We made it!
Turning one is a point of joy for many. The cake is everywhere, the cameras are rolling, family beams and friends cluster around. Brewww just turned one, and you best believe we’re celebrating.
We made it!
At most every other point in history, living to see your first birthday was an incredible feat. You beat the odds. To be one means you survived jungle cats, the ever classic “everything must go” style plagues, and all the earth changing elements good ol’ Captain Planet could throw your way.
I’ve always looked young for my age, and so does this company. We’re one, but a mature one.
So, what have we all learned this year?
1. Just take the first step
You should not start a company until you have everything figured out. I'm sure you've heard this before...I know I have.
That obviously makes no sense.
You could go out and frame your first prospectus as if that means something, but a business relies on more than financial projections. It takes grit, flexibility, and determination. To start a business you have to know the odds are stacked against you, most won't understand your vision, and you can only see about 10 seconds into the future at any given time.
So, one year in, what was our first step?
Some people come to us because they need a website, others need graphics, still others photography. It would seem, at first glance, that we make websites, or take photos, or understand what all the buttons in photoshop means.
Yet, that's too simple. Brewww means more to me than just a list of services. We don't have it all perfectly figured out but I will never regret embarking to find out what moved me to take the first step in the first place.
Unsolicited Advice Time: If you want to start a business, just do it. Take the first step.
2. Enjoy the “potential” stage
Everyone "loves" love.
The first stage of starting a company, an idea, an endeavor, whether big or small, is essential. At this point, your idea is beginning to form, and you seem to find inspiration everywhere. It’s like you are falling in love, and you idea can do no wrong. Everything before you it potential, pure unadulterated potential, and your idea generates so much excitement within you.
Soak it up. Write it out. Tell your friends.
Waste no time capturing the excitement.
After you leave this stage, you will need these moments (and friends) to testify to why you began in the first place. As you leave the first stage, you venture into the second, and your mettle will be tested.
Leaving the stage of pure potential and venturing into the unknown is terrifying. The instinct of self-preservation can kick in immediately, and fear drains out the excitement you had for the idea.
- What if I fail? Let’s rip off the bandaid, you will.
- What if I never make money? Or worse, lose money? Money will come and go. What if I’m not good enough? You’re not. That’s why you practice. That’s why you grow.
- What if someone else is better than you? Someone will always have more raw sklll than you.
Venturing into the unknown is terrifying. But, to me at least, even more terrifying than beginning something and it not working out is being that person that lives by the coulda, woulda, shoulda. I would rather start and tank a thousand companies than ever live with a single regret of never starting.
A wise friend once told me, "Keep the big things big and the small things small."
As the initial excitement fades with each bank account that's opened, each document filed with the state, and each time someone challenges you on your idea...well...
Keep the big things big, and the small things small. You're starting a company. You'll never remember the ream of paper you had to fill out to make your dream reality, but you will remember the moments when you light up because you started a business.
Unsolicited Advice Time: Enjoy the beginning stages of your company, but remember to keep the big things big and the small things small.
3. Get to work
As much fun as the potential stage, the real joy and excitement is in the "work" stage.
I had the idea for Brewww back in 2012. Like any good crush, it was all in my head. It was only when I took the steps towards formalizing everything that I realized how much I loved running a business.
- I love people counting me out.
- I love when there is a problem I can't figure out (yet)
- I love when I make a client's life a bit easier because mine was a little harder.
I know what gets me out of bed in the morning. I know that after a year I can shave milliseconds of loading time off a client site, or I can recognize the diminishing returns and focus my efforts elsewhere. I know there is much to learn, but I also know I am self-taught and I'm not slowing down.
Above all, I know the potential stage is what sets the hook, but it's not what reels you in. It's your preference for your vision over the simple pleasures of life that are a truer indicator that you were meant to start a company. You are never alone as you start your company. We're rallying behind you, and here when you need us.
So, as we celebrate our first birthday, we're more confident than ever it won't be our last.