Over ten months ago I wrote down the skills I’d like to have before starting my first company.
Since then I’ve developed many of those skills.
And at this point, I feel more equipped than ever to start a company.
However, from studying business, and previously working at a startup that ran out of runway and had to let go of half of their employees in one day, one thing is very clear to me.
Starting a company is hard.
So hard that if you truly knew all involved some would say you’d be crazy to still want to do it.
I’m not daunted by hard work, especially if it’s something I believe in.
In fact, insane and crazy ideas excite me.
I am, however, daunted by the idea of continuously pouring effort into something that’s unsuccessful.
(Unsuccessful being loosely defined as not accomplish what you’ve personally defined as success.)
A good example of this is Jeff Bezos, one of my favorite entrepreneurs of all time. He determined to run Amazon in a way that would not be profitable in the first twenty years. This was because his metric of success was attaining market share.
My metric of success for now: is having a validated business idea by the end of the year.
To accomplish that goal there are two things I think I need to do. Firstly, further, quantify my metric of success. And secondly, develop a process to quickly test if there is a demand for an idea.
I know that I can not effectively identify a good idea within the confines of my brain. Imagine if you simply considered the core offering of Uber, riding in stranger’s cars, Airbnb, staying in a stranger’s homes, Facebook, connecting with other ivy league students when MySpace seemed to sufficiently serve that need.
Having an idea is easy, the execution is the tricky part.