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The latest news on Entrepreneurship from Business Insider

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    Shark Tank screenshot

    Now in its fifth season, ABC's hit reality pitch show "Shark Tank" has made entrepreneurship and the process of acquiring funding a cultural phenomenon. It's also provided countless examples of pitches that work and pitches that fail miserably.

    Is there a formula for crafting the perfect "Shark Tank" pitch? Pierce Marrs, a sales and communications coach who does a weekly podcast recapping the show, thinks there are some basic rules any aspiring deal-maker should know. His tips don't only apply to "Shark Tank" hopefuls; they're useful takeaways for any entrepreneur looking for money.

    Below, Marrs shares his top strategies for making a perfect presentation. 

    Minimize stress, and master the "30-second stare down."

    A little known fact about "Shark Tank" is that before contestants begin their pitches, they must stand on a mark in front of the Sharks and not say anything for about 30 seconds. This gives production the chance to get a few static shots and also helps the Sharks size up the mettle of their contestants. Can they handle their nerves? Do they keep their cool or get fidgety? In fact, Marrs says he's interviewed contestants who were told to wait 15 or 20 minutes on that mark without speaking to anyone. It's essential to remain composed before, during, and after the pitch. "Everybody needs to be set at ease for it to be a happy negotiation and presentation," he says.

    Know your numbers, inside and out.

    "The cardinal question is about how much sales you have," Marrs says. "That question right there can make or break you." Contestants on the show need to know their numbers inside and out. How much does the product cost to make? How much does it retail for? How many markets are they currently in? What other marketing opportunities are available? Knowing the data is part of knowing the product, and the Sharks are looking for people who can rattle off those figures in their sleep. Plus, the numbers better be impressive, because that's something you can't charm your way around. 

    Remember you're pitching an investor, not your mother.

    One of the top mistakes hopeful entrepreneurs make, Marrs says, is to make their presentations as if they were talking to friends and family members. Your mother might think everything you say is delightful, but the Sharks won't be so easily convinced. Assume your audience will be skeptical, and be prepared to back up claims about your product with evidence. More importantly, don't be shocked if the Sharks make disbelieving or snarky comments about your pitch and product. Think of the toughest questions and criticism you could face and have responses ready.

    Show, don't tell, how awesome your product is.

    Most of the contestants on "Shark Tank" bring a sample with them. But the most effective pitchers turn that sample into a compelling demonstration. Just last week, for example, a family from California landed offers from both fashion entrepreneur Daymond John and technology guru Robert Herjavec for their land-based surfboard invention, Hamboards. It's probably not a coincidence that John and Herjavec were also the only two Sharks that chose to try out the boards themselves, riding them up and down the stage. Once the Sharks connected with the product, they were far more willing to take a chance on it.  

    Most importantly, know what each Shark looks for, and appeal to it.

    The Sharks care about and value different things, and understanding that is the most important part of succeeding on the show, Marrs says. Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, for example, wants to see a hard worker who will go above and beyond for the business. For Kevin O'Leary, an educational software businessman, it's all about the money. And while John can be tough, he softens up for people that are struggling to pull themselves up by their bootstraps like he did. The best contestants on "Shark Tank" don't just know how to pitch to any investor — they understand how to connect with each individual. 

    "The biggest mistake that I see people make is that they believe people will buy their product, their service, their company, for their reasons," Marrs says. "To move people, to persuade people, to sell people, you’ve got to look at things through their eyes."

    SEE ALSO: The 10 Worst ‘Shark Tank’ Pitches Of All Time

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    oprah winfreyGetting a pink slip can be demoralizing, to say the least. Luckily, these successful people prove that it's possible to bounce back.

    Clearly, Mark Cuban was destined to become more than a computer store salesman, and J.K. Rowling wasn't passionate about her job as a secretary. Steve Jobs went through a crisis and eventual transformation after the company he created fired him.

    For some, getting fired is exactly what they needed to launch into the success stories they are today.

    Here are 19 people who got kicked to the curb and turned their termination into an opportunity.

    Steve Jobs was fired from Apple, the company he co-founded. His second act turned out to be bigger and better than the first.

    When Jobs was in his 30s, the very company he created fired him.

    "I was out — and very publicly out," Jobs said in a 2005 commencement speech at Stanford University. "What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating."

    Jobs spent the summer of 1985 in a "midlife crisis" trying to decide what he wanted to do from entering politics to becoming an astronaut, said Alan Deutschman, author of "The Second Coming of Steve Jobs."

    During his time away from Apple, Jobs co-founded computer company NeXT, which was later acquired by Apple, and launched Pixar Animation Studios. When he returned to Apple nearly a decade later, he brought the innovation of the iPod, iPhone, and iPad.

    Walt Disney's newspaper editor told the aspiring cartoonist he wasn't creative enough.

    In 1919, Disney was fired from the Kansas City Star. According to his editor, he "lacked imagination and had no good ideas."

    That wasn't the last of his failures. Disney then acquired Laugh-O-Gram, an animation studio he later drove into bankruptcy. Finally, he decided to set his sights on a more profitable area: Hollywood.

    He and his brother moved to California and started producing a successful cartoon series.

    In the 1980s, Mark Cuban lost his job as a salesman at computer store. That was the last time he worked for someone else.

    One of Cuban's first jobs out of college was as a salesman. However, he was more interested in cultivating new business than manning a cash register. After he failed to open the store one day because he was busy with a potential client, his managers cut him loose

    Shortly after his termination, Cuban started his first company, MicroSolutions. Since then, he's made over $2.4 billion.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    When you start up, everyone wants to throw in their two cents. Chances are, you'll ask them to. Advice from seasoned entrepreneurs is usually meant well, but that doesn't mean it's right for you. When it comes to a fledgling startup, the fact is, you still know your company better than anyone — and you have to learn how to weed out the bad advice from the good.

    We asked nine successful entrepreneurs from the Young Entrepreneur Council to share some words of wisdom they received from a mentor or investor that they then gladly ignored:

    1. Get Your Old Job Back

    When I started my first company and things weren't going well, I went to a mentor for advice. His suggestion was to see if I could get my old job back. I told him I wasn't ready to give up. Now, we are doing extremely well, and I'm growing my second company. If I had taken his advice, I'd be putting together testing procedure specification reports eight hours a day.

