14 Reasons Why You Need To Start A Startup

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14 Reasons Why You Need To Start A Startup

 

stay hungry stay foolish resized 600This post has been ruminating with me for a while. It's not a sudden "a-ha" moment that made it form, but a collective group of "a-has!" over the past few months. Consider this the uplifting post to counter last week's "The 11 Harsh Realities Of Entrepreneurship". Just because it's a harsh reality, doesn't mean you shouldn't be an entrepreneur. The best time to start a startup is not tomorrow, not next week, and certainly not next year. The time is right now, at this very second.  Here's why:

You Will Have The Time Of Your Life

I put this first, because it's the reason that will motivate you the most to start a startup. Doing this may be hell at times, but boy is it fun. It's an adventure that you will remember for the rest of your life whether things go very well or things go poorly. They used to say that everyone should try to be a rockstar at least once in their lifetime. I'm going to add to that and say that in-between being a rockstar and something else, you should be an entrepreneur at some point just for the adventure. Writing this article makes me realize how much I truly love doing this - the uncertainty, the victory, the failure, the connections with customers, the press,etc. I couldn't see myself doing anything else and if this is truly for you, you will eventually feel the same.

You Have The Power To Create Something From Nothing

Few professions have the power to create something from absolutely nothing whatsoever. Right now, you may have some crazy idea in your head to bring into the world. It exists on some napkins, photoshop files, etc. right now, but eventually it will become reality. There's a good chance it's something that will have an impact on a large number of people... millions of people around the world. That wasn't something many could achieve, even 20 years ago. Now, it's possible for anyone, anywhere. I rarely use absolutes, since I know what that means, but I truly believe the ability to start a startup can happen anywhere. It's certainly more difficult in poor countries, but it's still possible. Look at Kiva.org or posts like this on HN.

A World Of Knowledge Is Available

It used to be a very old boys club or dark art, when it came to entrepreneurship. It used to cost a ton of money to go to seminars and buy books full of snake oil. It still exists, but people are starting to learn better. The experiences of previously successful and/or failed entrepreneurs are everywhere. They are on this very site, they are posted hourly on hacker news, daily on Mixergy, and found through smart people on Twitter. The blueprint to go from zero to paying customers and all the knowledge in between to guide you is out there in the open... for free.

Cloud Computing And Web Apps Make It Cheap To Start

Ten years ago it used to cost a lot to get started in terms of software+hardware. If you planned on doing anything with scale, you needed what equated to a front loaded CapEX of 500k to buy the equipment YOU might need. Software for internal collaboration costed a lot, with very few choices available. Software for actual development was even more costly. Now we have mature open source frameworks/databases and cloud apps. Startup Weekends occur every weekend and are possible due to this advancement in software. I almost feel weird writing this because we've taken what's in front of us for granted. Amazon EC2 scales well, but now it's even free to test out initially for your project. Of course, your time isn't free, but even that is reduced with libraries+frameworks like JQuery and Ruby On Rails. Odds are, if there is something you need, it's out there and available for free. If it's not, there is probably someone to talk to.

Location Isn't Important At First

I still think certain geographical areas have their place once you reach certain scale along with what type of business you are building (lifestyle vs. venture backed). In today's day and age, you can START your company anywhere in the world and get great visibility. I'm seeing more and more companies come from random spots in the US along with international waters. Take a look at Balsamiq, WooThemes, or where Backupify originted (Kentucky!). The ability to access customers is available globally and you can run a distributed team due to the previous point listed above (cloud apps). Face to face time is always a good thing, but it's a whole lot easier to book a flight once every 8 weeks than to pick up and move to 94306 right out the gate. If location is a worry for you, then don't worry anymore. Don't be pressured to race to the valley right away. If another geography makes sense, you will know in due time. You can start getting the most important thing right now, where you are... NOT funding... CUSTOMERS.

You Can Get Press And Attention Overnight

Getting press used to require an overpriced PR firm to the tune of $10,000 a month when getting started. Now a great product with a well crafted story can blow up overnight and get the attention of mainstream media+the tech elite. Take a look at Chat Roulette. Though it's not a shining example of a great business, it is a shining example of the attention that a company can get press overnight.

