Screw serendipity – make it happen!

I’ve heard these stories of startup founders where great stuff just happens to them. They’re telling a friend about their latest idea and are overheard by some angel who immediately writes them a check or they create some neat tool in their spare time, while holding down a real job, and then become superstars earning millions and flying around the world to speak to their screaming throngs, or they create some neat little tool in a weekend and end up selling it a month later for $10 million.

All crap, seriously. I don’t believe any of it. Sure, there might be some fantasized retelling of a startup that starts with these lines, but there not reality. Maybe I don’t believe them because they haven’t happened to me. Maybe I’m just a doubting Thomas after all.

Last spring when we applied to TechStars with the original, now long-dead idea for TempMine, we were very excited to make it through the first cut from a  500 or so companies down to fifty.  But making the first cut wasn’t the goal and we weren’t in yet.  We still had to beat out 40 other teams to get a slot.

I then saw a tweet that Shawn Broderick, the Director of the soon to be first Boston class of TechStars was going to be at Andala Cafe for OpenCoffee the following week.   Did I wait around for someone to overhear me talking about TempMine?  Did I sit in my house and code, code, code hoping to get noticed?  Did anyone buy TempMine for $10M?  No, no, and sadly, no.  I got off my butt, skipped a few hours of work, and got in Shawn’s face.

Applications for TechStars Boston 2010 are now open and getting into TechStars is hard.  The odds are quite literally stacked against you.  Tilt them a bit, go meet Shawn.  Go meet some of the TechStars alums who are going to be there too.  Go find out why I jumped at the chance to leave a great job and chase my dream.

Come learn more about TechStars as Shawn hosts an Info Session at 10:30a on Wednesday, Dec 2nd at Andala.

Screw serendipity – make it happen.

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