    Justin SpringBringShare

    2. If You Don't Reach a Billion Dollars, It's Not Worth It

    We thought about taking on investors to scale our business a few years ago, but we found that they were interested in completely changing our business model to aim toward becoming a billion dollar business. I realized that I love running my smaller business, and I didn't want our company to lose its personality by becoming something completely new.

    We decided to skip the investors and continue to grow organically so that we could focus on the things we wanted rather than letting others shape our path.

    Allie SiartoLoudpixel 

    3. Fire Your Team

    I once had an active investor suggest I throw our team under the bus and spend time with potential customers. Our team was developing the second iteration of our business at the time, which was a critical process our investor didn't understand. After explaining that our product needed more work before we could scale, he understood how critical our team was to getting things done.

    Had we taken the advice, we would have been left without a product and a poor reputation that would have killed the company. Fortunately, we reached a mutual understanding when we both slowed down to explain the thought processes driving us.

    Tyler ArnoldSimplySocial

    4. Diversify Your Marketing Strategies

    This was advice from a mentor in our early stages, which we quickly learned to ignore for the benefit of our business as we doubled down on a few marketing strategies that worked well. Once we built our business big enough that we could hire more team members, we were able to allocate more time to marketing and discovering new, scalable marketing strategies. It felt terrible to go against a mentor's advice, but it was the best decision for our company.

    Danny WongBlank Label 

    5. Try Something Else

    Don't let anybody tell you that you can't do something. Late last year, an investor told us that our market was too hard and that we should try something else. The problem is that this investor had never been involved in our market and didn't have the slightest clue what the competitive landscape looked like. Feedback from investors and mentors is critical, but it is also critical to have a filter.

    James SimpsonGoldFire Studios 

    6. Get Rid of Your Business Partner

    A potential investor once advised me that my partner wasn't serving any value towards the company, mostly based on the fact that he didn't have a lot of experience in this particular space. Quite the contrary, he's the best partner I could have and the company wouldn't be alive today without him. I find that so many people judge a book by its cover, but overlook the tenacity of the individual and other relevant experiences that they can bring to the table.

    In my case, my partner has put in a financial stake, as have I, but brings over a decade of business management and organizational experience. His unique skill set offsets my weaknesses and vice versa.

    Andy Karuzabrandbuddee 

    7. Focus on Valuation

    A lot of people will tell you that when gaining investors, valuation is important. Although it isn't something you should just throw to the wind, ultimately investors are buying the CEO or partner. Relationships matter. It is more important to build a strong relationship and heavily focus on that than getting your valuation down perfectly.

    Raoul DavisAscendant Group 

    8. Pick a Vertical

    To date, the most commonly received (and ignored) advice has been "Pick a vertical; you can't dominate if you're horizontal." I've received this feedback from incredibly successful entrepreneurs who have had more exits and whom I respect. It's good feedback, and I wouldn't say I've ignored it. I'd say I've chosen not to act on it.

    The reason I've chosen not to act on it is because I believe that our company's existence is about the consumers of enterprise workforce software, and because the notion of consumer business software is so new that focusing on a vertical now would bring our growth potential to a screeching halt. We need to show several verticals that business software doesn't have to suck. After we do that, we can focus on high-growth verticals.

    Chad HalvorsonWhen I Work 

    9. Change to Fit the Trend

    Don't ever change your business approach because an outside person says it's falling along a trend! Do what your vision entails, refine it (using investors and advisors), and be comfortable with it.

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    bill gates microsoft

    Top executives sometimes exhibit peculiar habits.

    Microsoft's Bill Gates has a habit of rocking back and forth in a chair whenever he's in deep mental concentration.

    The more agitated or excited he gets, the harder he rocks. The pace is determined by his interest.

    This happened so often during meetings that Microsoft employees started imitating Gates.

    A profile piece published in Fortune magazine in 1990 described this scene with Microsoft employees:

    "As discussions get animated, they hunch forward, prop their elbows on their knees, and start rocking back and forth in their seats, just like Chairman Bill," it reads.

    An excerpt of Gates' undergraduate years from author Walter Isaacson's upcoming book mentions Gates' rocking habit several times. Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen shares his memory of young Gates rocking:

    "I can still see him alternately pacing and rocking for long periods before jotting on a yellow legal pad, his fingers stained from a rainbow of felt-tip pens," said Allen. "Once my simulator was in place and he was able to use the PDP-10, Bill moved to a terminal and peered at his legal pad as he rocked."

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Neil Blumenthal Warby Parker

    Neil Blumenthal of Warby Parker says there are two reasons why people leave their jobs: 1) They don't like their boss or 2) they aren't learning and growing.

    To make sure people are happy and prevent turnover, Warby Parker's culture is rooted in open and honest feedback.

    "So, we spend a lot of time developing leaders internally and creating learning opportunities," Blumenthal tells Adam Bryant at The New York Times.

    When Blumenthal started the online eyewear phenemenon with three of his former classmates, they decided they would have a "360 review" of one another every month. This involves going back to the bar where they had the original idea and take turns putting someone in the "hot seat," meaning they would get open and honest feedback — even if it's harsh.

    "We have quarterly 360 reviews for every employee, which is very time-consuming," said Blumenthal. "But as a manager, it’s your highest priority to be developing your people. The promise we make to our employees is that you’ll always know how you’re doing and that there will never, ever be surprises."

    At Warby Parker, employees are asked to share their happiness rating (on a scale of zero to 10) with their managers every week. Blumenthal says this forces a conversation to happen and managers are also able to see the trends going on in their company.

    The company also asks everyone for an innovative idea weekly. This reinforces the idea that everyone is responsible for the success of the company.

    "The question is, How do you remain a disruptive company? How do you create a culture of innovation? The first way is actually asking for innovation. A lot of companies don’t expect or ask their team members to come up with ideas, but we demand it. It’s just everybody’s responsibility."

    Want your business advice featured in Instant MBA? Submit your tips to Be sure to include your name, your job title, and a photo of yourself in your email.

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Chief executives in America get paid more than CEOs anywhere else in the world, often bringing in annual compensation packages worth millions of dollars.

    In the last three decades, CEO pay grew at a faster rate than any other top executive. In fact, CEOs were paid 273 times more than their average employee in 2012, according to a study by the Economic Policy InstituteOftentimes, these highly paid CEOs can count on their hefty paychecks whether their companies are doing well or poorly.

