By: Gigaom
Steve Blank on small startups, big execution, and Steve Jobs
When serial-entrepreneur-turned-college-professor Steve Blank talks entrepreneurship, people listen. His new book, The Startup Owner's Manual is bound for CEO bookshelves everywhere. Blank talked with us about the current and future state of entrepreneurship, the myth of Steve Jobs, and more.

When Steve Blank talks about entrepreneurship, people listen. When he writes a book on the subject, like his latest effort with co-author Bob Dorff titled The Startup Owner’s Manual, it’s a good bet it will be on many founders’ bookshelves.

Blank co-founded the CRM software company E.piphany and the video game business Rocket Science. His current gigs as an entrepreneurship professor at Stanford, UC Berkeley and Columbia give him a unique insight that combines a historical perspective with a look at the next generation of entrepreneurs.

I sat down with Blank at his ranch in Pescadero, where we talked about his book and his take on the state of startups and entrepreneurship. Some key takeaways:

  • Startups are not smaller versions of big companies, so don’t try to be like them
  • Startups are about searching for a business model, not executing a business plan
  • Contrary to the myth, Steve Jobs interacted with consumers more than you think
  • Amazon has been hugely important to the boom in startups
  • Today’s students have a “wonderful entrepreneurial arrogance”

Watch the videos below or listen to the audio only of the entire interview.


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