My friend reread my previous article on why I left a VC to join a startup and asked me when it would be his turn to dive into his own project. So here’s my learnings so far.
Well, it’s definitely a great life experience you will never read in any books but entrepreneurship is extremely challenging and demanding. First weeks in the accelerator quickly proved there are so many gaps in a skillset and so many things to think and do about our business to get it on a right track. You will be literally snowed under with tasks and deadlines, and the to-do list will be growing in a geometric progression — so it’s vitally important to stay focused and prioritize. Fortunately, there are good people in the muru-D family who are ready to share their knowledge and life hacks to support entrepreneurs.
For me personally, it’s actually all about ‘flearning’ (learning through failures) and getting priceless professional and life experience. Some startups in the program are already generating revenues and doing well but ours is still on MVP and early pilot stage. We have no revenue and still looking for a product-market fit. We have a limited amount of time and resources so it’s a big challenge to figure out what is important for our company now and act accordingly.
Regarding the best time to do your own projects, I believe it’s similar to marriage or having kids — you will never be 100% ready. But that’s what entrepreneurs are all about — they just go and do it. Nevertheless, before jumping down the rabbit hole I suggest you consider a few things:
You will find yourself working hard and late in the office and facing many problems — having perseverance and passion are the only ways to survive.
There is no way you will survive unless you actually enjoy most of the things you have to do in a business.
Do some physical exercise to relax and recharge.
Get out of the building — explore the local ecosystem, network and leverage the existing resources. You never know who might help you.
This point is especially true for international accelerators. Being away from home and working countless hours on your business, it’s easy to lose the connections you have with your home, friends, family, and culture. I am originally from the Republic of Tatarstan, and was extremely happy to join Tatars community in Singapore to celebrate Korban bayram / Eid-al-Adha.
The best moments in the accelerator so far — my communications with people there. Talking to other founders helped me to understand we were all going through the same hard times and gave me relief. Talking to muru-D team gave me valuable support and understanding the things I should focus on. Talking to my family and friends gave me love, faith, and power to keep doing what I do.
It’s important to remember that entrepreneurship is not for everyone — and that’s ok. I believe that everyone should do what they love. This is the only natural way to grow and succeed. If it happens in a corporate environment — great. If it’s your own startup — super. If you find your sweet spot in academic career — wonderful. Just find your own niche, work hard to become better and balance work and life — then you are happy and satisfied. Live where you want to live, do things you want to do and be with people you want to be.
This article originally appeared in techinasia
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