The Startup Journey - powered by Precursa

EPISODE 21

Founders Session: Overwhelm is real… Don’t go it alone

Together again, Precursa’s co-founders talk about the reality of feeling overwhelmed when sorting out what’s important and urgent to get done and what really can wait. We share our strategies for dealing with overwhelm, when to ask for help, who to go to, and how to build your community… Entrepreneurs need each other.

Welcome to Precursa: The Startup Journey, a podcast hosted by Cynthia Del’Aria as she dives into the ins and outs of building a tech startup company from scratch. With full transparency and honesty, she reveals everything from inception, to launch, to revenue, and beyond. These conversations will help you understand what you need to know for your startup! In today’s episode, all three of Precursa’s founders are together again to discuss the benefit of having other people on your side to avoid overwhelm. As attested to by our gang of three, all founders have likely experienced overwhelm. The first step in overcoming this barrier is to admit that you can’t do all the work alone. It’s so important to be able to delegate tasks to others or tackle them step by step rather than at once. The prioritization skills developed before your company’s launch are critical in the long run. Then, we hear what keeps Precursa’s founders up at night. For Cynthia, she often wonders how to reach individual entrepreneurs, who are often very frugal. The heart of the drive behind Precursa is to help and impact entrepreneurs. Rather than directly approaching each entrepreneur individually, they realized the possibility of going through an incubator to reach even more entrepreneurs indirectly. Through this approach, they are confident that their reach is even further.  To get the point where Precursa will really take off will require lots of data. Once they overcome these first few steps, they don’t doubt the momentum will be there. Next, they take a minute to speak directly to those entrepreneurs who may not have the luxury of co-founders. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and reach out to other business owners who are further along the path than you. Other entrepreneurs are the best people to talk to as a founder, because they share the same experience and struggles you are facing. Speaking your ideas out into the universe can be very helpful. The more you stay in your own loop, the less success you are likely to have. When you don’t allow yourself vulnerability, you miss out on hearing how other people may add value to the problems you are working to solve. Additionally, you won’t have an outlet for your overwhelm. Not only is entrepreneurship not for the faint of heart, but it isn’t for lone wolves either. It’s a community effort which takes bringing in as many resources as possible. Doing it alone will definitely bring on overwhelm. Be sure to like, share, and subscribe to Precursa: The Startup Journey on your favorite podcasting platform and tune in for the next episode! Email us with any questions or comments (startup@precursa.com). Check out our website (https://www.precursa.com) for more information on getting your startup rolling.

Straight to you from Denver, Colorado, this is Precursa: The Startup Journey. We share the ins and outs of building a tech startup from inception to launch to revenue and beyond. If you’ve ever wondered what building a startup from scratch really looks like, you’re in the right place. With full transparency and honesty, we reveal it all about Precursa on our ride from idea to exit: the wins, the lessons learned, and the unexpected twists and turns. Hey everybody, welcome back to Precursa: The Startup Journey. And I’m so excited Because we’re finally getting our founders session. So Paige and Sarah are here. It’s been too too long. Uh, and so many things have happened in the meantime. Um, but we are all back together. The band is back together. It’s amazing. So I talked a little bit, actually, maybe, maybe we haven’t talked about this yet, but maybe we have, um, I know that in the past, I’ve talked about there’s times where like overwhelm sets in, right. And as an entrepreneur, you’ve got, we’ve talked about the juggling act that you’re doing, like strategy and vision and execution and keeping all the balls in the air. And, you know, oftentimes you can’t afford to pay someone to do all these things. So like, like all the things, right. And so I had a breakdown and, uh, Paige and I got on the phone, I was like, oh my gosh, I’m so overwhelmed. I don’t know what to do help. Right. And so today we wanted to talk a little bit about what is the benefit? Why should you have people in your corner? Who are those people? And how do you get perspective? Because really overwhelm is about a lack of perspective, right? It’s, you’ve lost sight of maybe not the end goal, but you’ve lost sight of what matters today. And I think that was the thing that Paige got me to on