Lead Follow or Get the HELL Out of the Way!
Well through the week I’m often at the Innovation Destination milieu, at our beautiful McMaster Innovation Park where startup entrepreneurs drop by on a daily basis. Not all or even a major number wander over to say “hi” and ask for some advice/counsel…but the ocasional one does in an off-hand sort of way….as when I ask “what’s new” I usually then get a list of current issues, problems and crossroads that they’re facing…
And that’s what I wanted to talk about today….this inability of a startup entrepreneur to make a decision based on their current level of understanding.
I guess what that means is that when any entrepreneur is faced with an issue, they must research same….find out all of the variables that can affect THIS decision…and what that will mean for the future of their business too – and then decide.
Lead. Follow. Or get the hell out of the way is how I think of this – but maybe not as it might appear on the surface.
What I mean is that for any entrepreneur to succeed…don’t they NEED to be up front leading the way?
As it’s often stated “unless you’re the lead dog, the view seldom changes…” and boy is that ever the truth! Being successful in business is a tough horizon to aim at….and for many entrepreneurs, they fall from being the lead dog in their sector or startup and fall by the wayside.
And from what I see, it’s decisions that are not made on time to gain a competitive edge. Decisions are not being made. And startups are faltering….least that’s the word I’ll use right now…yup…faltering.
Some might say that to make a decision, you have to fully understand the issue, which I’d agree with….but what if you don’t? What if there are some items you’ve not yet considered or have done so, but not in enough depth? What if there is a decision you need to make – but you don’t know that you do?
Case in point…and what got me thinking on same….I just heard a great – and I mean great “deep-nerd” pitch (my term for a pitch made by a programmer) to a room full of investors by a firm that has 2 of the 3 major startup areas covered for their firm. The firm had a geek and an artist but no business type at all….no one to send out to “sell” the firm to Angels or VCs or investors. No one to develop a business model that would invite investment. No one to go out and get revenues. Just the geek and the artist…sigh…
Did they think that they needed such a new founder and if so had they thought about even thinking about same? Nope. No biz type on board….and when asked they only offered that such an addition would dilute their share structure and provide no real value. Huh? The classic founding team yes, has a geek and an artist (or something similar) but always includes a biz type….the guy who can go out and find funding and revenues too.
So one can only nod….and move on…which is what I did…but in thinking about it, I thought I would at least share same here with our readerhip…that such decisions must be faced…must be considered…else, you fall by the wayside…no longer making your own firm’s path towards success!
For those entrepreneurs “stuck” in that “second dog from the front” type of spot….I have no real advice other than the title of this post….lead, follow or get the hell out of the way!Google