There Are More Customer Acquisition Channels Than Ever Before

Getting customers used to be a really hard thing. It used to take a lot of money to make money. At scale, it certainly takes a lot of money to optimize an efficient sales machine with CAC, LTV,etc., but to get started, you can use a variety of customer acquisition channels. Public relations, inbound marketing, search engine marketing, in person events, platform distribution, direct sales, affiliate programs, and a ton more currently exist. They can be strategically used with little capital. Why does this matter? It's like having more lives in a video game. Many of the channels won't work out, that's just life. If there are more channels, then you have more opportunities for success.

It's Possible To Make A Living From A Startup Fairly Fast

It used to be that businesses would take years and years of losses to get to the point of making enough money to pay for you to live. If you wanted to do one, you had to raise a significant amount of capital up front, usually in the form of credit cards + savings from your job. In today's day and age, it's just completely different. You can start charging for software, increase your customers with a certain level of profitable scale, and get to the point that your barebones living is paid for. We also live in a subscription economy, where revenues are recurring. With things like churn aside, customers are now that gift that keep on giving. It won't bring you riches right away, but it's fairly reasonable for a team to create software and make a living within a 6 months period. Building a venture backed company is usually different, but lifestyle ISVs can sometimes morph into one. 37 Signals chose to stay independent, but if they wanted to do the raise money + grow fast show, they could have quite a while ago.

The Capital To Grow Is Widely Available If You Need It

The capital raising world is going through an interesting transitionary period. Since entrepreneurs need less to get to certain milestones, a new class of investors have sprung up, leading smaller and smaller deals. It used to be do a larger angel round or Series A, after having a lot of traction to get started. Deals took a while and the terms varied a lot. Now the spectrum varies heavily. You can get funding from YCombinator or TechStars at a ~18k level for just the idea+being a smart team, a $250-500k seed round in multiple flavors, a traditional larger angel round of $1,000,000, or the full Series A. I actually haven't seen the full Series A as the first round of financing in a while, now that I come to think of it. A word of caution: many people think they should raise money, just because they see it in the press. That's the wrong way to go about. You should raise money for a specific reason. In the case of the small ~18k YC round, it usually entails getting the first working version of the product out to get initial customer validation. Anything above that should be strategic to hit certain customer + traction milestones. If you don't know what those are, don't raise money yet.

You Will Make Friends And Connections That Will Last A Lifetime

This is one of my top three reasons on the entire list on why to start a startup. The friends you will make, just stay with you forever. There is a certain bond that connects you. It takes an entrepreneur to understand what another entrepreneur goes through. We tend to all stick together and the bond that is formed is very very deep. I've been at this for about 5 years, since I was 19 going on 20. Many of the friends I have today were there with me when I first got started. It's also a very very small world when it comes to the tech entrepreneurship ecosystem. Everyone is at most 3 degrees of separation away, but it often seems to be something closer to 2 degrees. A lot of people will give up along the way and find out entrepreneurship isn't for them. If you stick around long enough, the pool shrinks, and the people who began their career around the same time as you have advanced far along too. For example, when I first met Noah, he had just started at Facebook. Now he's done great things through Facebook, Mint, started Get Gambit, and is killing it with AppSumo. I can point out the same for a dozen other people. It's great to see your friends that have stuck it out start to succeed.

The Amount Of New Platforms And Technologies Is Staggering

Most of the platforms that exist today weren't around 36-48 months ago. Mobile was owned by the carriers and MySpace was still fairly dominant. The tools now available to build new companies upon is truly remarkable. It's certainly very difficult to have a lack of problems to solve in unique ways. The more new technologies and platforms that become available, the more companies that can be built over time. Without Facebook we wouldn't have Zynga and without the iPhone we wouldn't have companies like Square. Without the advancements in SaaS/Cloud computing, we wouldn't have companies like HubSpot or ZenDesk.

