A constant state of feeling unprepared

June 2, 2011 § Leave a comment

I had a weird dream the other night.  I was completely unprepared for a class.  A term paper was due and I hadn’t even started it.  I was panicked.  I was walking around campus overwhelmed with a fear that I was going to fail the class.  When I woke up, the first thing I remembered was that I hadn’t been in school for 6 years.  The second thing I remembered was that I had this dream before.  But it had been a while.  I last had this dream when I was starting my first company.

The reality of starting a company is that you are always under-resourced.  The result is that it always takes longer than you want to have your product match your vision.  If it ever matches your vision.  The best way I can explain the feeling is that an entrepreneur is in a constant state of feeling unprepared.  Always fighting to keep her head above water.  Always fearful that your company will fail, unless you…

  • …fill that critical hire.
  • …launch that feature.
  • …fix that bug.
  • …improve site performance to X level

In reality, even after you fix the bug, improve performance, add the feature or fill that key role, you never really feel satisfied.  You forget what the product (or team) was before the change (or addition), and immediately start focusing on all that you are still missing.  It is just the nature of the beast.

Good entrepreneurs are in a perpetual state of urgency.  They always focus on what is missing and how good the product/team will be when they have it.  If they are good leaders, their organization shares that sense of urgency.  It’s healthy.  It’s productive.


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