Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Bad Powerpoint - different views on what makes a good pitch

Thursday, February 8th, 2007

Seth Godin recently reposted his views on how so many companies create really bad powerpoint decks with uninspiring, boring information presentation. His key message - a picture is worth a 1,000 words.

For example:

Can you trust job candidate interviews?

What makes the point better? this picture, or several bullet pointed phrases?
Meanwhile, Guy Kawaski preaches the 10/20/30 rule in making powerpoint presentations. No more than 10 slides, in 20 minutes with 30 point font. Who is right and who is wrong? I think they are both right. For an investor deck, I focus on Guy's points first and mix in Godin. For sales decks, the oppposite is true.

If you are trying to sell a product that requires education on a concept, then you really out to check out this VERY innovative presentation on Identity 2.0 , made by Dick Hardt, the CEO of Sxip Identity. You will understand the challenges associated with Identity Mangement after listening to this and you will be entertained. Very unique approach - applicable for the right audience at the right time.

About Me

Wednesday, January 17th, 2007
A brief history: I am a Technology Executive and live in the Philadelphia, PA area.  I started my Technology Career as a tester at IBM while in college and joined Accenture after graduating. I stayed at Accenture until I noticed that implementing global ERP systems in Fortune 500 companies was not as much fun as selling global ERP systems - and selling paid a lot better. After riding the Y2K ERP growth wave, I co-founded what I call an "Accidental" dot.com company - Atlas Commerce. We started this business in '98 and sold it to Verticalnet in 2001 for $24 million. I ran services at Verticalnet and helped phase-in two acquisitions before leaving to find my next opportunity at the end of 2004. In 2005, I joined SkillSurvey as the CEO, helped launch the company after raising $2.4 million and have since turned it over to someone else to run. I am currently the Chief Operating Office for the Sierra Products in SunGard's Capital Markets and Investment Banking Group.  My website has more info. Contact me: dan at dantiernan dot com

My First Blog Post

Saturday, December 23rd, 2006

I am searching for my next opportunity. I will use this site to record my plans, my findings and ideas.

Here is my current plan:

After investing in and leading SkillSurvey for the last 15 months, I am beginning my search for my next venture. When I joined SkillSurvey, we could not afford to pay salaries to ½ of the team and we were supported for 4 months by my capital infusion of $100K. We were able to raise $2.4 million in funding, build a team, rewrite the product to ensure scalability, launch the solution on the market, grow the revenue 4X, double the subscriber base and build a marquee list of market leading partners: Taleo in Talent Management, Hewitt in Human Resource Outsourcing, Verifications in background screening and many others.

Having made this progress, I came to believe that we could grow faster if we had someone leading the company that had previous success selling into the HCM/Talent Management Space. We have made the transition and I am now serving as a board member and advisor.

So, what am I going to do next?

Find an exciting, executive level opportunity with a high growth technology company in the Philadelphia area where I can channel my energy, knowledge and skills.

There are not enough startups flowing through this area for me to limit my search to CEO positions, unless I start something myself. However, I don’t have the patience to start from scratch again. Therefore, I am looking for a business that has made some progress:

  • Have a live Product
  • Have revenue generating customers
  • Need Leadership help
  • $100K in revenue to $100 million in revenue
  • Role: CEO, COO, VP Services, VP Sales/Marketing, VP Biz Dev, just not a CFO
  • Industry – not that big of an issue, although I prefer business applications over pure technology or consumer plays.

I have really enjoyed working in an company with a niche solution, an ASP delivery model, recurring revenue stream, easy to “try”, low price entry point and automating something that was previously done manually. This formula has always interested me.

So, there you have it.

In 2005, I investigated 43 deals in detail (after screening over 100) to settle on SkillSurvey, so I am sure I will need to add a lot of opportunities to my evaluation pipeline.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.