And the third is in the area of risk.

1. Vision

One of the key elements of having a successful business is to have some critical insights, which you see from your unique perspective.

That forms the basis of your vision and to an extent there has to be some differentiation from how the world currently sees it or is even aware of it and/or sees it very differently.

Wherein you find your unique angle.

People talk a lot about the vision but what makes yours unique, and what is sustainable about it?

And that’s the secrets upon which you build your business.

It’s no secret that some of the best examples of success have had happened where there’s more than 1 person involved in the founding team.

2. Execution

The second area that I would really focus on is how you’re going to execute on your vision. People form a very important component of that.

You commonly hear everyone talking about getting the best team you can.

The reality is that not everyone can hire superstars or be able to afford them. I believe that trivializes the problem.

To a large extent, I think that people are so critical that in reality, as much as you have to know how you’re going to execute on your vision, your vision has to sort of adapt to the people who are available to you.

That is particularly true in the case of senior leadership in particular, who will help you execute on your vision.

It’s no secret that some of the best examples of success have had happened where there’s more than 1 person involved in the founding team.

Often there is one person who is more visible but usually there is a band of 2 or 3 who serve as the basis of very successful companies. It creates a mind meld.

That’s true of companies including Microsoft, Apple and Oracle, whose stories are well documented.

Having a core team with complementary skills and with some overlap in the understanding of how to execute on your vision is critical to success.

3. Take calculated risks

All businesses are based on taking risks.

And by that I mean calculated risk.

It’s about knowing where you’re going to push the edges and how you’re going to stay in the game.

Even if that doesn’t pay off, you must learn something from it and move on.

CHANNELS