We as a society are loosing our instincts. It is my belief that instinct plays a role in successful startups. In a startup it is imperative and essential you posses a passion for being the strongest, fastest, smartest or combination of all of the aforementioned with respect to the technology or business model you are creating. There are no gray areas concerning creating a successful agile business. You cannot pass off the blame or pass the buck in this environment. This is one reason that so many come back to the startup world. This is survival of the fittest. Yet there are some that do not view it this way. They view a method of tearing down instead of raising everyone’s performance level.
Playing to Success; Playing to Failure
There are those that play to success or play to failure. Playing to success is the process that I prefer and honestly only know how to perform within the context of my career. Playing to success means that you involve as many people as possible in the discussions in order to make the pie larger for everyone. You also involve people that are BETTER than you. I like to term this “Wolves Drinking Out of the Same Pond.” If all the wolves drink from the pond and protect the pond it will create a larger and healthier pond for all the wolves (companies) involved. Playing to success is connecting the Elite of Elite together. If you look at the world of successful startups the people involved are usually multi-faceted over-achievers. They are great business types AND world class rowers; they are world-class programmers AND accomplished musicians. Then most add extracurricular endeavors like marathon running, martial arts or some other extreme sport. Most read self-help books or some type of non-fiction daily; if it is fiction it usually is something arcane or they are re-reading say Milton’s Paradise Lost. These types of people usually seek out others of like kind to aid them. Also most do not need self help books yet they strive to make themselves better at all costs.
So lets return to the importance of loosing our instincts. Our ability to perceive fight or flight situations are becoming less and less. We do not, on daily basis, need to detect these situations or do we? We no longer need to smell the air to detect an adversary. What does that do to our pre-cognitive processes when engaging with an adversary (read competitive company). Is tearing down the new competitive startup advantageous? On the contrary startups should ban together. The startups are the wolves. We have the advantage, we have the speed, might and will power and passion to create faster and more focused entities. Exits are Acquisitions. So why wouldn’t we want to increase our ability to detect Fight or Flight? You think that Venture Capitalist can’t detect when you are not completely committed or are unsure of your answer you were just asked? You bet they can detect any type of fright mechanism. Use at your disposal what let you arrive at this juncture. Go increase and practice your senses (all 6 of them) and I bet it will make you a better entrepreneur. If it doesn’t at least you will have improved yourself. For those that already know you already have and I will see you at the pond.