I came across this question on Quora.com and couldn’t resist the urge to answer it in my own way. Here’s my answer to the question:
More often than not, people tend to invariably relate the concept of start-ups with product development, and I don’t understand why.
I think a start-up can be anything you invest yourself into, which could be your own money, time and everything in between. Again, start-ups could mean different things depending on the socio-economic scenario. Here in India itself, start-ups could, for ex, face different challenges in different cities.
To answer the question, start-up is like your very own kid – because you conceive the idea before it’s born into reality, toil hard to raise it to be an adult and then set it adrift when it grows into a bigger entity.
It’s not easy being the founder of a start-up just as it is not easy being the mother of a tender child that needs constant attention, relentless love, selflessness and sacrifice. Embracing motherhood is a choice, so is founding a start-up.
You sure lose your sleep over your baby or wake up in the middle of the night to attend to it. That’s what mothers around the world do as well. It’s a painful journey and but has its very own exhilarating moments. Just like a mother, you feel the emotional fulfilment and divine joy when your baby is born, smile, take the first step or just start crawling on the ground.
Your start-up is always close to your heart despite how the world around you perceives it. You toil to help it grow, out of sheer love and affection. You can run through the fire to help it push forward to where it belongs. Ask any founder, and they would put their inherent satisfaction much above the money which comes with it incidentally.
It’s difficult to describe in words what it’s like to be a start-up founder. One has to carry the mantle to know what it takes. It’s a very personal experience.