This post is a cathartic release. What I love about blogging is that it can become a way to share and put to rest one’s experiences. This post is my way to summarizing what three years of doing business online has taught me.
Essentially there are two things needed for business success:
1) a product that sells (scratching an itch, fixing a problem, providing a solution that people want); and
2) find the right business partners to help you deliver the product.
Finding a product that sells is a challenge but is definitely the sexier topic and there are thousands of services out there to help you find a product to sell. It is the second point about needing to find the proper business partner has crystallized for me just recently and is not discussed very much. It is because as a topic it is full of disappointment and unhappiness.
Nobody can do everything by his or her self. You need to find and work with others who help you with technology, accounting, marketing, etc. You can engage these people by purchasing their services or by entering into a formal business partnership. Regardless of how it is done, finding the right people is critically important.
I have to say that since 2004 when I started Promaginy that this is a chronic theme. I don’t really have that much of a problem with finding product ideas since I am always tuned on to that kind of stuff, but have been continuously challenged with finding people who will finish what they say they will.
My first computer game was a downloadable Windows game that was going to be launched in 2005 but never got done because the company I partnered with had other things they would rather do. This is despite cultivating a really good relationship and me putting a substantial bit of equity in them. We still remain friends, but there will always be a part of me that will feel let down by their lack of loyalty and follow through.
After I got my equity back from that company, I started acquiring my own websites vowing to make a go on my own. I quickly realized that there was so much to learn to run a profitable website and that I needed to find the right people to assist me. In 2010 I bought my first for-profit site via Flippa.com. Unfortunately, my experience has been a resounding disappointment. People simply suck on Flippa.com.
For example, one guy that I worked with from 2010 to late 2012 I initially had a positive experience but this slowly changed. He became lazier and less responsive. Now I find out he is reusing the code he sold me and has essentially left me with a couple of unfinished websites. This is despite having a clear and positive communication system throughout.
I am sorry to say but in the business world you will find partners who do not follow through on what they promise. I have been bitten too much to trust people the way I once did. This is likely what needed to happen.
But the disappointment is now a part of me and I will find a way to incorporate it into how I conduct myself. The failures of past partnerships will make me wiser and better capable for future success.
The world of business is harsh, cruel, and you will fail in your partnerships but this is all part of the sculpting process to teach humility and temper expectations.