Startup Philosophy: Why Entrepreneurs Inspire Us
Over the past couple of months, I have been attending the Verge Meetups in Indianapolis to learn more about the exciting projects and companies that are being formed. When we sign in at the registration table, we are always asked to identify ourselves as an entrepreneur, a developer, or an investor. By default, I always indicate that I am an entrepreneur, even though I have not started my own fully-functioning business. Despite this fact, I do believe that I will be an entrepreneur one day – I just haven’t decided what I want to do yet!
Growing up, my parents have always been straight-laced types of people: my mom was an attorney turned business law professor turned Dean of a business school. She follows the rules of 9 to 5 work days, wears fancy suits, and follows business etiquette. My dad isn’t much different, except that he was in computer programming and followed the work rules of his clients. Please note**: there is nothing wrong with this lifestyle – entrepreneurship is not for everyone. However, both of my parents had started their own businesses: my mom started her own law firm with a couple other partners and my dad was self-employed. But they never really made their own rules – their work life was still dictated by their clients or someone else. While I really respect my parents for their accomplishments, I have always known that their life wasn’t for me.
I have almost always known that I wanted to go into business when I went to college. I do think that college is a valuable experience, even if it doesn’t teach you about the real world. College taught me something else that I might not have learned had I not gone to school: I learned that I could do anything I set my mind to. My professors, career mentors, and internship supervisors put so much faith into what I could do; I had always been a smart kid, but I never had as high hopes for myself as they did for me. In other words, I think college, especially my experience at Butler University, pushed me to be entrepreneurial-minded. Now, I’m working for my amazing boss and mentor, Doug Karr, who is pushing me even further to be my own business woman.
Last night, when I was listening to Eric Tobias from iGoDigital talk about starting a couple of businesses, I realized that this is without a doubt the life I want to live. Of course, there are always risks with starting your own business: losing money, neglecting your personal life, etc. But I believe that it is better to have tried and failed a startup than to never have tried at all. Why? One reason:
I want to create my own rules.
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