Why business incubation doesn’t work or how many times you should try

Good friday to you all!

It was a hard week and I hope you have made amazing and aspiring things during it. Made smth useful, made smbdy happy, enjoyed life and touched to smth very beautiful and wonderful.

I wanted to tell you the story about entrepreneur who had tried many times and on experienced huge amount of failures on his way for a glory. He is not a Steve yet, but also not a young geek. Smth in between. He is the guy with really great idea and technology, PhD, and who have passed the way from technology-driven approach to entrepreneurship towards market-driven one. I also want to show you the real reason what let this trasformation possible and why business incubator don’t provide this value for incubatee.

Let me call him Mr. X. This is because I work with him but don’t have a permission to announce details and names. So, Mr. X worked in a particular area of knowledge for a very long period of time. He became a really good expert in the technology, even reached PhD, published articles in scientific journals, developed unique technology. Then he came up with idea that he can make a company out of it. So, he went out of his laboratory and discovered that there is a lot of people who work in the same area on the market. They try to solve more or less problems he wanted to solve with his technology. I will only say that this technology deals with speech recognition.

Thus, there was no room for his company with his technology because the problem he wanted to solve doesn’t need this kind of technology. And….he started his long way of customer development. He brainstormed, tried to come up with new possible applications, started to meet other people, even traveled to different conferences. I amazed how many times he spent keep on going and trying for possible applications because he believed that his womderful technology could be a breakthrough! He spent 2 years in attempts and failures on his way to possible customers. Eventually he found out a niche (thar has a very good size, growth, and big pain that should be solved immediately – noone is still able to propose a very good solution which can cut costs like his technology). He conducted more than 200 interviews with experts, potential customers, and channel partners. One person, after another revealed him a big opportunity for his technology. At the same time he was working on his technology improving characteristics. Market needs and technology met up…. Here I want to stop because this is enough to show why incubator could never help him.

There are only two factors that allowed him to transform his approach:

  • passion and motivation to keep going on;
  • strong will and belief in victory (after 2 years he didn’t give up) Have you ever tried to keep going with failures?
  • material resources that allowed him to devote all his time to this project.

Why incubators will never could help him. The reason is simple. Incubator didn’t work with truly soft issues of entrepreneurship. They don’t develop and improve personality and character. They give you external services that I have extensionally described in this post. But they will never and can’t give you passion, motivation, and belief in your future success.

In my work on virtual business incubation and in the project CrowdSynergy, we potentially found a solution which Alex Krol called Tracking. Will tell you about it later.

So, good luck! and keep going in your failures! 🙂

How many times you should try

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