    Using data from FindTheCompany, a site that compiles information on more than 30 million companies and more than 200,000 corporate officers in America, we've identified the 15 highest-paid CEOs in America.

    Interestingly, Yahoo's Marissa Mayer is the only woman who made it on our list, with $36.6 million in total compensation in 2012 — a figure that, while impressive, pales in comparison to Oracle CEO Larry Ellison's $96.2 million.

    Disclosure: Total compensation for executives is disclosed to the SEC to provide a comprehensive overview of a company's pay practices. FindTheCompany uses the same figure and methodology as the SEC. To clarify, the total compensation includes salary and other pay, such as restricted stock options, which may be distributed throughout a long-term contract.

    15. Peter S. Kraus, AllianceBernstein

    Total annual compensation: $36 million

    In 2008, Kraus was elected as Chairman of the Board and CEO of the investment management company. Prior to this, he served as an executive vice president and head of global strategy at Merrill Lynch & Company Inc. Kraus spent 22 years with Goldman Sachs.

    Disclosure: According to the SECKraus' total compensation is listed as $36 million, but his 2012 compensation was $275,000 salary plus $2.6 million in other compensation. Kraus signed a five-year contract with AllianceBernstein in 2012 for $33.1 million in restricted stock awards, where most of the compensation incentives will be delivered when the agreement expires.

    14. Marissa A. Mayer, Yahoo

    Total annual compensation: $36.6 million

    Mayer became CEO, president, and a member of Yahoo's Board in July 2012 and has quickly implemented numerous changes in restructuring the organization. Prior to Yahoo, Mayer was vice president of Local, Maps, and Location Services at Google. She held several roles at Google since joining the company in 1999 as employee number 20.

    13. Paul A. Ricci, Nuance Communications

    Total annual compensation: $37.1 million

    Between 1997 and 1999, Ricci served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Nuance Communications, a computer software technology company. On August 21, 2000, he took on the role of CEO of the company.

    Before Nuance Communications, Ricci held several positions at Xerox.

    His compensation has increased by 79% since 1999.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Warby ParkerNot wanting to be another failed partnership, the founders of eyewear company Warby Parker, who were former classmates at Wharton, decided early on that they would be able to criticize each other openly, honestly, and harshly, if needed.

    How would they do this without building resentment between one another?

    In an interview with Adam Bryant at The New York Times, co-founder Neil Blumenthal says that every month the four founders return to the bar where they originally came up with the idea, and one of them is placed in the hot seat. According to Blumenthal, during these "360 reviews," a partner might say, "When you shoot me a 10-page email at 2 in the morning, I want to punch you in the face."

    "That set the tone for the culture at Warby Parker, which would really be rooted in open and honest feedback," says Blumenthal.

    This culture of communication isn't reserved only for the founders. The entire Warby Parker staff is given a 360 review every quarter. Although this takes up a lot of time, Blumenthal says "as a manager, it’s your highest priority to be developing your people." And employees should never be surprised by how they're doing work-wise, he says.

    Employees are also asked to share their happiness rating on a scale of zero to 10 with their managers every week. This helps managers know what's going on with their direct reports and identify trends that appear.

    The founders also have interesting methods for getting to know who's working for them. In an interview with Quartz, co-founder David Gilboa says that they ask unexpected interview questions in order to reveal a candidate's personality. For example, asking someone "what was the last costume you wore," gives a glimpse into a candidate's thought process on a day when they can be whoever they want.

    "We find that people who are able to make the job environment fun build followership more easily," says Gilboa."If we hire the most technically skilled person in the world whose work style doesn’t fit here, they won’t be successful."

    SEE ALSO: What 11 Highly Successful People Eat For Breakfast

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    These days, everyone with a MacBook and a blog thinks he’s an entrepreneur. Well, here’s a little tough love for the entrepreneurial generation: Calling yourself a CEO doesn’t make you one and a small army of Twitter followers doesn’t make you a leader, either.

    As a wise VC whose name escapes me once said, “There are entrepreneurs and there are Entrepreneurs.”

    Not to dash your hopes and dreams, but the truth is the vast majority of you simply aren’t cut out to be entrepreneurs or leaders. I know you don’t want to hear that, but it’s true. And the sooner you realize you’re not going to be the second coming of Mark Zuckerberg, the better.

    Don’t get me wrong. It’s great to reach for the stars. As Robert Browning said, “A man’s reach should exceed his grasp.” But having grown up in the high-tech industry and worked with hundreds of real CEOs, VCs, and Entrepreneurs for decades, one thing I can tell you is the word has become so overused, it’s almost meaningless.

    So while there is no one-size-fits-all model for true entrepreneurs, in my experience, there are some things they seem to have in common. This might surprise you, but what sets them apart isn’t some laundry list of attributes. It’s their actions. What makes them unique is what they do and, perhaps more importantly, what they don’t do.

    1. They don’t think about work-life balance.
    They’re mostly workaholics. What that means is their work comes first. It’s what they live for. They’re not freewheeling, fun-loving people who live for the weekend. They live to do what they love, and that’s work.

    2. They don’t try to be what they’re not.
    Probably the most damaging business myth to come along in decades is personal branding. You are not a product, and you can’t change who you are. Besides, real entrepreneurs don’t think about themselves. They think about their ideas and how to turn them into great products and services. And they deliver.

    3. They don’t do it for the money.
    They don’t whine about how hard they work for peanuts. They just do it. And because they’re passionate about what they do and focused like a laser beam, the money eventually comes, big-time.

    4. They don’t have day jobs.
    Great entrepreneurs don’t just dip their toes in the water. They jump in headfirst without a thought about the rocks below. They don’t do a little of this and a little of that. When they hit on something they think is really cool and exciting, they go all in.

    5. They don’t give in to fear.
    They don’t pay attention to those voices in their heads — you know, the ones that haunt you with everything that can go wrong. They’re not fearless, mind you. Nobody is. They just don’t let their fear stop them from taking risks. They do listen to some voices, though: the voice of reason and their instincts.

    6. They don’t have grand visions.
    While some do have grand delusions that they’re destined for greatness — a prophecy that’s often self-fulfilling, interestingly enough — for the most part, they generally don’t have grand visions for their companies. Zuckerberg, for example, wasn’t trying to create a company. He just wanted to rate the looks of fellow classmates.

