By Kevin O'Keefe

Starting a business : Time could not be better

Couldn’t agree more with the reasoning of the guys at 37signals, the makers of Basecamp, Backpack et al, that the time to start a business could not be better.

  • You don’t need VC diesel to get your motor running. Working nights or putting money aside to run full-time for three months is enough to get off the ground.
  • You can actually charge money for valuable services. People have never been more willing to part with their credit cards to pay for services that improve their business or their life.
  • You don’t need mainstream tech to make a dent. Mainstream tech people are working at the risk-averse insurance companies of the world. Pick up people who like to work with the likes Ruby. These folks are bustling with passion to develop using tools they love.
  • You don’t need to live in San Francisco or other large metros to make it big. 37signals has people all over the world working alone or in small groups.
  • You don’t need a swarm of worker bees to take off. Small teams are capable of doing big things. Having more people is likely to slow you down rather than speed you up.

My last legal Internet company took a bunch of VC money upfront, 25 or 30 people were employed over night for one central location, we wrote our own software, and we never brought in one dime in revenues. LexBlog’s success is now dictated by doing just the opposite on all accounts.

We were focused on deriving revenues from the start, these revenues as opposed to capital drove growth, 6 or 7 passionate people at remote locations were employed, and we focused on enhancing another’s software to serve our clients, as opposed to writing our own.

You guys in large law firms and professional service firms looking to get out and start your own firm can learn a lot from these lessons. The cost to get out and start a small company costs nothing compared to when I started my own law firm over 10 years ago. You have laptops, easy to use software, the Internet, contract workers available from anywhere, and executive suites if you do not need a fancy office each day.

Seize the day and start your own business. You’ll never regret it. And it could never be easier than today.

Kevin O'Keefe
About the Author

Trial lawyer turned legal tech entrepreneur, I am the founder and CEO of LexBlog, a legal blog community of over 30,000 blog publishers, worldwide. LexBlog’s publishing platform is used on a subscription basis by over 18,000 legal professionals, including the largest law firm in each India, China and the United States.

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