Inc. Magazine May 2017

Founded in 1979 and acquired in 2005 by Mansueto Ventures LLC, Inc. is the only major brand dedicated exclusively to owners and managers of growing private companies, with the aim to deliver real solutions for today’s innovative company builders.

United States
Mansueto Ventures LLC
6 Issues

in this issue

1 min
4 email mistakes you don’t realize you’re making

1-BAD GRAMMAR Before you hit Send, proofread what you’ve written. Sending typos or other errors makes you seem lazy. 2-USING EMOJI OR EMOTICONS Those cute digital icons belong in text messages— not in your emails. 3-MARKING SOMETHING “URGENT” WHEN IT’S NOT That red exclamation point is irritating if the matter isn’t really pressing. 4-WRITING THE MESSAGE IN THE SUBJECT LINE Most people won’t read a lengthy subject line. It’s best to use the body, even for very short notes. “Being paranoid and at the same time overconfident is really important in Silicon Valley.” Guido Kovalskys, co-founder and CEO of Nearpod • TOP VIDEOS INC.COM/PLAYBOOK Casey Neistat YouTube star “Video is no longer an option. It is essential to building a successful business.” INC.COM/PLAYBOOK Faith Popcorn Founder of BrainReserve “Look at your day and say, ‘What’s missing?’ Then build a product around that.” INC.COM/PEAK-PERFORMANCE Jeff Jonas Ironman triathlete and founder of…

2 min
truth and its consequences

OCTOBER 8, 2016: That was the day that I learned, like it or not, I am a 21st-century journalist. That morning, I was leaving the stage after speaking to the Cincinnati chapter of the YPO—a much respected peer group for CEOs—and a pleasant, middle-aged woman approached. “May I ask you a question?” she said. She was polite, as people from Cincinnati tend to be. “Why do you in the media always lie?” That’s not a question we at Inc. get asked very often. Because Inc.’s mission is service, not news, and because we write for business founders like you—that is, people who are nobody’s fools—we tend not to be lumped in with the “lyin’ press.” But, as Jason Fried points out in his column this month (page 104), it’s not always possible…

4 min
get rolling

LAST YEAR, INDIANAPOLIS-BASED building-restoration company Hays + Sons had a website and a Facebook and Twitter presence, but it tended to get lost amid a horde of competitors. Then tornadoes hit Kokomo, Indiana, and the company decided the time was right to try social video. A Facebook clip documenting the tornado damage has clocked 9,500 views on Facebook—extraordinary for a local business in an industry not known for its “clickability”—and, says co-founder Mark Hays, “it helped us communicate our message from the customer’s point of view. It sets us apart from our competition when the user is trying to pick between companies.” Facebook generates an average of eight billion video views per day, and YouTube reaches more 18- to 49-year-olds than any cable network in the U.S. Yet only around…

1 min
the jargonator

• AUTOLIVERY / • noun. Ford’s new delivery concept: Self-driving trucks bring packages to a destination, and then drones bring them to “destinations inaccessible by car, such as high up in a tower block.” The drone always smashes into your window twice. Source: Ford ROBOTIC HARASSMENT / • noun. “When machines begin to supplant people as the primary actors in the workplace, individuals naturally begin to feel unimportant.” It’s almost as if we don’t aspire to a life of jobless penury. Source: Nikkei Asian Review • LESS-CASH SOCIETY / • noun. Professor Kenneth Rogoff proposes a “less-cash society” with the elimination of high-value banknotes ($100, €500, ¥10,000) popular with criminals. Of course, this would end Hollywood’s favorite McGuffin: the briefcase full of money. Source: Daily Princetonian TARIFFYING / • adjective. A gloomy assessment…

2 min
what task would you never delegate?

“Communicating bad news. When it comes to missing numbers, aspects of the business that failed or didn’t perform, or removing somebody, even though we want to empower our people, I don’t want to delegate that. I prefer they hear bad news from the CEO. It gives our people a sense that there’s leadership at the top and that we don’t run away from things when they’re challenging.” AHMASS FAKAHANY CEO, Altamarea Group (food & beverages) NO. 4,298 2016 INC. 5000 RANK 63% 3-YEAR GROWTH $65.7M 2015 REVENUE “Some people hire formulators for their brands. That’s something I would never outsource. I am intimately involved in the formulation of every product, in all aspects, and I think that goes along with keeping consistency of the brand and not letting someone dilute that.” DOUG MILLER CEO, Core Nutritionals (health) NO.…

11 min
will amazon buy you?

While Amazon doesn’t disclose its specific investments and acquisitions and declined to confirm the following transactions with Inc., they have been reported by CB Insights. Inc. included the financial values when possible, using publicly available reports. ACQUISITION INVESTMENT ALEXA FUND RECIPIENT ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE Companies that make software or hardware to simulate human behavior. Many of these technologies are used to power Alexa, Amazon’s digital assistant housed within the Echo smart speaker, which was unveiled in 2014 to compete against Apple’s Siri. HARVEST.AI $20 MILLION 2017 EMBODIED 2016 ANGEL.AI 2016 TRACKR $500,000 2016 DEFINEDCROWD 2016 KITT.AI 2016 MARA.AI 2015 ORBEUS 2015 SAFABA TRANSLATION SOLUTIONS 2015 The six-year-old Pittsburgh-based machine translation firm founded by Robert Olszewski and Alon Lavie, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University, made software that automatically translated text from one language to another. Amazon likely acquired the company, in part, to get Lavie, who was…