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  • Writer's pictureJohn Selzer

Neverending Math Equation

Updated: Nov 30, 2018

If it was easy, everyone would do it.

Being an entrepreneur is hard.

It requires a broad and fluid skillset, catlike reflexes and an unwavering commitment to push through uncertainty. Oh, and most likely on a shoestring budget.

And all the while, the dynamics are constantly in flux. The morning might be algebra, the afternoon calculus, and by dinnertime, you are knee deep in some new theoretical equation bullish*t just dreamt up in the Valley.

Stay on your toes, and you will be fine. And remember; it is all of this that makes it unbelievably fun and rewarding, too.

But sometimes the math is clear.

I recently met a startup founder with a platform intended to serve a two-sided market. Bring both together, have one (or better, both) pay you and you are off to the races. He described the glowing love for his solution from one side, but it quickly became clear that the other was not so enamored. In fact, there was no interest. Zero. Even my eight year old knows that any number times zero is zero.

That is the hard part about this startup thing. Sometimes you need to recognize it cannot be solved - at all, or by you - and that is best to put the calculator down and just walk away. To find a new problem to solve. And to start the whole thing all over again.

But for the rest of you, keep your pencils sharp and keep working on it. The solution you seek is out there. And if you’re lucky, it might even come without a remainder.


This song is everything great about Mark Kozalek. His rich, smooth voice. His penchant for sharp, yet sometimes meandering, lyrics. Lightly produced songs that just plain work and you find yourself listening to again and again and again. Give this one a try. Just be prepared to hit replay a few times.

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Oct 05, 2018

Any number times zero is zero? Crap. Graham is smarter than I am...

I do understand the passion part of this post... I have a firm that is eager about having me take on a major writing project for them - I love to write - but I have zero passion about the topic they are looking for. It's going to be a "no" from me on that one... but that doesn't mean on several nights this week I haven't said... "You know, it wouldn't be that bad... in fact, I might learn to like it once I got started...". But at the moment, it's still a "no"....

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