R U Fit for the purpose of being an Entrepreneur?
Do people describe you as entrepreneurial?
Do you feel like an Entrepreneur?
How many businesses have you built?
Are you really an Entrepreneur?
Do you feel fit for the purpose of your work?
Do you code?
Do you know how to architect a software project?
Can you design a schema? Otherwise known as a schematic diagram… or wireframe?
Do you know how to design a product?
Do you understand how to design a culture of Innovation?
Does your product fit with the marketplace?
Is the timing fit for the user experience?
You can see what am getting to…
And where am going with this…
Yeah… RISK MANAGEMENT
Because the biggest risk with most start-ups is not product-market fit.
It’s Leader-Entrepreneur fit.
If you don’t have an Entrepreneurial Leader at the helm of your StartUp — you might as well go for a pik-nik at the Black bear forest without a gun.
Go become bear bait and let me know how that works for you.
Sure there are other things that matter, but that CEO-Entrepreneur FIT is the crowned king of the kabob.
Everything else comes after this on the piercing stick.
Or on the Totem pole as the case might be, if you are PC and of a sensitive nature.
Of course as a start-up you also need to figure out the cheapest and fastest way of answering the other important question:
Are you building something that enough people want and are willing to pay folding money for it?
This is the second most important question.
Mind you — this problem is not a trivial one, because it is a non-deterministic situation that will give you the best answer.
The risk and the competitive advantage, in most cases, are not to be found around your ability to build the product.
Building the initial version of most software products has become rather easy these days.
More importantly, most of the time you don’t even need to develop new software to assess product-market fit.
As for assessing Leader – Entrepreneur Fit, you certainly need Brain Software and if you’ve read my book with that title — then you know what I’m talking about.
If not, try to surmise or divine the CEO-Entrepreneur Fit best you can…
Or go and get my book “Brain Software” and it will get explained to you upon the very first reading….
And as a Leader that plays CEO for a time [that’s all it is] you should also remember that it helps if you are technically savvy.
Cause it helps if you know how to write code.
It helps if you know some coding languages.
It helps if you know how to architect.
And it helps if you have the skills of a full stack developer even if only you cna supervise and evaluate the full time developers, Code Architects and all others.
And that is what it means to be an entrepreneur. Knowing all you can about the jobs you hire people to do and also being able to do them yourself in a pinch…
And being an Entrepreneur Leader today is far easier because you’ve got all manner of tools from great software building tools to AI, and outsourcing and crowdsourcing mechanisms.
And if as a Leader you are willing to roll up your sleeves and roll out the work using all the arsenal of tools out there — yo’ll be golden.
Get started with simple tools like Sketch, Basecamp, Invision, Unbounce, MailChimp, Ad tech, Video content tools, software libraries, code depositories like GitHub, open source dev tools and code for development, freelance headhunter tools, crowdsourcing sites, American Angels for Early Funding, and Kickstarter for crowdfunding, Slack for communicating, and other coworking kits, and then the most Disruptive force for Startups ever — reading the Bleeding Edge Blog.
And once you have started rolling down the road to product market fit with a Leader – Entrepreneur Fit, then yo win.
Still you’ve got to give the right answer to the first question, because only then you can get culture in your organization in order to attract Top Talent and then it is far easier to find believers/backers who will help you get the product built.
Yet the other questions also remain:
Are you, your team, and your company fit for purpose to support the Entrepreneurial Leader?
What about the top team members? Are they engaged in the idea of entrepreneurship? Or they see this as another stupid gig?
Having engineers & developers as co-founders early on is really helpful only if they are also respectful of the entrepreneurial culture and understand when the journey to product-market fit requires the extremely agile ad-hoc development of software and pushing out the door Vaporware — instead of over-engineering it, or waiting to make it perfect, or even wanting to bug check, debug, or refine the code before it ships.
Let your customers do that. That’s what customers are for. They give advise, debug the code and offer insightful commitment to your Product Market Fit. Seriously, your job is to ship code… Oodles and oodles of it. Ship first – ask questions later. The customers will find the bugs and help you debug it fully. No worries.
Of course it also helps to have engineers and devs being entrepreneurial from the get-go doing agile development and extreme development thus less bugs. And they do this because they understand that building up a startup company means sweat equity, and they jump in the fray without holding back.
This entrepreneurial Act alone not only proves that you have a Visionary Entrepreneurial Leader who attracts the best Tech talent for the “Culture” and is cultish about it’s culture — but it also saves you precious time & resources. And any entrepreneur will tell you that early on, idea strength, energy, capital, and time, are the most precious commodities. Couple that with the “Art of Fit” and you can get to go wherever you are going, and to achieve your targets and desired results.
The incredible intensity of Now is underestimated in our usual lives but we should not forget that all Leaders know that you need to strike when the iron is hot.
Assuming you have an Entrepreneurial Culture — You’ll find that there are some people who are willing to do amazing and crazy things for equity in a Good StartUp amongst peers who are fully committed to the Dream.
But let’s look at the beginning again. The first question remains true. Is the CEO fit for purpose?
Because if the leader is fit for purpose, you are good and golden. And if not — you are shite and brown.
And if the CEO is also entrepreneurial and deals with a strong hand with the team, so she extracts the discipline, and also has the courage, to turn around, to pivot, and to “throw away” assets, like humans, software developed, clients gained and market share in order to pursue the “Dream” then she owns it.
And that is truly being Fit for Purpose.
And if you are not Fit for Purpose of Being an Entrepreneur — there are all kinds of other things you should be doing with your Life that are probably more rewarding.
Don’t follow fashions, cause this s your Life. Find what moves you and stick with it. For a while… Or at least until you get Mastery of it.
Play the tuba if you will but do it with style…
It’s far better than pretending to be an entrepreneur and struggling with it.
I for one — like the sound of the tuba.