    7. They don’t have virtual mentors.
    Most people follow all sorts of writers, bloggers, and tweeters these days. That’s fine, but to get somewhere in life, to do great things, you have to have real mentors in the real world. Former Intel chairman Andy Grove mentored Steve Jobs. Jobs, in turn, advised Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Behind every great entrepreneur is at least one great mentor. A real one.

    Most importantly, real entrepreneurs don’t call themselves entrepreneurs. They don’t do what everyone else is doing. They don’t follow the status quo, conventional wisdom, or popular fads. They carve their own unique path. They’re leaders of their own destiny. That’s what drives them. And that’s why they succeed.

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Sally KrawcheckSallie Krawcheck is a former banking executive and the current business leader of professional woman’s network 85 Broads. The network is 30,000+ women strong, with members from across industries and around the world.

    1) There are more great business ideas out there than great businesses. The difference is in the people, the execution and the timing.

    2) At a big company, you can say you spend your company’s money like it’s your own. You don’t spend it like it’s your own until it’s your own.

    3) Enterprise sales always take longer than you think. Finding the decision maker(s) can be tough because many don’t have “decision maker” taped on their shirts. And sometimes the head guy is not the real decision maker, no matter how many times he says he is.

    A corollary to #3: Enterprises can kill your company. At Merrill Lynch, one of our senior managers loved a start-up so much that he killed it. He kept promising its CEO a large business opportunity, but the deal got caught in the bank’s approval processes — which took much longer and were more complex than he expected — and the business ran out of money and shut its doors.

    4) You’ll finally miss your big company when your website goes down and “the guy” responsible can’t fix it. And there aren’t 400 other “guys” lined up behind him. Asking “the guy” again and again and again when the site will be back up doesn’t get it back up any more quickly.

    5) It all takes longer and costs more than you forecast… until it doesn’t.

    6) Keeping your own calendar sucks up hours a day. Making travel reservations takes up even more. I mess this up far more often than I would have thought.

    7) There is an extremely fine line between “entrepreneur” and “small business owner.” Extremely fine.

    8) At the big companies at which I've worked, all faces turned to the CEO, and seniority mattered. But I’ve learned much more from the quite-a-bit-younger-than-me entrepreneurs I’ve met over the past couple of years than from the CEO who spent an entire business review “talking at” his directs about how to run their businesses.

    9) Every small PR firm tells you they are a social media expert. And a LinkedIn expert. (Every big firm too.) The vast majority aren’t.

    10) After a business lifetime of thinking of competition as “bad,” as an entrepreneur, it can be a great, great thing because it can validate and expand the market.

    11) You can make a lot of moderately-sized mistakes running a big business, and even a few big ones. You can only make a finite number of mistakes as an entrepreneur. Many of them involve hiring the wrong people.

    12) There is a lot of talk about how important one’s network can be inside a large company. This can be even more true in a new venture, where it can be one’s lifeblood; it has been shown to be a key determinant of success for entrepreneurs.

    13) No monthly business reviews, operational risk committee meetings, staff meetings, OCC meetings, Fed meetings, management committee meetings, executive committee meetings, quarterly strategy offsites can be enormously freeing — but that can mean fewer guard rails… and very few others to blame when things go wrong.

    14) It's sort of nice not to wear a suit every day.

    Read more from LinkedIn Influencers:

    The Top 10 Financial Mistakes Women Make

    The Magic of Being in Monk Mode

    When to Go With Your Gut

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    dick costolo twitter

    Twitter, Instagram, and shopping site Polyvore all have one important quality in common. They do one thing extremely well.

    Zeroing in on one idea and executing it exceptionally is the key to entrepreneurial success, argues Daniel Roberts in "Zoom: Surprising Ways to Supercharge Your Career." You don't need a complex, multifaceted idea to succeed in today's market, Roberts argues. Just pick one thing, and do it better than everyone else.

    "These days many of the buzziest startups are brilliantly basic in concept," he writes. "Whether you've come up with a completely revolutionary idea or you're building upon a preexisting one, if it's clear and addictive it will take off with users."

    Here's a look at how the founders of Twitter, Instagram, and Polyvore found their one thing and made it work:

    Make the business easy to understand.

    The initial idea for Twitter was incredibly simple: create a way for people to share brief "status" updates about what they happened to be doing. When the company's founders first rolled out the service internally, employees loved it. "It was fun, simple, and friendly," Roberts writes. "And it took only a moment to understand how it worked." He argues that Twitter has succeeded in large part because it never lost sight of that simple starting principle, even as it began to monetize its services and add new features. "If an idea is clever enough — simple, clean, and addictive, like Twitter — it can weather other problems that would normally bring a company down," Roberts writes.

    Strip the bells and whistles.

    Before it was called Instagram, the founders had named it Burbn. Back then, it was supposed to be a location-based photo sharing app (a "mashup" of Foursquare and Flickr, as Roberts puts it). That idea garnered some interest from backers but failed to catch on after its initial release. So co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger decided to strip the app of all but one part — photo sharing. "Burbn had too many different features," writes Roberts. "What would be a hit, they knew, was something simple that did one thing." Sure enough, the night the app relaunched as Instagram in October 2010 the servers crashed within two hours from the flood of traffic.

    Focus on what you do best.

    When Jessica Lee first became CEO of Polyvore, the popular online shopping site, she decided that the company needed some serious streamlining. She began to cut extraneous features, minimize projects, and sent out a company-wide note asking staff to "identify what is most impactful to the company. Then figure out what to cut." Simplicity was Lee's obsession, Roberts writes. She wanted to create a smooth, simple customer experience. "We really try to focus," she told Roberts, "because at the end of the day you're going to be remembered for one thing."

    SEE ALSO: 7 Things Great Entrepreneurs Don't Do

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Henry Bloch

    When Henry Bloch and his brother, Richard, started their tax-preparation company H&R Block in 1955, they didn't know they were going to struggle for eight years before experiencing success.

    Today, H&R Block has completed more than 625 million tax returns for its clients, writes Andrea Huspeni in Entrepreneur

    "I’m glad I didn’t know I would struggle — almost living hand-to-mouth — for years before finding success," says Bloch. "...[I]t was an incredibly valuable period of learning, mostly through trial and error."

