KickoffLabs Blog:

10 things to be thankful for at a startup

By Josh Ledgard

Nov 24th, 2011

It’s Thanksgiving in the US. That means reminding yourself of everything you have to be thankful for.  Here a list of things you should be thankful for if you work at a startup.

1. Controlling your own destiny.  Whether you are a founding member or employee #20 you have never been as much in control of your own companies destiny.  You don’t work for “the man” anymore. You are “the man”. Make it count.

2. Good advice.  In a startup your world shrinks. That means you have to take advice from anywhere you can outside of your own small group. Be thankful for the advice you’ve received… even if you don’t take it. 

3. Friends and family. This should be on your list anyway today, but there probably isn’t a time when these people have held you up more than they are right now. 

4. Being profitable. Even if it’s just “ramen profitable” for now.  It means you are starting to scratch an itch.  This puts you even more in control of your own destiny.

5. How easy it is to build your product.  Never before has such great technology been so accessible and easy to use.  Technology probably isn’t your roadblock anymore and you have a lot of geniuses who came before you to thank for that.

6. Your competition. Having competition means you probably picked a healthy market.  Having competition keeps you on your toes.  Where would Apple be without Microsoft or vice-versa.

7. People who say your idea sucks or don’t understand what you are doing.  Their advice is probably worth 10x what the polite people say.

8.  The supporting infrastructure tools available today.  You don’t have to build your own support system, billing solution, source control, ticket tracking, or landing pages. You get to focus on your customer product experience. 

9. The economy. It’s keeping you lean. There are people hungry for work to help out. It puts the focus on revenue over hockey sticks. When people have money to throw around it makes everyone lazier.

10. Your customers. Last, but most important. They are making a bet on you.  They may be choosing you over Microsoft, Google, or some other entrenched competitor. They are betting you’ll make their world a better place.  Be thankful for these gamblers and make sure your product pays off big for them.

Happy Thanksgiving from KickoffLabs!

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