Get yourself a Greyhair!
The underappreciated experience of previous generations is untapped knowledge and a valuable resource for all Startups. Call them what you want: Consultants, Advisory Board, the old guy who keeps rambling on about how easy the younger generation has it – either way, get yourself 1 or 2 or even 3!
Your goal should not only be to pair yourself with a mentor from your industry, but also find experts who have different experiences, promoting cross-innovation, by using and adapting the ideas and solutions from one industry or product, to another. Engineers, Financial Experts, Artists, Designers, Scientists, etc., all have a perspective which may be massively beneficial to your business. So stop coding and talk to a real person for one minute.
A Greyhair can help to discuss new ideas, business strategy, marketing plans, or simply help critique your product. Don’t shy away from critique; it’ll help you and your company significantly.
When searching for a Greyhair, I would advise to keep these two things in mind:
- Find someone who is open to share their experiences. Regardless if they can directly offer insights along the product development process or not, you should be taking their life stories (highs and lows) and applying them to your situation. Personally I love these types of conversations because it always allows me to reflect on what I am doing now, and where I want to go next.
- Get someone who can offer endless motivation. This one is a bit tougher. Yes we all need someone to give us a hug and say “everything is going to be ok sweetie, I believe in you” (usually your mom takes this role), but as we hit bottom (and lord knows I have been there), you’ll need a kick in the butt and a Rocky theme song on speed dial. A solid Greyhair won’t allow you to have a victim mentality, and parallel, will give you that super-boost of confidence you’ll need along your journey. (Which is also a great band for some quick courage.)
If all else fails, hit this link just before you run out of money and need to pivot the business model for the seventh time.
Now get out there and start swingin, ya bum!