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June 18, 2014

3 Things Entrepreneurs Should Know

Over the last two years, we’ve developed more than 60 apps/websites, and a large portion of these apps are for entrepreneurs who want some help to see their idea through to fruition. We love being a part of the journey, and by no means claim to know the best pathway, but there are things we keep seeing that we thought we’d collate into a simple list of things you should know when you get started. In no particular order:

  1. Worry about your millions of users when you get them: Invariably in meetings we have about the development of an app/website, we get asked “Please make sure that this can handle millions of requests a second, because we know the moment we launch, things are going to blow up”. While it’s important to build on an architecture that can scale, as an entrepreneur, every penny you spend counts.  Rather than spending it on the most powerful server known to mankind from day one, its better to spend that money getting users and a lower-end server, and scaling when you actually have those users.
  2. NDA’s are pointless: In our days at the AngelCube incubator, we often heard different reasons why NDAs were a waste of time, but Anthony Mittelmark, one of the mentors, put it in the most memorable (if crude) way: “No one likes to hear their baby is ugly, but for there to be beautiful babies, there have to be ugly babies. The quicker you realise your baby is ugly, the sooner you can get rid of it”. No entrepreneur likes to hear their idea is worthless, but ideas are a dime a dozen. The distinction between a successful business and a failed business is almost exclusively based on execution. A well-executed idea is much better form of protection than an NDA, and if the idea has no legs, then its much better to move on to something better.
  3. Go and talk to people: Building a business is not easy- it requires a tenacity and a level of stubbornness that borders obsession. It’s not easy trying to sell your vision to someone, let alone asking them to pay for it. That said, don’t rely on “Build it and they will come”. For every 10 people you talk to, one might be interested. Its better than the alternative, where 10 out of 10 people don’t even know your product exists.

I should point out that these aren’t criticisms on anyone we’ve worked with or talked to, but rather general things we thought may help.

Now go out there and build a business!