The primary condition to run a company
Recently I attended the MIT Global Startup Workshop in Athens which was an amazing event where various participants like students, entrepreneurs, investors, etc were given the opportunity to learn from the best in innovation and develop their entrepreneurial spirit.
One thing that stood out for me was the core concept around Bill Aulet's workshop named
Intro to disciplined entrepreneurship.
# The question
So the main pillar of that workshop was:
What is the singular necessary and sufficient condition to have a company?
Is it having a high-performing team? Nope.
Is it having a brilliant idea? Nope.
Is it being an ambitious and innovative founder? Nope.
Is it being an efficient and experienced leader? Nope.
Is it having a strong network around you? Nope.
Is it using state-of-the-art technologies? Nope.
Is it having tunnel-vision with a specific plan and end-goal in mind? Nope.
Is it being an extremely hard-working person? Nope.
# The harsh truth
So what is it?
The singular necessary and sufficient condition to have a company, is having at least 1 paying customer
To be totally transparent, I preferred to do some networking while the workshop was taking place so a friend of mine shared this with me during the lunch break but this was like a huge slap in my face once I heard the answer 😬.
All the answers above apply of course and play a huge role while building a successful organization. Nothing can happen though if we cannot pay the salaries of our people or if we cannot bring talent in.
No matter how sexy ideas we have, how smart and ambitious we are, or whether we work 16 hours 7 days per week, ideas and aspirations don't keep the lights open. That's facts.
Being realistic and pragmatic is very important to build a sustainable firm and this is a key difference between dreamers and achievers. While it's essential to set big goals, it's equally important to approach them with a practical mindset while making solid steps forward.
This is something all of us should keep in mind and not only the founders or the entrepreneurs since the landscape is extremely brutal without any signs of romance in the post-covid era. Cheers!!
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