Lock in the Learning
When I started blogging 3 years ago it was really to see what all the noise was about. When I re-started more seriously last year it was because I needed a way to remember the important stuff I was learning. It was a way for me to reflect and get a grip on bigger trends that I was seeing. Then I made the mistake of reading Fred Wilson’s blog and Mark Suster‘s blog and other ridiculously smart people (just check out the sidebar to see some of the big brains). Then I froze up. Let’s be honest, what I was writing before was not earth shattering stuff, and the style was a bit more Hunter S. Thompson than Thompson Reuters. But regardless, it was something. Learning is a combination of action and reflection and if you only have one or other the results aren’t good. So despite my feelings of blog envy I am back to writing.
90 days ago I got a call
About 6 months ago I was asked to take a look at a start-up. It had been plugging along for a few years but had not yet launched anything and the company’s partners and investors were wondering what was up. After a bunch of meetings and some other homework it was obvious that the company was suffering from a serious case of founders syndrome. Really smart people sometimes outsmart themselves and it was here in spades. Amazing advisors, great development partners, a privileged position in market all a result of the founder. Yet no product, no revenue.
So in September some angels I work with decide to buy into the company and asked me to lead the charge towards launch. Remember how I said learning was a two part process. I have been all about the action since that call in September. I have been rapidly applying the lean startup process, an open technology development plan, and everything else I have been able to read and remember.
I have been at this game for over a decade and getting back into the actual doing after years if advising has been fun/frightening/exhausting/amazing. But in all this doing I have lost the reflection part. Over the next few weeks I hope to take a quick peek over my shoulder. There is so much to do but for me JFDI needs to be balanced with JFBI (just f*&king blog it). Eric Ries says that a start up is an entity built to learn. I couldn’t agree more .
- Mark Suster Lays It Down At Columbia (markpeterdavis.com)