You want to start a startup and don’t know where to start? Here are top 3 books that will help you start building your startup.
I believe you should become a startupper.
No matter your abilities, background, level of experience, gender, geographical location, religion, culture, orientation, we have one common connection, we all can become startuppers...
Who Are Startuppers?
A startupper is not a profession it’s a way of thinking, startuppers are entrepreneurs that see in every problem an opportunity, a solution, they try to solve it and make money.
We all have a unique experience, which cannot be repeated, all of us carry an infinite amount of problems and potential solutions to these problems. But all the solutions as any ideas have no value until it is implemented, only then it can be given value and measured its potential, its public interest, and revenue opportunity.
How Do I Start a Startup?
It's most difficult to start, not because it is a hard process, but because most people don’t know how to do it. It's easy to begin if you know what to do in front of the white canvas - in art school, we call it fear of the white page.
And here is how you can do it.
How to Generate a Minimum of 60 Startup Ideas in 2 Months?
- Get a notebook with 60 pages minimum,
- Every day add 2 ideas - problem and solution,
- Turn the page without rereading it,
- Do it for 30 days,
- When you have 60 ideas or so open the notebook from the beginning,
- Research every idea and write down:
- Add more details on the problems it solves,
- For whom this solution is,
- How the solution will be implemented,
- How much it costs,
- Who are the competitors,
- Burn the book without reading it again!
- Here is a more detailed explanation of how you should do that.
2 Ideas a Day
In a 60 pages notebook write 2 ideas a day, it should take you no more than a minute, I recommend asking a 6 -10 years old child to help you get started (first couple of days). Anything goes to salad from world hunger problem to dirty windows, and anything that annoys you daily, no idea is silly or too complicated or outrageous, no idea discrimination! Write what is the problem and what is the solution, only 2 sentences are allowed here.
Done? Turn the page and bye-bye for today. After 60 or so ideas you go to the next stage.
Every idea gets researched, you are not allowed to judge or choose your ideas at this point, you research them with a serious face or a happy face if you want. You need to find out more details about the problem, for whom you want to solve this problem, how the solution will be implemented, and approximate costs, at this stage you can just add numbers from the top of your head. No more than 2 sentences for each category.
Done? Burn it away without thinking about it…
What 60 Startup Ideas Will Teach You?
Well, you'll need to find out yourself for sure, but here are some that I’m hoping for.
Your Ideas Are Not Golden...
First, you will learn not to perceive ideas like pieces of gold, the idea is an idea, with no value, what is truly valuable is your time and your attention. What you want to spend your time on, what issues you want to care about?
Secondly, It will help you overcome the freeze of starting, by the end of 2 months, you will be a professional beginner, the one who knows how long it takes to start, how long? 1 day!
Obvious Ideas or Original Ideas?
Surprise! After the 20th idea your obvious ideas, which everyone else would come up with too, will run out, this is when you will start digging deeper, looking harder, where your real creativity and looking under the hood will begin. This will save you from going with the flow and make you best at choosing ideas that no one thought about, it will help you differentiate ideas, you will know immediately how many obvious ideas were started and later become a hidden killer of time and wasted potential for so many startups.
Originality comes with two things, quantity, and a deeper look.
Freedom Of Creation!
When you will generate so many ideas, you will know that you need not jump on the first Idea comes to you, you will know how wide your choices are, freedom of creation comes from the experience of choice, and practical understanding that your choices are not just theoretically infinite, but you will actually experience that through the process. Give yourself this freedom, it will save you from the main mistake most startuppers do before even starting, by choosing the wrong problem or wrong solution to focus on and coming face to face with burnout and loss of interest.
Freedom of creation comes from the experience of choice.
And lastly, by the time you come back to your so original ideas a month later, you will often experience the idea cold-headed, you will have many lessons to learn in the process of research which will help you next time when you get excited about something to remember how amazing it sounds at first and how ridiculous and useless it will sound later, yet you will discover that sometimes at first glance ridiculous ideas turned out to be a good one, and a good one turned out to be unreasonable one, only working with them you will truly master the idea generation stage, this experience no one can give you until you do it by yourself, it will sharpen your intuition.
