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Key Tips and Ideas from an Accidental Founder

An Overview

Looking back, I became a founder of a startup tech company by accident. At that time I was on my way to becoming a pharmacist and a toxicologist. In my final years at university, I was set out, ready to go out in the world and find a job with my relevant qualification. But something was definitely something missing… and I could feel it but couldn’t quite dial in or pinpoint what it was.

 The decision to go out and find that “thing” was made around the middle of 2017. Catalysed by a combination of things- a desire for freedom and control of my own destiny, and a belief that I could be doing better for myself; I set out to become an entrepreneur to search the answers to a question that I myself did not know.

 Today, I am still stuck with the very same “feeling of the unknown”. It has, however, definitely been alleviated a bit through the discovery of other things.

 Although my journey has just begun; (just shy of 2 years); during those two years as a founder, I’ve learnt vital ideas, tips and tricks which I would like to offer you my 10 cents on and share them with you.

Photo by G. Crescoli on Unsplash

Tip 1

Work with something you love or with someone you love. An observation I made in January this year, but that I now understand the implications of deeper: there is nothing more precious than spending time with the people that you love, doing things that fascinate you (in that order).

For better or worse, humans are highly social creatures… the people who spend your time with having a disproportionate weighting on your day-to-day happiness (which is different from month-to-month happiness).

 Memento mori: Which literally translates to “remember you have to die”.

 

As brutal as this seems. It is a reminder that we all desperately need in our own lives. A thought or an idea that we’d rather ignore, do everything to avoid and pretend is not true. Most often, our ego runs away from anything that reminds us of the reality that sits at odds with the comfortable narrative we have built for ourselves. And there is one simple fact that most of us are utterly scared to meditate, reflect on and face head-on: We are going to die.

 Everyone around us is going to die. So thus every day you spend not working on something you love or with people you love is a finite day gone.

 So do something that you love doing with the people you love working with. Because that is what can be guaranteed.

 Nothing else.

 Tip 2

The formula for success is derived from 5 key components.

Desire + Drive + Knowledge + Action + Persistence = Success

Common paths to success seem to be:

  1. Become world class in your chosen endeavour
  2. Attract the best people to work with you
  3. Create

Tip 3

Upskill yourself to prepare for the future.

As a non-technical founder in a technical startup it sometimes difficult to delegate technical discussions when you clearly can’t produce technically.

Fortunately for me, I am surrounded by technical co-founders who do that job for me. But I have recognised and acknowledged that this could potentially be a problem for me in the future if I ever want to begin creating something new by myself in the future

I started learning how to code in javascript, in preparation for starting something from zero.

 Several key reasons:

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  • Skill – value add
  • Aligns very closely with how my mind works
  • Skill and knowledge set to use as a platform and structure for learning
  • The future is likely in (or will to a large extent) involve the ability to code and manipulate technology run by code. Thus having basic knowledge of coding may become the minimum prerequisite in the future.
  • Having the ability to hack together a prototype over a weekend is valuable.

 [/tie_list]

Once you know what you want – everything changes. Whether that desire comes from a dream, a person, a vision, whatever, you start to hunt. But to get ready for when that day comes, you must prepare yourself with the necessary skills to do it in whatever field that may be.

So prepare yourself.

Tip 4

Quantify things. Over your ~60 remaining years – there are only a finite number of times you can do something.

In my mind, you can only have 100 people that you get to know, live with and work with. So be extremely selective about who you choose.

So find a group of people that you love and respect and want to work with, figure out your core competencies, find what you want to work on and go for it.

To Conclude

Although that “feeling” that “question” has yet to be answered and I don’t think I’ll be getting an answer anytime soon. But I don’t worry about it.

 I have already learnt so much of other things as an entrepreneur that I could imagine and I am utterly grateful for it. Answers to questions that I didn’t know I was looking for and that is what keeps me excited about the future. 

A long empty asphalt road through dry plains with snowy mountains on the horizon

Photo by Bruno Bergher on Unsplash

The road for a founder may seem long and daunting, but at the same time, it is full of promising discoveries. And I can promise you as a fellow entrepreneur and founder who found his 10 cents accidentally on the side of the road.

Hopefully, you’ll be able to find your 10 cents to share it with the rest of world!

US$ 125 million global partnership with BlueChilli will benefit early stage startups
Key Tips and Ideas from an Accidental Founder
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US$ 125 million global partnership with BlueChilli will benefit early stage startups