Monday, she was like, well, let’s just go through the list of all the things, and then we’ll just figure it out. And there were some things where she was like, let’s deprioritize that. Right. But without that perspective, it all felt really important, which is why it feels overwhelming. Cause you can all, you can’t do all the things all the time. So, so I guess my question to you ladies, first of all, is have you experienced this for yourselves? And what are the strategies like what, what are the things people are looking for to get over that hump of overwhelm? I mean, I think we’ve all experienced it. Um, and for me, you know, sometimes it’s just a brain dump, right? You just need to write it all down and seeing it in black and white kind of helps like, okay, well I can bite this off in chunks and figure out what to do. But sometimes you do need other people to come in and say, Hey, I totally get, at some point, we need to worry about that, but now’s not the time. So let’s focus on step one and let’s take step one and then we can figure out 10 in a month when we actually need to. But it’s hard because you, like you said, if you’re the founder, if you feel like it’s all on you, right. And you don’t want anything to fall through the cracks, so your brain is constantly spinning. Like, am I missing something? Did I think about this? Do I need to put something in place for this now? And so it really does have a, it really does help to have people whose brains work differently to kind of attack the problem from all sides. A lot of entrepreneurs that I know. And you know, I don’t know if Paige, you, you feel like you fall into this realm. I know I do. Sometimes I’m a control freak, and one of the challenges is how do you let go of the control? Like, what is it, how do you let somebody else contribute to you in that way? And then take, take that advice, right? It, when, when you’re like, no, it’s all up to me. Yeah. I mean, I think all of us are control freaks in our own. Right. And with different things. Right. I think in theory is where we find that we’re quote unquote experts, or we have the most passion or, you know, we have the most four or five. And you know, I think one of the things probably that you and I both experienced, um, and have experienced along with, with Sarah is this kind of like, you know, what, what if I admit I need help? Right. What if I can’t do it all on my own? Right. What if I sort of pull back the curtain and the other person says, wow, what are you doing? Yeah. You thought you knew it. Right. I think we’ve all experienced that. But I think that’s part of this entrepreneurial journey is being able to pull back and say, Hey, I need help. I can’t do this all on my own. And actually we’re, we’re going to be better together than we are independent, you know? And so when I think you and I went through on, on Monday, right. When, when I received that, that call and then ultimately when we were on zoom, I saw your face. I said, okay, uh, you know, let’s look at things in, in a quadrant, right? What’s important. What’s urgent. Um, if it’s important and urgent, then let’s do those first. Right. So let’s kind of lay it all out and then let’s put them in buckets and decide who’s the best person to tackle this right now and why. Right. And I think the why is critical and Hey, maybe Cynthia for you, it was these two things you have to do, right. You’re the best person to do it. If it’s on a, you know, really needs to be from you. 05:20 So what can then we take, or can we deprioritize or we can, can we back off to say, Hey, that’s not really the benefit. There’s not a benefit for you to do it. One of us can do it, or we don’t need to do it right now. And I think, you know, putting those things in buckets or quadrants, or however you want to look at it is critically important at every step of the entrepreneurial journey. But it’s also important once the business is launched. Right? And I think, you know, those are things that you need to, the skills that you develop and being able to do that pre-launch are critical for when you actually are launched and you have employees and then things are coming at you from 9,000 different directions. It’s cause I, in my head, the question that I’m hearing is like, well, how do you determine what’s what’s really important and really urgent or not. Right. So one of the things that I’m struggling with right now, and, and we’ve talked a little bit on the podcast and last couple episodes about the shift in the business model, which I would love for you both to kind of give some perspective on that as well, and here in a minute, but with that shift, naturally some priorities were going to change, right? Like all of a sudden doing direct to entrepreneur marketing is no longer, really as important because that’s not our main strategy, right? Like we need to get to that initial 250 users or whatever, so that we have the data and the proofs that we need in the system. But we