Tag Archives: Learning & Courses

Free University Courses Online, Including Predictably Irrational

Coursera is an amazing education resource that makes classes from top Universities available to the public. You’ll find a wide variety of courses, including many relevant to entrepreneurship.

Highlighted here is “A Beginner’s Guide to Irrational Behavior” with Dan Ariely. I highly recommend Dan’s book, Predictably Irrational, which explores behavioral economics. While that may sound dry, it’s what makes the world of internet marketing (and darn near everything else) tick.

For example, Internet marketing is all about getting the right people to click and move forward to the next step in a buy cycle. Or put another way, motivating people to buy = behavioral economics. As you’ll see in this brief video clip, Dan is the sort of guy who has a sense of humor and breaks his research down into practical terms you can use to grow your business.

Many more classes like this are available on Coursera.


P.S. If you like Predictably Irrational, check out this reading list on Behavioral Economics.

(Source: http://www.youtube.com/)

Your Questions Answered – on Quora


Quora is a great resource for getting answers to your business questions. The community is helpful and generally well-moderated so you can expect thoughtful, well-reasoned answers. The best way to see how it works is to join, start following a couple of “boards” (aka topics) and start chiming in the conversation. 

As an example, here’s a question I answered on benchmarks this morning:

How much of your startup’s revenue should be spent on the office space? Is 10% too much?

Short answer: Yes, 10% is generally too much. Longer answer: The less you can pay in the startup stage, the better. Hence the common “I started in the garage” (or basement, or coffee shop) theme. Today there are so many incubator-type spaces in many cities it’s much easier than it used to be to find a small, inexpensive place to set up shop.

Once you’re past the startup stage, a rule of thumb would be 2% in manufacturing and 8% in a professional office space, at least in my neck of the woods. A local CPA would be able to give you a more specific benchmark for your industry and geography.

Now, off to find the answers you seek on Quora!