5 Pieces of Advice from NYU Alumni Founders

When the Summer Launchpad teams aren’t conducting customer interviews, running pilots, or forming partnerships – they spend a large portion of their time at the Leslie eLab meeting with mentors and hearing from guest speakers, majority of whom are also startup founders. It’s a powerful thing to hear from founders who were recently in their shoes.

During “Ask Me Anything” or morning workshop sessions, NYU entrepreneurs share insights, advice, and war stories with the SLP cohort. Here are a few pieces of advice recently shared with the teams:   

1. Don’t be afraid to share your startup idea with others.

“Starting out, I didn’t want to share my idea. I was so concerned someone would steal my idea. At the end of the day, everyone is walking around with ideas - it’s all about execution.” 

  • Caren Maio, Co-Founder of Nestio (Gallatin ‘07)

2. Understand what your strengths (and weaknesses) are as a founder.

“As you grow your company, know what you’re good at and what you’re not good at. the faster you can delegate big chunks of your business to amazing people who are better than you, the faster you will grow.”

  • Will Canine, Co-Founder of OpenTrons (Tisch ’14)

3. How you communicate (and pitch) your startup will vary based on the audience.

“What’s the audience, what am I trying to achieve with this audience? And how much time do I have to achieve it?”

  • Dave Isaacs, Creative Director at R/GA (Gallatin ’99)

4. Your short-term and long-term vision are separate but of equal importance.

“We had a vision of what we wanted to build early on. We were so naive of how hard that would be. It took 10 years to get to where we are today.”

  • Dennis Crowley, Co-Fonder of Foursquare (Tisch ’04)

5. No one said starting a company would be easy.  

“Building a product is easy. Getting someone to use it, keep using it, and pay for it — that’s hard.” 

  • Adam Goldstein, Co-Founder of Vettery (Stern ‘07)


We are so grateful to the 30+ entrepreneur guest speakers and 50+ startup mentors for your support this summer. Stay tuned on our blog to learn more about the participating teams and speakers!