could do that grassroots. Right. We don’t need to pay a company and spend what is currently like $180 a lead get started on that. I know that’s a whole nother thing. So Oka, but how does it, how would the average entrepreneur know? And maybe it is just having someone outside of yourself help you get perspective. But for me doing the blog posts and making sure that all the advertising stuff and doing the social media, like all that stuff feels like if we had employees, we could pay somebody to do it. But since we don’t and we have limited time, but it’s all important. Like how do you go through that prioritization process and understand what actually matters and what actually moves the needle. Right? Because until Paige said, Hey, you know what, we’re not really targeting a direct entrepreneur strategy. So focusing on the blogs, especially when they’re not even the ones getting, when that’s not, what’s getting traffic on the website right now, anyway, like let that go. But I couldn’t see that because it’s like, no, we have a strategy. We have to stick to it. Like, this is what it takes to be successful. Right? Like how do you, how do you as an entrepreneur, like pivot that in your brain or get yourself to that place where you can actually put some stuff down. I mean, I think it is other perspectives, right? Because this is why we want people to go through our platform. Right. Because you’re, you’re so in love with this baby, you’ve created this idea because it is a good idea, but it’s hard to make tweaks to that once you kind of have your mind set on it. And I think, you know, the thing that makes so many entrepreneurs great, the ability to kind of just push forward and heads down, get it done. Despite obstacles can also be a detriment because sometimes it’s beneficial to pause and look around and be like, oh, I need to take a few steps this way. And not just like ran my head into this brick wall. Um, and I think, um, you know, either having advisors who have been through it before or having people, you know, like Paige said with expertise in other areas who can ask just a few questions can really clarify things like, Hey, why are you still doing that? Like, oh, I don’t know, just habit and now I’m just doing it. So I think, um, I think it’s, it can be humbling to, to be willing to ask the questions and examine actions, but I think having the awareness to blood others in, and kind of listen to their, their thoughts is, um, like you said, it can change the trajectory of a business. It’s huge. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. So I want to add to that. And I think one of the biggest things that, you know, from an entrepreneurial standpoint, right, you you’re really most, uh, most of those of us who start businesses have these visions of where we’re going, right. And there a decent amount in the future. And so I think one of the critical things is kind of trying to, to break that down into meaningful steps to get there. Right. So I think one of the things that you said there, you and I talked about is, okay, Hey, by the end of the week, not by the end of our launch or, you know, in two years when, you know, all of us were raking in the money, we can’t think about that right now. We need to think about by the end of the week, what do we need to accomplish in order to move us to the next step? And I think often, you know, if we can kind of think through is as good as we are at, at the vision side of it, the, the more tactical kind of, uh, again, urgent and important. So for us, so, uh, for, for our example, right, something I talked through, Hey, we had to finish our updated deck with the shift of business, right. That was the most important thing we needed to do. And so we both agreed, Hey, here’s what we’re going to do. You’re going to take the first stab at it. Then you’re going to send it to Sarah and I, and we’re going to make some edits and then we’re going to regroup and we’re going to finalize this deck because without it nothing else, regardless of how well our blogs were written or how much we focused on, you know, in marketing or not, none of that was going to make the impact that the updated deck was. 10:44 So I think as we were talking through those, we needed to know kind of what was, what was going to be accomplished by the end of the week, not by the end of launch or by the end of the year. And those kind of shifts in mentality can be really challenging for those of us that want to just think big picture and talk about, you know, when, when we’re rolling in it and we’re on the beach, then what does that look like? But that’s not always reality. Yeah. And I think, I think you’re right, Paige, that, that’s basically the fundamental question that has to be asked, you know, once a week, once a month, however often it is, it’s like, are these things I’m doing still getting me to this goal? I have, because as, as the goal maybe changes a little bit, you got to change the things you’re