Many students tell me they want to be an entrepreneur when they graduate. However, being an entrepreneur is not something you aspire to become. It’s something you just do — right now. You don’t need permission and there is no license required.
It doesn’t matter if you are still a student. Tony Hsieh of Zappos.com famously bought whole pizzas and sold them by the slice in his college dorm. It will never be easier to start a project than right now.
I’m in San Francisco again. It’s amazing how many Japanese ventures are moving here. Fundraising is easier here, but I really respect the entrepreneurs who are determined to compete with (and learn from) the world’s best. Aspiring musicians move to Los Angeles (or New York for Jazz) and aspiring internet founders come the San Francisco.
In either case, if you are not truly world class, the city will let you know quickly and painfully.
I spent the afternoon mentoring at Startup Weekend. A lot of good ideas here, but my advice to today’s entrepreneurs is don’t be shy about what you want from your users. Don’t tell people your idea is just for fun if you think it will add real value to their lives. Don’t promise to be free forever if you think you can charge for your service. Don’t use a point system if users might pay real money.
Have confidence. Tell your users what you really want from them.