Author: ryanfoland

Make Your Experience Bigger by Making Them Smaller: The Rise of the Un-Conference

I consider myself a high-energy people person. In fact, some people call me a human firecracker. These days, I fly around the world and speak in front of large groups, sharing ways for them to better communicate. When it comes to large groups, I am fearless. But it wasn’t always that way. In fact, when I was in middle school, I was the quiet kid in the corner. Being a redhead with freckles (a.k.a. a “Ginger”) made me an easy target when I was young. Harassed, bullied, outcasted, the whole nine yards. I learned to stay away from larger groups. ... Read more

How Sweta Patel Helps Startup Founders Succeed Through People-Centricity

5 ways to power-up your business success the Sweta Patel way. Being a startup founder isn’t easy, and one of the big challenges is setting the tone for your company culture. It’s especially hard to stay cool and calm when you are forced to juggle all aspects of your business. Meet Sweta Patel, The Oracles Member, Search Engine Top Influencer and founder of She has advised with over 200 startups in Silicon Valley. I caught up with her the other day and she shared some great insights about her experience in helping founders maintain company culture you want by ... Read more

Deep Patel Will Make You Better at Understanding Generation Z

Deep Patel is a serial entrepreneur, marketer and best-selling author of A Paperboy’s Fable: The 11 Principles of Success. The book was dubbed the No. 1 best business book in 2016 by Success Magazine, and named the best book for entrepreneurs in 2016 by Entrepreneur Magazine. Recognized as a top 25 marketing influencer by Forbes, Patel has worked with VC-backed startups and Fortune 500 companies. He is a contributor at Forbes, Entrepreneur, The Huffington Post and Success Magazine. I have had the pleasure of getting to know Deep over the past year. He has been on my radio show and ... Read more

Who is Leonard Kim? And What’s Surprising About Him?

It’s not what you do, it’s who you are that’s really important. If you’ve never heard of Leonard Kim, you might be in for a surprise. He’s attained over 10 million reads on his writing within the first 1.5 years of publishing content online. He’s been named the top marketing influencer by Forbes and received a few other accolades from other top tier magazines. He’s been invited to speak at events across the world, even though in my opinion, he doesn’t speak that well. One of the great things about Leonard and what made him so successful, isn’t really what ... Read more

Chris Harvey Interview: Discover the Secrets of a Quora Influencer

I meet a lot of lawyers. Some of them I really like, some, not so much. The ones I really like are those whose have true passion for helping people. Enter Chris Harvey, startup lawyer, top Quora writer, and my good friend. Chris primary practices business law and internet law in traditional business spaces including tech, fashion, media, food & beverage, coworking and professional services. He regularly handles convertible notes, corporate restructuring, independent contractor agreements, non-disclosure agreements, business contracts, employment agreements, trademarks, copyrights, and license agreements. After an event in Santa Monica, I took the time to interview Chris about ... Read more

Hack the Potential of Your Brain and Body With This Simple Advice From Tom Bilyeu

Quest Nutrition Founder turned motivator Tom Bilyeu is host of the new entrepreneurial mentorship show, Impact Theory. Impact TheoryTM, is Tom’s new pay-it-forward company aimed at unlocking human potential and inspiring future entrepreneurs. Designed to help others build the mindset necessary for success, Impact Theory’s marquee program is a talk show featuring insightful interviews with top thinkers, entrepreneurs, and celebrities. More than a digital content platform, Impact Theory aims to shape the next generation of culturally poignant businesses, and foster content creators, innovators, and leaders who embody the entrepreneurial spirit. Today, Tom’s mission is to accelerate mission-based businesses and create ... Read more

Taking a Peek at How to Monetize My Personal Brand

Since I’m all about sharing tips on how people can grow their personal brand, I wanted to share a great conversation that I had with Mark Itwaru, founder and CEO of Peeks. I got the inside scoop on how he helps entrepreneurs with strong personal brands and a decent following, learn to monetize their influence through what he calls “social commerce.” Who is Mark? He has more than 20 years of experience in ecommerce, marketing, mobile commerce and payment processing. He was the founder of Navaho Networks where he developed a leading proprietary payment processing solution, which processed over $8 ... Read more

Why Smart Applications Invest in Empowering Users to Turn On and Off Features – Insight to Startups from Shaz Khan

