Today's blog is the 6th in a 10 part series on the Entrepreneurial Puzzle. Today's installment is about surrounding yourselves with those that will ENCOURAGE you.
The story today is about the people behind the scenes that are the unsung heroes of entrepreneurial success.
Their pictures don't appear on the cover of FAST Company and they aren't sitting next to you when you are interviewed by Barbara Walters. But their contributions are invaluable.
The mental picture that I want to use for today's blog is that of a group of skydivers, joining hands in the sky.
They encourage the founders and investors with their talents and often with the gift of their time, known as sweat equity.
When things go well, the investors and those with sweat equity are the people that are able to "cash in" on the success. But if a venture tanks, they have no choice but to move on. The rare ones follow the founder from venture to venture, providing material support for one idea after another.
Without their willingness to support the idea, research the market, translating market needs into product and service requirements and to navigate the risks along the way, new companies would never get off the ground.
But behind the scenes are those that make and pack the parachutes, the investor that funds the purchase of the airplane, the mechanic for the plane, the pilot, the person fueling the plane and the skydiving instructors. And then there are the countless family members and friends that provide encouragement when you question the sanity of jumping out of a plane.
Yes, starting a new venture is very much like jumping out of a plane. Sometimes it is a beautiful sunny day with puffy clouds and sometimes it is grey and cloudy and you can't see the ground.
Thanks to those of you that have made my entrepreneurial ventures (and even the failures) possible.
I couldn't continue to dream and to risk without you.
You know who you are.