In my previous post I had shared the story of my venture 'ePiller' and how I had to shut it down. In this post, I will be discussing some of the lessons I learned through my failures. Though I am not some great person from whom you should be learning the tricks of entrepreneurship, life is too short to commit and learn from your own mistakes, you should look for the mistakes committed by others as well.One of the first mistakes I did post starting out; was the absence of required homework. I had not given enough time to see the local market and the conditions that existed around. The Website designing and internet marketing segment is heavily flooded with companies and the competition is head high. What this competition does is customers expect you to offer services at lower rates, for you have no experience behind you. Unless and until you have a world class service to rock the walls of the market you have to face problems.
Decide firmly on the co-founder. Most people tend to prefer their friends or even relatives, but you should remember entrepreneurship is different from any relation. You will have to face hardships and challenges and if you think your dear friend will stand by your side then you are fooling yourself. Lt. Steve Jobs said it right “you will need to have the passion for what you are doing, because it’s so hard that if you don’t any rational person would give up. You have to do it over a sustained period of time. The successful persons who have it are the ones who used to love what they did and if you don’t any sane person would give up.” The absence of any co-founder will affect your journey profoundly. I relied heavily on my co-founder while I never knew what his mentalities were. Look beyond your relations, your friend might be perfect for hanging out in malls but he won’t be ideal company when you have to work on the computer for 10 hours at a stretch.
It will invariably happen but in my case I received a very warm welcome and appreciation when I started out. People from NEN appreciated our idea; we got press coverage and an interview by the local news channel as well. At the end of the day I didn’t benefit from any of that. The fact that I had expected that these would bear significant results for me, worsened the scenario. Watch out for all the people who will catch every opportunity to extract an advantage out of you. Stop wasting time on these people instead concentrate on your venture.
When we were out in the market hunting for clients, the real problem we faced was pricing. As we were inexperienced we underestimated ourselves and went for minimum pricing. At that price we got the worst clients who never had anything to invest in us and we lost precious time running for them. We used to vary our price model for different people; it showed that we lacked confidence in ourselves. Don’t do that, believe in yourself and what you are doing, you will receive the desired result at some point in time.
Looking back I would say that I got the act of starting out right but then some major points got misplaced. The fear of starting and going into the market was not there within. It still isn’t. As student entrepreneurs we have lots of time to commit mistakes but most importantly learn from the mistakes. I committed one and I have enough time to make one more mistake but different from the earlier one. After all there are still 2 years of college left ahead of me.