In a previous edition of this Editorial or Column, whatever you prefer, I talked about the Maker Bubble and the current craze of creating startups.
Many people scratch their heads trying to find an idea for some sort of a product and hope to create a successful startup company for it that will bring in loads of cash. But what many of these makers tend to forget is that it takes much more than a good product to start a company and then survive for longer than a month.
The other day I talked to a maker known as Snow White who launched seven startups without success. Yes, all her startups failed for various reasons, and, surprisingly, none of these reasons was the product for which the startup was created. Snow White still rides her bicycle instead of whizzing around in a Tesla while her resident landlord takes messages and makes her tea three times a day.
So what went wrong with all these startups?
Well, for the first one Snow White had teamed up with a friend and quickly ran into a cashflow problem where the cash flowed more easily into the pockets of the partner than into the bank account of the fledgeling company.
The second startup – this time with a commercial partner instead of a friend – said his goal was manufacturing two chocolate-covered candy bars in one packet. Sadly the production process created so much animosity between the two that they decided to go their own way, each taking one half of the product, that's one chocolate-covered candy bar in a packet, a product that, of course, nobody was waiting for.
For the third startup she signed with a friendly and oh so helpful incubator full of good advice. A very bad headache caused by a glass of apple juice offered to her by the friendly, elderly lady who ran the incubator, prevented Snow White from reading the contract as carefully as she should have done and two weeks later she discovered that her startup wasn’t her startup anymore.
The fourth startup was a threesome where each of the participants owned one third of the company. When the two other partners fell deeply in love with each other Snow White was quickly voted out of the company.
The fifth startup revolved around a technological innovation. Her partner insisted on taking out a patent for it, but Snow White felt that that would take too long. Her partner managed to convince the bankers and when, many months and euros later, the patent didn’t come through, a competitor had already taken the market.
The sixth startup started out well, with good partners and promising financial backing but lightning struck the office and the fire that followed destroyed her laptop. The backup Snow White always kept safely in her room turned out to be unreadable.
The seventh startup she decided to do all by herself. She worked hard, very hard, but when eventually the accumulated fatigue turned into a burnout she thrashed her files, trampled her laptop and got institutionalized.
Today Snow White is feeling better, but has no plans for an eighth startup... yet...
So what about your startup?
- on Education & Information
Snow White and the Seven Startups
September 22, 2016 | 08:00
The other day I talked to a maker known as Snow White who has launched seven startups without success. Yes, all her startups have failed for various reasons, and, surprisingly, none of these reasons was the product for which the startup was created. Snow White still rides her bicycle instead of whizzing around in a Tesla while her resident landlord takes messages and makes her tea three times a day.