Archive for the ‘Startups’ Category

Thou Shalt Not Dilly Dally

Posted by Peter on November 7, 2007

We were impressed by this list of “15 Startup Commandments” from the Web 2.0 Entrepreneurs Group:

1. Your idea isn’t new. Pick an idea; at least 50 other people have thought of it. Get over your stunning brilliance and realize that execution matters more.

2. Stealth startups suck. You’re not working on the Manhattan Project, Einstein. Get something out as quickly as possible and promote the hell out of it.

3. If you don’t have scaling problems, you’re not growing fast enough.

4. If you’re successful, people will try to take advantage of you. Hope that you’re in that position, and hope that you’re smart enough to not fall for it.

5. People will tell you they know more than you do. If that’s really the case, you shouldn’t be doing your startup.

6. Your competition will inflate their numbers. Take any startup traffic number and slash it in half. At least.

7. Perfection is the enemy of good enough. Leonardo could paint the Mona Lisa only once. You, Bob Ross, can push a bug release every 5 minutes because you were at least smart enough to do a web app.

8. The size of your startup is not a reflection of your manhood. More employees does not make you more of a man (or woman as the case may be).

9. You don’t need business development people. If you’re successful, companies will come to you. The deals will still be distractions and not worth doing, but at least you’re not spending any effort trying to get them.

10. You have to be wrong in the head to start a company. But we have all the fun.

11. Starting a company will teach you what it’s like to be a manic depressive. They, at least, can take medication.

12. Your startup isn’t succeeding? You have two options: go home with your tail between your legs or do something about it. What’s it going to be?

13. If you don’t pay attention to your competition, they will turn out to be geniuses and will crush you. If you do pay attention to them, they will turn out to be idiots and you will have wasted your time. Which would you prefer?

14. Startups are not a democracy. Want a democracy? Go run for class president, Bueller.

15. You’re doing a web app, right? This isn’t the 1980s. Your crummy, half-assed web app will still be more successful than your competitor’s most polished software application.

Ok, so maybe a couple of the points are a little goofy, but in general it fits our M.O., especially 1, 2, 7, 8, and 9. We’re just 3 people (2 of whom are n00bz!) without any funding (yet!), trying to realize this fine idea that probably countless other people have had.

In the spirit of #2 and #7, we’re trying hard to get Sparkker out there about a week from now. It may not be the most polished web app ever written; every pixel may not line up perfectly; and you may get an occasional error message (hope not.) But, it should work and should help people meet people better. And, we hope to keep learning from whoever’s using it to keep improving it.

We could have taken the time to raise the big bucks, to hire a big team, to polish all the rough edges. But, then you wouldn’t have Sparkker for a few more months. (Though you probably would have some other similar service before then.) And then we wouldn’t be able to learn and improve on it for a couple more months, etc.

We hope you’ll appreciate our trying to get it out sooner rather than later, and we hope you’ll let us know if something doesn’t feel quite right!

Chief Nephologist & Code Monkey


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