Intuition without experience is just superstition.
How to Choose on What Problem to Focus on?
It’s an interesting topic for me, there are no rules here that work universally. From my experience, I advise you to choose a problem with which you deal daily or it greatly impacts your life. I believe is best to choose a problem where the solution will be for you personally, in this case, you will be the judge of the solution, the first tester, and user of it, in films and game design there is a practice not to create anything that you won't like to watch or play yourself, in this situation you can use your intuition to speed up the development process.
Solve it for yourself then for others.
Ok, we all have a gazillion problems, which one is it then? I personally choose problems that infuriate me, then I can use this energy to propel me through the building process which sometimes can get daunting and we often lose focus, this kills two birds.
We never give up on something that we care about.
But remember, the problem you will start with will change, morph, take different shapes and directions. Don't be alarmed, this is ok, your instincts will tell you whether this is it or not, the reality is complex, and our cognitive capacity being limited works well when we let it do what it can do best, to adapt to changes. Take advantage of the first phases in learning and experimenting with the problem you want to solve.
Nature calls - adapt or die.
How to Start?
I like the concept called “unfail”, which is basically based on the idea that when you start your project it is “failed” because it doesn't exist, and every day you work on unfailing a problem at the time pulling your startup out of the abyss.
This can help you overcome the fear and the psychological barriers, considering that this is one of the reasons we never begin many things in our lives believing we can’t pull it off or that not knowing how to do it matters somehow. In many cultures especially in Post Soviet Countries, we treat failure as a death sentence to our personality, execution of our professionalism, and freezes our mind in fear of real death.
Yet from all biographies I’ve read anyone who did accomplish anything in their life, writer, painter, architect, politicians, any profession all build their success on the ruins of failed attempts of an Everest size. Only trying and failing allows you to learn and analyze these failures, experience reality, not theory, it forms your instinct on which later you will rely to create your masterpiece, and this helps improve on the next step. Not a single writer, painter, musician ever created a masterpiece from the first try, the masterpieces come as a result of thousands of works that will never be seen by the rest of the world.
Fail your way to success!
It all sounds depressing at first glance, it's easier not to try so we don't have to suffer. I know how frustrating it can be, tiring, what to do when you lose your fire?
You Don’t Build a Startup It Builds You
A thought experiment for you. If you built a startup, and if all goes well, tomorrow comes someone with an offer to buy your startup, take the money, what will you give them for the money?
You give them a system, a process, a technology, how it all works, you give them information and a team. It's easy if you prototype a car, you give them the car, but if it's something less tactile? Like for example our startup MedicalTourism.Review it's a website anyone can build a website, what are the components of our “car”?
So when you create the process one of the fundamentals is to implement your process, what you need to do daily so the vehicle would run without you pushing it with your energy? The startup has to pull you, not you the startup. Until then you need to fail until you get to a day where not working for the startup is an effort, this is your main goal as the creator of your startup.
How To Keep The Fire in a Startup?
With motivation and inspiration is easy, you need to focus on forming a team that is passionate about what you are doing, no you don't need in your core team people who emotionally are not involved in the problem, and the solution, these people will drain you and drown you. However, if you do get to form a team that dreams the same better world as you do, they will be your inspiration and you theirs, it’s a perpetual engine.
I also use books as inspiration, to books I turn when I lose direction when I feel disappointed, lost, frustrated, confused, overwhelmed. Any startup-related book in 5 minutes will pump me to the rocket engine power, ready to fly. It works because no matter how much I know, my experience is never enough, nor any other person will ever know everything. Books help me hack the system by collecting knowledge from other experiences, giving me insights, passion, and ideas. No, articles don’t do the job, if I have a question I need a deep dive, not a surface scratch, 10 sentences would not do it.
What are you waiting for?
Go get your 60-page notebook, get 3 books on how to start a startup, and schedule yourself for a startup related event to meet inspiration, support, and your future partners in greatness.