A start-up is like a chemical reaction

Why Start?

Starting anything is one of the most exciting and well-loved human experiences.

How do you feel when you:

  • Start your car?

  • Start a journey or vacation?

  • Start a new friendship?

  • Start your lawnmower?

  • Start working out?

  • Start a new project?

It feels pretty good right?

Maybe like a new chapter in your life?

The potential for new possibilities, new relationships, and a new you?

Starting A Business

Starting a business is one of the most exciting human experiences.

Entrepreneurial ventures are at the pinnacle of innovative, creative, exploratory, adventurous, challenging, and rewarding endeavors.

Starting a business offers the possibility of creating new things.

Creating new things can be spiritually rewarding.

But new things are often ridiculed and laughed at - and sometimes the closer they are to accepted, the more they are vilified.

It can take years before new ventures become part of the landscape.

But the promise of overcoming difficulty through perseverance, ingenuity, and teamwork is a part of what makes start-ups so exciting.

The Start-up Reaction. Another way to think about start-ups.

New ventures are like chemical reactions.

Composed of a variety of chemicals (people and ideas), in a set of environmental conditions (nations and markets).

Chemicals require activation energy to react.

The outcome of an entrepreneurial reaction is the creation of a new organizational entity; and not just any entity, one that itself creates services or products.

A generator of things.

A conversation with Elon Musk

Creating a Creator

A generator of things.

So a start-up is this incredible human endeavor that brings together resources, adds activation energy in the form of sweat and capital, and creates an organization that exists for one purpose.

To create more things.

To me this is the peak of human ingenuity.

It is at the very essence of what we humans do.

We gather matter moving through the universe toward chaos, and we rearrange it into things that give us pleasure or utility.

Think about that.

We gather matter moving through the universe toward chaos, and we rearrange it into things that give us pleasure or utility.

Look around you at the buildings and cars, all the things we create.

At the root of every one of these things is a start-up.

Steve Jobs on starting a business.


Start originally meant 'jump, leap, caper' ('Him Just not [he did not like] to play nor start, nor to dance, nor to sing,' Chaucer, Romance of the Rose 1366). This gradually evolved via 'make a sudden movement' to 'begin a journey,' but it did not emerge as a fully-fledged synonym for 'begin' until the end of the 18th century. Startle [OE], which came from the same Germanic base *start-, has kept more closely to the notion of 'sudden movement'"

~ John Ayto, "Dictionary of Word Origins"

Jeff Bezos discusses loving your work.

Take Away

Find a way to start something new that creates products or services for others.