Jack Derby, Coach, Advisor, Tufts Entrepreneurship Professor

Recent Posts

3 Steps to Relentless Focus in Everything We Do!



After this first year in my new role as the Director of the Tufts Entrepreneurship Center, now that we have a solid understanding of what we have, and we don't have, I'm spending time visiting the heads of the local universities to figure out how and where entrepreneurship fits into their organizations.  I'm doing this partially to understand their organizational structures of what works and what doesn't, partially to assess "the competition" and mostly to be able to better express what's unique about Tufts' own brand of entrepreneurship.  These interviews, plus talking with hundreds of students and alums, and having just completed our first-ever "Impact Report on Entrepreneurship at Tufts", will lead to developing an updated two-year business plan this summa'. 

I love working on "Tufts' Stuff" on the beach.  It justifies, just a bit, my excuse to be on the NH beach and not commute into campus

By the way, if you would like to receive a copy of this  just-released "Impact Report, just email me at jack.derby@tufts.edu, and I'll send you a copy. 

The Impact Report work is dynamic and all the more so since it was done by our students, led by Team Captain, Leila Li, a remarkable student leader and friend.  

One of my first stops in assessing other universities was Babson, perhaps the most highly rated university in the world when it comes down to encompassing "entrepreneurship" in everything they do.    As I and a few of my associates visited with the senior leadership of Babson, I was struck by...

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My 3 Rules to my Graduating Seniors

May is always a bittersweet time !

It's the end of the academic year and the realization that hundreds of our students at the Tufts Entrepreneurship Center will graduate opening the next chapter in their books of life and in their careers.  We know from our data that the majority will join larger companies where they will bring their entrepreneurial spirit of curiosity and innovation.  Right alongside our congratulating the seniors going to work at Google, Hubspot, Linked and other companies where we can open doors, we are also closely watching and coaching a handful of companies being birthed right now as a result of this spring's very successful Tufts $100K New Ventures Competition Tufts TEC Graduates 2019-2

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Tags: angel investing, Tufts university, Tufts ELS program, Tufts internships, entrepreneurship, jack derby professor at Tufts, Tufts Entrepreneurship, Tufts Entrepreneurship Center

Most importantly...we all need to remain curious!!!


20 years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do.
So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. 

Catch the trade winds in your sails. 

Explore! Dream! Discover!

   ...Mark Twain


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Tags: sales boot camp, sales management boot camps, Tufts marketing projects, jack derby professor at Tufts, sales management productivity, creating trust in sales, Tufts Entrepreneurship, sales motivation

10 Lessons for Success from a Serial Entrepreneur!

At the Tufts Entrepreneurship Center, in addition to shepherding 450 enthusiastic and curious students a semester among 16 wicked smart professors, I've been focusing on building an event structure throughout the year that leads up to our $100K New Venture Competition in the spring.  Right now, you should Mark April 5th in your calendar and come and participate in what Forbes ranks as one of "The top 15 business plan contests in the country." 

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Tags: sales leadership, value propositions, jack derby professor at Tufts, sales management plans, creating trust in sales, Tufts Entrepreneurship

It's all about time...sales, management, and entrepreneurship!

You cannot not like Michael Porter... 

The guy is just brilliant!  Been around for a long time.  Lots of books.  Got the Five Forces Thing down.  Senior professor at HBS.  Has a building on campus named after him.  And, he's a true Renaissance Man, who continues to do research, write and still actively teach. The Real Deal !

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Tags: entreprenurial, Tufts ELS, sales planning meetings, entrepreneurship, sales management plans, sales effectivness, Tufts Entrepreneurship

Celebrate The Revolution !

Thanks for closing the Q on time and even squeaking in those last few orders on Friday afternoon before the closing bell !  This morning, whatever the number was, it feels good to have the wind at your back and a new page open to a new week, a new month and a new quarter !  Still lots of room between now and the end of December.    

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Tags: business planning, business coaching, business plans, strategic planning, strategic

Everything's in Place in VT & in Sales-Today's # is 3

 

"A clean forest is a happy forest !"

In the tiny town of Bondville (Federal government's name) and/or Winhall (the State's name), population 647, I was out in my Vermont woodlot this past weekend. Always a work process of love for the land that is good for my head, the soul and especially for the woods!  
My family has lived in this valley for over 250 years, and I have enough great grandfather and grandfather stories of real entrepreneurship to fill a book. I think that it's not by coincidence that I'm now director of the Tufts Entrepreneurship Center, just two miles from my grandfather's first retail store opened in Davis Square in 1908.  Bapa left the not-so-rural town of Poultney, just 20 miles up the road a piece from where I live in Vermont, to settle in Somerville next to the Tufts campus.  

Last Friday, Mike, my trusted co-worker, and I were deep in the Vermont muck with chain saws and ATV's cutting, bushwhacking, and generally cleaning up the final damage of the winta'. 

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Tags: improved sales management, sales management training, sales boot camps, improving sales productivity, sales management productivity, sales careers

The Importance of Seven Today in Your Success!

Today's critical number is seven!

  1. Seven days in the week
  2. Seven is a very spiritual number; just like three
  3. Seven continents and seven seas
  4. Shakespeare's "seven stages of life"
  5. Seven colors in a rainbow
  6. Seven letter in "SUCCESS"
  7. ...and, of course, just seven days left in Q2 to make quota !

For years, I've always been a countdown guy ticking the numbers down from here to there, or more typically, I start at the "there" and back into where "here" is so that everything...quota, work, travel, and my work at Tufts with my extraordinary students and professors, gets handled efficiently...and most of the time, effectively. 

Time is obviously finite and allows for zero expansion in life, in projects and certainly in Sales.  The month closes, the calendar page turns and BAANNG, it's a new month, a new quarter, and we're on the other side of that measuring bar. Same as in sports when the buzzer sounds!  Zero difference since Sales is just like any professional sport.  Always remember that we're all professional athletes just like any professional sports figure...we just chose different careers.  Same requirements for training, motivation and the clarity of our drive!

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Tags: improving sales productivity, sales management productivity, sales effectivness, sales careers, sales motivation

Today you have a choice to make...Be Happy!

There's one underlying truth that never discriminates among any of us, and that's simply that we have limited time. 
  • Limited time to work.  On average a "very good" salesperson works 57.5 hours a week, only slightly less than the 63.2 hours for a "very good" CEO...most of whom are what?  Salespeople!
  • Limited time to sleep.  I guess that there is still a rule of thumb that the average adult needs eight hours, but there are those of us who have gotten by just fine, thank you, for decades on four or five, and last night on three. 
  • Limited time to live.  'Nuff said about that depressing note, since today I chose to "Be Happy!"

A beautiful happy day here in Boston having finally shrugged off the ugliness of a cold wet spring to now bask in the excitement of the startup capital of the world.  Just a great day to be alive..."and sell some stuff"

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Tags: sales success, sales management productivity, selling trust, Tufts Entrepreneurship

Just Remember...everything

Looks like it'll be a pretty good start to the weekend. 

Must admit, I'm working from home today at the NH beach, where I just decided that I needed to do some field research so I've just relocated the office to the sand. 

Definitely, a beach day, and, for me, a time to think, to read a book (on Social Media, of course) and begin the summer task of sorting through a rewrite of How to Write the Winning Business Plan and a total overhaul of its two accompanying ebooks on writing marketing and sales plans. 

Nothing like blue sky, the sound of the ocean and the bliss of knowing that I, once again, successfully beat back the tentacles of yet another New England winta'.

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Tags: SEO, selling trust, Tufts Entrepreneurship