Guy Kawasaki compiled an excellent list of top ten lies by entrepreneurs.
His list in brief:
1. “Our projections are conservative.”
2. “(Big name research firm) says our market will be $50 billion in 2010.”
3. “(Big name company) is going to sign our purchase order next week.”
4. “Key employees are set to join us as soon as we get funded.”
5. “No one is doing what we’re doing.”
6. “No one can do what we’re doing.”
7. “Hurry because several other venture capital firms are interested.”
8. “Oracle is too big/dumb/slow to be a threat.”
9. “We have a proven management team.”
10. “Patents make our product defensible.”
Read the full article here with tongue-in-cheek explanations.
The article is apparently geared towards software ventures.
Patents do provide a barrier of entry to newcomers especially if you are in biotechnology industry. However even in software industry they can be good leverage.
It is normally harder for larger companies to move as fast as small startups due to their process and systems. The same process which maintains and enhances their market position and success often slow them down to counter a new threat. However it is changing. Today even humongous companies like Microsoft move rather rapidly for comfort. Also when they move they make a bigger impact due to their marketing machinery and economic muscle. However that doesn’t mean you cannot compete with them. You can either work with innovative technologies like Google did and/or operate under their radar so they do not perceive you as a threat. And when they do, you have already garnered a significant chunk of the market to stand on your own. Then you also stand a good chance of being bought by your humongous competitor.
Guy K. has also compiled a list of top ten lies of venture capitalists.