Finding Out Whether You Are Right Takes Far Less Risk

It used to take many many months and lots of capital to find out whether you were on to something. That just isn't true anymore. You can find out if you're right in some time period that is under 60 days. If you're right keep peeling away more layers. If you're wrong, pivot a bit, and move on to the next thing. It's not a zero sum game. You shouldn't fear failure, but embrace the process that comes with it. Test your ideas via Amazon Mechanical Turk, talk to customers, buy some basic keyword tests on Amazon, and find out whether you are right. You can do this with close to no capital and get over one of the biggest humps a startup faces in its first 6 months: Knowing whether you are building something people want.

A Traditional "Job" Isn't Much More Secure In The Long Run

Oh sure, you're a great engineer or marketer. You could get a high paying, possibly even six figure job right now. Add in some benefits and things sound great. Here's the truth: no job is safe in this world. Wall Street practically collapsed overnight and larger companies do "layoff roulette". At least doing a startup is some function of having survival that is within your control. When you're fired, that is usually it. When you go through the equivalent of "being fired" in the startup world, you can fight back. You can persevere and stay determined.

The Worst That Can Happen, Isn't Really That Bad

It seems a lot worse when you think about it now, but it really isn't that bad. If your startup fails you will hurt afterwards for a decent while physically, emotionally, and financially. People have been in far worse positions and triumphed. If things fail you either a) try something new startup wise b) join another company whose mission you believe in c) take a new direction in life. Failure at a startup, DOES NOT mean failure at life. I'm not trying to play down the horrible reality that comes with failure. I'm just trying to say this: "You will bounce back and you will live to fight another day".

Bottom line: If your gut tells you to go for it and there's something you really believe in, then go for it. We need more startups, as they are the change agents that can save the world. Why do you think now is the best time ever to start a startup? What made you take the entrepreneurial plunge?

I love meeting fellow entrepreneurs.  Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/jasonlbaptiste, Friend me on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jasonlbaptiste, Email Me: jbaptiste@onstartups.com, or even call me: 772.801.1058

Posted by Jason Baptiste on Mon, Nov 15, 2010

COMMENTS

Once again, a great blog post -- keep it up!

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:18 AM by Christopher Little


I have a huge start up, I cannot get funding...Can you advise me...?

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:23 AM by Michael Blade


Great post. Inspired me so much that I will give a free PDF of my book STARTUP, 100TIPS TO GET YOUR BUSINESS GOING to anyone who wants it.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:23 AM by GL Hoffman


Jason, thanks. This is an important message for the very reasons you mention; A) a regular traditional job is hard to come by, B) not necessarily secure, C) by no means personally stimulating and satisfying. Having been a successful marketing entrepreneur for 25+ years, I know what you are talking about.  
 
Today, I've expanded my marketing background to help other start ups develop qualified web traffic, lead and sales generation online. Being a start up can provide one with the rewards of a lifetime. Keep up the great work. You've got a terrific writing style.  
 
Rick

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:24 AM by Richard Feldman


Generally a fun read, though I do not agree that funding is always easy to find. Smaller amounts maybe.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:27 AM by Miles A. Harris


Nice article. The following article by Paul Graham is also highly recommended: http://www.paulgraham.com/really.html

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:27 AM by softwarecandy


Have read many good articles on onstartups but have a bit concern on this one. The title vs the headings dont fit in well.  
 
I mean Yes you should startup and you will have the time of your life, you will make more friends. But at the same time you dont startup because there's cloud computing available, or customer acquisition is easy etc. These resources help starting up but are not reasons you shoud!! 
 
Do rectify me if I am wrong...

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:32 AM by Himanshu Chanda


This is the first comment I post on this blog. 
 
I am from Peru and recently got my MBA. I am pursuing to start my own venture and will probably quit my job in December to focus on my startup. 
 
Thanks for the inspiration. I loved the article

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:37 AM by Javier Pasco


Great post! I took the plunge a few months ago myself. My background is in software marketing and I finally got tired of making the other guy rich. One bit of advice I'd add to this is to be sure your business is about solving a problem. Don't just start a company to start a company or because you've created some great tech. There has to be a need. That's where the money is. 
 
