Your Startup is 'Breaking Bad'
And suddenly, you are Walter White.
Assuming you are Walter White, you just realized that either your present career is hopeless or your life is somewhat heading towards a dead end (or you’re just getting bored). You need to do something about it.
Say you are working the traditional job. You are (or were) an employee, like Walter, and you are getting tired of everything - from your boss firing up your ass inch by inch on a daily basis to you being the typical breadwinner. You realized you are not going anywhere. You are going to relive your inner scientist to prove to yourself - you can do much better than this.
And so you venture to a new world, a much dangerous and risky but free world.
Your new adventure awaits you.
ROUND 1: STARTING YOUR COMPANY
Ha. So you want this business? Why so? “Oh well, you’ve never seen a high school Science teacher cooking meth, have you?” And so you chose to do what is not done yet. And you’ll be the first one to do it. Not only to show the world that you can do it, but also to experience what it’s like to go out of your comfort zone. And don’t forget the money business.
ROUND 2: FINDING A CO-FOUNDER
You realized you cannot do this alone. You may as well look for a partner. Oh, there’s someone I knew from high school… Jesse!
Things should go well from here, you wished.
ROUND 3: YOU NEED A SHIP
Oh ship! You’re finished with your product, what now? There goes most of the startup problems, getting you to ship your products to the right customers (or users). Think of why most of the Kickstarter campaigns fail. Most failures occur not because they fail to get funds, not because they fail to perfect the product, it is when they didn’t put in mind that delivering their products to their customers is part of their business.
Thank the drug deities for Tuco’s gang.
ROUND 4: EXPANDING YOUR BUSINESS
Well, the main gist here is - if your product is as genius as Walter’s 99% pure blue crystal, you get to expand your business easily. Even with just the word of mouth. Your products don’t have to be perfect, though. As 99% is as perfect as it may seems, at least you got way above your competitors.
ROUND 5: COMPETITORS
Here comes your competitors. As you expand your business, you must be aware of your competitors. Or you may end up getting hit by a 12 year old boy you wouldn’t think your competitors would surprise you.
Well, now you are aware of them. Like Walter, you know you have a better product - waaaaay better than theirs. Why is it? Because Walter spent most of his time actually being so nosy on everything about his product, from that one fly carrying shenanigans around the lab to the very least details about temperature and chemistry stuff. He underdid his competition. He doesn’t need competitors, least the need to compare his product with theirs.
ROUND 6: WE ARE ACQUIRED!
“Posterous has been acquired by Twiter, all your posterous blogs will be shut down next month. Muahaha”
Oh, remember when you spent most of your time investing to a service then one day you’ll hear they’ve been absorbed by a much larger (hint: monstrous & slimy) entity? If any of you ever played MyMiniLife way back 2008 you’ll know that feeling when Zynga bought it and all your MiniHomes were instantly demolished into one lonely black hole on the internets.
Well, as being on the client/user’s side, it sucks harder than actual black holes. But mostly on the startup, company, service being acquired, they are partying harder than a migrating flock of geese leaving all but bird shit behind.
Oh, remember when Mr. White’s business has been acquired by Gus Fring’s army of chicken-flapping distributors? Well, he and Jesse got more cash than they dreamed of. But ended up doing things they do not wanted to do. The freaking CCTV, anyone?
In the end, he fired his new boss. Hmmm, might end up differently had he been acquired by the Cartel, eh?
ROUND 7: BETTER CALL SAUL… AND FRIENDS
You know you cannot do anything outstanding without any legal advice, right? Saul was supposed to be killed the first time they met but Walter realized he needs him… and his connections. Better have legal advice, buddy. Bloody network, too.
ROUND 8: K.O.
Your startup’s future is in your hands. Had it been that Walt’s DEA Brother-in-Law didn’t discover that book Gale gave him, it would be a happy ending for the White household. Well, to the very end he still saved his co-founder’s troublesome ass who turned Judas with him. So I guess the lesson is pick the right co-founder to begin with. Ha.
It all goes back to where you started. If you are thinking of building a startup, it’s up to you to just remain as society's typical byproduct - or go start cooking and go Breaking Bad.
Now, find your Jesse Pinkman.
This post is originally posted on my blog last September 30, 2013.