The Value of Starting Small and Thinking Big
It all starts with a good plan and a will to implement it properly.
What do Steve Jobs of Apple, Kurt Varner of Daily Toaster and just very recently Austen Allred of Grasswire have in common aside from the fact that they all began their start-up companies at Silicon Valley? The answer, they all spent their productive times looking for investors or partners to fund their killer apps while living out of their own cars! They slept in their cars at night and in the morning they worked hard until something positive came up with their project.
Maximize the Use of Resources
Knowing the value of their limited financial resources at that time, they tried to maximize the use of their money for maximum return. Renting an apartment can be financially draining and the money can instead be used to buy food and personal supplies. For them, it is more important to remain healthy so that they can pitch their ideas to as many people as much as possible. Their cars became their temporary homes.
Everyone knows what Apple does and the products they sell. Daily Toaster on the other hand is an app that promises to get you up in the morning on time everyday. Grasswire is also an app that lets ordinary people create reports by voting on and fact checking social media content in real time.
These entrepreneurs know the value of starting small in order to get big someday and to make their dreams into a reality. Steve, Kurt and Austen are just ordinary people with extraordinary dreams. This just means that you and I can also make something out of our lives and career and help us make a turn-around for the better. According to Anatole France, a French poet and novelist, “To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.”
A Clear Vision and Mission Statement
If our personal vision and mission are clear in our minds, we will do everything in our powers to achieve them even if it requires us to sleep in our cars just to save on that precious cash. This is just a minor inconvenience compared to what we can contribute to the greater good if our dreams came true. Another important thing that we must remember is to plan. Planning is an important management function which we must utilize to its fullest if we want our inspired dreams to take flight. If we fail to plan we are planning to fail.
And if we are successful, our own personal vision and mission can become the organizational vision and mission where everyone who believes in our dreams are also now solidly anchored on what we want to accomplish. In this way, attaining organizational goals and objectives becomes a way of life for everyone involved in the organization. If we build our reputation based on positive values like hard work, honesty, loyalty, meritocracy among others, there will be genuine “buy-in” from amongst our peers and colleagues on the direction we want to take.
Be Prepared to Sacrifice (a lot)
Again, big things or success does not come overnight nor does it come in cheap. It requires lots of sacrifices on our part. Starting small is a general rule to becoming big someday. Nature dictates that we follow the simple laws of the earth. Just like a farmer, before we enjoy our bountiful harvest, we have to prepare the soil for planting, we irrigate it, we maintain it for pest prevention and eventually we harvest what we have worked hard for. In all these steps are the factor of time (which means waiting) and the input of our efforts (which means our sacrifices).
If we have a dream especially in our career, we can always start now. There is no such thing as starting too early or starting late in our lives. The only thing that matters is that we take the necessary steps today to attain our dreams for a better tomorrow for us and for our family and for our community.