doing. And so I think it’s worth asking that and forcing yourself to pause and ask that, um, reevaluate. So let’s talk for a second because our business model did shift and that’s partially what we’re talking about, you know, in the conversation that Paige and I had was she was like, Hey, you know, some of our priorities are going to shift some of the things we need to be doing are going to shift because the business model shifted. What I’m curious about is from, from, you know, I’d be curious about this from each of your perspective, Sarah, you know, sort of from that like ops and finance perspective Paige, you know, as an entrepreneur, a founder, like I gotta sell business, right? Like all the things, like what in your mind, what starts to go through your mind and what, what mental shifts or, or what planning do you start to do and how big is a sh of a shift? Is this, I mean, I mean, what are the impacts of it and what do you do about that? Right? Uh, yeah, I mean, I will say just because of the way my brain is wired, um, it, that’s how I think, right. If, if the goal changes, my brain automatically goes, what’s the shortest path to that goal and what makes the most sense. And then, you know, the steps kind of fall into place behind that. So, um, I mean, it does change things, but I, I, that doesn’t freak me out. Right. Um, I can pivot and kind of back into step one from there. So I think, you know, I wasn’t part of that conversation cause I was out of town, but had ultimately come to the same conclusion, like, Hey, we’re not going after direct to consumer, so we don’t need to do that anymore. Like focus over here. But I think, I think it’s exciting to kind of run those new numbers and think about the possibilities. But I think we’ve already talked through, well, this, this has a different feel from our video side and the customer service side and all of those things. It has a real trickle down effect. And so I think having the big goal in mind is important, but then you have to have people who can take a step back and be like, well, how does this affect every single aspect and how can we put stuff in play now? So we don’t get a surprise, you know, if something does fall through the cracks later on. Yeah. I mean, I think Sarah just proved her value in a singular sentence on a podcast. Um, you know, I agree with Sarah wholeheartedly, I think this is a huge shift for, for us as a business, which is the right shift for us to make and we made it early. And I think that’s another just tremendous value in, in what Precursa as a platform is offering is the ability to shift and shift early and often and quick. Right? So one of the things that I think we’ve recognized as a value is we went from what was going to be a pretty challenging target market, right in entrepreneurs, um, moving to a business to business model, which is much more in our sweet spot, right from other businesses that we’ve run. Um, it was much more targeted. We knew the immediate value proposition. Um, you know, we knew how to sell to them. It shifted from, uh, you know, very marketing, uh, forward facing, uh, approach to a direct sales approach, again, much more in line with, with what we needed. And I think the tremendous value that we’ve we’ve, I think all three of us have, have received from this is again, prove that market validation, market reviews, client conversations, we need them, we have to have them as we were having them. It just pushed us in the direction that we’re going now, which I think will ultimately be a tremendous benefit. Everyone, not only just our customers, but to us as business owners. And, you know, I said to Sarah’s point, right. Looking at now the shift it’s okay. What changes and how does it change? And as it’s shifting, which are the important things we need to look at again, back to our other conversation is, Hey, if it’s not marketing now, great, awesome. Now we’re really focused on strategic partnerships, right? It’s that fast. And I think just realigned our energy effort, which ultimately is money. And I think those changes are critically important for success. Yeah. 15:22 Yeah. So tactically, when you shift a model from a direct consumer model to a B2B model, essentially like in our case, the, and, and this comes back to the challenge that I’m having with the shift to, right. But in our case, what we’re saying is we’re going to get at the market through the, through the business channels who are already getting that market. And the market is clamoring for the attention of incubators, accelerators, investors, whatever, but we provide strategic value to both sides, right. And, and you know, this morning as we were talking through some of the deck and the, the addressable market and all that, my challenge is I want, I want to prevent Doug’s story, right? I don’t want people spending five years of their lives, you know, half a million dollars, a million dollars or even more, I mean, the number of companies