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Bob Dorf    

Co-Author of the "Startup Owner's Manual"; GM of the Four Steps Consultancy Group

Allegedly retired serial entrepreneur, Bob Dorf is the co–author of "The Startup Owners Manual."

Dorf is likely the second most knowledgeable customer development expert on the planet, second only to its developer and Godfather, Steve Blank. Together the two spent nearly two years conceiving, outlining, drafting, rewriting and revising the global bestseller, "The Startup Owner's Manual," now a business bestseller in the U.S. and many countries around the world.

Bob left a lucrative broadcasting job at the age of 22 because he had a passion to start his own company, which he did seven times over three decades. Bob’s track record as a founder, as he says: “two home runs, two base hits and three great tax losses.”

Bob invested in and coached or advised more than two dozen startups over more than a decade. Seven of them IPO’ed, while six went “straight into the toilet.” In all, he says, “an incredible 42 year entrepreneurial education!”

In March, 2012, Bob published "The Startup Owner’s Manual: A Step–By–Step Guide to Building a Great Company," along with Steve Blank. Two years of virtually full-time research and development yielded his magnum opus: 608 page, painstakingly detailed guide is the most comprehensive, rigorous step–by–step road map that is guiding startup founders throughout the world. "The Owner’s Manual" offers parallel customer development pathways for companies in the web and mobile channels, as well as traditional physical goods and enterprise software startups; it also includes in depth web marketing tutorials.

Bob travels the world, helping startups, incubators, governments and established corporations learn how to effectively deploy customer development process through speaking, workshops, and in intensive eight- to ten-week hands-on Startup Boot Camps. His training takes many forms, including speeches, workshops and hands-on consulting.

He teaches customer development and business modeling in full-semester and week-long classes at Columbia Business School, where he is an adjunct professor of entrepreneurship and has led training sessions at Tech de Monterrey, Mexico, Skolkovo Business School in Moscow, and many other places around the world. He’s counseled dozens of nonprofits probono as well, including the legendary Acumen Fund, a sustainable venture fund.

Bob lives in Stamford, Connecticut, with his wife, Fran, a writer, therapist and thrice–published novelist. When he’s not speaking, teaching or writing, Bob is often found on his bicycle or his skis. But Bob’s proudest startup of all is daughter Rachel Dorf Gotler, a PhD Psychologist who recently made him a grandpa.


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Bob Dorf: Build a business not just a product

Sure, a great product is what woos customers. But learning about those customers and building the product around them is what makes that magic happen and ...

Startup Academy at SKOLKOVO Cranking out Dozens of New ...

Startup Guru Bob Dorf and co-author (together with Steve Blank) of The Startup Owners Manual, the “Bible” for startups, also teaches Startup Academy students.

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