Shaz Khan is Co-Founder & Chief Strategy Officer of Vroozi, the leading cloud-based business purchasing platform. He has managed and implemented SAP supply chain and operational procurement projects for numerous Fortune 500 clients in the Media, Entertainment, Chemical, Oil and Financial Services industries. His specialties include: a.) Software Product Design & Innovation b.) Startup Mentoring c.) Mobile & Enterprise Mash Economy As shared in a prior episode, I had fun talking with him about his passion for human-centric design. See that interview here. It got me thinking about what happens past iterations and once products are built. Below are his ... Read more

Agile Human-Centric Design: What Is It and Why You Need to Know

Shaz Khan has been actively implementing SAP ERP eProcurement and Supply Chain applications for over ten years. Once he noticed procurement software wasn’t being fully utilized by businesses (even though they were already paying for it), he decided to co-found Vroozi. As the Company’s CSO, Shaz is a valuable resource to those who may be unfamiliar with the procurement industry, but are already deeply impacted by it. Ultimately, Vroozi helps CEOs and their companies stay within their budgets and easily manage their spend, without having to micromanage the entire process themselves. Delivering an e-commerce solution centered around B2B sourcing and ... Read more

Accelerator Application Red Flags (and How to Pass Due Diligence)

Powerful Accelerator-Application Advice W/ Peter Polydor:  The best advice comes from people who have actually been there and done that. For this reason, I often sit down with successful friends and ask them simple questions about their paths to achievement. We chat about our various problems, offer solutions and learn as much as possible — all of which has helped me continue to find my own success. Peter Polydor is one of these friends, having accomplished more before the age of 30 than most people accomplish in their whole lives. I have made a habit of learning from him often, sometimes over drinks ... Read more

5 Things You Should Do Every Day Before 8 A.M. to Get More Done

Peter Polydor’s Top 5 Recommendations On Starting Each Day Right:  Imagine you have a chance to start all over — a chance to change the way you do things in order to find success. I am always fascinated by the daily routines of successful people. One of my favorite quotes says, “Successful people don’t do what others are not doing. They are doing what everyone else can do, but don’t.” Enter Peter Polydor. A young and very successful entrepreneur who built companies in eCommerce and web services, and spent the last several years working in venture capital. As the Director ... Read more

3 Differences in Startup Culture Between USA and Europe, According to Peter Polydor

And the Single Most Important Thing You Need to Know As an Entrepreneur:  Peter sits across from me at the Euro Cafe. We have had a great conversation so far, and my Americano is half full as I dive into our next topic. Peter Polydor is a successful entrepreneur who has a knack for picking out winners. He sits on the Board of Directors of ecoPHYSI and SugarsGone as well as the advisory board of a number of startups. Further to his work at ERGO, Peter is a Professor of Practice at the University of Wales, advised the Oxford Seed ... Read more

How Startup Goal Setting Is Like Swimming Across A River. Will You Make It?

Peter Polydor’s Top Startup Recommendations:  Peter Polydor has built successful companies in eCommerce and web services, and spent the last several years working in venture capital, all before turning 30. He is the Director and Founder of ERGO Capital and the startup accelerator Ergo Accel. In 2014, he founded the Eureka Building, a massive startup and tech community designed to foster innovation and house entrepreneurs in Orange County, California. The site is home to over 30 companies, ranging from startup to large public company. I have known Peter for a few years now, and I am always impressed with his ... Read more

Episode 7: The Business Plan Might Not Be Dead After All

Jenny Q.Ta and Shinta Dhanuwardoyo’s Business Plan Tricks Exposed Jenny Q. Ta and Shinta Dhanuwardoyo, co-founders of, taught me a lot about their new vision to improve the process of connecting entrepreneurs to funding. A big part of the communication between entrepreneur comes via the “investor deck,” or presentation that is used to explain a company/idea. Historically business plans have also been tool in communicating with investors. I was curious to learn from Jenny and Shinta, their thoughts about both decks and business plans, and their relevance in today’s startup environment. Ryan: Do you give guidelines for how you like ... Read more

Episode 6: More Money Makes Less Problems

Top Venture Capitalist Lessons You Can Benefit From Today Listening to Jenny Q. Ta and Shinta Dhanuwardoyo talk about their experience as women in the tech world, I became curious as to the specific qualities that they found most important for younger women who are interested in becoming an entrepreneur and/or an investor. Ryan: For those female entrepreneurs that are coming in the ranks or that are wanting to get into VC, are there certain qualities that you look for or that they should be emulating to get either the attention that they deserve? Are there particular qualities that you’re ... Read more