An infant elephant is tied up with chains. He tries very hard to break free but fails. Every day he wakes up with a new hope, toils day long and sleeps with disappointment and failure. This continues for a while and gradually he gives up. He accepts that chains are unbreakable. With time, he grows into a big powerful elephant, still tied to the same chain. Today he is so powerful so as to break-free within seconds but he has given up.
The same is true with our lives. As a child, we were inquisitive and creative but cease to be creative and question the society doctrine as we grow up. Still wondering how this story is related to start-ups? Infant elephant is a startup which tries too many things initially but fails in want of power, resources and network. Chains are the constraints of resources. In the beginning, resources are limited hence many venture might fail in want of resources. But slowly the reach of company grows. It gradually grows into a successful enterprise. Some of its failed idea can change the world today. But start-up has been conditioned to believe that the idea lacks the spark.
The point that I want to drive home is: remain creative and inquisitive as your start-up grows. You are not the same as you were a decade back; the same is true for your start-up. Just because you failed once, doesn’t imply that you would fail every time or just because an idea clicked in yesteryears doesn’t guarantee its success every single time.
Time, person and place are major factors which affect the dynamics of a start-up. You need to identify the idea whose time has come. Facebook might have failed miserably, had it cropped up a decade earlier as Internet had not penetrated to the masses then. So you need to be at right time with right persons at right place to fancy your chances of success. Time suggests the state in life-cycle of start-up you are in. It is important that you know your limitations as an infant elephant and recognize your power as you grow up. Person refers to the team that you have and persons you interact with including your customers, VCs and investors. Place includes your physical location and external environment you deal with. Clearly time, person, place for start-ups change drastically over years. Hence, don’t stay chained up, break free. try out, experiment, fail, fall, stand and try again!!!