Startups grow best from hairy decisions

There’s no shortage of experts saying we work best when we’re motivated and that means doing something we feel is worthwhile. ‘Worthwhile’ or not is owned by future you, but today it’s your choice that counts. If you are harbouring a secret start-up project then now is the time to get it off the ground. But how? Having a destination gives you a reference point. When you have a reference point, that means you have a choice to make, namely, how to get started.

However, a big problem is that we are often spoiled for choice. It’s easy to sit at the starting gate staring at your opportunities, wondering which path to take. Look close up at one path and you’ll see all the dollars you’ll need; for another, it’s co-founder troubles. Suddenly the opportunities seem less appealing. You do the human thing and step back to think about it, but what then? How long do you stay thinking? You wait too long, and in short, you stay stuck.

Think about the 15-year-old you and the cool haircut you sported way back when. I know, you cringe when you remember the hairstyle but it was kind of cool at the time. It’s the same with your startup idea. On one hand you like it, but on the other you don’t want to commit to it long-term because it might turn out to not really be you. You might think that you can’t really pull it off.

Sooner or later, a decision is made, even by default. Default, in this instance, is doing nothing. How are you adding to your feelings of worthiness then? A bad haircut may affect how you look to others and the opportunities they give you, but hair grows out. You can hide it under a hat, scarves or a helmet. You have more choices than you think, even though some may appear ugly for a time.

On the other hand, we all know that person who won’t go out the door until their hair is right. What do you think happens to their startup? Sometimes you just need to accept that it’s a bad hair day. Your startup will never be right, just like perfect hair gets mussed up by the wind. And yes, we make bad decisions (like the mullet — what were we thinking?) but we can settle on what looks like a good decision to get out the door. Hindsight is clever, but what it shows, more than anything, is that we started from somewhere by making a choice.