Starting a Business is like Giving Birth to a Child
“Parenting is the easiest thing in the world to have an opinion about, but the hardest thing in the world to do.”
Vishal Shah, CEO of MIDAS India, builds on the analogy of starting a business to raising a child.
Oh yeah! Tell me about it! Being a parent to a 15-year-old, I am living the above quote. I have had this unique opportunity to be involved in shaping businesses & entrepreneurs in my current role as a Business Coach at MIDAS. After having worked with over 50 start-ups I began to see the similarity between starting a business & bringing a life into this world. So, let’s start, from the beginning.
Conceiving a child is no different from conceiving a business idea!
Like most young couples today will tell you, planning a child is no small decision. Neither is the decision to start your own business. As both need a lot of effort. Not to mention that the phase before conception comes loaded with the pleasures that go into conception! Yes, just as one must do to conceive a child, an aspiring entrepreneur too, indulges in the inevitable process of making love to all their ideas, hoping that “this” time it will fructify into a “positive result. One must try a variety of things to achieve the desired outcome. This is what we like to call “IDEA GENERATION” at MIDAS.
Fertilizing the egg is akin to validating your idea! But, just like not every act of making love results in the conception of a child, so is the case with the ideas. It is our belief that not every idea is destined to be a business. Like in the process of conceiving a child, only one of the millions of sperms will fertilize the egg, the scenario with ideas is no different. The egg in the case of businesses represents the “ripe” opportunity in the marketplace. An idea can be translated into a business only if it is “validated” in the marketplace. This journey of ideas racing against each other in your mind & eventually one getting a thumbs up from the marketplace is a process we call “IDEA VALIDATION” at MIDAS.
And just like a fertilized egg results in conception, a validated idea results in an idea being transformed into a “business idea”. In both cases, we are now PREGNANT!
Prenatal-Care is what we call “Incubation” in start-up terms!
And now that we are pregnant, utmost care needs to be taken to ensure that the child receives the right kind of nutrition & attention to facilitate natural growth. Basically, everything that needs to be done to convert the foetus into a healthy child. Exactly what needs to be done with a validated business idea! This phase is what we call INCUBATION at MIDAS. Everything required to translate your validated business idea into a viable business is done during this stage. Just as prenatal care involves regular check-ups by the doctors, regular exercises recommended by the experts following a disciplined diet plan, so is the case with start-ups. Here the doctors & experts are replaced by what we call “BUSINESS COACHES” at MIDAS. They ensure that all adequate measures are taken with respect to company formation, intellectual right protection, financial plan, marketing roadmap & most importantly a go to market strategy to acquire the early adopters for your start-up.
My water just broke! This is when a start-up completes a successful pilot launch!
Yes! The time is now near. You know that all your efforts, the pains of nurturing the child over 9 months are now about to bear fruit! Similarly, after setting up the foundation blocks of the company, we at MIDAS make each start-up conduct a pilot launch to ensure we identify & debug the finer details before we go for a full-fledged commercial launch. And, just like once the water breaks, it’s time to go to the hospital, similarly, when the pilot is successfully completed, it’s time to go to the market!
The magic words for a parent – “IT’S A GIRL!” & the magic words for a start-up – “YOU’VE GOT YOUR FIRST CUSTOMER!!”
I still remember the day I held my daughter in my hands for the first time … A feeling that is unmatched. Her little hands & feet moving around trying to get a feel of the world outside the womb … Her eyes rolling in delight as they felt the warm rays of sunlight for the first time … Always an unforgettable moment for any parent…
So is the case with the launch of your business. Whereas there are different ways of defining a business launch, we at MIDAS believe that your business really comes to life the day you acquire your first customer. Your product or service is finally, out in the world to fend for itself. The umbilical cord is well & truly cut! And, so the journey from individual to parent & student to founder, culminates with the birth of a child & a business respectively. But, as all parents & start-up founders know, this is only the beginning. This is only the first step. A long & eventful life awaits both the child as well as the start-up. Both life and business is unpredictable but we as parents & founders need to play our part, ensuring that we nurture & bring up the child & start-up, well.
If you wish to know more about starting your own business, feel free to –