that have tens of millions, of dollars of investment from VCs and still fail. Like I don’t, I want to prevent that story. And for me, that’s just as much a founder story, if not more than it is even about the investors or the incubators, because they’re hedging their bets across, across the board. Right. So what I find myself questioning and wondering is, are now, are we starting to skew more towards solving a problem for someone who isn’t at the heart of why, why I wanted to do this in the first place and how do we stay true to that when they’re not the primary source of income. Right. And so I’m curious, am I crazy? No. I mean, I think, I think the, the reason for the pivot is what we heard repeatedly and kind of what we already were grappling with was, you know, we want to prevent Doug from having this issue. Right. Doug doesn’t know he needs us until he’s already had problems. So yeah. You know, how do we find, how do we find Doug before he gives them the home and marriage and everything. And so I think this change, you know, it really was just a different way to come at these people because they know they need money. They know they need accelerators and incubators. And, and it was like, well, if, if they tell the entrepreneurs, Hey, do this process first, it will pay off for you in the long run. We don’t have to explain the value to them. Right. So it’s people who already get that. And so, um, I totally hear what you’re saying because where, where our primary customer is and where the money comes from and that’s going to be a priority for us. Yeah. Yeah. Um, and so, and so I think we need to keep that top of mind, but ultimately the people using most of our platform and still reaping the benefit from it are the entrepreneurs. We just kinda found a faster way to get to them. Yeah. And it’s almost like what we’re, what we’re doing is really using the incubators, accelerators investors, like those stakeholders as the force or the impetus or the I’m saying, you need to, therefore you will, because you know, and I want to ask each of you this question too, but the number one question I’ve gotten asked in every pitch I’ve done so far, what keeps you up at night? Like, what’s the thing that you can’t stop thinking about that you’re worried about, that you don’t know how to solve. Right. And for me, what I don’t know how to solve is convincing. It’s easy to con it’s easy when you talk to serial entrepreneurs. I mean, I don’t know the number of serial entrepreneurs I’ve talked to about what we’re doing. They’re like, oh my God, I need that. Like where, where was that? When I built my first company, but forget that I need it now. I mean, the guy had talked to you like two weeks ago. He’s like, I just wrote down like six things you said, because I realized like, we completely haven’t done any of that. And that this is like his eighth company. Right. So how do you get to Doug? So that Doug has the opportunity to be a serial entrepreneur because his first failures and so big, it ruins his life. Right. That’s the thing that keeps me up at night. And so I guess what we’re saying is this B2B model, the reason it was such like a kind of moment for me, it was because it was like, that’s how you get it dug. Right? I mean, hopefully most people that I’ve talked to in masterminds and accelerators and incubators and people are applying to all those things. They are really early stage and they, they haven’t gotten money. So if they have spent money, it’s been their own, but they’ve been really frugal about what they’re spending, you know, they’re cheap. Right. That’s the other thing that keeps me up at night is entrepreneurs are cheap by nature. Right. And so it’s like asking, Right? Yeah. Hey, hello. And so it’s like asking them to spend, you know, 1200 bucks a year, although that’s not a lot of money for some entrepreneurs that might be like, no, I can do this myself. And, you know, those are the ones that usually end up coming to me and spending 10 to $20,000 two years later. Um, so I would ask you about the same thing. Like what keeps you up at night about this? 20:18 You all can’t see, but Sarah gave me the wave to go first. I want to adjust something to that you said right about is the heart of what we wanted to impact and who we wanted to impact was the entrepreneur. And I think one of the things that we’ve all realized is that, you know, we could try to go to Doug and Jan and Steven and Amelia or whoever direct, right. So we could go to singular, uh, incubator accelerator, and we could get to those. Plus the Cynthia is the, is the Paige is, the Andy’s right, as we keep going. And that I think is where I feel so confident in this shift is that our reach gets further faster to the entrepreneurs that need this platform and have been looking for this platform for a long time. Um, so I think that’s really where I am so excited about it and thinking that, yes, it’s a different approach, but I think it’s an approach that gets