Quote for every entrepreneur to keep in mind

“You’ve explained something for four minutes but I have no idea what this is. What you said in that time, you could say in 10 seconds. I know this is difficult in English, but I have no idea what you are doing.”

Benjamin Joffe, during JapanNight start-up competition

I really loved how Ben said that. At first, I thought it was a Japan specific problem, as it’s no secret the Japanese have embarrassingly weak English communication skills. Second thought, Ben’s comment really applies to every entrepreneur.

Having spent time in SF and NY, I’ve had the (pain) and pleasure, to connect with many mary start-ups building many, many things.  I’ve noticed how much of a challenge it is, for entrepreneurs to solidify their elevator pitches and people tend to go on and on and on without answering: this is what I’m building and why.

I hope more angels and VCs keep pushing start-ups to quickly answer the what and why, just like how Ben prompts them to.

Sidenote: I was fortunate to have dinner with Ben a few nights ago and in private, he is this super sweet, charming French guy. It was nice to see a side of Ben during the competition I didn’t get to see during our dinner ;)


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