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Our book recommendations present a selection of what we consider are some of the most relevant books published for new technology entrepreneurs.  We have selected them not only because of the relevance of the subject matter, but also because of the valid real world experience presented by the authors that makes evident the working principles of capitalism as an engine of sustainable economic development.  A book can be ordered from Amazon.com by clicking on its image.

Technology Entrepreneurship

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Smartups: Lessons from Rob Ryan’s Entrepreneur America Boot Camp for Start-Ups (Paperback); Rob Ryan, 2000

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Order from Amazon here!This book teaches would-be entrepreneurs the skills they need to get through the venture capital process with companies that will survive to grow and succeed.  Rob Ryan, a pioneer in the high-tech industry, founded Ascend Communications in 1989, and throughout the nineties provided firms with the infrastructure they needed to keep up with the rapid growth of the Internet. At the beginning of 1999, Ascend was sold to Lucent for $25 billion. Ryan has helped launch a string of successful companies, including Virtmed, RightNow, and Virtual Ink.   Smartups teaches methods for building a sustainable business that makes money. He emphasizes testing ideas on customers and making sure that a product offers something new and important. Recognizing a team’s key competencies is crucial. He also finds it necessary to take certain steps at the correct stages of a company’s inception.  Smartups will show you how to turn your idea into a real product, take it to investors, and get your start-up started right.

Reason:

A book that is clearly articulated, plain language and direct arguments that clarify what you do when building a great company.

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What Customers Really Want: Bridging the Gap Between What Your Company Offers and What Your Clients Crave, S. McKain, 2006

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Order from Amazon here! This books is the kind of book that if you had started a company, and tried to sell and didn’t do well; …well this is the book you wish you had read at least once before that venture, and that you should keep close when you do venture again.  Business executive Scott McKain addresses the biggest obstacle to revenue for businesses in the twenty-first century-the disconnect between what customers seek and what organizations deliver. Drawing from his experience as Vice Chairman of a $100 million organization, McKain reveals how to provide a superior client experience and maintain customer loyalty.

Reason:

A book that explains how to understand and connect with customers.  It shows that the author deeply care about making meaning to its customers and that as result, it creates success and wealth.

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The HP Way: How Bill Hewlett and I Built Our Company; David Packard, 1995

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Order from Amazon here! Packard tells the true story of the mighty Hewlett-Packard Company: Two college buddies begin a partnership by producing an audio oscillator in a Palo Alto garage in 1938 and wind up 60 years later with a $25-billion-dollar electronics company on their hands. He wraps the book up tidily with a timeline of the company’s development milestones. Packard chalks up success to many things, including government contracts during wartime, but mostly to the company’s management outlook (“The HP Way”), which champions openness, honesty, and flexibility throughout the organization. Entrepreneurs and technologists alike will be interested in this journey of an American giant.

Reason: 

It reminds you of an era when people understood that capitalism is a business doctrine designed to create meaning while delivering vast efficiencies.

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Bill & Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World’s Greatest Company; Michael S. Malone, 2007

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Order from Amazon here! The definitive history of Hewlett-Packard and its legendary founders, based on unprecedented access to private archives In 1938, working out of a small garage in Palo Alto, California, two young Stanford graduates named Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard built their first product, an audio oscillator. It was the start not only of a legendary company but of an entire way of life in Silicon Valley—and, ultimately, our modern digital age. Malone draws on his new material to show how some of the most influential products of our time were invented, and how a culture of innovation led HP to unparalleled success for decades. He also shows what was really behind the groundbreaking management philosophy—”the HP Way”—that put people ahead of products or profits. Malone argues that the HP Way was a hard-nosed business philosophy that combined simple objectives, trust in employees to make the right choices, and ruthless self-appraisal. This business adventure story will be perfect for entrepreneurs, young managers, and students, not to mention the tens of thousands of current and former HP employees.

Reason:

The detailed story of how the pioneers of Silicon Valley actually did it.  It talks about creating a culture of products, markets and profits supported by relentless innovation, ethics and risk taking.

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