In the early days of a start-up an almost inexhaustible amount of energy is required from all involved -- it is a journey of complete dedication, certainly not a 9-5 life. But energy alone will not a company make -- a healthy dosage of skill is required as well.
I was reminded of this while playing squash today with my good friend Gideon Ben-Zvi -- Gideon is a much better squash player than me, even though my energy level is probably a bit higher level than his....because his skill quotient more than trumps my energy.
Gideon is exploring some fascinating new ways to be involved in start-ups, and I will let him decide at what pace to make those plans (and realities) known to the wider public. Simply put, however, Gideon is a wonderful combination of skill and energy, both off the court and on. As a start-up CEO Gideon certainly puts in the hours, but most importantly invests his time (=energy) smartly.
Next week I will be accompanying the mPortico team to the CES trade show in Las Vegas, which will be a intense energy experience, but if that energy is not focused, could easily spend three days chasing our own tails (which when you think about it, is actually the whole point of Las Vegas...).
There is no magic formula to the correct energy/skill balance, but like any sport requiring skill (most of them, unfortunately for us semi-spastic people) some of that skill can be acquired. Note I say "some," as I do believe one needs to have the right DNA to be an a successful entrepreneur. Yes, you need to be born with it -- and need to spend a lifetime honing the skills and stamina to go the distance with a start-up.
Now if I could only figure out the time management piece, I could increase my skill level so that my energy/skill combination will allow me to finally beat Gideon...;-).