    Bloch tells young entrepreneurs to forego shortcuts when it comes to success because of the valuable lessons you learn along the way when you're working hard to keep from failing. Even if you fail, the lessons you learn when getting back up builds character that will eventually lead you to success. Bloch says there's no way he'd be as successful as he's become if lessons from those mistakes were never learned.

    "I believe perseverance is a quality that any successful entrepreneur must have," he says. "There’s an old proverb: Fall down seven times, stand up eight times. A young entrepreneur must expect to travel a bumpy and sometimes treacherous road."

    Want your business advice featured in Instant MBA? Submit your tips to Be sure to include your name, your job title, and a photo of yourself in your email.

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    Shark Tank

    It doesn't take getting a deal to make it big on "Shark Tank."

    Some of the biggest success stories from ABC's hit pitch show, now in its fifth season, walked away from the tank empty-handed. But it didn't matter. Their companies took off anyway.

    "Shark Tank" experts say that, in many cases, the value of getting airtime on the show outweighs the benefits of taking a deal with one or more of the Sharks, which typically requires giving up a precious amount of equity.

    "There's been a lot of studies done on how much it's worth to go on 'Shark Tank,' and there's a lot of consensus among veterans that it's worth somewhere between $4 and $5 million dollars in marketing exposure," says TJ Hale, a Phoenix-based entrepreneur and producer of the "Shark Tank Podcast."

    That raw marketing value has led to a new class of contestants on the show: people who seem far more interested in filming a segment than haggling for a deal. "I've seen a few entrepreneurs this season where it's pretty evident that they're not interested in doing a deal, but they're extremely interested in the promotion that comes with the show," Hale admits.

    For instance, there was Garrett Gee, who came on seeking a $1 million investment in exchange for a 5% stake in his code-scanning mobile app, Scan. After he revealed that the company had already raised $8.7 million, investor Daymond John had to ask: "Why are you exactly here? Is it just for exposure?"

    Gee said no at the time, but seemed to suggest otherwise later. He told Business Insider that his decision to go on "Shark Tank" was about 50/50 in terms of seeking exposure vs. the chance for a deal, and he's previously said that some of the startup's investors didn't support Scan appearing on the show in the first place.

    Either way, the exposure paid off. After the segment aired, Scan vaulted to the No. 1 spot among paid utilities apps and the No. 20 spot for all paid apps in Apple's App Store, and became the top-selling app in the Windows Phone store.

    Scan won't be the last business that profits from "Shark Tank" exposure despite not getting a deal, and it certainly wasn't the first. With the help of Hale and Pierce Marrs, a sales and communications coach who also does a weekly podcast on "Shark Tank," we compiled a list of five companies that succeeded even though the Sharks turned them down.

    1. Chef Big Shake

    Founder Shawn Davis didn't get any takers when he appeared in Season 2 asking for a $200,000 investment in Chef Big Shake, a gourmet seafood operation that proudly claims to be the "home of the original shrimp burger." Since the appearance, however, the company's sales have soared from their original $30,000 in 2010 to well over $1 million. What's more, Mark Cuban has called Chef Big Shake the one company he regrets not investing in. "He didn't get an investment, but now he's just killing it," Cuban said.

    2. CoatChex

    Derek Pacque, the 20-something founder of CoatChex, a ticket-free coat check system, turned down a $200,000 investment offer from Cuban on the first episode of Season 4. Cuban's offer matched the funding Pacque was seeking, but demanded a 33% stake — more than three times the equity he wanted to forgo. Since the company's appearance, CoatChex has landed contracts for huge events like the 2013 New York Fashion WeekMercedes Benz Fashion Week, and the Super Bowl. The company is projecting to bring in $500,000 over the next six months through a variety of events, contracts, and new leads, VP of Business Development Adam Loos said.

    3. Proof Eyewear

    Taylor, Brooks, and Tanner Dame — three brothers from Idaho — pitched their hand-crafted eyewear company to the Sharks in Season 4, but failed to get the deal they wanted. They walked away from two offers of $150,000 that both demanded more equity than they were willing to give up. Since their segment ran, their sales have more than tripled to $1.4 million, and they're projecting $2.5 million in sales in 2014, Tanner Dame said. The company also recently opened a flagship store in Boise, Idaho.

    4. Echo Valley Meats

    Dave Alwan appeared on Season 4 of "Shark Tank" to pitch his old-fashioned, farm-fresh meat company. He asked for $300,000 in exchange for a 20% stake. Alwan didn't give a great presentation, but the Sharks loved his product. He was doing $1.2 million in sales before the segment aired, and his sales more than doubled in the first six months after his appearance on the show. He's since launched the company on Amazon and QVC, and is projecting sales will reach between $5 million and $10 million in 2014, he told Hale. "He's had the Sharks call him and order from him and give him advice," Hale said. "He feels like he got the best of both worlds."

    Despite the tremendous publicity value of appearing on "Shark Tank," sales and communications coach Marrs thinks the payoff ultimately depends on how you come off to the audience. "Just being on the show can be a huge boost for you, but it's only if the Sharks like it," Marrs says. "How much success you have if you do or don't get a deal depends on how much they like the product while you're on there."

    SEE ALSO: Mark Cuban Reveals The Best And Worst 'Shark Tank' Pitches And More

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    shark tank

    When a husband and wife team walked into the tank on the most recent episode of ABC's reality pitch show "Shark Tank," the investors didn't seem t0o interested in Rick and Melissa Hinnant's lace sock business.

    That was until the Hinnants announced that their company Grace and Lace had made $800,000 in 2012 and $1.25 million this year to date.

    With high profit margins and no money so far spent on advertisements, the investors were suddenly quite interested.

    The pitch got intense, however, when investor Robert Herjavec offered the Hinnants exactly what they wanted — $175,000 for 10% equity in their company. The catch: Herjavec wanted them to accept or decline the offer immediately, before hearing what the other Sharks might offer. 

    "I don't think it's fair to me ... I'd like an answer now," said Herjavec. "I've given you exactly what you're asking for. I'm a very nice guy, but don't mistake my kindness for weakness."

    Would the entrepreneurs jump on a great offer or get greedy, hoping a better one might come along?

