Starting a start up is almost like getting out of college and getting on with your first job. You are heading into the unknown, with no clue of how to get to the “other-side”.
The only difference here being; I started the start-up in my late 30s, not really much time for any re-dos in life.
It’s pretty cliche to say, oh I had my full of the corporate life and finally wanted to follow the passion I always had, the one thing I always wanted to do but never could due to family, society, financial and the list of pressures we are put under as normal human beings.
But yeah, that cliche ridden list is my story too.
Life’s too short to hate your work!
So finally breaking the shackles of my superb corporate life, much to the bewilderment/excitement/awe of my colleagues, friends & family; I headed to start my own company.
Somethings I learned pretty early on:
As they say, no matter how prepared you think you might be but everything new in life pops up with it’s own surprises. So, always keep more money than you think you’ll need.
It’s not just lonely at the top, its lonely in a start-up too
From having a proper 9-5 routine laid out for me; I went to no routine.
You are your own boss, so you can work when you want to and if you lose focus, the “when” might just never come!
Focus & setting out a routine for yourself is essential here. I was surrounded by highly motivated people around me all the time, but here I was by myself & had to make sure I was on my game no matter what.
Design it- Get to the source
To get the maximum return, cut out the intermediaries. Get to the source of your business.
Throw away all your apprehensions out the window, leave the inhibitions for another day; just go out and sell.
The 2 Sided Coin- Sales & Collections
Sure you made the sale! Bravo!
But no sale is complete until your client pays up.
As important it is to make the sale, collecting your dues for the job done is what keeps your business going.
Money begets money! Well, yeah!
Outsource your weaknesses
You truly have to be a super human, having started your own business.
You are the boss, the employee, the HR, the office boy, driver, PR manager, accountant etc etc..
Moreover, you also have to play psychologist not only to yourself (surely it’s overwhelming for any normal, standard IQ person), but also to the minimal number of employees you might have, to start with.
Do not try to be the super human; there are certain things that you might just be horrible at.
Phone a friend/family, who you think is remotely good at it & can help you (read free!!) scrape through the initial business phase, whilst its still trying to stand up on it’s two, crumpling under tons of pressure legs!
Not All Business is Good Business
As a start-up, you tend to be needy & clingy! You want to take any and every business that comes your way. You believe you do not have the luxury of being choosy.
Like most of our first relationships in life; it’s also mostly our initial clients who teach us the important business lessons. The Dos & Don’ts!
Clients can be highly demanding; they would expect the moon but would want to get the same at the cost of a pebble!
They are not only not good for you money wise, but also business-wise. They tend to choke up your bandwidth & stand in the way of business that you should be out getting/ working towards.
Consider yourself warned 🙂
That said,the demanding one’s can be challenging too. As long as it’s a healthy mix between the two, go for it! It’s at times our most demanding clients who push our limits & stir us in directions we never thought we would even look at.
In the end:
F**k it, Just do it!