Week 2: Always We Begin Again
I went to a party this weekend where I was prompted to talk about Edittress. Thankfully there were margaritas on hand.
Without missing a beat, the new friend espoused about how much he needed help consolidating his email. I think he misheard “writing better email” for “organizing email.” My boyfriend politely asked if he knew about email inbox rules. He did. As far as I can gather, he yearns for a Container Store consultant for too much email.
An innocent mistake. But, by the way, now a future idea on the product roadmap. Everything happens for a reason, right?
More importantly, the interaction reminded me how human it is to hear what we want to hear. When I started at Recess Labs last week, I wanted to hear that my minimum viable product was, well, viable. But at every turn, it became clear to me that I needed to start again.
I still believe in my bones that there is a deep need for accessible mentorship that helps young people block-and-tackle the modern workplace. As an aspiring entrepreneur, I held fast to the Field of Dreams: “Build it and they will come” mentality.
“There is surely nothing quite so useless as doing with great efficiency what should not be done at all”
As a working entrepreneur, I am coming to the realization that a successful startup builds (fast), asks strangers what they think, builds again (faster), asks different strangers, builds again (faster!), asks more strangers, builds again (can’t you go faster?), gives it away for free, and on, and on, and so it goes. Until the truth sets you free. And hopefully secures some funding.
It is a harrowing and vulnerable process. No wonder 9 out of 10 startups fail.
So I humbly plan to take a step back over the next few days to interview customers, test new use cases, and iterate this product. You have been warned.
And in the end, I believe 10 out of 10 startups learned something along the way. I like those odds.
“Always we begin again.”
-St. Benedict’s Rule