Startup or “New business attempt”: Who are you? What suits you best?


– “I’ve been in almost every possible event that was organized in the last 2 years in Bucharest”

– “Why? Is it so difficult to find a girlfriend?”

– “Don’t tease me, please. I heard almost every speaker who had something to say, while I read almost everything written online”

– “And? How does it feel to be… totally informed?”

– “I don’t know, I can call myself rather confused. Leaving aside the parrots who learned a story by someone else and simply repeat it without understanding their own words, I heard many interesting things. I really found some speakers offering value, with great ideas and theories”.

– “I agree that there are, I am glad you spotted them too…”

– “But if you add all theories… look… I wrote them down… in many cases these experts contradict each other… many times their suggestions are totally opposite…

– “I know the feeling, I was in the same situation when I started political campaigns back in the 90s and when I came in Romania back in 2004…”

– “I feel…. “overeducated” and lost… too much theory…”

(In this part of Europe, an average male future entrepreneur usually “knows everything in advance”, so the fact that my friend was honest and not selfish was already a very good start…)

– “So, let’s put the problem on a different basis…”

– “Ok…”

– “These serious people come with ideas that you like / agree / respect / find useful, yes?”

– “Indeed”

– “Let’s call these ideas “food recipes”. It’s like watching different chefs proposing to you how to cook a particular meal…”

– “Let’s say so…”

– “I am Greek, you are Romanian”

– “You are also Romanian”

– “Partially, I became, yes. But I was raised in Greece and got used to Mediterranean diet, which is not the case for you. I have to pay you 100 Euro so as to see you eating salad, while I cannot live without it… On the other hand, I am not fan of mamaliga, for instance. None of us is wrong, it is just a matter of personal taste and of who we are…”

– “What is your point? You make me hungry…”

“My point is that you listen to all these people, me too between them, without introducing the most important element in the discussion…”

– “Which is…”

– “YOU!”

– “Me?”

– “You, my friend! You have to step back and decide who you are, above all! Then you take all these good proposals and ideas, analyze them and fit them in YOUR OWN PERSONALITY! Like you do with the recipes! You don’t eat everything, but only what you like, no?”

– “And if I reject some good ideas because they don’t match to who I am?”

– “This is healthy and great! You will choose the ideas that make you feel comfortable! In the end of the day, no idea works if you don’t feel comfortable with it. Nothing brings results if it is done mechanically, without will”.

– “So these experts are wrong?”

– “No, they are right in principle. But the success comes if you adjust their words in your own reality, values and understanding of the world”.

– “Do I have the right to question their expertise?”

– “You HAVE TO question everything and keep only what suits you. Otherwise it is like you wear shoes which are bigger or smaller than your size, just because someone told you that they are great”

Who are you?

Romania nowadays is not the country of the 90s, or the one I found in 2004 when I arrived here. It is not even the country in deep crisis, back in 2009 – 2011. In 2016 or 2017 Romania will surpass Greece in GDP and become the leader of South Eastern Europe, with strong potential in the years to come.

(The 3 “Romanias” and the one you should invest in)

In this new business environment, we all hear daily many voices regarding which is the right direction for our business, for ourselves. But when it is about a startup, a new business venture or the expansion / pivot of an existing business, there is one common element for everyone: We have to work hard to as to succeed. If someone tells you the opposite, he is either a liar, or someone who does not know.

So, what is standard for everyone?

  1. The business environment
  2. The necessary hard work

The rest has to be customized, according to who you are!

Startup or new business venture? What suits you best?

Last week we were talking about the 6 major differences between startups and new business ventures. Many people confuse them, but they are based on different principles and lead to different destinations. I received several messages asking more information about this subject, while tens of people were curious: “What is the best for me?”

Let’s think of some basic principles:

1.  99% of new business are not startups.
(Yes, the media talk more about the 1%, but still the “new business attempts” are about 100 times more).

2.  Do you try to understand the others? Do you have this “I noticed that people were doing this, so an idea popped up in my head”? In this case, you have the basis of a startup approach

3.  Do you assume risks in your life? Are you ready to lose? If yes, then you can go for a startup.
(Attention: I did not write “do you risk?”, because there are thousands out there ready to risk and then disappear if a failure knocks at their door)

4.  Do you want to open a new market / “change the world”? If yes, then you can go for a startup

5.  Are you egoist / stubborn in a positive way? Then a startup may allow you to prove your ego and value

6.  Are you cautious and conservative? Forget about startups, you will have higher chances to succeed with a new business attempt.

7.  Are you good in sales? Do you have talent in this field? If yes, your original destination is a normal new business attempt, where you can capitalize this talent. Or be partner in someone else’s startup, being responsible with sales.

(It is very interesting that the vast majority of successful startups were not based on their founders’ talent in sales. After the idea was considered as “one with potential”, they hired others to sell. Innovation and sales talent are not usually found in the same person).

 8.  Are you an “artist”? If yes, startups can accommodate your different way of thinking and transform it into a future business

 9.  Are you attentive to details? If no, then you need next to you someone who is, or you need to work much harder so as to succeed (especially in a startup). If yes, both options are valid for you.

 10.  Are you the “I simply want to start a new, decent business for me / my family”? If yes, forget about startups, you will begin a new business venture and this “down to earth” approach will increase your chances to succeed.


Last but not least:

  • (No one is watching you, it is just you and yourself now…)
  • Are you able / do you wish to work extremely hard in the next 3 – 5 years of your life?
  • If yes, then you can think of a startup.
  • “Simple” hard work leads to “founding a normal business attempt”
  •  “I don’t really want to work hard / push myself / I have different priorities in life” means that you should avoid starting your own business, your chances to lose your money are double than the average.

“Who you are” determines your venture and your limits

Successful people may have any of the characteristics above, or the opposite ones! The important thing is to start your approach on business based on WHO YOU ARE. Then all advices will look different and you will be able to create your business strategy based on your real character, not on “wishful thinking” by people who don’t know YOU.

“Who you are” determines what you will create too. It also sets the limits of your venture, either a startup or a new business attempt. “But many people tell me that I have to exceed my limits so as to succeed” you may ask. This can be true, yes. But how can you exceed your limits if you don’t know them? And how can you build a successful company or a startup without adjusting it to your abilities, pluses and minuses?

You choose your food based on your personal taste (plus health criteria etc). Isn’t normal to do the same with your business?

What is your opinion?


1 Comment


    Also I have found myself in many meetings for start-ups, from what I noticed is that apart from the ambitious potential founders and benevolent or not investors there are many people around who are trying to exploit those  who from ambition or need try to create something new. The truth is that a good idea is  rare scarce and if finally found is visible kilometres away. Then all these people around try to get a large share of the company with a small amount of money.

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