us to the entrepreneur in a different way and aids all of them, including the accelerators, right. That are putting money in value and time and effort and mentorship entities, individuals. So I, I’m confident in this shift and I think it’s a way for us to get to more of those of us who want this platform and have wanted it for the longest time faster. So, you know, with that, I think what keeps me up at night is, you know, making sure that your, the, the intrinsic value of the platform in supporting the speed to success and the speed to the market is recognized across incubators accelerators. Right? We talked about it this morning and that, you know, there, there could be a predatory type of approach in, Hey, these entrepreneurs came into our Precursa instance, but I want to encourage and really show value in sharing the entrepreneurs across platform, right. Across investors, across angels. Because I think at the core of their mission along with ours is to show that entrepreneur expansion is the best thing for everyone, right. Tonomy markets, individuals, families. And so I want to continue to encourage that. And I think what keeps me up at night is how to do that effectively and how to make sure that, that we’re getting that opportunity across the platform. I like that. That’s good. Yeah. I think, uh, I think the thing I still, you know, worry about in the wee hours of the morning is, um, kind of, kind of what you mentioned, Cynthia. I mean, ultimately yes, we have a way better way to get in front of entrepreneurs. And I think longterm, this can help so many people it’s so valuable. Um, but to get to that point, we need a certain amount of information, right. And people to try it out and test it out. And, um, you know, ultimately we still have to get it in front of a few Doug’s before, before it can really take off. And so being effective there, um, you know, and, and really having a strong launch, um, is I think top of mind for all of us right now, there’s no doubt in my mind that once we get past those first few steps, it, the momentum is there and it just, um, but I want to make sure we do it and do it well, uh, for the first several users. Yeah. That’s totally I, yeah. Well now I have both of your worries on my mind too, so that’s great. At 3:00 AM. What are you thinking about tonight? Well, the entrepreneurs out there it’s okay. The two to 3:00 AM wake up as real, and unfortunately it doesn’t go away, so just be prepared for it. Exactly. Right. That’s exactly right. So let’s just speak for a minute to the entrepreneur who maybe doesn’t have founders, maybe, you know, they’re, they’re sort of bootstrapping this or they’re trying to do a lot of the legwork themselves. Who do I look for to be that advisor be that, that human in my life to help give me that perspective that I need. I mean, sometimes I try and talk to David, but I don’t think your spouse always is the right person to have that perspective. Um, So they’re always objective. I don’t think so. Yeah. No, he’s always like, you’re going to do great. I’m so excited, you know? Um, so yeah, exactly. So who, who could, who could people start to look for and how do you start to build that, that advisor mentor kind of relationship with people, right? Who are those people and how do you do that? I mean, I think people just kind of need to put themselves out there to some extent, right. Um, reaching out to other business owners who are a little bit farther down the path than you and just them, most people are good people and they want to help right back. And, um, I think most people are willing to do a phone call or a coffee or whatever, just so you can kind of pick their brain. But I think ultimately that’s why a lot of startups turn to accelerators and incubators, right? Like I feel great about my idea. I just need a path to follow. Can someone just give me that both options are great, but I think you do need to be intentional about finding those people. They don’t always drop out of the sky. Um, and just know that that’s going to be a piece of your success. 25:39 I agree with putting yourself out there and fellow entrepreneurs and other CEOs, uh, are great, great people to talk to cause they’re going to likely give you the good, the bad and the ugly. Uh, not just, yeah, I think you reaching out to those types of people, but I would also encourage, uh, you know, startup entrepreneurs and tech founders to look at organizations in their, in their local community, right? Most, uh, communities have, uh, groups like there’s an economic development group here in Denver that focuses on entrepreneurship. Um, there’s a group, a national actually it’s international, uh, entrepreneurial organization, right. EO. And sometimes you may not get accepted into those programs, but having the starting conversation about what it’s like to be in those programs and how it benefits, uh, individuals can be very helpful as a starting point. Uh, I would also say, you know, there’s