25 minutes audio interview
Local Los Angelian, Arjun Patel has learnt a few things about being an entrepreneur.
He admits to being a wannabe entrepreneur in previous years, I will too.
I’ll also admit to the total bullshit story I told myself about the vast amounts of money I’d earn from running my own business, while having next to no idea of what that actually translated to in terms of effort and care on my part to the people I’d be serving.
Arjun is 23 years old. He is wise for his age and he has a funky beard.
Perhaps the wisdom is in the beard?
Arjun and I met in Tea Pop, a cafe in North Hollywood and he gave me a snap shot of his life and business experience; he’s a good guy.
He told me about an App he and his biz partner have released and are still growing, but his real wisdom was regarding, let’s call it, making Entrepreneurship suit you and the needs of the people you want to serve.
I say “suit” in the sense of getting clear on the kind of mindset you want to have as you travel across the enchanted landed of Entrepreneurship.
Arjun made an honest, humble and important point about how many would-be entrepreneurs (himself included) dream of running a billion dollar company, but don’t know some of the actual effects of trying to make that happen.
Consider the effect your entrepreneurial vision, dream or fantasy can have on your life, the potential demands of investors, and the way it can change and even end relationships with friends and family.
It reminds me of Michael Gerber’s “The E-Myth” and the thought that runs through some employed people of our world that goes along the lines of: “I don’t need my boss, I could run my own business.”
Then reality kicks in and you are working twice as much and making twice as less, but you keep telling yourself more bullshit that you are gonna make a million dollar business.
After having a taste of where things were heading, entrepreneurially speaking, Arjun has decided to drop the fantasy of a billion dollar company (for the time being) and instead he chose to value his family, his friends, a small group of loyal customers and creating genuine community while growing an App.
Don’t do things that scale, in the beginning. This wisdom goes against the popular entrepreneurial advice going around. Doing things that do scale is of course a great idea, but at what cost to your friends, family and creating great relationships over time for your loyal customers?
Mister Patel has chosen this grounded and soulful path of the Entrepreneur rather than go on the other path of trying to have millions of customers and the effort it takes just to get people (or “users”) on board.
Arjun and his business partner realised that trying to “get” customers to try their App was expensive, required a lot of effort and simply, wasn’t what they really wanted to do.
They realised they valued community building, their customers, friends, family and themselves over the entrepreneurial dream of running a billion dollar company. Or should I say, they valued staying grounded while building something meaningful.
About the Author: Samuel Osborne is a professional speaker, educator, coach, performer and beatboxer. He likes baking banana bread, home cooking, psytrance music and LA hip hop duo People Under the Stairs.