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Survey Results

Have you started your own IT-related business?

Survey period: 11 May 2020 to 18 May 2020

Whether it's a simple side-gig doing contract work or an international multi-million dollar business. Have you taken the plunge and backed yourself?

Yes, I've started and continue to run my own full-time business11712.68
Yes, I've started and continue to run my own part-time or side business838.99
Yes, and sold it222.38
Yes, but shut it down / put it on hold15616.90
No, but I intend to12613.65
No, and don't intend to41945.40

GeneralThe anti-poster boy Pin
Dean Roddey16-May-20 8:39
Dean Roddey16-May-20 8:39 
I'm the cautionary tale on this front. There's a huge issue in this area because only the winners write history. No one ever writes best selling books about the hundreds or thousands of folks who went down in flames for the every one that makes it (or the tens of thousands for every one that makes it big.) If you work hard and create an amazing product, that's not at all a guarantee that you will make it. But lots of people don't understand that because they've only heard the stories of the writers of history.

Not that I want to discourage people, but you have to have reasonable expectations. Most businesses fail. There just isn't enough room on the top of the public mind-share mountain for all the folks who want to do it. And just because you have a good product doesn't mean it's a given that people will buy it. It has to be a good product with a viable market, that can compete against others doing the same (often with more money and visibility.)

And of course viable means in the long run. Often it starts off nicely, then you suddenly realize that maybe the market for your product may be in the range of thousands of users, or maybe a couple tens of thousands, and once you've sold to that many, the income drops dramatically to a dribble, but you still have all of the expenses and obligations.

You'll have a lot better chance if you get in bed with the money changers, but you'll also likely not end up controlling your own company in the end. If you get rich, that's probably not a bad thing, go enjoy your gotten gains and let them deal with the headaches. But for some folks it can be a real problem. And of course if they come in after you have put in a lot of your life, they are just risking money while you are risking a large chunk of your time in this mortal coil.

Anyhoo, I went out on my own the early 2000s, worked like a psychopath, created a really powerful product, and just went and more broke till I was living in a 35 year old single wide trailer behind a convenience store. Ultimately I have ended up such that I'll never be able to retire and anything that should leave me unable to work is likely to see me living on the streets.

Partly it's because I wasn't able to face the reality of shutting it down, and hung on far, far longer than was intelligent. Partly because I'd put so much into it. Partly just because I'm a technical entrepreneur and not a real 'business' man, so dealing with all that messy business was just more than I could handle.

Mine was a powerful and robust product that just didn't have a viable market. It was too small to support a real business, and it was hemmed in below and above by competitors that couldn't be pushed back. I created what I did because I wanted to, not because I had figured out if it was going to be viable. That's not really what you should do, at least not if you are going to depend on it as your main gig. I made the mistake of assuming that, you build it they will come. But they won't necessarily.

* Obviously there's a big difference between service and product related companies. They both have their challenges, but a service oriented company is probably easier to get into and out of.
Explorans limites defectum

GeneralNo, but I intend to Pin
kane8115-May-20 20:22
kane8115-May-20 20:22 
GeneralI Started it Recently Pin
Anurag Gandhi14-May-20 20:24
professionalAnurag Gandhi14-May-20 20:24 
GeneralYes ... in my mind ... |d++b| Pin
RedDk13-May-20 8:22
RedDk13-May-20 8:22 
GeneralThank God I am employed now. Pin
Carsten V2.012-May-20 20:44
Carsten V2.012-May-20 20:44 
GeneralYes and never will again Pin
Mathew Crothers11-May-20 13:57
professionalMathew Crothers11-May-20 13:57 
GeneralRe: Yes and never will again Pin
Jalapeno Bob15-May-20 18:43
professionalJalapeno Bob15-May-20 18:43 
GeneralYes thats what I do. Pin
Ron Anders11-May-20 3:43
Ron Anders11-May-20 3:43 
GeneralOnce Upon a Time Pin
W Balboos, GHB11-May-20 2:02
W Balboos, GHB11-May-20 2:02 
GeneralYes, running my own full time business! Pin
Sander Rossel11-May-20 0:32
professionalSander Rossel11-May-20 0:32 
GeneralYes, but Pin
Nemanja Trifunovic4-May-20 2:18
Nemanja Trifunovic4-May-20 2:18 
GeneralRe: Yes, but Pin
Dan Neely11-May-20 4:49
Dan Neely11-May-20 4:49 
GeneralNot Counting Contracting Pin
W Balboos, GHB4-May-20 1:58
W Balboos, GHB4-May-20 1:58 
GeneralA few Pin
CHill604-May-20 0:51
mveCHill604-May-20 0:51 
GeneralNo and I don't intend to Pin
den2k883-May-20 22:16
professionalden2k883-May-20 22:16 

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