Time, the ultimate enemy....
Updated: May 29, 2019
The definition of time has changed. Technology has compressed it to the point of oblivion and it is now our biggest enemy. It is the one commodity we all lack. There is no going back, no buying more and no escaping its pressure. It is one of the most important variable in our lives and while most believe they control it, in reality we have become slaves to it.
Nowhere is this more true than on the Internet and for aspiring start-ups wanting to leverage its enormous power. Most tech entrepreneurs I meet are under the misguided impression that they have "time to get it right". I do not agree. As in life, you need to deliver and impress at all times. Expectations build-up and the tech ecosystem must accept that time is the enemy against which all will be benchmarked. There is no escaping its judgment.
The reality is that you need to think of your start-up as a 24/7 journey, one where you recognise that you are always auditioning and you are only as good as your last achievement. Time is not your friend, nor should you draw any comfort from it. Rather you need to face it head-on and recognise two of its key elements:
As a start-up, the flip side of time is money. The longer you take to "get it right", the more money will you need to raise and this translates into dilution. While part of the game, dilution ultimately is the enemy of entrepreneurs and once diluted it is extremely difficult to get it back.
The by-product of time is competition. In an increasingly flat world, the more time you take to "get it right", the more chances you give people around the world to copy your idea and take the spoils of victory.
The Internet rewards speed and punishes those that don't take time seriously. For my part, I encourage entrepreneurs to forgo the comfort of time and entice them to push, push and push more. It is about executing at "Warp Speed"....without regret.
Some time ago I wrote a post about the importance of Speed. I think it complements this post well: https://www.daretodreambeyond.com/post/2016/10/25/speed-mattersalways