T.A. McCann got the entrepreneurial bug as a teenager and never stopped building. His career has been a mix of corporate and startup ventures that have shaped his perspective on marketing and leadership. Now he’s the managing director of Pioneer Square Labs, a startup studio and venture capital fund. He draws on the experience of raising millions of dollars during his career to share what he’s learned about selling, fundraising, and shipping new projects. He also opens up about how he regained his confidence after a failure and why you should always have a side project.
Behind His Brilliance: Great advice and being given opportunities
Say hi to T.A. on Twitter: @tamccann
T.A. MCCANN | Serial Entrepreneur + Managing Director
T.A. McCann is a serial entrepreneur. He was founder and CEO of Senosis (acquired by Google), Gist (acquired by Blackberry) and Rival IQ, a leader in marketing analytics. Previously, he was an EIR at Polaris Venture Partners, Vulcan Capital where he built Vulcan Labs and Providence Health Services, focused on quantified health ideas and investments. He also held senior roles at Microsoft leading Exchange and the Mobile Services divisions. In addition to his own startup experience, he is an active angel investor in companies including SkillJar, CreativeLive, Assist, Migo and Vendor Hawk and on the board of Guidant Financial, Volt Athletics, and Splash.org. He is also an adjunct professor at the University of Washington Foster School of Business and active TechStars mentor.
Prior to his startup career, he was a professional sailor having competed in 2 America’s Cups (won one, lost one) and the Whitbread Round the World race. He holds a degree in mechanical engineering from Purdue University, where he attended on a full swimming scholarship.
T.A.’s early days as an athlete
Why you should always have a side project
Gist, T.A.’s first successful venture exit and how it landed at Blackberry
T.A.’s best advice for how to thrive after an exit as a founder
T.A.’s reflection on how marketing and social media have evolved
T.A.’s entry into the incubator/startup studio space
Pioneer Square Labs
3 questions to ask when navigating professional changes
T.A.’s best leadership insights
The strategies T.A. uses for fundraising
How T.A. recovers from failure
How T.A. cut his teeth as an angel investor
The things great CEOs have in common
And much more!
STUFF MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE
Books by Richard Feynman (T.A.’s book pick)
Books by Jeanette Winterson (T.A.’s book pick)