Yesterday, I had two thoughts collide. OK, make it three.
Thought 1: I was thinking about what’s missing in my new venture. Like everyone, I can use more capital but my mind was going beyond that. Was it some type of expertise or credibility? A more attractive market segment? An additional product feature? Perhaps a different price point?
Thought 2: What occurred to me right away was a catchy phrase I heard many times while at DePaul: Time, talent, and treasure. It’s shorthand for the patient strategy fundraisers often use for new donors: first, ask people to volunteer, then ask them to contribute their expertise, and then ask them for a donation.
My mind formed the question before I was able to even process it: Of the three, which was I missing the most? Was it time to get done what we needed to stay on schedule? Was it talent in a specific area that we may not already have? Or was it treasure which would allow us to not only acquire a particular asset, but perhaps even buy time or buy talent?
Thought 3: As I mulled those questions, I concluded that they applied to virtually all startups, particularly in the execution phase. Maybe not in a linear, process-like way (such as with donors) but they mattered nonetheless.
Note: To my former students, what does this post remind you of, and why?