Friday, June 02, 2006

Natural born entrepreneurs

Some time ago I read the 'Story of my First Business' by Joel Spolsky and it touched my heartstrings.

Young Joel worked at the university library; he loved donuts, but there were no shops around that sold them. So he asked a friend to buy some on his way to work and began to sell them to other people… whole story here

Every person who ever played a strategy game (Civilization, Settlers, Warcraft, etc) knows this feeling when you focus a lot and play hard and at one moment you raise your head, look around and ask – hey, am I a WINNER?

In real life this feeling is even stronger, because the 'war' never ends and that's this state of constant pleasure of winning little battles is what makes you high. That's why, I think, people start their own companies.

When I read Joel's story I began to think about my first business. As a child I've always had ideas like making hot pies or sewing shirts and selling them. However, when I shared my ideas with parents they told me it's not gonna work. I trusted them and gave up (maybe they were wrong, who knows?).

So my nearly real first business became my web project. It doesn't bring me money, so that's why it is 'nearly real'. When I started it consumed much of my time (and again my parents wanted to persuade me leave it: 'It costs you so much effort and nobody will ever pay attention', 'Phone your friends and go to the movies, don't live this weblife, will you?'), but it became popular so quickly that they stopped.

As you look at the revenues from your business, you'll say, "gosh, it's only 3:00, and we've already had nine customers! This is going to be the best day ever!" And the next year nine customers will seem like a joke, and a couple of years later you'll realize that that intranet report listing all the sales from the last week is unmanageably large.

One day, you'll turn off the feature that emails you every time someone buys your software. That's a huge milestone.

I know.

Do you still check how many people come to your blog and where are they from? I do :)

But I haven't checked this for my project for the last three or four years.


If you think of becoming an entrepreneur once, then you've probably had your first business already. Want to share the story?

UPD: check this article, it's fun: Top 10 Signs You're Made to be an Entrepreneur