E138 – Lessons Learned From Startups: Tips for Innovation in Any Business | with Steve Kahan

Steve Kahan, Chief of Staff at Thycotic, is hardly a stranger to the world of entrepreneurship and startups; he’s successfully helped grow six startup companies from their early-stage development to going public or being sold, resulting in more than 3.5 billion dollars in shareholder value. In all his time working with these startups, Steve has acquired a wealth of insight and knowledge that he’s ready to share with One Big Tip listeners today – and his tips don’t just apply to startups!


Steve says that you don’t have to be the next Zuckerberg to find great success. All it takes to run a flourishing company (startup or otherwise) is to adopt a few common actions, attitudes, and behaviors that will breed innovation and maximize success. 

In this episode, Steve shares some of those key steps to follow and how to follow them, from challenging the status quo to working up the courage to make tough decisions to address the elephant in the room (or Zoom call!). Although Steve has learned the importance of all of this through his work with startups, his tips can be applied to any business, so this is a great episode no matter what industry you work in or where you’re at in your entrepreneurship journey. 

In this episode:

  • [2:24] Steve tells us a little bit about his background and his journey as a serial entrepreneur in the tech startup world.
  • [4:39] Steve shares his tips for success, including challenging the status quo, find the courage to make tough decisions, and address the elephant in the room. 
  • [9:27] Steve explains how hiring a great team is key to running a great business. 
  • [12:56] Steve breaks down how to go about making a big change within your startup when people may be apprehensive: explain why you’re doing it in a very clear way, create specific objectives, and follow up. 

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