Deemed a Thursday must-read (at least for small business owners and entrepreneurs) by the Wall Street Journal, this article details the impact of Y Combinator, a startup accelerator, including its potential inflation of startup valuations. Some believe these increased valuations—resulting largely from the hype generated from some of the successful Y Combinator startups, including Dropbox, Airbnb, and Socialcam—have made early-stage startups more expensive across the board. Check out the entire article to learn about why investors believe Y Combinator startups are overly priced, and how these valuations are impacting the startup community as a whole.

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As an entrepreneur, 2012 has been an exciting year in terms of progressive legislation. The JOBS Act, which is aimed at promoting start-up financing and includes access to capital via crowdfunding, seems to be a positive sign that Congress is trying to advance entrepreneurial interests. In addition to the JOBS Act, the Senate Small Business Committee is working on the early stages of another entrepreneur-focused bill. Wednesday, the Committee met to discuss the landmark bill, which is being called Perspectives from the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem: Creating Jobs and Growing Businesses Through Entrepreneurship.

The goal of the bill is to make entrepreneurial ecosystems stronger, i.e. create more start-ups and generate more quality jobs. The Committee roundtable discussion is focusing on developing the foundation…

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As our economy begins its (slow) recovery, it’s an excellent time to thoughtfully consider your business ideas and start to write a business plan for launching your start-up. Here’s the best part, you can write your business plan for free. You won’t have to invest anything, other than a little time, to develop a bullet-proof business strategy to grow your business. Today’s post focuses on two initial steps you can take to write a business plan. I’ve also included some tips on how to find easy-to-use online resources to guide you through the process of building a successful business plan.

Determine Who You Are
The first step is to take some time to think about exactly what your business is? What services…

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When you think of start-ups you may think of Silicon Valley and young millionaires, who enjoy wealth beyond the greatest imagination and a steady (perhaps exponential) growth of income. What you typically don’t think of is the significant hurdles these start-ups often face. Paul Graham calls these hurdles “Brick Walls” (or “BW”). Graham is the author of Trough of Sorrow, which details the start-up process, or start-up curve. While some companies enjoy wild success from the get go, most follow Graham’s diagram below.

The first stage is exciting; you’ve got an idea and you’ve set the wheels in motion to develop the idea. Next, you suffer through the wearing off stage, trying your best to maintain momentum as you begin the…

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