Sunday, December 05, 2004

A Room of One's Own

In her 1928 essay of the same name, Virginia Woolf argued that, "A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction."

To the same extent, I think the same thing applies to entrepreneurship. Most entreprenuerial dreams die an early death because they are starved of the most precious resource: Time. I can attest to this fact from personal experience; with two small children under the age of 3, I can barely find time to keep up with a real job, let alone work on a new entrepreneurial idea (though I have several, and if you are looking for an idea and an advisory board member, drop me a line!).

An entreprenuer needs money and a room of her own to efficiently and quickly create a company. In my own mind, I've done a hypothetical analysis, and concluded that if I did not have to work a job, had my own office, and $50,000 per year to spend, I could start one new business per year.

Thanks to the relentless progress of Moore's law and the death of distance, it is orders of magnitude cheaper to start a company. I can incorporate online for about $150. I can get a corporate identity designed by Romanian freelancers for $100. I can get an entire custom e-commerce back-end built by Indian programmers for less than $10,000. All of those would have cost 10, 100, or even 1,000 times as much during the pre-Internet era.

I hope that in the not too distant future, I will be successful enough to own my own home, have enough money to pay my living expenses and spend $50,000 per year on business startup expenses, and have the time to be serial entrepreneur. And if you already have those things, what's your excuse? Get out there and create!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have a toddler, part-time job (working from home with full-time responsibility and benefits), and a dream of running my own business.

Although my "real job" is pretty ideal, I believe I could make more money and be more fulfilled putting the same effort into my own business. I have to agree that if I just had more time to get this baby off the ground...my dream would become reality fairly quickly.

I think the money thing is right on, too. Money can buy you time via purchasing services. I could make up for the lack of time by purchasing the services for set-up.

I don't require much to launch (I have the tool-set I need already), but I haven't felt comfortable diverting funds from family-goals. My toddler will be ready for pre-school a few days a week in the fall...I'm hoping that will be the time I need to get this rolling.