a lot of, um, you know, we have Denver startup week, right? Those are, uh, getting involved in big events that where you’re going to likely be setting next to somebody that’s going through the same thing. You are, can be a great way to get insight, to learn and to challenge your own ideas and to, you know, pitch off of somebody. That’s probably thinking that their idea’s amazing too. And you can say, Hey, have you thought about, you know, X, Y, Z. And I think that’s one of the things that has sort of shifted our focus, right? It’s something Cynthia said, just kept painting in my mind. Like, wait a second, wait a second, wait a second. And so on my way home, one night I called Sam. I was like, I can’t get this out of my mind. I have an idea to completely shift things. And I absolutely lost that. And she’s like, yes, you’ve lost it, but it’s still my great idea. So I think those types of, you know, get you getting your ideas out there, speaking them into the, into the universe and obviously into other entrepreneurs can be very, very helpful. Well, and, and so I love what you’re both saying because it’s, it’s diametrically opposed to this whole concept of stealth mode. And I’ve talked about the stealth mode myth a few times on the podcast. So it’s not, it’s not a new concept to the listeners, but we’re pointing at it in a different way. Right. Which is that if you are heads down trying to hide what you’re doing, you know, hiding your light under a bushel, not talking to him, like you’re never going to get that perspective. You’re going to continue to create monologues in your head. You’re going to continue to believe the things that you believe and my perspective. And I’d be curious what you guys think about this, but my perspective is that the more you are in your own internal loop, the less likely you are to ever have product market fit, to ever actually have a successful company. And so when you look at the risk of someone coming along and stealing, you’re stealing your idea or selling your company versus the very much bigger risk of ending up with being a Doug, because you were in your own little bubble, I’d rather have the risk of somebody coming along and doing it out from underneath me that, because I know that I can’t be successful the other way. Totally. And it’s like, at the end of the day, what’s your goal is it to create this idea you have in your head or to create a product that people need and want. And you can’t know that if you’re only in your own head and not talking to anyone about it, it’s exactly right. And that’s why we always come back to you from the beginning. What’s the problem you’re solving. Who are you solving it for? How do they resonate with your solution? Like, that’s, that’s the whole, that’s all of it. It’s everything. Yeah. And will they pay for it? Yeah. Right. Because I think a few often, right. We get into like, oh my God, this is amazing. It’s going to suck, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And then like, yeah, but are they going to pay for what you’re offering? Because without customers, without paying, uh, right now, I don’t think any of us are creating non-profits. Um, and even that we still have to go get money. Um, so, you know, I think that the loop of in your own head of the amazingness of this idea or product or service or whatever it is without out on the market and testing it and seeing if people will pay for it at what dollar amount, over what time period, those are critical components you have to get to and, you know, bouncing it off of other people is the way that you get to that information and is the way that you validate that it’s going to be realistic in the market. I mean, we do that all the time. We just did it this morning. Right. And we’re not only bouncing it off each other and getting our perspective, but every time I do a pitch, that’s another opportunity for some perspective. And sometimes you’re just objection handling, because we know we’re going to get this objection and that this is how we’re solving that problem. And that’s, but there are things that come up in a pitch where you go, yeah. I never really thought about that. And here’s the, here’s the thing that I learned pitching to, uh, Chris a few weeks ago, which I think I talked about that right after I pitched him, I came in and recorded David when he was sitting in on the pitch. And he said to me, what I thought was really great is every time he brought up something he’s he said that the one time he brought up something that you didn’t know how to answer it, you actually said, I don’t know, but tell me more. 30:47 He said that was brilliant. He’s like, you didn’t have to have the answer in that moment because you didn’t have the answer, but giving him the opportunity to show that he could add value. That’s what investors are looking for. It’s not just, they want to write you a check and go turn it into more money. A lot of times you’ll hear, especially VCs and angel