This is part of my Series on Getting from Zero to One.
Take a look at that map of yours for a moment and let your eye roam around it clockwise: Mentor, Team, Technology/Product, Partnerships/Customers and Funding. Yes they’re all inter-related, one affecting the other to a large extent- but you can’t worry about that now.If you choose well and execute, success in one will often lead to success in another. You have mapped out the big picture, but now it's time for granularity. You will break your company down into its component parts and again ask yourself basic questions such as these:
What is my vision? What has my customer development told me? What minimum viable product will I begin with? Have I found a good mentor? Who is the first person I need on my team? Who my first channel partnership or first customer? What is the minimum funding I need to get through this first stage? Can I provide it or will it need to come from someone else?
You’re after a succession of firsts all at once, nothing more and nothing less.
Initial Idea & Vision, early Customer Development, early MVP, early Mentor, first team member, first customer, first 10 customers, first 20 customers, first funding in, first revenue.... and on and on... each is a major milestone and each should be thrilling to you. Individually these initial steps in each category may seem modest, but when executed in their totality, something absolutely magical happens to your startup. It is something I have marveled at time and time again when I see it occur and I consider it to be one of the great hidden forces at play in the realm of entrepreneurship. Suddenly, as if by some magic spell, the world begins looks at you and your company differently. What has happened here?
From nothingness you have created Value.
And the delicate needle trembles, moving slowly away from “zero” and tantalizingly close to “one”.The crowd begins to murmur now…. very softly, almost in a whisper…. “zero to one…. zero to one….. zero to one……”