We all have mostly pleasant memories of our childhood. These memories may be few and far between, but they flash by us once in a while. It could be the school we want to, the first friend that we made, the first train journey that we remember, the first toys that we played with. We may forget much of our later life, but there are those few early memories that we never will.
For the entrepreneur, the childhood has its own joy of discovery of freedom, of finding new things, of doing things on ones own, of the early successes. There is an immense sense of fulfillment when things start falling into place slowly, but surely. This is a world in which the entrepreneur now seeks to make connections, reach out and touch others. Everything around may be the same, but yet things look and feel quite different.
The entrepreneur now needs to start putting a team together, along with raising capital (either from family and friends, or from angels and venture capitalists). Each day is now full of life. There just arent enough hours to do all that needs to be done. Every morning brings with it a fresh ray of hope. Every night is at the end of either a satisfying days of work or one which has been depressing for a variety of reasons. Either way, a good nights sleep puts a full stop and the morning brings with it its own new event stream. Each day is an experience which enriches, each night etches these experiences into memory. Whatever happened the previous day, the only certainty is that this new day will be unlike any that has gone by previously.
Each day of childhood has to be lived through. Life cannot be fast-forwarded. The same is true for an entrepreneur. The new business has to be built day by day, customer by customer, rupee by rupee. There are no magic wands. And in many ways, this is the real life of the entrepreneur challenge and struggle, success and failure, laced together.
It is often said that ones best friends are made in school. It may be no different for the entrepreneur. One always remembers the people who stood by one at the early, difficult times. The first employee who joined wishing upon a star, the first customer who showed faith, the first cheque they are the encouragement and endorsements that the entrepreneur needs along the way. They each have their special place in the history of the business the entrepreneur is building.
I still remember the day we launched IndiaWorld, the first two customers we got for our home pages, and the first large order we got for a website (I was on a bus back from Nasik on a suspenseful trip in the pre-cellphone era). Even today, the many meetings I had in the early days to try and get content partnerships are still quite fresh. Much of the period since then is a blur, but those few memories are forever etched away.
Tomorrow: An Entrepreneurs Early Days (continued)