I had trouble finding good consumer feedback/market validation services for startups/entrepreneurs/inventors. I saw others making costly mistakes by not getting unbiased feedback on their ideas. I based my business on solving that need. We just launchedwww.questionmoms.com, a self-service, affordable market research site where you can get feedback from real moms on your ideas. We'll be launchingwww.questionnation.com soon. It's been tough and there is a lot of learning to having your own business. But, you are exactly right about the timing being great and the services being available.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:40 AM by Shelley Straitiff


Great Post..Good to be reminded of why I made the jump! 
 
 
 
Keep'em coming

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:51 AM by Rusty Bettis


I find this article motivating for its upbeat tone, but at the same time I have to agree with others that starting a sustainable business is about solving a problem for the customer while doing it in a new or different way than the competition. There also needs to be a workable revenue model, otherwise it's just a hobby (fun, but not a way to make a living). Also, when it comes to customer acquisition, there may not be a big cash outlay if you do it all yourself. However, to do it right, you may need to hire a few people and there's a cost to that. It usually isn't free.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 11:54 AM by Robbin Block


Thanks for the post. Especially " The Worst that can Happen" Part. We are bringing cloud, ipad, 3G platform tech to physician's enabling mobile primary care practice. I love meeting other entrepeneurs too. Best, Natalie

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 12:00 PM by Natalie Hodge MD FAAP


Jason, 
 
This definitely speaks to me and my experiences. What I've learned from my two businesses has been staggering. The lows happen from time to time, but when things go right, it's an experience like no other. You won't appreciate the success if you never fail. Much success to you!  
 
Mary Jo

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 12:02 PM by Mary Jo Van Horn


Great points Jason. 
 
For people who have been seriously considering starting a business, these are more points to consider in their decision, indeed. It can be difficult to grasp many of these points if one has not yet started a biz, but as someone who launched a life coaching biz in 2008, they resonate!

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 12:04 PM by Sara Clark-Williams


I like these 2 points. 
A Traditional "Job" Isn't Much More Secure In The Long Run. 
You Will Make Friends And Connections That Will Last A Lifetime

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 12:15 PM by oneprakash


I have a startup and built a few products. many people started using the site. Need funding for marketing and further product development. Can you help in finding funding? Or anyone reading this post can help in this process?

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 12:27 PM by Joe Johnson


Great post…for a limited number of entrepreneurs. Of the over 6 million new businesses that The Kauffman Foundation tells us will start up this year, only a few thousand fit the scenario you present in your post. The vast majority of new businesses are NOT high-tech startups…and most of them will hire new employees. 
 
Unfortunately, most of them will also fail—something over 5 million of them. In my opinion, most of these failures will occur because there is minimal support from the business community, the media, the consultants, the government, the pundits, etc. Our youth-oriented society concentrates on the "darlings" of the high-tech startup community and takes for granted products and services provided by auto repair shops, salons, clothing stores, food merchants, machine shops, restaurants, small manufacturers—all the businesses that contribute to America's GDP and make our country function. 
 
For a real lesson in entrepreneurship, a person should study the business climates in emerging Asian countries, such as Singapore, Indonesia, etc. As long as people in the U.S. believe that only high-tech companies can be considered legitimate "startups," we will continue our gradual (rapid?) spiral downward into a second-rate provider of the world's goods and services. 
 
Let's see something beneficial for the vast majority of new entrepreneurs who are blindly going into business…and failing. 

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 12:27 PM by Bob Foster


Michael Blade,  
 
If you can provide your contact information, we can discuss if I could be of assistance. 
 
Suzanne

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 12:47 PM by Suzanne


Great post! Another cool reality of start-up, it may fail, but at least you gave it your best, and you have learned something of value from the experience. 
 
And what's cool about being an entrepreneur, you can never lay-off yourself. Just dust yourself off and keep being innovative.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 1:02 PM by Yonica Pimentel


Start early and start often! I have been through several startup failures and have a great corporate job. Don't be scared to take risks. It is rewarding no matter what.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 1:03 PM by DefunktOne


Superb post!

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 1:13 PM by Anshul Gupta


Jason 
 
Great blog article! 
 
I think the point many people miss is that being an entrepreneur is truly a way of life...  
 
