Monday, June 8, 2009

What I love about start-ups

Today reminded me of why I love start-ups so much. Rusty (my partner and the creator/CEO of TheBlogFrog) and I spent the day holed up in the Boulder Public Library working on arguably the most important presentation we'll ever make. There are just two of us (for now). No fancy office, no corporate salaries, no entertainment or travel budget. Just two people fighting hard to turn a great idea into a reality that will change the status quo.

I absolutely LOVE the early phase of a start-up. Almost to a fault. To me, there is no other stage at which the realm of possibility is so huge. If you are starting with nothing, all that exists ahead is pure potential and YOU GET TO DECIDE WHAT IS POSSIBLE. We get to sit in a library cubicle, on a park bench, or at a Starbucks and decide what we will build, what it will look like, and how we will solve our customers' problems. No one can tell us its not possible because frankly, they don't know. Nobody knows. If you live in a world of unknowns, all there is left to do is create.

My first job out of college was with a big telecommunications company marketing high speed data networks. At the time, they had 80,000 employees. I had a nice salary, a matching 401K, a cafeteria in the building, and an excruciating 4-year wait from product conception to market launch. I just thought that was the norm. Then I moved to Boulder and discovered the tech start-up scene where entrepreneurs were turning passionate ideas into real companies within months. For me there was no turning back. Six start-ups later and the early stage is still my favorite.

If you are the type of person who likes lots of constants in your formulas and the variables make you nervous, a start-up might not be for you. But if you thrive on the adrenalin and sense of freedom that comes with creating something from nothing, you might want to give it a try :)


Louise Ross said...

You write (and speak) so eloquently about your start-up experiences, Holly.

In fact, that may be a future venture for you: speaking to the next generation of women technology-entrepreneurs about the joys and challenges of starting your own social networking venture.

Love your blog, it's a joy to read such well expressed thoughts and ideas :)

Louise Ross

Tara said...

Sorry I couldn't find your email and had deleted one you sent me several weeks ago re: the blog frog.

Thanks for stopping by my blog. Unfortunately, FPF wasn't my idea so I can't take credit for it but you can send people my way anytime. I love meeting new friends through the blog world! Alicia over at More Than Words ( is actually the creator of FPF. I'm just a dedicated participant. You can tell people you found FPF through me if you'd like though. It really is a fun idea and we always end up wondering why in the world we wore the clothes we did back then. It brings back memories and causes a few laughs.


ruth @gracelaced said...

I'm so glad you visited my blog! We are a part of two "start-ups": a school and a church! It takes so much patience and faith! Blessings to you as you continue on your future ventures!

Lori said...

Enjoyed reading this!! It is exciting.

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