I go for homeruns, not singles. I want to knock it out of the park. The problem with that is homeruns are very high risk. The chance of a homerun is significantly lower than simply getting on first base. I don’t want to stop dreaming for the homerun, but more training is in order to get there. I really should focus on getting a hit, rather than the homerun — but I’m driven to practice for the homerun, rather than just a hit.
There is a trail of dead startups behind me and a money trail that I have burned through. There are years of things I have tried building and failing. On one hand, failure does equal experience and lessons. On the other hand, it’s been an expensive education by not programming these ideas myself…
Extendy, Boughtly, ViewCues, ifluencer, Trackable Links, Sme, InSeconds, ThankYouTroops, PinkPinky, MyFavorites v1, MyFavorites v2 (haven’t given up on this yet), and there are more.
As much as I have read and heard the same thing over and over and over again in the past 12+ years, I want to say it has never really sunk in or I have just never really “got it.” That one thing is “work on a problem you have, that you want a solution for, that you are the user of.” MyFavorites is the closest to this. It is a problem I have — is it a big problem? Not necessarily. It’s something fun, entertaining, and would help me learn more about my friends (and anyone) and discover new stuff (beer, books, local plumber, etc).
I have found myself working on ideas over the years that I think can be homeruns, but they really haven’t been problems — or rather, big problems of mine. As a most-times unrealistic entrepreneur that swings for the fences, it’s my reading about the sensationalized homeruns in the press (Twitter, etc) that have skewed my attention towards working on my startup ideas that I think could be sensationalized homeruns. But it’s all fiction and theory in my mind — because typically the idea isn’t even solving a problem I have!
So I pledge to only work on a startup in the future if it’s solving a real problem I have. Hopefully the idea won’t fade out in a few months as all the others have, when I find myself wondering what the heck I’m doing. It’s a recipe for disaster when you’re making up a problem. A successful startup should lead to 5-10+ years of working on a solution for a problem, so I better have a real problem that I believe in fixing. I don’t know if that means I’ll be swinging for the homeruns anymore or not — I guess it’ll depend on the problem at hand.