How I’ve Founded Two Start-ups

Recently I’ve founded two start-ups.

But to put honesty in its place, I really couldn’t label us as a “startup” yet. We’re still at the infancy stage: A fetus waiting to be born. We have no investors, no capital, etc. We just have us, a company of hackers, businessmen, and entrepreneur-wannabes, working for free towards a vision that may lead to somewhere or may just go down the drain.

I’ve formed the team basing on two things: an idea, and connections. And in this post, I’ll be talking more on the latter.

So far I had a 100% success rate of my attempt in recruiting the people that I wanted to work with. I hand-picked them based on their talents, experience, and character. This got me thinking: Why would such talented people, where some are more experienced than me by years, accept a crazy offer from someone young who’s from a unknown faraway land? And why would they be willing to work for free for something that will just drain them of their energy, finances, and time?

At first, because of my prideful super-masculine-testosterone-driven-ego-centric thinking, the questioned revolved around me. But as I thought more, I realized it wasn’t about me. I had nothing to do about it. It was more about abstract factors that contributed to this willingness, and in here I’ll attempt to identify them.

1. Trust

I believe trust is the foundational block of relationships.

I hand-picked people that I trust enough. People that are flawed but great. I found out that I trust people more that have apparent flaws, than people who try excessively to hide them.

I also believe this is a two-way thing. I believe they can’t accept my offer if they do not trust me enough. Why they trust me, I do not know. But this I do know: Trust is the foundational block of relationships.

So, don’t be afraid of your human flaws. We all have them.

Share yourself enough; Build trusting relationships.

2. Plan

Trust is the foundational block, skills provide the leg work, but a plan makes things clearer, reduces fear and uncertainty, and provides overall motivation.

I’ve come up with a plan and presented it to the people that I’ve recruited. I’m no seer, but I try to see the possibilities of the future, and then for me to come up with a plan to work towards the most ideal future.

Plans tend to fail. A lot of my plans did. But plans work sometimes too. And at the very least, plans makes a lot of things less uncertain.

Me and my teams are working towards something that we’re not very familiar with. We’re even stepping towards a very unfamiliar area. But we’re willing to grow and to experience what holds ahead of us. And having a plan makes this frightful venture more bearable, even exciting.

3. Vision

A team without a vision is a team without direction.

I’ve once read from a Chess grandmaster that in order to win, you need to study the endgame. For me, to make something work, I need to visualize the end result, then slowly work from there towards the current state that I am in. That way, efforts will be focused towards the end game.

A vision unifies. A vision gives direction. A vision gives focus. A vision inspires.

And I’m not talking about a vision of success, fame, nor wealth-creation. Things like those doesn’t really cut for me. Even from a lot of people that I’ve learned from, they’ve shared that wealth-chasing usually backfires. Instead, I think that a better world is a more appealing and satisfying goal.


I have plans, but I’m not entirely sure of the things that are ahead of me.

I have a vision, but I’m not entirely sure how the future will play out.

I am only sure of this:

That I do not have total control of my past, present, and future, but to the LORD who is sovereign.

“It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God’s mercy.”
(Romans 9:16)

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