Basic rules for starting a business

Is it a plan or capital?

  1. You are passionate about it
    If you pursuing an idea just to make money, then stop right now. Money can be a great motivator, but it won’t get you through the dark times of being an entrepreneur. Are you so passionate about this problem that you can see yourself working on it in 10years?
  2. It’s simple. Big ideas are raised, not born. Ellen Degeneres didn’t wake up one morning and say, I’m going to be an actress, writer, producer, host, and LGBT activist.’’ All the great businesses of our time started with something simple, and then expended upon that. Start by solving one problem, with one product, for one customer.
  3. One revenue steam
    A start would be more than lucky to execute on just one revenue steam. Let alone three or four
    So focus on one to start, and if you can’t identify one revenue stream that can support the business, then it’s a bad business.
  4. Few steps to revenue
    How many things need to happen before you make a dollar? By going through this exercise you can identify the number of stakeholders involved, which equals complexity. No more than 3 steps to revenue is ideal.
  5. You know the customer
    From the outset you need to intimately know of one very specific archetype who desperately need your product. And there’s nobody you know more intimately than yourself. That is why so many great businesses have been formed from personal need.
  6. You know the market
    How can you possibly have a meaningful vision about the future of a market if you are not a leading domain expert on that market?
    If you are not an expert, then get to work!
  7. Sufficiently large market
    Any market with < 10 million people or multiple billions in annual revenue will be very hard to address and is not worth your time. The market will die winning a small market.
  8. Original secret sauce
    Is what you are doing unique, or better, than everybody? Do you know a secret that nobody else does?
    Be bold, because the best ideas are transformational, not incremental.
  9. You have tried to kill it. Positively reinforcements are very easy to find, but your job in the idea stage is to find the things that make your idea bad. Then, one-by-one eliminate those negatives through iterating on your idea.
  10. You are sharing your idea!
    The chances that someone is going to drop everything and devote their lives to executing your idea are slim to none. You are much feedback as humanly possible. Don’t worry about people stealing an idea. If it’s original, you will have to ram it down their throats.’’
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