You can?t build something without getting help from others.
I didn?t learn that lesson very well the first time around, 20 years ago, when I started Terraine from my college dorm room. ?Back then, getting help was a matter of asking people within your own circle of contacts and your contacts? contacts, networking your way around, reading how-to books, and getting help from SCORE and the SBA. ?And getting help from the SBA was sometimes a really bad idea. SBA is a massively bureaucratic organization whose mission, in my opinion, is more to squash small business than it is to help small business.
In the early 1990s, mentors were hard to find, understanding how to manage cash flow and other critical business concepts was written about only in physical books, and the Internet as we know it, with blogs and advice about everything under the sun, did not exist. ?Non-profit organizations dedicated to helping small businesses and entrepreneurs, while some did exist, were hard to find out about. ?And the word ?entrepreneur? was code for ?I can?t find a real job with a large company.?
Nowadays, we celebrate entrepreneurs. ?We blog about innovators. ?We admire risk-takers that succeed in the face of long odds. ?And with that attitude change, organizations dedicated to helping entrepreneurs have sprung up everywhere. ?They come in the form of incubators, seed funding organizations, startup meetups of all kinds, tons of online resources, organized mentorship, non-profits, and much more. ?Most of this stuff was not around in 1990. ?And I?m here to tell you to take advantage of it all! Get out there, meet as many people as you can. ?Check out as many of these organizations as you can. ?Attend local startup meetups. ?Make an appointment at SCORE. ?Go to speed networking events. ?Tell everyone you can about your idea.
All of this may sound obvious, but many times, you will get caught up in the daily grind of your business, you will prioritize doing the busy work, and you will forget that simply getting out there might completely change your entire organization for the better.
I?ve been around long enough to know that you simply can?t go it alone. ?You need help to get you where you want to go. ?As Oprah Winfrey says ??You can?t do it all yourself ? don?t be afraid to rely on others to help you accomplish your goals.?
Some resources to get started:
- Startup Meetups:?http://www.meetup.
- Lean Startup Meetups:?http://lean-startup.
- Council for Entrepreneurial Development:?http://www.cednc.
- Service Corps of Retired Executives:?http://www.score.
- List of Incubators/Accelerators:?http:
//www.launch.co/blog/complete- list-of-incubators-and- accelerators-like-y-combinat. html