It's not just ideas or work, but if you are an 'unlimited expense account' kinda guy, its much more difficult. Value for money 'Skunkworks' is the way to go, and often brings the biggest Changes! :-) 
 
Cheers 
Arya 

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 1:19 PM by Arya Madanmohan


A fun article - again aimed at the virtual entrepreneur community. I would like to add: competition. I haven't competed for anything . . .since High School? - Anyway, I have just entered Walk Me Wear in the Hottest New Brands competition at ISPO (Yup - a real trade fair for sports and recreation) I would never have this experience if I had not taken my passion for dogs and walking to the next level. BTW you can all support a co-entrepreneur by clicking on: 
http://www.ispo-brandnew.com/Hottest_Brands.aspx?show=1737. 
 
Yes: it's fun.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 2:17 PM by Johanna Miklos


I recently launched SQL Locator, a database search engine, and am having a hard time getting the word out. This article reminds me there are other cheap marketing mediums I should try.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 2:24 PM by corey bui


And don't forget that the only way to create great wealth is by being enterprising, not by only holding a day job.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 3:24 PM by Bernard Ferret


Help for starting a hardware-based business: 
I started a Linked-In group called inventpreneurs: http://www.linkedin.com/groups?mostPopular=&gid=3675669

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 3:57 PM by Otto Hunt


Thanks for the article Jason.  
 
 
 
I really needed to read that. Not sure if it's for hope, inspiration or both. But it definitely made my day. 
 
 
 
I think my business is going through the stage of decline and I'm at a cross roads on whether to continue or give up on it. I've been fighting to keep it afloat (working full time while doing my business, supporting my family, paying off debts) but have nothing to show for all the effort and money spent. 
 
 
 
"You shouldn't fear failure, but embrace the process that comes with it." That shook me, because I do fear failure, fear that others will look at me as though I've failed, fear that if next time I get back up to do another business they will assume I will fail that too.  
 
 
 
But I realise that others have been through far worse. Tetsuya (3 star hat chef in Sydney) failed in his first restaurant and went broke with no money to pay his suppliers and had hardly any customers for over a year. He didn't give up and now he is one of the world's top 10 chefs. So I continually think about those stories to hold on to the hope that eventually, things will turn around me.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 5:42 PM by Zoe


inspiring blog, i believe

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 5:57 PM by fix-m23


As an entrepreneur myself, and as a business lawyer, I believe the best advice for startups is . . . don't forget to gather your team of professionals (legal, tax, etc.). You may opt for the "road less traveled" but make sure you have a map (aka a team of professionals to guide you)!

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 7:29 PM by Michelle L. Grenier, Esq.


nice blog... in the long term i see myself as an enterpreneur and so keep reading such posts for preparing myself... thanks for sharing your thoughts

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 9:17 PM by sonu dhariwal


I love the articles posted in this blog. As always you come up with thought provoking tips. Thanks. Now as for your questions: 
 
 
Why do you think now is the best time ever to start a startup?  
When every one is talking about layoff, downsizing and you see the gloom and doom, you must consider it an opportunity to step up and explore the Entrepreneur in YOU. Change is the only thing that is constant. As you mentioned, no job is permanent. A job can definitely, help in developing our skills, building discipline and learning the value of money. However, when the jobs are not there or in scarce, it is the best time to change the thinking from working FOR someone to Working for yourself. You will learn to develop your left and right brain-I mean logic and creative brain. You will change from victim to victor mode. You will learn to stop blaming circumstances and start making responsible choices and create opportunities. In fact many big companies today were formed/originated during recession. Personal Deveopment/self development industry flourished during the time when people turned to entrepreneurship. Considering all the above-Now is the best time ever to start a startup. In fact even an employee must start a startup, because, he will have less money worries about funding and it will be easy eventually, if he wishes to venture business full time. 
 
 
What made you take the entrepreneurial plunge? 
First, Downsizing by my employer. Second, after attempting job searches which required long commute and disruption in attention to my kids, I made a commitment to test the Entrepreneurial venture. So far so good. Thanks to technology and communication.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 9:55 PM by Lalitha Brahma


Dear Folks, 
 
It is amazing and really encouraging to read such a great post like this. I am from a rural background and have spotted oceanic opportunities and thinking to connect it to the resources world wide. I am really encouraged to read this.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 10:26 PM by Pawan Kuldip kerketta


Nice article. I too have taken the 'risk' by launching a new web application-www.webinarbucket.com that enables you to see and register for all webinars and webcasts happening across the web in one go without the need to google it out.  
 
