So often, I tend to get very negative when it comes to marketing or business ideas. I’m sure my DW can attest to my most-used comment (“outburst” is probably a better word…) while reading VentureBeat is, “Oh my god! Listen to this stupid idea that just got millions in VC funding!” I’m not sure if it’s age, cynicism, or just being around a critical mass of coworkers over my lifetime to really, finally be able to quickly separate the smart from the, well, not so smart.
Example: While reading about Bump.com, the license-plate social media startup that links people via their car’s license plate numbers and has just raised $1M, I jumped to the conclusion that it was, yet again, another reason that the Silicon Valley bubble was about to burst. Instead, I should have focused on the positives:
- VC and angel money is fairly easy to get.
- A startup’s focus is usually very different after a year.
- Getting an early jump on connecting your car to your social graph is an ingenious idea.
- This is a great experiment to test the bounds of social media.
- I now have an outlet beyond my middle finger and my horn for the jerk-store in front of me who jammed on his breaks and didn’t use his turn signal.
With less than two weeks focused on my own startup, I’ve quickly realized that there is as much negative energy in the business world as there is positive. And, being pretty much a solo operation, it’s up to me alone (and maybe Buddha) to ease my suffering. My negative energy hasn’t been because these other startup ideas have been that bad (OK, some have been that bad…), it’s been due to my jealousy and anger at myself for not having the confidence and positivity to launch something on my own.
Now, when my startup launches, I can’t wait for all of the other people to say, “Yeesh, what a stupid idea!” It’s already happening, and, after a momentary, “oh no, they might be right,” I quickly plow forward, knowing that this is a great idea! And, to all of those other companies getting seed or VC funding, I say, “Good for you! (But leave some for me!)”