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The joys of founding a start up

By Dr. Colin Coulthard |

 

Me, jumping out of my bathA few days ago, I was lying in bed, trying to get to sleep, and it came to me. “It” being the solution to something that had been nagging at me about Yourpressure.com for a few days. I’d seen a prototype version of our app, and although it was good, it wasn’t great. What I was struggling with was how best to communicate my vision to the people that I’m working with…

I have it!

And then it came to me.

We want to be “Headspace for healthcare”.

I was so excited that I couldn’t get to sleep for two hours afterwards. I couldn’t wait to talk to Richard about it...

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The most vital step in launching any business...

By Dr. Colin Coulthard |

 

In a previous blog, I wrote about the mistakes that we’d made so far. This is the first part of a series on how we’re starting to fix those mistakes, and form a coherent business plan.

Ideas are common

I think that like everyone who starts as an entrepreneur we were very protective of our idea. It was hard-won and precious. We’d spent a lot of time coming up with it. About two years to be exact. We’d had a few others, but this was it. This was the big one. This time next year Rodney, we’re going to be millionaires.

If only…

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Lessons learned vol II

By Dr. Colin Coulthard |

At itamus, we’ve just realised that we’ve made a mistake. To be more specific, as I am in charge of business strategy and all that entails, I’ve just realised that I’ve made a mistake. Actually, it’s one in a series of mistakes that we’ve made.

Now you may be thinking that this is a bad thing. It is not. It is only by making mistakes that we make progress, so I thought that I’d document them here.

 

Scaling

This is the first mistake I made. If you want to make a profit, you need to have a business model that scales. This means that your unit price needs to be greater than your unit cost. That way as your volume increases your profits will outweigh your fixed costs and eventually you’ll be in profit. If you can scale enough, you can make a large profit.

However, as a start-up, this can lead to a tactical error.

The mistake that we’ve made, is thinking that we could go straight to ‘at scale’ production without paying our dues first. Every company needs to pay its dues. Facebook started off as a web page with a set of yearbook photos for Harvard. Google started off as a PhD project.

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