    That's when investor Kevin O'Leary warned the Hinnants about the "bone in mouth" disease: when a dog looks into a pond, sees his reflection, and drops the bone he has for the reflection of the bone in the pond. The result is that the dog loses the only bone he has.

    Indeed, the Hinnants hesitated and ended up losing the offer from Herjavec, but they had their eye on investor Barbara Corcoran from the beginning. Ultimately, they survived the "bone in mouth" disease and struck the deal they wanted with Corcoran.

    SEE ALSO: The 10 Best 'Shark Tank' Pitches Of All Time

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    Kevin O'Leary

    If you're a fan of ABC's reality pitch show "Shark Tank," you know that the relationships between the hyper-competitive investors get heated at times.

    Tensions tend to peak when multiple Sharks express interest in the same entrepreneur, and end up fighting with each other to invest their own money in front of millions of people.

    Kevin O'Leary, sarcastically nicknamed "Mr. Wonderful," is often the Shark at the center of those fiery battles. He's best known for putting pressure on entrepreneurs at key moments with intense stare-downs and questions like, "What are you going to do?" He also seems comfortable low-balling contestants on the show to see if they'll accept.

    With his brash humor and cold TV persona, it's no surprise that when the mother-daughter duo Tracey Noonan and Danielle Desroches of Wicked Good Cupcakes struck a deal with O'Leary in season four, they were nervous about working with the notoriously mean Shark.

    "When we first made the deal with Kevin, it felt like we were making a deal with the devil," said Desroches at a recent promotional event for the show's new book, "Shark Tank Jump Start Your Business," in New York.

    Since landing the deal, the Wicked Good Cupcakes entrepreneurs have paid O'Leary's investment back in full, but he still gets 45 cents a cupcake from their contract, in perpetuity. Today, the mother-daughter duo describes O'Leary as "an angel in disguise."

    "He's been a tremendous mentor," said Desroches, adding that O'Leary is "very approachable, has a big heart, is very hands on, and loves Boston."

    But when Desroches later said that O'Leary had promised to take them out to a celebratory dinner, investor Barbara Corcoran, who was also at the book release party, laughed doubtfully. "Kevin is the cheapest bastard you'll meet," she said, advising Noonan and Desroches to get their dinner "before he forgets about it."

    Corcoran also added that a certain amount of the on-screen fighting among the Sharks is for show. The producers are always encouraging them to bicker more, she said, because it makes for better television. But that's not always easy for the investors to pull off. "We spend so much time together either investing our money or pissing it away that we have to be friends," she said.

    SEE ALSO: The 10 Best 'Shark Tank' Pitches Of All Time

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    Barbara Corcoran

    It may be 2013, but that doesn't mean women shouldn't flaunt their sex appeal to get ahead. 

    That's the message New York real estate mogul and ABC's "Shark Tank" investor Barbara Corcoran was trying to get across to women in business at a recent promotional event for the show's new book, "Shark Tank Jump Start Your Business."

    "If you've got sex appeal, big boobs, long legs... why wouldn't you use it?" she said. "It's like asking people who can see to not use their eyes."

    Corcoran admitted to the audience that she got her first lucky business break because she was sexy.

    At the age of 23, Corcoran was working as a waitress in a Fort Lee, N.J., diner when she met Ramon Simone, her future boyfriend and first business partner. Although Simone was much older than Corcoran, the two began dating and moved to New York City together, where Simone encouraged Corcoran to start a real estate agency.

    He gave her an initial $1,000 investment. They split the company with Simone getting 51% and Corcoran getting the other 49%. Two years later, Simone announced that he was marrying Corcoran's secretary and the two parted ways, which led Corcoran to start her own enterprise, The Corcoran Group.

    Today, Corcoran says her sex appeal put her on the path to business success. "I would've never gotten the $1,000 to start my business if I wasn't sexy," she quipped.

    To further her point, Corcoran pointed to Daisy Cakes creator Kim Nelson, a petite blond, who also spoke at the book launch event. During season three of "Shark Tank," Corcoran invested $50,000 in Nelson's mail-order cake business in exchange for a 25% stake in the company and a $1 repayment per cake until her investment is repaid in full.

    Immediately after the segment aired, orders poured in so fast that they crashed Daisy Cakes' website. Today, the sales are still flowing, with men placing the majority of the company's orders. Why? Corcoran says it's simple: Nelson has sex appeal.

    SEE ALSO: Here's What Happens To Investments On 'Shark Tank' After The Cameras Stop Rolling

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    sierra nevada

    What does it take to turn a homespun craft beer into a national brand?

    That's the question Ken Grossman, president and founder of Sierra Nevada, tackles in his new book, "Beyond the Pale: The Story of Sierra Nevada Brewing Co." In the book, Grossman explains how market differentiation, an obsession with quality, and rapid early hiring grew Sierra Nevada in two decades from a small microbrewery to a powerful brand that produced nearly 25 million gallons of beer in 2012.

    When Sierra Nevada was first getting started in 1980 in Chico, Calif., the American brewing scene was dominated by a few big-name brands. "During this depressing and soulless era of the U.S. brewing industry, many struggling smaller breweries must have felt that in order to compete they had to change their beer styles to emulate the lighter, homogeneous style of beer that the national brewers were producing," Grossman writes.

    Unlike most microbreweries, Grossman and his partner, Paul Camusi, realized it was useless to try to break into a market that national companies had already cornered. So instead of following the herd and producing light and bland beer, they set themselves apart by brewing a dark and flavorful recipe.

    "We knew that Sierra Nevada would not became a brand people loved if we didn't turn out beer with a consistently rich and full-bodied flavor profile," Grossman explains.

    Sierra Nevada also was careful to avoid common mistakes made by their fellow home brewers. Grossman, for instance, points out that many early craft breweries would sell beer with an inconsistent taste. To avoid this, he and Camusi committed from the beginning to not selling their product until they knew they could replicate the same flavor in each batch. He set up a small quality lab in the brewery to test ingredients and brews.

    They also put in a lot of hours and hard work. Brewing required three lengthy days each week that began at 5 a.m. to produce 30 barrels, followed by two longer days for packaging. In what time remained, Grossman found himself fixing up the salvaged refrigeration equipment he'd bought for production processes. Even with a few part-time employees, he was working seven long days a week without knowing whether the product would take off. 