investors say, I want to invest in companies where my investment goes beyond money. It’s like, I can help you be successful. I have contacts or I have knowledge or I have industry experience or whatever it is the adds to the value of not just the check that I write. And so if you never be vulnerable, and again, this goes back to talking to people, getting it out there, you know, asking questions, bouncing ideas. If you never be vulnerable, you never have the opportunity for other people to see how they can contribute and add value, which is another form of investment. Absolutely. And, and you’re doing yourself a disservice because you know, all these little tweaks are what makes things great. And you never know what little comment someone’s going to make. That’s going to start up your entrepreneur brain and be like, oh, wait a minute. Yeah, that’s exactly right. I want to hit on this too, because I think this goes back to how we started the podcast with overwhelm, right? Because if you are overwhelmed and in your own brain, the overwhelm will not go away and it’s just going to perpetuate. And so you’re going to not only be overwhelmed, but then you’re going to have all these other thoughts in your brain. So the combination is awful. I’ve been there. I think I shared this when, you know, when I started my prior organization. Uh, and I literally, I, there would be days I just sat there. I was like, I feel paralyzed. I don’t have anybody to bounce ideas off of. I don’t have anybody to talk to about how do we get things moving in the right direction. And so whether it’s overwhelmed, trying to prioritize, trying to get some of these ideas out, trying to bounce ideas, whatever it may be, getting them out of your brain, whether that’s on paper in conversation, uh, whatever it may be. You have to get them out of, sort of the cycle that goes on in our brains. And then it naturally eliminates overwhelm and you can prioritize. And you can think through rate to Sarah’s point kind of how do we move this forward? What are the tactical things that need to shift? I think just kind of bringing it back to this is all related, right? And that if we stay in our brains and we stay independent and internal in a lot of these situations, it’s only the, to the detriment of us and to our potential business, uh, which doesn’t benefit anyone. So I love that. I love that. And I think, I think the point here that we’re making is you can’t do this alone entrepreneurship. Not only is it not for the faint of heart, but it’s not for lone wolves, it is a community effort. It takes, it takes bringing in as many resources as you can. And it takes a village. I mean, it is like raising a child. And I think we made the ugly baby reference in an earlier conversation, raising a baby is like raising a startup and it takes a village. So don’t go it alone. That is the, that will definitely get you into the overwhelm space. For sure. Yeah. And I think ultimately most of us want to create companies that are bigger than ourselves. Right? It’s about more than us in our personal identities. And so you need to start that from day one, have that mindset and see what happens. That’s right. Yeah. And don’t, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, right. Having somebody pull back, the curtain is actually the best thing that can happen to you as an entrepreneur. And that, you know, if you’re willing to do it, the benefit you will get is tremendous. Yeah. That’s awesome. All right. From the mouths of the best co-founders on the planet, how lucky am I? You wish you had a Sarah and a Paige. That’s all I’m saying. Yelling at us on the drive. Home blows up where you are. All right. Folks. So as always, if you have comments, if you have questions, if you want to argue, if you want to be on the podcast, email me at startup@precursa.com, as always happy entrepreneuring. And we will see y’all next time. Thank you for listening to this episode of Precursa: The Startup Journey. If you have an idea for a startup and you want to explore the proven process of turning your idea into a viable business, check us out at precursa.com. Make sure to subscribe to this podcast wherever you listen to podcasts, so you never miss an episode. Until next time…

Cynthia Del'Aria

Cynthia Del'Aria is a serial entrepreneur and tech startup ninja, specializing in product-market fit and idea validation and helping new entrepreneurs reserve their time and money for the idea with the best shot at success. With two successful exits before 30, an active high-profit-margin SaaS in the commercial airline space, and two additional startups in the works, she knows what it takes to traverse the entrepreneur journey, the highs, and the challenges of turning a vision into a successful, viable business.

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Copyright © 2021 Precursa  |  All Rights Reserved  |  Site Created by Natalie Jark

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