Being a rebel isn’t easy. My tendency to philosophically disagree with things puts me at odds with many “thought leaders” within my field. For example, one simple (but apparently offensive) idea that I have is that entrepreneurship does not have to be an 80+/hr per week, mind numbing, sleepless night inducing, battle for self-worth and world domination. I happen to work on my start-up occasionally (maybe 5 hours a week). That’s not because I’m not motivated or determined to make my venture a top contender in its sector; I’m just not a fan of busy work.
Does anyone remember back in high school when you had a substitute teacher? Not always but many times, the substitute teacher was given the simple task facilitating the completion of busy work that has been left behind by the full-time teacher. It was during these days when the chances of me getting detention or being escorted to the principal’s office were at their highest.
My point… If I have 3 tasks I planned to complete for my start-up today (email a few potential investors, update my go-to-market strategy on paper & finish collecting data of my TAM [Total Addressable Market]), that will not likely take all day. After I’m done with those 3 tasks, I’m done working for the day as far as I’m concerned.
Maybe your thinking, “what’s my problem? If I don’t want to work 80+ hours a week, then don’t…” right?
Well, a few weeks ago I was accepted into an accelerator program… Initially, I was super excited and honored that this program saw potential in me and my venture. It was a huge validation that my work has not been in vain. However, as my excitement led me to read through the program curriculum, read interviews of the accelerators’ founder and browse every aspect of the site; my excitement faltered. It would seem that almost every aspect of this accelerator program is built upon all the principles and presumptions on entrepreneurship that I don’t believe in. Now… Do I have to agree with everything an accelerator program represents in order to participate and learn from it? Nope. Will I participate in a program that gives me 5 hour assignments (not exaggerating) that have nothing to do with my business but are meant to see if I’m “entrepreneur” material? Nope.
So here’s my plan. In a few days, the accelerator program has its first session. I already plan to drop out but I’d like to at least attend one session to see if I’m completely off in my assessment so far. By the time people read this post, I will probably already have dropped out of the program. Crazy huh… A struggling entrepreneur who drops out of accelerator programs… Oh well, that’s me.
Lesson in Retrospect: Progress or Principle? Faith or Doubt? Money or Mission? All decisions are not always black or white but those that are may require us to practice what we preach.