    When the team did begin hiring in earnest, Grossman says they went with an "everybody pitches in" model that created a "very flat organizational structure." There was little emphasis on titles or management positions. The employees who got promoted were the ones who began in production, and even after getting those promotions "they still spent most of their day with their boots on." The system ensured that employees who came to work for Sierra Nevada actually wanted to be there and were willing to put in the effort.

    Looking back on the company's success, Grossman says Sierra Nevada underwent "truly organic" growth. They scaled with no public relations company or media budget. He and Camusi created their own niche by putting in plenty of time and producing a unique, high-quality beverage.

    "Sierra Nevada was a production-focused brewery from the very beginning, not a market-driven one," Grossman writes. "We brewed what we loved to drink, and it sold."

    SEE ALSO: Successful Entrepreneurs Do One Thing Really Well

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    Michael Rubin

    By the time he was 16, Michael Rubin was more than $200,000 in debt with his discount ski-equipment business.

    Although his parents wanted him to go to college, Rubin dropped out after six weeks to focus on his business, which eventually merged with then publicly traded athletic shoe company Ryka to form what would later be known as GSI Commerce, writes Catherine Clifford at

    It was the late '90s when an analyst called to ask Rubin what he was going to do about the internet. Rubin brushed him off, saying: "Oh, don’t waste my time. It’s all these young kids who lose lots of money. They barely do any revenue and the only thing they are good at is losing money. Don’t waste my time with this internet thing. I have no interest."

    But Rubin started thinking about it more once he got off the phone and called CEOs of his competitors, including Modell’s and the Sports Authority, to see how they felt.

    He realized that although no one understood the internet at the time, a lot of people were talking about it. This spelled out opportunity for Rubin. In 1999, he started developing an internet strategy for his company, well ahead of the crowd. About a decade later, Rubin sold his company to eBay for $2.4 billion and went on to purchase three e-commerce businesses: licensed sports merchandiser Fanatics, fashion flash sale site Rue La La, and retail benefits program Shop Runner.

    Today, Rubin is 41-years-old and worth $2.7 billion. He serves as executive chairman on each of his companies’ boards.

    Rubin tells Clifford that he's currently focused on improving the mobile applications for these sites.

    "I think about the way e-commerce disrupted retail," he says. "Mobile is going to change e-commerce the way e-commerce changed traditional retail."

    Want your business advice featured in Instant MBA? Submit your tips to Be sure to include your name, your job title, and a photo of yourself in your email.

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    When it comes to making a difference, it seems that there is never enough time or resources to try new ideas or programs. Instead, we focus on the day-to-day and try to make the most of what we have to ensure the communities we serve get what they need to thrive. But are we selling ourselves short by thinking that new ideas require a huge influx of cash?

    Instead of hoping for more resources and time, try thinking like an entrepreneur.

    In an article on Forbes, author Dan Schawbel talks about how the definition of an entrepreneur is changing: “A major shift is taking place, replacing the typical definition of an entrepreneur — ‘someone who starts a company’ — with a newer definition, one based on the innate mindset of a person who sees opportunities and pursues them.”

    Looking at entrepreneurs in this way means that there is room for an entrepreneurial spirit while at work. In fact, many are increasingly exploring what it means to be an “intrapreneur” or someone who innovates within an organization.

    By thinking like an entrepreneur — with an eye toward new ideas and a passion for making them come to life — and acting like one in appropriate situations, you can set yourself apart as a leader within your organization. Here’s how to do that.

    Analyze your work situation.

    Before you set out to launch a new program or take steps on your new idea, understand the level of entrepreneurship your organization encourages. Look around and see how others at your organization act and what results and projects are praised. Over the past couple of years, more and more businesses are embracing an entrepreneurial spirit among their employees, so make sure yours is one of them.

    If your organization doesn’t seem that keen on taking risks like an entrepreneur, talk to your manager about ways you can step up. Is there a project you can oversee or an idea you can focus on for a couple months? By finding small ways to get more involved, you can grow your entrepreneurial attitude and help foster a spirit of openness at your organization.

    Find a project (or passion) to focus on.

    One of the reasons why entrepreneurs often start companies is that they have something they feel passionate about and want to see come to life. At work, a potential project or passion might reveal itself in many ways: a recurring problem or challenge; a small program that’s showing promise; or an interest/idea of yours that you think could help your organization and you’d love to try.

    Once you identify the project or passion you’d like to explore, stick to it and explore how it could grow keeping in mind all of the various constraints (budget, time, etc) within your organization. Lean Impact has great information on

    Get comfortable with risks.

    Entrepreneurs are known for taking big risks and getting big rewards. While this might sound intimidating, taking a risk every now and then might not be the worst thing in the world—especially if it brings back big rewards for your organization.

    Another article on Forbes addresses this subject and provides four ways you can embrace risk:

    • Broaden your observations beyond what you seek and beyond the obvious details before you, and enlarge your field of opportunities.
    • Meet good vision with consistent execution every day to build a stable, growing pipeline of opportunities.
    • Cultivate the most promising opportunities by giving them the right amount of focus and attention.  Don’t let the best opportunities vanish by wasting energy on opportunities with limited potential.
    • Make generosity a part of your purpose, and an integral part of how you manage opportunities.

    Don’t be afraid to speak up.

    Sometimes it’s not about managing or launching something, but asking questions and sparking conversations that shift your organization’s POV when it comes to exploring new ideas.

    Not comfortable speaking up? On Harvard Business Review, Meredith Fineman discusses this, highlighting three ways you can still cultivate an entrepreneurial attitude: having a deep network, not necessarily a wide one; working alongside an extroverted partner; and pacing yourself in situations when you are out and about.

    Do you have entrepreneurial tendencies? How do they come out in your day job?

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    Al 'Bubba' Baker on Shark Tank

    How did a former NFL player-turned-entrepreneur with disappointing sales get an investment from the Sharks in the latest episode of ABC's reality pitch show "Shark Tank?"

    It's not because Al "Bubba" Baker is a former professional athlete. Instead, it's because he knows how to talk about his challenges.

