By John Sonmez July 13, 2017

How To Start A “BIG” Programming Project?

More and more, people are becoming more aware that entrepreneurship is an awesome road that can bring you amazing results.

However, entrepreneurship is not always easy. There are a lot of downsides and challenges that new entrepreneurs HAVE to face if they want to succeed in this field.

One of the main challenges new programming entrepreneurs face is trying to start a big programming project. How do you start? Where do you find money, investors, etc? How do you build a team? Watch this video and find out!

Transcript Of The Video

John Sonmez: 

Hey, what's up? John Sonmez here from simpleprogrammer.com. Tired of pushy recruiters sending you LinkedIn requests for jobs you have no interest in? Tired of blasting out resumes into the dark? If so, you should check out Hired.com. Hired.com flips job searching on its head by having top employers like Facebook come to you after you fill out one simple application. You also get your own job coach to help you on your next job search. If you haven't checked it out, I highly recommend you at least fill out the application. Just go to Hired.com/simpleprogrammer. When you get hired with Hired, you'll get double the normal sign-on bonus for using that link.

I've got a question on how to start a project, but you need more than yourself to complete it. This question is from Matt. He says, “When it comes to developing a service that will require more than one person to pull off successfully, how would you approach the situation?” He's got a little bit of additional info here. He says, “Firstly, I'm a huge fan of your work, very inspiring for us programmers out there and just can't seem to get ahead. My name is Matt and I have a simple question for you.” He goes on to say that he's “Got a business plan that I believe will make the food industry more customer friendly, but I have a little idea of where to begin. Looking for advice.” He's saying, when he's developing the service it looks like it's going to require more than one person to pull off successfully. How would you approach this situation? He says, “I could pay someone, but I won't get the partner I need. I have a friend that could help but they aren't qualified. I could just develop a business plan and sell the idea.” He's curious what to do here.

There's a couple of things I'm going to say Matt. First of all, I'm going to burst your bubble. I'm going to point you to a video called Your Million Dollar Idea is Worthless. I probably have answered this a few times, but I want to set the frame first of all that like execution trumps everything else. There's a million million-dollar ideas. I come up with million dollar ideas every single day, but I don't execute on those million dollar ideas every single day. There's a ton of people that have those. You've got a million million-dollar ideas possibly in your head, maybe not a million, but maybe a hundred. That could be successful. In fact, you don't even know which ones are million dollar ideas. Sometimes the best ideas are actually the shittiest ones and sometimes some shitty idea like, what is it, a snuggy? Have you seen a snuggy? Those little blankets that you put on that you have arms in them. That was more than a million-dollar idea. That was a 100 million-dollar idea, but it's a shit idea. Execution on that crappy product was 100%. It was great. It was awesome. Not many people can execute like that.

I'm not saying this to be mean. I am saying this to burst your bubble, but I want to set that first because what your problem is, what you're worried about is you're like you've got this golden idea and you're like, “Oh gosh, I've got to do something with this golden idea. Should I sell it? I got to act on this. I got to get a partner. I got to build this business.” Uh! It's just not that gold of an idea. I don't even know what your idea is, but it's not.

Someone has already thought of it, I guarantee you, but they haven't executed on it, so you have an opportunity to execute on it. First mover definitely gets as benefit there. But again, I'm not trying to just totally crush your dreams. I'm just trying to help you to understand a couple of things. One, to get out of the scarcity mentality. There's abundance of ideas, ideas are never going to be the problem. You can come up, with I guarantee, just as good of the idea that you have right now. If you brainstorm for an hour everyday you'll come up with 100 of them. If you make a list of 10 phenomenal world changing ideas every single day, when you wake up first thing you do in the morning, spend a half an hour and do that and then you compile them up in a year, you will have the best of the best. You'll have 10 ideas if you pick your top 10 ideas that could change the world. Anyone could do this. I promise you. It's just there.

I just want to say this because I want you to get out of the scarcity mentality. I want you to realize that ideas that all of this is abundant, that there's a million ways to make a million bucks and that that—that you want to have that abundance mindset.

Now, we can actually get to your question because we don't want to operate out of that fear of losing something, of missing something out, that FOMO type of mentality. It's no good. Instead, what you want to focus on is what makes practical pragmatic sense. In this case, if this is your first business, if you've never built a business before, if you're going into entrepreneurship, does it really make sense for you to build a business that's going to require multiple people and possibly a big team?

Now, if you want to go down this road, there are plenty of people that are going down this road. If you look on Hacker News and you look in the startup community there, there's some show, I haven't watched it, called Silicon Valley, that whole culture. You can totally do that. I've got a friend, I'm an adviser in a company called , my buddy who's the CEO of the company, Anthony, he is totally about that and he is raising money and raising rounds and he's built a team and all of this stuff to build his dream, his business and I'm part of the team and I've helped him and advised him on that, but he went through a lot of work and effort to do that.

You can go that road if you're going to really develop on this idea. Now, I'll have to tell you that Anthony has being doing entrepreneurialship stuff for a while. This isn't his first time in the rodeo, maybe at this size, but if you want to go that road then I would advise if you're going to build something that's going to require multiple people that is going to be really big that you do go down that funding, the startup road. You build a prototype, a proof of concept, you go through and you do the whole pitch.

I just remembered the book. It's called How to Pitch Anything. That's a really good book about frame control. I always forget the name of that book. It's by Oren something, but anyway, really good book. You should read that of course if you're going to pitch startups. You could go that funded route and that's probably the best thing if you're going to have a company that's going to require multiple people. But that might not be the place where you want to start. Eventually maybe you want to get there and you could even save that idea and shelf that idea, but I would highly recommend that you start off on a much smaller entrepreneurial venture. Start a small business yourself. Start selling something online, maybe an eBook, maybe a video course, something very small. Build a small piece of software, something that you can build yourself, an app that you could put in the app store. Start there so you can make the mistakes that you're bound to make early on with a low stakes thing that you're not investing a huge amount of time in, because I guarantee you that this is not going to go smoothly.

I could give you some advice and be like, “Okay, well you could find a partner that you could work on on this idea, but maybe they're not going to be as committed.” Or I could say, “Okay, you could hawk your car, your guitar and get some money and go in debt and pay someone to work on your idea” but your chances of success are very, very low on your first idea. Ideas are not the thing that's scarce. The key thing here is that—figure out long term pragmatically, practically where do you want to go and just assume that ideas will come. You will have plenty of ideas. That's not the problem, but if you want to be a entrepreneur, start small, start getting some wins under your belt, start taking some swing, start hitting your teeth on the pavement and getting the failures out of the way and developing that skillset and that's going to take you where to go.

If you do want to go this other route, if you just want to build this big company and go the startup route, it's a high, high risk. It's a lottery ticket, but you can go that route. You're just going to have to go out there and you're going to have to raise funding. There's plenty of advice and information on that. I'm not an expert on that but I can tell you it's definitely a hard road. I would either go that road for a business idea like this, or I would shelf that idea and I would start with something smaller, something easier that you're going to be able to accomplish by yourself and start there.

All right, hopefully that helps you. Hopefully I haven't burst all your dreams. I appreciate you sending the question. I honestly do wish you the best, like I said, I'm not trying to just bust your chops here. I'm just trying to give you a dose of reality so that you can be as successful as possible.

All right, if you like this video, if you haven't subscribed already, click that Subscribe button below and I will talk to you next time. Take care.

About the author

John Sonmez

John Sonmez is the founder of Simple Programmer and a life coach for software developers. He is the best selling author of the book "Soft Skills: The Software Developer's Life Manual."