Give it a try, would you?
September 18, 2009 § 8 Comments
Over the last few months, I have been quite restless. Generally, was bored to death, did not feel like working (managed to meet the targets/deadlines though), friends & life everything seemed to go slow, future goals blurred, etc.
Around the same time, also got convinced that I should start-up a company in the technology front preferably a service based website (like bookmyshow). I read about flipkart(which sells books online) and thought why don’t we develop the same thing or a website to sell magazines online(Indiamags). Unfortunately, whatever comes to our mind, it already exists in market place (sad story, uh?). We considered Hospital ERP, School ERP as well. But the base point, is even if the same product/website offering same service exists, why not tweak a bit and offer it in a different geographical region if possible?
Lots of thinking went into all these. Sometimes I would realize i either do not have the technology know-how or business know-how. For e.g: Creating a website which sells all retail items online from grocery to tooth brush to cookies. To put it simply, managing a store like Reliance or More online. Now for a start-up, it means competing against Amazon and Reliance Fresh put together. That freaks me out!
Finally, i kind of realized, i may not be prepared to take all of them at once. I clearly don’t have the guts to run something like that. (Realization is the 1st step, buddy 🙂 ) If I had a MBA, i would have given it a shot. But, armed with just a B.E, I am nowhere close to taking the 1st step. So, thought would put down in writing and see if it distills out, below is the essence.
What i thought is needed to start a business?
1. Technical knowledge – Being the best in what you do (if you are selling ropes for bungee jumping, do u know how to manufacture the strongest one with least cost?)
2. Business knowledge & Money-matters – Being ahead of the curve in the area, taking care of business partners, clients, vendors involved, working out more than just profit, loss
3. Last but not least, Kick ass confidence
I have personally met many people who say they want to do something with their life, but never do (am one of them, trying hard to cross the bridge). They could cite all sort of reasons from lack of time, or “am not sure” or “ya, in a few months”, etc. One thought which often comes to my mind is: If at least once it had occurred that you should start a company or running a venture on your own, then you are destined to start one in the future. A good number of people are comfortable and so conveniently placed in their career, they never want to lose that cushion in their life.
As Henry ford says,
If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.
No one can build a Microsoft or IBM in a day. Step by step. A winner gets to victory inch by inch. So,
What actually is needed to start a business?
1. Even if you don’t know how to build the best product on the 1st day, start with something basic, put it out in the market, start improvising it. (Make sure the bungee jumping rope does not fail under tension, primary requirement). No one gets it right the 1st time. That’s why even pencils have erasers! Strive towards perfection.
2. Be in touch with your area, it definitely helps. Do not worry about all the client, vendor, financial over heads. When the situation demands a business case presentation or a negotiation, you will raise up to the occasion. Virgin’s turnover was around $100 million in 1984 when they first brought in a proper financial guy/CA to manage the accounts. (from Richard Branson’s autobiography Losing My Virginity)
3. I am not going to refute the kick-ass part, it will always hold good.
Recently i came across a link which had featured 4 serial entrepreneurs. All of them around 20 yrs old and one Jessica at 19 yrs with 3 start-ups under her belt. Wow! Richard Branson managed to get the 1st issue of his Student magazine out in UK almost 2 years after he started working on that. Imagine the amount of determination and the courage needed to sustain oneself for that long.
What is with these people? What makes them tick this big? They take chances, they do not say NO! They commit themselves to things and events, put their foot down, get things DONE. For people who can’t make that commitment, they simply don’t deserve it.
If your heart says something, there should be nothing in the entire world to stop you from going for it.. Give yourself a chance, give it a try!