Brian Krausz

I build internet things


November 25, 2007

Note: Startupy was at one point the name of this blog. While I still love the term, I didn’t like the fact that it gave a topic to my blog and made me feel like I shouldn’t post about other things on it. Thus I changed the name/domain back to NerdLife.

There is a word that I found myself using more and more often, a word that I feel describes myself perfectly. And that word is Startupy.

Startupy, as I see it, describes a feeling of wanting to create a startup. It’s that simple.

So why don’t I just say entrepreneur? Because entrepreneur refers to someone who runs a new business, and that is not a requisite of being startupy. For example, I am currently in school, I no longer run a venture, yet I still consider myself startupy. I have the desire to start a business, but circumstances disallow it. The main difference is that being an entrepreneur is a physical state, that of owning a business, while being startupy better describes a state of mind.

A good application of this is an argument I was having with a couple of friends. They were taking a course called Entrepreneurship, which supposedly taught you how to be an entrepreneur. This bothered me greatly, and I claimed that one cannot be taught entrepreneurship, it’s an inherent trait that is merely honed by experience. This led to a large debate over how wrong everyone else in the room felt I was. I now realize that I was wrong (gasp!). I was not using the proper definition of entrepreneur, instead I was referring to being startupy. The mentality of being startupy cannot be taught, just as one cannot be taught in a lecture to be nice, it’s a personality trait. Starting businesses, on the other hand, could be taught.

Furthermore, I claim that startupy people will inherently do much better starting businesses than others. This follows the logic that one who is passionate about something will be better at it than one who isn’t.

Are you startupy? This is a rather subjective question, but there are some signs. Do you frequently find yourself evaluating ideas for potential as a startup? Do you love the idea of Silicon Valley and what it embodies? Most importantly, is the potential profit of a startup just a factor in evaluating the startup’s potential, and not the motivating factor, i.e., were it not for the impossibility of success, investment gathering, etc., would you start a startup that had no potential for profit just for the sake of starting one? People who can answer yes to those three questions exhibit startupy traits.

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