Personally, I think its easier to be an entrepreneur in web world because of lower entry barrier and more pronounced benefits of technology.

posted on Monday, November 15, 2010 at 10:37 PM by WebinarBucket


Hi 
 
I like the article because at has a no nonse approach to startup. Most people can do it if it fits into thier life situation. Maybe the entrepreneur just need a little guidence on the path to new business. The web site www.dynamicbusinessplan.com asks the right questions to startup and the entrepreneur must answer so it fits his or her environment. 
 
ys 
 
Mogens

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 1:39 AM by Mogens Thomsen


this is a good summarisation of various reasons inspiring people to move on try their skill, gut and create something on for themselves. Personally i took a plunge after 15 years of corporate life was basis the GUT i always carrried that "YES" i can do it to create a value for myself and for society too...i wish all the startup enterprenuers all tbe best!!!

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 2:22 AM by nirbhay kant


Hi  
 
I have just started to enjoy the bumpy ride of a started! It is great share this excitement with some who have already been there. 
 
Do good. 
Regards 
Martin

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 2:33 AM by Martin Athanas


Jason, 
 
Thanks for the great post! 
I am about to start up my first company with a friend, your article is really inspiring. 
 
Thanks, 
Balazs

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 6:50 AM by Balazs Jerk


Thanks for posting such a positive article. There are so many negative people we all face every day and it is great to be able to start the day with a really inspiring story and someone who is so supportive.

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 8:04 AM by Tim


Jason,  
 
Great advice! There are a lot of people on the fence about taking the leap to starting their own company. I hope this will help them make the leap. Like yourself, I loved my years as an entrepreneur, and would echo your comments above about the joy it can bring. 
 
Best, David

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 9:03 AM by David Skok


Love the post! Wanted to add another resource for those needing funding for their start-ups. You can crowdfund your capital through our website http://peerbackers.com (there is no fee to post). We launched this site last month specifically to help entrepreneurs get the money they need to start their ventures. Good luck!

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 10:29 AM by Sally Outlaw


Great post, my business is a start up which is beginning to enjoy real success after MUCH hard work - very satisfying & liberating - Good Luck

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 12:10 PM by Chris Projectsguru


Thank you very much. This post could not be more timely.

posted on Tuesday, November 16, 2010 at 6:46 PM by Mark Chmarny


Inspiring post. 10+

posted on Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 1:13 AM by Gregorius


You are right - we need more start-ups, especially in this economy. The power of small businesses is what will bring us out of this recession. I love this article because it reminds me of why I love working for myself so much.

posted on Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 9:23 PM by Sue Barrett, Home Business Center, Inc


Hi Jason,  
 
Another great blog post on onstartups.com. I think it is important to see things realistic and the other article you linked to does this well. But it is equally important to bring enthusiasm and good spirit with you to start a new business. It is also essential to reduce some concerns, e.g. about location and infrastructure. Thus this article is excellent! 
 
While you write about the reasons why someone needs to start a startup, our CEO of our start up had a great presentation at a conference giving 24 tips on HOW to set up a new business. It got recorded so I am very excited to share it with you and your readers and I think people will enjoy it: 
24 Hints on how to run a Super Lean Startup 
 
Regards, 
Alex 

posted on Thursday, November 18, 2010 at 3:07 AM by Alex [memonic.com]


Thank you! Just venturing into a start-up, so appreciate your story and the examples you offer. You inspire and that's a gift.

posted on Thursday, November 18, 2010 at 7:19 AM by Robyn


A good article. However, I would say, based on my experience (yes ' did startup and brought out patent-pending _innovative_ solution to a serious problem on cyber security). 
 
 
 
The following lessons are learnt and want to share with others 
 
 
 
1. Dont think that your innovative solution will be embraced by all even if they (customers) have serious pain. If the pain is "just a cost of doing business", as one of the leading CIOs put it for me, you will be in for rude shock!! 
 
