Being an entrepreneur, you have complete flexibility over all facets of the business. You can change and create at will and have nobody to answer to but yourself (or co-founder). This is exciting and exhilarating, but can also be stressful. How do you know what decision is right? How will things turn out if I choose this over that? There are so many unknowns. I wrote about success needing no excuse. If a decision turns out to be right, then it was a “genius” decision. However, if it turns out to be wrong, it was a “perilous” decision. There’s so much judgment, but only after the fact. When in reality, the decision was based purely on what seemed right at the time.
I find myself having to make hundreds if not thousands of small and large decisions every single day for my Chicago parking startup company SpotHero. There are so many different facets of the business running in parallel that just the focus of time involves a lot of decision making. Do we practice our presentation for the class we’re guest presenting at, work on SEO, write a SpotHero blog post, work with legal and liability issues, answer emails, spend time going door to door in key parking spot areas, on the ground event parking research, learn how to code Python, apply for startup funding from a place like Y Combinator, or schedule meetings with perspective owners of parking spots? These are just a few of the endless list of things we must allocate our time to. Each facet has a multitude of decisions that must be made. It seems there are so many critical decisions made each day, yet it’s impossible to know how they’ll turn out or impact the business later on.
Some decisions you can see results right away. I disagreed initially on a key part involving our design with my co-founder. I was extremely adamant, yet we ended up going in his direction even though I disagreed. It ended up being one of the best decisions we’ve (I mean he’d) ever made. As an entrepreneur, you have to make hundreds if not thousands of small and large “right” decisions every single day. I know for a fact there are some decisions I’ve made that will probably negatively impact my business later on down the line. I don’t know what they’ll be, but I can’t fret over them. I take solace in the hope I have made enough “right” decisions that will counteract all the “bad” ones. I have those two words in quotes because a decision that seemed right can actually turn out to look like it was a bad one, and then flip flop and end up being the best decision ever. This is true in the reverse also.
Sometimes my co-founder and I fret over decisions because we just aren’t sure. All the research in the world sometimes just doesn’t help. There are so many unknowns, yet the decisions need to be made today. It’s impossible to make 1000 right decisions every day, but an entrepreneur must try. In the midst of constant choice and infinite paths, having a co-founder helps to keep some sanity. There’s no way to predict the future, but I’m hoping that it will show that of all the decisions I make each day, the good ones will make SpotHero prevail and uplift it from the bad ones. Only time will tell.