Ognjen Regoje bio photo

Ognjen Regoje

I make things that run on the web (mostly).
More /ABOUT me.

me@ognjen.io Twitter LinkedIn Github

2 (more) signs that your business ideas will fail

Yesterday, an article titled 9 signs that your business idea will probably fail was quite popular on HN.

I didn’t completely agree with the justification regarding not being the right person for the job. I think that’s true, but because you are fundamentally not interested in the potential business. If you’re a mechanical engineer and you think of a new way to harvest honey but you hate the country-side, are alergic to bees and dislike honey, then you’re the wrong person for the job. For most other things, you can probably learn.

Besides that it had some good points and it was interesting.

There are two signs that I’d add though.

1. You had an idea

And unfortunately that means that it will most likely fail. The often quoted metric is that 50% of businesses close in the first year. Many more don’t even get to the point where they’re eligible to be a part of this statistic. The bright side is that you’ll have many more ideas so there’s no need to sweat about one.

Besides, you’re bound to learn something from an idea failing, even if it’s just that you don’t like a particular niche. On the other hand, it could be something immensely helpful such as that you love a new tool, or a community or an industry.

2. It’s a hobby not a business

This was something that I learnt very early on.

In a hobby you can do things that you find interesting and cool and fun. In a business you can too, but only if they’re in service of a goal that’s good for the business.

If an idea is treated as a hobby then it can’t be a business. There are exceptions, of course, but they prove the rule.

That might sound discouraging, but is in fact liberating. Once you label an idea of yours as a hobby it frees you from having to think about all things that you aren’t interested in doing. You can focus only on the good stuff.

#business #opinion