Be a Startup Superstar

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2019-12-05
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Inc

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What is included with this book?


Find a job and quickly climb the ranks at a tech startup, even if you’re not a techie.

Are you underemployed or struggling to find a fulfilling career? Stuck on a low rung of the corporate ladder and don’t see a way up anytime soon? You’re not alone. Like many recent college grads and people who feel stuck in their corporate jobs, you’ve probably never considered working for a technology company that’s just starting out, especially if you’re not a tech whiz. That doesn’t matter. Tech startups are desperate for talent and creativity in all kinds of fields from people with leadership skills and new ideas—people like you!

If you’re looking to turn your general business know-how into a wildly successful career, Be a Startup Superstar is your guide. Yes, you can love your work, feel energized by your role, and earn the income of your dreams. Author Steven Mark Kahan left his safe corporate job to join his first tech startup, and since then he has helped seven startup companies sell or go public (meaning early employees usually score big). In this breakthrough book, Steve shows you how to:

  • Look for five key traits when choosing a tech startup
  • Get hired at a tech startup with your existing degree, skills, and experience
  • Develop the leadership attributes and entrepreneurial mindset that can launch you to the top
  • Make better decisions and get better outcomes in the tech startup world and beyond

Be a Startup Superstar provides the expert insider guidance you need to ignite your career by joining the tech startup revolution.

Author Biography

STEVEN MARK KAHAN is the CMO of Thycotic, an IT security company based in Washington, DC. An award-winning cybersecurity marketer and startup entrepreneur, Steve has successfully helped to grow seven startup companies from early-stage development to going public or being sold, resulting in more than $3 billion in shareholder value. He is known for his ability to plan and execute marketing strategies that accelerate a company's revenue, grow its market share, and consistently deliver superior returns for its shareholders. Connect with Steve at StevenMarkKahan.com.

Table of Contents

Foreword by David Meerman Scott ix

Introduction xiii

Part I: The Best Opportunities are in Start-Ups 1

Chapter 1: Use the Tech Start-Up Boom to Zoom 3

The Unprecedented Opportunity in Tech Start-Ups 5

Why Work for a Start-Up Over a Big Corporation? 9

Fewer Barriers to Entry 10

Versatility in Roles 11

Access to Leaders 11

Financial Rewards 13

Culture 14

Upward Mobility 16

Chapter 2: Pick the Right Start-Up for You 19

How to Find Start-Up Opportunities 20

Research Posted Jobs Online 21

Explore Technology Accelerators 21

Attend In-Person Entrepreneur Events 21

Engage with Start-Up Leaders Online 23

Attend Hiring Parties 23

Be Willing to Intern (Preferably for Pay) 24

Seek Mentors 25

Five Criteria to Choose a Start-Up 26

Quality People Who Share Your Values 27

The Concept Fills a Big Market Need 28

A Great Product You Believe In 30

A Role You Can Fill Today with More Opportunities Tomorrow 31

The Start-Up is Well-Funded 31

Getting Hired 33

Part II: Seven Keys to the C-Suite 35

Chapter 3: Develop Your Leadership Skills and Self-Confidence 37

Visualize Your Success Until It’s Real 38

Use “Co-Opetition” and Competition to Stand Out 40

Become an Expert and a Constant Learner 41

Develop Strong Communication Skills 44

Embrace Accountability 47

Show Humility 49

Believe in Yourself 50

Chapter 4: Stand Out from the Herd 53

Differentiate Yourself 53

Ask More Questions 56

Take Calculated Risks and Challenge the Status Quo 59

Find the Courage to Make Tough Decisions 63

Call Out the Elephant in the Room 65

Be Known as an Idea Person Who Executes 66

Chapter 5: Act Like a Leader (Even If You Don’t Have the Title Yet) 69

Set Clear, Inspiring Goals 70

Three Pillars of Goal-Setting 70

The Baby Steps 71

Keep Your Goals in Sight 72

A Final Thought on Goals 73

Everything Can’t Be a High Priority 74

Create Order Out of Chaos 77

Make Fact-Informed Gut Decisions 80

Earn Your Stripes 82

Chapter 6: Adopt Winning Work Habits 85

Work Hard without Feeling Overworked 85

Show You Know Your Customers 88

Be Part of the Solution 91

Pay Attention to Details (without Being a Control Freak) 93

Add Value Through Simplicity 96

Persist and Be Patient 97

Chapter 7: Choose Carefully the Company You Keep 101

Surround Yourself with A-Plus Talent 101

Find the Right Mentors 106

Choose Your Mentors 107

Mentor/Mentee Relationship Guidelines 108

Know When to Stay and When to Go 109

When to Go 110

When to Stay 111

Leaving the Right Way 112

Trust Your Unique Path 113

Chapter 8: Embrace the Power of Kindness 117

Walk in Others’ Shoes 118

How to Develop Empathy 120

Get to Know Your Team 121

Say Thank You and Mean It 123

Gratitude is Contagious 124

How to Show Gratitude 124

Create Fun and Joy 126

Exude Energy and Optimism 128

Keep Your Surroundings Positive 129

How to Foster Optimism in Yourself and Your Environment 130

Chapter 9: Take Care of What Matters 133

Protect Your Calendar 133

Meetings 135

The Should-Dos Trap 137

Be Your Own Top Priority 139

Put Your Family First 140

Make Health and Fitness a Priority 142

Work Out 143

Eat Right 145

Sleep More 145

Live Life to the Fullest 147

Acknowledgements 149

About the Author 151

Index 153

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