Everywhere I look – I see dead people.
Well maybe not people per se – but dead things. Lifeless objects that have been cast aside for various reasons – it became too hard to continue, neglect due to something shinier, lack of funds – the reasons don’t matter. The fact is that these lifeless objects were once the pride and joy of someone. A cherished idea, prototype or product / service – now a dead object cast deep into the earth.
10 Startups was my idea to identify cemeteries of dead startups; a way of collecting data on what didn’t work. Originally, I went after companies in the startup phase – interviewing entrepreneurs who were filled with hope. The whole idea was to chronicle their story and be able to tell the good along with the bad.
Well that didn’t appeal to me at all. All motivation and gumption left me after the first round of interviews. Turns out, deep down inside I don’t want to talk to those people – it’s all too soon. I need the people who are down on their luck, had their ass handed to them and are looking to make a comeback (or not and take that cushy government job). Everyday I deal with people who are happy-go-lucky and naive about the startup and entrepreneur world. I want to meet the goth equivalent of an entrepreneur. I want to meet other people who see dead people.
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I should note that I originally started writing this article on October 20, 2012. This is around the time when I first started exploring the idea of 10 Startups.com. Since that time, there have been a few hiccups, a few changes of the guard and I’m still unsure how to move forward. I know that over the next few weeks I’ll figure something out, but I’m looking for input from various sources.
Any input you have would greatly be appreciated!
942 days to go
I believe that there is something fundamentally wrong with the way that investment banking is conducted today. It’s something that I noticed with a deal in the fourth quarter of 2013 and it’s been nagging me ever since. I’m setting aside some time to ponder and write about this old antiquated system.
Inspiration struck earlier this week in the form of a panel discussion on the idea of “zero” and “nothingness” or the “void”. I wasn’t able to watch the whole panel discussion, but by accident I clicked on a video off to the side and what I saw blew my mind away. Immediately, I started writing ideas down. Concepts and constructs that I believed to be constant were thrown out the window. I began to see problems and possible solutions in a new light and from an entirely unique angle / point of view.
Today I have 944 days to go. It still seems ominous and too-far-off in the distance. The goal of ten million is even larger – only 9, 995,500 to go (approximately).
Next week will be a long and “interactive” week. Monday will be a day to prep for the trip north and take care of any lingering issues. Tuesday and Wednesday I will be at Georgian College in Barrie. The rest of the week will be in Toronto getting things moving forward.
There is a lot more writing going on over the past week. Writing seems to provide some comfort to me. Music is soothing my soul. I’m listening to a full album of Audioslave and discovering for the first time that I really enjoy it.
While half the world slept, I worked through the night. Music blaring from 7:30pm until 6am with the smell of coffee brewing throughout the night. A few problems had to be sorted out revolving around web sites – 10 Startups, Gobi Capital and Bay Street Hired Guns. I made the mistake of upgrading Gobi Capital to WordPress 3.8 (Parker) and it killed off the biggest section of the network (Gobi Capital with 100k+ id’s). It was a few deep breaths to realize what had occurred due to lack of planning was in reality an opportunity to take something mediocre and turn it into something better.
I will be at Georgian College in Barrie, ON in two weeks (Tuesday January 21st and Wednesday January 22nd) to discuss entrepreneurship and present to one of the entrepreneurship classes (Speaker’s Corner, Tuesday Jan 21, 1-3pm, Rowntree Theatre H106). If anyone has any questions or suggestions, I’m open to them.
This past week has been particularly challenging – focus being my biggest issue. I’ve had five significant events occur in my personal and business life that have caused me to get side tracked from my long term goals. Fortunately, I sat down with a good friend who helped put me on the right path. Thank you SS! Today is day 952.
“Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.”
Colin Powell (1937 – )
former U.S. Secretary of State