Startup Advice

What

This is a catch all page for capturing some of my thoughts about starting up. These are things I like to remind myself to remember along the journey.

Avoid Facebook

Let’s be honest, Facebook is a time suck and when you’re *starting up* time is everything.

Acceptable uses could be maintaining strong business connections, business networking, business research.

Pay No Attention To The News

Reading is great, don’t get me wrong, but one could speed a lifetime simply staying up to speed on general and industry related news. It also takes critical attention away from your business and adds more information to what is most likely an already overloaded brain. Reading the news kills time, especially if done at the beginning of the day.

SEO From The Beginning

As you create, you’re going to want to make sure people can find you. While the SEO game is much harder than it used to be, don’t neglect it. SEO only used to be about Google, but now it may include the Apple App Store, Google Play, YouTube and Amazon depending on what you’re creating.

In short, it’s critical folks can find you when they go to look for your services wherever that may be. Make sure you business name is unique and directly related to your offering. Using ridiculously generic terms in your offering will make it near impossible to be found. While your business will most likely require some paid advertising in the future, any free traffic is great and most importantly free!

Embrace The Mountain

If you’re becoming an entrepreneur, you better not be afraid of the mountain. It’s gonna be big and I hope you’ve been here by yourself before or you may freak out and come down before you get to the top. Don’t freak out. Have faith in the process and embrace the mountain.

Be Confident, Enthusiastic and Passionate

You’ve got to believe in yourself and what you’re building. If you’re not convinced, good luck convincing anyone else. An entrepreneur should radiate how passionate and jazzed they are about what they are working on.

Get In Your Head

People are going to try and throw you off. Competitors are going to try and intimidate you. Naysayers will punch holes in your plans. Jealous people will smirk at what you are doing. Don’t let them knock you down. Get in your head, be strong and focused.

Build Bridges, Don’t Burn Them

Always work to build strong, authentic, trustful relationships. The last thing you need when you’re starting up is people against you, so stay on good terms with everyone, especially those in your industry. There is a way to disagree with people and still be respectable.

Talk To People About Your Idea

Stealth smealth. Get out there and talk to people about your idea. Successful entrepreneur and investor Chris Dixon does a good job of explaining why you should not keep your startup idea a secret.

You Are Your Brand

If you’re a solopreneur you are definitely your brand. As you expand, your team is your brand. Remember this as it affects how people perceive your product.

Work From Your Heart

If you work from your heart, your passion will follow and you will be successful. I truly believe this. All of our hearts are different, so focus on your heart and your passion not someone else's!

Be Dedicated

If you *really* want to build a business, i hope you *really* do want to do this, because it may not happen in a week, a month, a year or ten. Most startups fail

A favorite quote of mine from hearing Richard Branson speak was ‘… at a young age I learned the art of dedication’.

Understand The Exception

There are rules to everything, however, rules can be broken. The key to breaking a rule is understanding the exception. The key of understanding the exception is understanding the rule well enough to understand the exception.

Be A Professional

Be on time. Be respectful. Be collaborative. Be a professional. There are folks that play on the JV team and there are folks that play on the Varsity team. Real leaders lift people up not put them down.

[to be continued]