 
 
2. First timers, esp if you belong to immigrant generation, dont startup until you have worked for a startup and the tag yourself with the "success of that startup you worked for", you _wont_ be able to raise a dime. Yes!! Alternative includes bringing in a pro-team and let them raise money for you (which in my mind is silly, and you better start looking for something else) 
 
 
 
3. Always have a "super-sales" guy as your friend. Their rolodex will be of immense use for you. 
 
 
 
4. You may be solo-founder, but always go in team when interfacing externally with customers/prospects. 
 
 
 
5. Yes, it is a hard road until first sustainable success (and your challenge from there is to sustain the initial success). Until then you are "Unemployed", "Wierd geek doing some strange things", or "mentally deranged (atleast temporary) with delusional attitude) for your friends and family. 
 
 
 
6. Your degrees, education, expeience mean "NOTHING" until your first sustainable success. 
 
 
 
7. Never underestimate your competition (esp. existing players) 
 
 
 
8. Good amount of savings or working spouse (always supporting you, but its a time-bound generosity/support to count on) with you. 
 
 
 
9. Better be in silicon valley or Boston rather in some city. It is so hard and a lone battle to raise money and customers.  
 
 
 
10. Have faith and courage until you hit the sustainable initial success. until then even work part-time. 
 
 
 
Cheers 
 
 
 
if any fellow entrepreneurs want to connect with me so we can help each other; send an e-mail to daffodil_wind @ yahoo dot com

posted on Thursday, November 18, 2010 at 7:30 AM by Startup Guy


Hi  
 
I have come across a Resource that I think will be super helpful to all who are Start-ups. It is a FREE Resource that I think is really helpful. This is an email I sent to the person who generously shared this with everyone. 
 
Hi GL 
 
Thanks for your genorosity. It is a surprisingly quick read, but packed with No-Fluff Zen like Wisdom. I really enjoyed reading it and would like to congratulate you on distilling your thoughts into such a powerful package. I will keep it as a trusted advisor. 
 
The relevant URL is http://blogs.jobdig.com/wwds/2007/12/10/a-complete-list-of-100-attributes-off-people-who-start-companieshow-you-can-be-one-of-americas-entrepreneurs/#comment-116067 
Believe me - I have read a lot of stuff on Entrapreneurship - and this is in the top 5% of the lot. 
 
 
Regards 
 
Mohan

posted on Friday, November 19, 2010 at 11:41 AM by Mohan Reddy


Hi Jason, 
 
Thanks for the great article!

posted on Friday, November 19, 2010 at 1:39 PM by Chris Cameron


TO Micheel Blade, 
 
What is your huge startup? I might be able to help. 
 
Len Ruggiero 
CEO, LaMarch Capital, LLC 
len@lamarchcapital.com

posted on Friday, November 19, 2010 at 5:03 PM by Len


For those who say they can't find capital or that smaller amounts are easier to get, I say there are literally billions of dollars sitting on the sidelines waiting to be invested in entrepreneurs who can think big enough.

posted on Friday, November 19, 2010 at 5:07 PM by Len


Thank you for the great post. In particular the line "it's certainly more difficult in poor countries, but it's still possible" resonated with me.  
 
Am trying to do a startup from Uganda and am facing 2 major challenges that someone say in the US would not face  
1. I could not pay for cloud hosting with either Windows Azure or Amazon ... they don't accept payments from my country. I circumvented this by getting a friend to open an account for me in the UK  
2. I cannot receive payments from PayPal (though i can make payments)...they don't send payments to my Uganda. Will write to them and see if they can bend the rules a little bit (fingers crossed).  
Despite all that , i think their has never been a better time to do a technology startup.

posted on Sunday, November 21, 2010 at 6:01 AM by Allan Rwakatungu


And once you start your startup you will want to let the world know. My blog actually features one GREAT startup each week.  
 
