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Six years doing PhD, now building hi-tech hardware startup for Ag

Michael Santiago

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Oct 12, 2017
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Hello everyone!

I have read hundreds of books and articles on business, but the MFL book resonated with me. I realized once and for all that (1) I don't want to work for anyone else and (2) that I have to work on building a system, not so much on building myself and my credentials. Until now, my focus has been on improving myself, which although helpful and I've made much progress (a mechanical engineering PhD from an Ivy school for once), I now find myself asking "I have amazing credentials and skills, but they have not brought me financial freedom". I worked incredibly hard to build my skills, but though my boss was happy I wasn't making any money and in fact I was training myself to be an employee.

Now, I moved to the West Coast to pursue my own venture. This business is my first shot at real success, and I'm sure it will prove to be instructive. Based on my work as a PhD, we are developing an improved way to measure water-stress (thirst) in agricultural crops that will help growers increase crop yield and quality. People have been trying to do this (have an automatic measurement of water stress) since the 1980's, but we're the first to crack how actually do it.

So, we have groundbreaking technology, but technology is only a piece of the puzzle. The challenges now are (1) manufacturing the devices cost-effectively, (2) figuring out how to market and distribute them, and (3) building a team that can accomplish all these.

I'm looking forward to helping each other out as we go through this journey...
@MJ DeMarco
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MJ DeMarco

I followed the science; all I found was money.
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Jul 23, 2007

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