Emily Pope, Author at General Assembly Blog

About Emily Pope

Emily Kate Pope is a digital marketer, writer, and life-long learner based in Brooklyn, NY.

The Difference Between a Startup and a Small Business

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If you work in the technology industry, or live in a tech hub such as Silicon Valley, Hong Kong, or New York —it’s likely that you or someone you know is in the process of conceptualizing or even launching his or her own startup venture.

A startup venture is often misunderstood for simply a small new business. The truth is, there is a significant difference between a small business vs. startup.

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What It Means to Be Data Literate

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The Data Journalists handbook defines data literacy as, “the ability to consume for knowledge, produce coherently and think critically about data.” It goes on to say that “data literacy includes statistical literacy but also understanding how to work with large data sets, how they were produced, how to connect various data sets and how to interpret them.”

At General Assembly, we’d like to imagine a world where you don’t need a Ph.D. in Statistics to have a data-informed conversation about your business, your health, or your life in general. Over the past year, we’ve embarked on the journey to build a more data literate world through education offerings that meet the diverse needs of our students.

In building these courses, we’ve sought advice from data scientists, analysts, and hiring managers to determine the critical skills you need to become data literate in today’s workforce. We discovered that it isn’t just a concrete list of skills, but a mindset geared towards data—a way of approaching problems beyond “gut instincts.” 

Here, we’ve proposed a few simple questions that will help you start to view the world through the lens of data.

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How General McChrystal Captures the Magic of Small Teams at Scale

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In today’s fast-moving society, the greatest leaders are those who discard bureaucratic business models in favor of a networked “team of teams,” empowered to make decisions quickly by breaking down communication silos between departments and positions.

This is retired United States Army General Stanley McChrystal’s philosophy, who dedicated more than thirty-four years of service to the U.S. military. His final, and perhaps most notable assignment, was as the commander of all American and coalition forces in Afghanistan from 2003 until he retired in 2010.

Throughout his tenure, General McChrystal worked to develop scalable management practices that enabled the U.S. Army to embody this “team of teams,” which possessed the necessary agility and flexibility to fight in a modern, technologically advanced war environment and beat back Al Qaeda.

Five years into civilian life, General McChrystal applies the leadership skills he learned during his time in the Army to the business world as co-founder of the McChrystal Group, a leadership and management consultancy firm.

We recently had the great honor of speaking to General McChrystal before he came to our headquarters in New York for a keynote discussion on leadership and team building.

This special event was moderated by Scott Kirkpatrick, the President and COO of General Assembly, who spent time as an officer in the United States Coast Guard.

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20-Year-Old Entrepreneur Is Using Data to Retune The Music Industry

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Raffi Khatchadourian, COO of indify

Raffi Khatchadourian is a Mathematical Economics major and incoming junior at Colgate University. A self-starter and talented entrepreneur, Raffi has established himself as the COO of indify, an emerging music startup, before many of his peers have even declared their major. Back in January, Raffi attended GA’s week-long Business Accelerator program in partnership with Colgate University. Since then, he and his co-founders have gone on to win $10,000 in funding from Colgate University’s Entrepreneur Weekend Shark Tank and $15,000 from Colgate University’s Entrepreneurs Fund. Read on to learn how this young entrepreneur transformed his passion for music and data into a successful early-stage startup.

Follow Raffi @DeadliestKhatch and his startup at @_indify. Continue reading

All of Your Web Development Immersive Questions Answered

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There’s never been a better time to start a career as a web developer. From startups to Fortune 500 companies, there’s consistent demand for web developers who can creatively solve problems and implement robust, sustainable solutions.

Whether you’re a career-changer serious about becoming a full-stack web developer, an entrepreneur with an idea you want to build from scratch, or a recent undergrad ready to ramp up your technical skill set, you likely have a number of questions about the best way for you to learn web development.

Here we’ve compiled a list of most frequently asked questions about our flagship Web Development Immersive course — also available online — to help give you a better sense of what this full-time, 12-week program is all about.

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10 Blogs Written For Entrepreneurs by Entrepreneurs

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Starting a company is hard, and finding reliable advice along the way can be even harder. There are thousands of entrepreneurs, investors, and bloggers who claim to be experts, churning out new business advice every day, but how can you trust that it’s advice worth taking?

We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite business blogs written by startup founders for aspiring entrepreneurs. These resources offer practical advice that is bound to keep you well-informed and inspired as you follow your business dreams.

Related Story: 11 Success Entrepreneurs That You Should Be Following on Twitter

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From Dorm Room to Silicon Valley: ‘Shout’ Founder Reveals How He Got Into Y Combinator

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Twice a year, Y Combinator, a seed funder named the top startup incubator and accelerator by Forbes, invests $120k in dozens of promising startups in exchange for 7% equity. As of 2013, Y Combinator has funded over 500 companies, and according to founder Paul Graham, the average valuation of Y Combinator-backed companies is $45.2 million. The infantile startups move to Silicon Valley for 3 intense months and are given the space, advice, and network to whip their businesses into the best possible shape before presenting their ideas to potential investors.

The hopes, dreams, and tireless work of these startup founders, web developers, and designers all culminate in one daylong event that has the power to change their lives, and perhaps our lives forever: That event is Demo Day.

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11 Top Entrepreneurs To Follow On Twitter

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The path to entrepreneurial success is a treacherous one; full of sharp turns, menacing boulders, and forks in the road. Once you arrive at your destination (which may not be the one you set out for), it’s likely you’ve acquired some scrapes and bruises; life lessons that you’re happy to share with other brave souls who have the intensity, passion, and grit to follow in your footsteps.

This is certainly true for many of the business leaders who made it onto our Twitter list of both established and up-and-coming entrepreneurs. Each member takes to their Twitter to share their unique perspective and expert tips on a number of promising industries.

Let these entrepreneurs guide you as you trudge the road to startup success.

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