You better workbench!

So, here is the point

You can be a tribal citizen of the planet, one who has just been on the Internet for a couple of hours and I bet you’ll have learned this:

success is not a straight line, mediocrity is.

There are countless stories from ancient leaders, to modern self made industrialists, which you can read in encyclopedias that look like wikis, from ancient online businesses started in the 90s to modern silicon valley “enthusiasm backed” companies, they all emanate this: failure is expected.

But in order to fail properly you need to give it your best shot.

And today you can do IT. No limits, not even one. The only thing required is YOU and IT.

I’m thinking, since you have YOU, thank God, the only thing missing is IT. That’s why you have to workbench! To know, to learn: what is it? How is it? Draw it, write it, describe it, architect it, brief it. That’s it! It is all you really have to do because there are no other problems, if you know IT you can do it!

The problem

Are you a free spirited, creative, interesting extrovert or social introvert that feels caged in some tedious job, hunted in a cubicle or “creative work space” by early retirement thoughts and living the day just for the future promise of some potential Bugattis, Maseratis, Lamborghinis, martinis, mansions and high class “partees”? Well good and bad news altogether: all that may be an early sign of “entrepreneuritis”! And it, my friend, can only be solved in one single way: you better workbench!

The workbench, in general, is the symbol of action, the ideal workstation for bootstrapping anything, the place to go when you need to make a hunch into an object, and in software, in particular, the workbench is the metaphor of knowing what you want to do! This is the key to unlock the door of entrepreneurship, having a rock solid idea of what you want to accomplish. From there on starts the adventure, which i know you crave for so badly.

I’ve seen tens of folks with amazing ideas, really the kind that made you slap your forehead in awe … that never took off. The main reason was that those ideas were never laid on paper or on screen in some coherent form, from a couple of phrases, right down to full stack specifications — if the need be and the idea so complex. The point is: that is how you start, at the workbench, that will be your goal, your brief to yourself, that is the touchable result you should get to and you can only get it at the workbench, not in your head, not in your conversations with buddies, not in scraps of code or documents spread all over your time machine backup. At the workbench.

The challenge

There were days, in the dark ages of … seven years ago?, when you really needed a business plan, a budget, a partner, an office! just to kick-start, but times have changed, and for the good: you don’t need a budget, you don’t need financing or investors, you don’t need an office, you don’t even need an idea, you only need to workbench! You need to figure out what it is that you want to make, build, sell — clearly defined. From there on, everything can be solved, here is how.

First, you don’t even need to build something at all.

Just mock it up! Dry testing is hugely successful, you can literally sell air, you can ask for funding just by giving your gentleman’s word that you’ll do it — grassroots funding throws lost of money at ideas presented nicely that do not exist.

You don’t have to be a genius, a leading innovator or a grand figure in the annals of business management.

You can simply copy something that is really performing good out there and offer it at a very low price to local markets, translated and with 24/7 support attached. Or, you can copy a big product’s functionality bit by bit, and sell the solution to folks who do SEO spam, who can make it in China or who have access to million long email lists.

You don’t need time.

Time is something you’ll never have! Externalize! There are hordes of developers who can prop up ideas in no time and that cost, overall, cheaper than a fancy dinner out with the one you love/like/lust. There are hordes of folks that can add content to your empty site, hordes of reviewers, zillions of testers, never ending streams of coders to rent. Buy their time and cherish yours.

You don’t need an office!

What office? Everything nowadays happens in Basecamp or Trello or some other clone of these that I’ve never heard of, but which I bet is outstanding. Skype/Twitter/SMS is what will always save the day and you can have folks working with/for you and never meet them in person for years and years. You’ll have a team distributed globally, literally working 24 hours a day. Do you hate working from home? Go to a cafe, get access to a shared space its cheap! Forget offices.

You don’t need capital.

You need to workbench! Stop dreaming of ventures, free publicity or “angels”. You are nobody, who’s gonna give you a bazillion dollars/euros/yens in angel funding? Did you work in the same room with Zuck or Larry? I bet you didn’t so, please, just:

  1. stop reading those success PR stories about some dude or dudette who landed eleven mils in two weeks for the dog walking scheduling app they’ve scrapped in a day at a hackathon. Its bullshit and its toxic for you.
  2. focus on the workbench.

And the final one, you don’t need a budget,
you only need a job.

Of course you’ll spend some money — but its the kind of money that comes from savings you make if you stop buying junk food and cook at home, if you are more careful with you gadget addiction, if you stop reading the labels of your clothing. And no, you do not need to do overtime to scrap money for your side projects! Its the worst idea ever, it will suck you dry and leave you unable to spell out what you want. Save your energy, capitalize on time, do the minimum required but keep doing it constantly.

As you can very well see you don’t need a budget, an investor, capital, an office, a team, development skills, a programmer’s mind, business school degrees, business plans or brilliant ideas.

You only have to figure IT out and for that you need to workbench!

Now get to workbench!