A few days ago I published a new redesign of the homepage and in the opening paragraph I mentioned how I struggled for years when building my first business, and the huge difference it made when I finally found a mentor.
As I was writing the thought struck me that I never properly said thank you to him. Of course I thanked him profusely for his time and kindness, but that's not what I'm talking about.
What I'm talking about is the kind of after-the-fact thank you, when maybe weeks, or months, or years later, you look back and realize how much that moment, and many more afterwards, have helped you get where you are today.
This is hugely important because we all like the myth of the hero that alone fights the bad guys and eventually triumphs, but in the startup world that couldn't be further from the truth. We probably owe where we are today to many more folks than our ego cares to admit, but in doing so we miss a huge opportunity.
We miss a chance to create stronger relationships and we miss a chance to curb our ego, which as founders is one of the biggest limiting factors. It's your ego that will stop you from connecting with your customers, whom you think don't understand your awesome idea; it's your ego that will make you fight with your co-founder and team; it's your ego that will blind you to the inevitable consequences of the feedback you don't want to see.
If I owe more than I could ever repay to my parents and my wife, which have been and are the baseline of who and where I am today, I owe however much of what I've achieved in the startup world to Tristan Kromer. He's the guy that sat with me those 30 mins and shred to pieces my wonderful idea :).
Thank you buddy, these past two years working with you at the Lean Startup Circle have been an amazing experience.
Thank you Tristan.
But there's more to it. This very site I'm talking to you from didn't build itself. Alessandro Prioni is behind every bit that your browser has just downloaded and he's been a constant invaluable help in keeping me focused on the right hypothesis as we decided what to build next.
Thank you Ale
Lean Startup wise I also feel obliged to acknowledge Sean Murphy, from whom I've learned a great deal over these years and whose consistency in going above and beyond to help other entrepreneurs has been always an inspiration.
Thank you Sean
Last but not least I need to acknowledge Leo Babauta of zenhabits. This guy taught me a lot of things, but what's most important to me is that he has shown me that you can change your life and build an insanely profitable business while sticking to your values.
This was crucial to me as I've had so much conflict around entering the business world because it seemed a constant rat-race to make money and convince people to buy something.
Leo has shown me how you can instead change lives by doing something you love and as a byproduct build a successful business.
Thank you Leo
I think Lean Startup, along with other disciplines that are putting the user at the centre, are a fantastic framework to build a new kind of business that focuses on creating value for others and solving problems rather than just making the most money possible.
And this post wouldn't be complete if I didn't thank you, the reader, along with all those that in the last 3 months have decided to get in touch and share what they are working on with me. What you guys are doing is awesome and I'm grateful for the opportunity you gave me.
Thank you all
you all take care,