Simply submit your new startup and a 2 sentence description at http://www.squidoo.com/submit-startup

posted on Sunday, November 21, 2010 at 7:55 PM by Adam Hoeksema


You are so right. And I can only agree with you as far as my well-being is concerned. However, to make sure that my well-being continues, I am nor sure wheter I would like more people to do the same as I did. I need customers, no competitors :-)

posted on Monday, November 22, 2010 at 8:29 AM by Heiko


I really like the comment about cloud based tools and apps making it easier to statup your business. 
 
I couldn't agree with this more since that is exactly what we, at Apptivo (http://apptivo.com) are trying to help out entrepreneurs with. 
 
Through Apptivo we are providing a complete business management suite, right from sales and Marketing, to Human resources absolutely free to startups and small businesses

posted on Monday, November 22, 2010 at 1:23 PM by Puneet Yamparala


Thank you for the boost.  
 
 
 
I have just launched my latest entrepreneurial effort, SPUBBER: The Place for Self-Published Digital Content, which is actually the culmination of everything I have been working toward for the past 15 years. 
 
 
 
There have been a lot of ups and downs but I agree with you 100 percent that it's worth it! In fact there is nothing I'd rather do. 
 
 
 
I'm a hard worker but I just can't stand the idea of wasting my time and energy not working on my own ideas. I guess that's what drives us all.

posted on Tuesday, November 23, 2010 at 11:26 PM by Eric Smith


My business is finding funding for start ups and grow companies.I also teach small business management classes at a local college. I really like your optimism! However, I hear a lot about start ups now since a lot of people cannot find jobs and/or think they have a great idea. I really stress "preparation and planning." Take advantage of small business classes at your local community college, and get an advisory board together comprising of your banker, attorney, CPA/Bookkeeper, insurance professional and small business consultant that you can get for FREE through the local Small Business Development Center or SCORE location (see sba.gov for locations near you). You cannot do it all so these professional can be on your team to assist you along the way. Remember to write a feasibility analysis--very simply can you prove revenue-cost=profit?  
*Who is your customer, *what are you selling, *why are they going to buy from you,  
*when are they going to buy, and  
*how do they expect to buy it!!  
If you can answer these questions with hard facts--not just your opinion, you are ready to write a business plan. It doesn't have to be an epistle by rather a road map to where you want to start and where you want to go and how much will it cost to get there! With some direction in mind you can prepare and plan to begin your business successfully!  
Denise

posted on Wednesday, November 24, 2010 at 11:32 PM by Denise Beeson


I'm trying to sign up to "recommendations" using the facebook account in order to recommend this article, but even after the log in I still get 
 
"You need to be logged into Facebook to see your friends' recommendations" 
 
14 Reasons Why You Need To Start A Startup 
473 people shared this. 

posted on Thursday, November 25, 2010 at 3:02 AM by Shahar


Need Funding? 
 
see peer to peer websites: 
www.prosper.com 
www.lendingclub.com 
www.kiva.org just to name a few. 
Also trywww.sba.gov for added information about starting a business, sustaining one and great info about funding. 
Denise

posted on Saturday, November 27, 2010 at 3:08 PM by Denise


To add to Denise's list above...this site http://peerbackers.com is 100% dedicated to helping entrepreneurs get the funding they need. Good luck!

posted on Saturday, November 27, 2010 at 3:21 PM by Sally Outlaw


Great read to any venture starter...Agree with most of article, sometimes funding venture is difficult as well as to grow start ups on scale.. 
 
 
 
Best Wishes!

posted on Sunday, November 28, 2010 at 5:35 AM by Gautam Jape C


Thanks for the really great post. I've been working for a big name tutoring company and just recently decided enough was enough and that I was going to jump into it too. I've just put my website together and started work on my promotional materails, but even so, so far I am loving every minute of it! It's great to see that entrepreneurs have such a vibrant community and that there are so many inspirational people involved who like to give their experience freely. Kudos!

posted on Thursday, December 02, 2010 at 9:02 PM by Talha Bhatty


Inspirational post... it makes us think deeply on actual situation and also in near future. Thanks for that!

posted on Monday, December 13, 2010 at 1:04 AM by Rodrigo Branco Matsumoto


Thank you for reasons why you need to soart a startup. I wait other article.

posted on Monday, January 03, 2011 at 3:23 PM by Misyon5ice


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