I meet a lot of founders and startups, some of them work under secrecy and want me to sign NDAs (I don’t sign NDAs). Ideas don’t matter much, execution and getting to monopoly status does, when you are a startup. I am often asked what if someone copies my idea, well that could happen if your idea leads to great economic value creation. IMHO, that is a good thing, the important thing to remember is the fact that when you have others who want to copy what you are doing that expands the market and market education. It is better to have many people talking about an idea than just you, it leads to more dialogue and maybe better ideas than you ever had.
Today, the barrier to entry to do a startup is almost Zero, the reason I say that is because there is an opportunity cost of your time. It is actually interesting to talk about opportunity cost, I believe the opportunity cost of not doing a startup is much higher than being in a job and earning $75k/year or even $100k/year or $150k/year. This is one of the biggest reasons why I have been encouraging and bringing programs like Founders Institute to Iceland. The opportunity cost of your time is really high, when you are able to focus on a problem, create value around that problem and build a team to drive economic value creation done through a tools and technologies that exist today can lead you to build an enduring and sustainable business… if you focus on the right sequence of activities, get mentoring and sacrifice something good today to get something better tomorrow. Just the journey in my opinion is worth it. You learn a lot about yourself and about how the world works.
Coming back to the topic, I believe no one can copy your passion. If you believe in something and willing to give up everything to bring that to life, like a mother for a child. There is absolutely nothing that can replicate that unique feeling. One of the biggest challenges that I believe founders and entrepreneurs go through is the deflation of their passion. Don’t forget why you started on the journey, or if you are thinking about starting on a journey, dig deep and find out why you want to do this, connect with it, wrestle with it. Go really deep into yourself and deal with your demons, that is the only way to find the true passion that gives you energy to do what we call entrepreneurship. This is not a get rich quick scheme, it is years of blood, sweat and tears. Is it worth it, Absolutely!
You want to find out how? come to the next Founders Institute Reykjavik Chapter event, even better ready to take the plunge? Apply to attend Founders Institute Reykjavik Semester.
Fantastic article about passion and hard work! I believe that the idea is only 10%, whilst idea and execution make up the rest of the 90% of a business.