[Nikhil V, Founder of letshead.to shares few hard reality of being an entrepreneur – and yet, why he is still one! Being a college grad to launching a magazine to going bankrupt and bouncing back – do read his story!]
Everyone talks about how ‘cool’ and glamorous Entrepreneurship is. Its almost become like a fluffy parallel universe whose inhabitants have 5 arms, 4 legs and 3 eyes.
Since everyone is so seduced by entrepreneurship, let me take this opportunity to tell you why you should NOT be an entrepreneur.
Entrepreneurship is for fools
Its for people who believe so blindly in something, that nothing will stop them from achieving it. They could go mad, lose their marriages, break relations with family, give up their education – nothing will stop them.
An entrepreneur is someone who lives by the words ‘No Matter What’.
Isn’t it easier to be a sleaze? To give that hidden middle finger to your boss when he asks you to do something? To know fully well that your boss will get fired by his higher up if you are not productive? That its totally OK to not finish something? That you always have other options? That there is always an easier way out?
Entrepreneurship is for people who want to carry the weight of the world on their shoulders
Its for people who want to solve the world’s problems. Its for people who think it is upon them to be ‘The One’. People who are actually delusional enough to think that they are like Neo from the Matrix? That if they stop doing what they are doing, the world will crumble and lives will be lost.
Isn’t it easier for someone else to do the worrying? To chill out, relax and laugh at people stressing out? To know fully well that someone else will clean up your mess? That you left the world exactly the way it was, and did nothing to change it? Do you really want to be responsible for people’s salaries, happiness, and putting their children in a good school?
Entrepreneurship is for Visionaries
Its for people who don’t live in the present – people who think they can alter the course of destiny for the planet. People who always think there is a better way of doing something. People who can see the future, and stake their lives to make it a reality.
Isn’t it easier to just do what is told to you? To just finish the day’s tasks and forget about work till the next morning? To use the current solution, however inefficient it is? To only think about getting married, having kids and settling in life? To leave predicting the future to a palmist or an astrologer? After all Astrologers and Palmists have an easier job, they just predict the future and leave it – these mad entrepreneurs will actually go and make it happen.
Entrepreneurs are Fighters
Its for mad guys who like to fight till their last breath. For people who will keep on breaking – barriers, ceilings, impossibilities, resistance, competitors or whatever is thrown in the way. For people who will keep on punching till the opponent begs for mercy, no matter how much they themselves bleed. For those who just cant stay away from a challenge.
Why do you wanna get hurt? Why do you wanna break barriers? Isn’t it easier to just let people be, and barriers stop you? If something is impossible, why challenge it? Who gives a damn about competition anyway – its your boss’s problem!
Entrepreneurs make pots of Money
Its for those who want to create huge amounts of wealth. Enough for them to make a pile and swim in it. To be able to blow it up buying fancy cars and huge mansions. More importantly, its for those who want to create pots of wealth for those who work with them – to see their employees buy all these fancy things. Most importantly, To create funds, and give back to society and the economy.
Who cares about giving back to society? Why be so altruistic? Isn’t it enough to just find a better paying job, save properly and make sure your children study in good schools? Why bother about your colleagues?
Entrepreneurs change lives
Its for those who change the lives of people around them, and in the entire process have their own lives changed. For those whose lives are not the same once they embark on the journey. For those who grow into Superman, Batman, Shaktimaan and Hanuman all in one. Those who seek to attain mastery over their art because they have no choice but to be the best at it for their startups. For those who know that their team’s lives will not be the same once they are done with the startup.
Why do you want to be Shaktimaan? Why do you want to attain mastery over anything, when one can just Ctrl-C and Ctrl-V? Why do you want your life to change, when everything is so nice and normal?
Entrepreneurs are Survivors
Its for those who can be thrown into an island full of monkeys, devoid of human beings, and they will still manage to build a roaring business by finding a neighboring island with humans and export coconuts to them while having taught the monkeys the basics of economics, and living a luxurious life. For those mad guys who can survive a nuclear holocaust. For those who can turn the proverbial eskimo into a Ice cube franchisee. For those who can not only survive, but make the most of it.
Why look for opportunity when all you need is to survive? If there is a nuclear holocaust, then why not just accept it, and die the way god intends you to? Why struggle to breathe, when you can just slip into a peaceful happy sedated coma?
Ladies and Gentlemen. Entrepreneurship does all of this to you.
I was a confused 20 yr old who hated college. I was insecure about who I was, scared that I was wandering about aimlessly and had zero self confidence.
Then – I started a magazine! An industry that has a 90% plus failure rate – that too for a kid with no background in publishing, writing and no money! Sure, I could have started something a little more achievable, but being young and reckless comes with its madness.
So I started ‘Strange Brew’ – a 28-48 page full color magazine which ran for 6 issues and was a big hit with the readers but a mega flop with advertisers. And knowing nothing about funding, VCs and financing did not help at all! So the print magazine crashed, I burned with a massive debt, abused by the 20 odd ppl working with me, dumped by my girlfriend, almost got thrown out of home a million times and other unspeakables.
Today Strange Brew is relaunching as an online magazine having paid off all our debts, and is doing thriving business as a media company making videos for global companies, NGOs and other prominent clients. Its running itself with an awesome team, and I dont even need to be around for it to grow.
I started a company called Strange Labs and we run www.letshead.to which is a web concept that partners with Restaurants, Nightclubs, Cafes etc and we have a totally new way for them to get customers and do sales. I work with a team of 7 Superstars, and we will stop at nothing to grow it into a gazillion dollar venture. And my life absolutely rocks!
Entrepreneurship changed my life, and gave me much much more than I bargained for.
Are you up for it?