    Baker's business, Baby Back Rib Steak, offers de-boned ribs that are ready to eat after two minutes of heating in the microwave. But here's the problematic detail: Baby Back Rib Steak only generated $154,000 in sales over the last year — even though Baker's been working on the idea for the last 20 years. When investor Barbara Corcoran asked him what happened in those undocumented 19 years, Baker admitted to quitting on his business before his daughter convinced him to give it another try.

    Baker's personalized story stood out compared to the other hopefuls on the show, who didn't admit to any challenges or major competitors. 

    When the Sharks asked co-owners Alexander Mendeluk and Marley Merota, whose faux fur headgear business Spirithood generated $9.3 million in sales in the past three years, about their competitors, they couldn't pinpoint any. And when investor Mark Cuban asked entrepreneur Jan Goetelvk how he was going to compete for consumer dollars with Virtuix Omni, a treadmill-like virtual reality gaming system that had 3,000 pre-orders before it rolled out its first productGoetelvk also couldn't answer.

    These examples prove that even when your numbers are impressive, entrepreneurs still need to be able to predict future challenges and size up competitors. 

    While Baker's numbers were not as impressive, he was able to show product and process patents for de-boning baby back ribs and was honest about what he was up against. It ultimately secured him a $300,000 investment from Daymond John for a 30% equity stake, contingent on securing a licensing deal. 

    SEE ALSO: The 10 Worst ‘Shark Tank’ Pitches Of All Time

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    business woman

    Women may make up nearly 50% of the workforce, but many of the most powerful and influential companies in the U.S. have yet to make meaningful moves to advance women into top leadership positions. 

    For eight consecutive years, there has been no significant uptick in corporate board seats held by women in the Fortune 500, reports a new study by Catalyst, the nonprofit research organization.

    "The rate of growth of women on boards is glacial. It's simply unacceptable," Daniel F. Akerson, CEO of General Motors, said to the audience at a recent gathering of the Women's Forum of New York at the New York Stock Exchange.

    For its part, GM has several women installed on its board and recently tapped Mary Barra to be its next and first-ever female CEO. "If you're a senior executive, put it right at the CEO's table," said Akerson.

    In 2013, 922 board seats were held by women, compared to 4,524 seats held by men. That means women held just 16.9% of these influential positions this year, which barely budged from the 16.6% they held in 2012.

    The low representation of women on boards has been and continues to be a major problem in the U.S., says Catalyst. Today, less than one-fifth of big companies have at least 25% of women on their boards.

    The lack of progress for women in these leadership positions may affect how well companies perform, since studies show that Fortune 500 companies with the highest percentage of women board members financially outperform firms with the lowest percentage. Despite this performance advantage, however, there are still 50 companies on the Fortune 500 with zero women on their boards, according to data provided by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which looked at board members as of June 30, 2013.

    The list below, provided by Catalyst, reveals the biggest companies in the U.S. with no women on their boards:

    INTL FCStone
    Total Board Seats: 11
    Industry: Finance and Insurance

    Total Board Seats: 17
    Industry: Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing

    HCA Holdings
    Total Board Seats: 13
    Industry: Health Care and Social Assistance

    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Retail Trade

    PBF Energy
    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Manufacturing (Nondurable Goods)

    Total Board Seats: 11
    Industry: Manufacturing (Nondurable Goods)

    National Oilwell Varco
    Total Board Seats: 8
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold
    Total Board Seats: 15
    Industry: Mining, Quarrying, and Oil and Gas Extraction

    Global Partners
    Total Board Seats: 8
    Industry: Wholesale Trade

    Energy Transfer Equity
    Total Board Seats: 6
    Industry: Retail Trade

    Icahn Enterprises
    Total Board Seats: 7
    Industry: Management of Companies and Enterprises

    L-3 Communications*
    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    *UPDATE: L-3 Communications elected a female board member in June of this year.

    Total Board Seats: 3
    Industry: Accommodations and Food Services

    Navistar International
    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    Chesapeake Energy
    Total Board Seats: 8
    Industry: Mining, Quarrying, and Oil and Gas Extraction

    EOG Resources
    Total Board Seats: 7
    Industry: Mining, Quarrying, and Oil and Gas Extraction

    Las Vegas Sands
    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Accommodations and Food Services

    First Data
    Total Board Seats: 4
    Industry: Finance and Insurance

    Leucadia National
    Total Board Seats: 13
    Industry: Management of Companies and Enterprises

    Caesars Entertainment
    Total Board Seats: 11
    Industry: Accommodations and Food Services

    Sonic Automotive
    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Retail Trade

    Cameron International
    Total Board Seats: 11
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    Republic Services
    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Administrative & Support, Waste Management & Remediation Services

    HD Supply
    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Wholesale Trade

    Spectrum Group International
    Total Board Seats: 7
    Industry: Administrative & Support, Waste Management & Remediation Services

    Total Board Seats: 11
    Industry: Information

    Fidelity National Financial
    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Finance and Insurance

    Precision Castparts
    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    Total Board Seats: 7
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    Core-Mark Holding
    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Wholesale Trade

    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Wholesale Trade

    NuStar Energy
    Total Board Seats: 6
    Industry: Manufacturing (Nondurable Goods)

    Level 3 Communications
    Total Board Seats: 15
    Industry: Information

    EMCOR Group
    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Construction

    CC Media Holdings
    Total Board Seats: 13
    Industry: Information

    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    Total Board Seats: 5
    Industry: Finance and Insurance

    CF Industries Holdings
    Total Board Seats: 8
    Industry: Manufacturing (Nondurable Goods)

    General Cable
    Total Board Seats: 6
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    Shaw Group
    Total Board Seats: 8
    Industry: Construction

    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Transportation and Warehousing

    Fidelity National Information Services
    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Information

    Live Nation
    Total Board Seats: 10
    Industry: Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation

    Joy Global
    Total Board Seats: 8
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    MRC Global
    Total Board Seats: 12
    Industry: Wholesale Trade

    Susser Holdings
    Total Board Seats: 6
    Industry: Retail Trade

    Total Board Seats: 7
    Industry: Manufacturing (Durable Goods)

    MetroPCS Communications
    Total Board Seats: 6
    Industry: Information

    YRC Worldwide
    Total Board Seats: 9
    Industry: Transportation and Warehousing

    Total Board Seats: 6
    Industry: Wholesale Trade

    SEE ALSO: Only 7 Of The Fortune 500 Companies Have Boards That Are At Least 40% Women

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