If you’re planning to start a company of your own, then you’re embarking on a journey to become the change you want to see around you. Intent is precious in this journey and like gold, only the right constituent of Aurum (without impurities) makes it uniquely gold otherwise it’s just another fake. As the saying goes: “If it is not Panadol, it cannot be like Panadol.” Here are three (3) recommended qualities you should possess if you want to succeed in this journey to change your world, especially looking forward to unlocking the gates of funding from investors:
1. GENUINE INTENTION
This is probably the part where it gets either scary or interesting, and it depends on your perspective, your approach, and your personal philosophy. One can pretend to bear the best intentions at something or a cause, but not forever. So, if your intent was to change your prolonged unemployment status, or because you just ‘wannabe’ a Founder/CEO of your company – a really cool title though – and hoping that, one day, out of sheer luck or brute cut-throat practice, you just might find yourself in bed with layers of money piles surrounded by roses. Although, unemployment may be your motivation for starting a company, it should not define your intention for ‘creating’ your company. A perfect intention for founding a company should be originality born out of a burning desire to solve an identified problem that is affecting you or someone else. This is so that when you finally come up with a solution, your competitors will question their solution and ponder: “Why didn’t we think of this?” When your intention to form a company is not genuine, you may find yourself spending more time trying to ‘force’ people to notice your solution to a problem they probably don’t have (some may call that marketing or growth hacking).
2. A KNACK FOR NAUGHTINESS
Before you go haywire on this one, this does not mean (or insinuate) evil; but rather, as an open confession, it not yet explicable why investors love this trait in founders; and to add to this complication, ‘naughty’ founders tend to be more successful than the normally ‘good-guy’ founder. Before you take off to the dictionary to look up the meaning of ‘Naughty’, try as much as you possibly can to stay within the context of entrepreneurship, building-from-the-scratch, and startups. In addition, having a ‘knack’ for naughtiness, refers to the thinking outside the box mentality, ability to see things outside and beyond popular views in a manner that eventually returns to influence same popular view; or “hack something to their advantage” in the words of Sam Altman of Loopt. A knack for naughtiness demands you walk around a tall wall you can’t climb, beat the system (if needed) without breaking it, and come out better than the system while also having initiated the process of changing the system for good.
3. GIVING UP ON SOMETHING YOU LOVED
Fried foods – fried rice, French fries, fried meat, and fried chicken – are really delicious meals you probably love. It takes a really strong man to give them all up for say white rice and plain sauce (without pepper or aromatic spice). It’s been several years since you’ve had that ‘great’ idea or a really ‘smart’ solution, until someone picked a ‘silly’ but valid hole that made your ‘treasured’ idea fall like a pack of cards. Deep down it will hurt; the worst part is, you can’t imagine yourself just letting go and starting afresh on something else. In fact, it is easier to repel such important turnaround feedback as a negative energy designed to distract your course of progression; but if you are bold enough to accept feedbacks, and if worthy, from an unbiased point of reasoning, consider giving up on it, then you are awesome! This is probably the surest bet to winning an investor’s appeal. However, it will be extreme mediocrity and deception to yield to every feedback just to win an investor over; the investor is not a robot, remember! Should you succeed in your art of ‘seduction’, it will not be long until the rainy day comes leaving you (and your investor) unprepared for it. The aftermath is an interesting super story specially reserved for another day.
Till next time!