Published on May 19th, 2013 | by Jose Vasquez2
Step Out of Your Comfort Zone for Startup Tech Companies
To reach greater heights as an entrepreneur, you have to be willing to make yourself uncomfortable in ways other people aren’t.
Familiarity is comfortable, and most people are perfectly complacent with the safety of their routines. But as an entrepreneur, you need to be able to step outside of that comfort zone and do things you wouldn’t ordinarily do. It might seem counterintuitive, but the more new experiences and new insights you find, the better your company can perform in the long run.
Penelope Trunk, a professional career coach and writer, explains that new ideas are usually the result of dissonance between people or information. Whenever there is a conflict of opinion or a new outside environment, there is an opportunity for a fresh take on an old thought or room for cultivating a new idea altogether.
Trunk outlines three major rules for exposing yourself to these types of opportunities:
- Go places where you don’t ordinarily fit in. Travel whenever possible, even if that means simply traveling down the street. Meet new professionals and learn from their different philosophies.
- Surround yourself with people you don’t get along with. Find people who are good at things you aren’t good at, and those who have ideological differences. They’ll be able to give you perspective you might not otherwise get.
- Embrace nervousness. If something makes you nervous, it’s generally worth pursuing. If you succeed, you’ll feel great and enjoy the reward. If you fail, at least you can learn from the experience. You won’t get far unless you take risks and challenge yourself.
The introverts reading these rules are likely shaking their heads, but this advice is crucial to anyone wanting to succeed in the world of startup technology. There are thousands of startup tech entrepreneurs competing to find success, and the way to surpass them is to do things they’re not willing to do.
While they hire a team of people who unanimously agree with them, you’ll be getting fresh insights from someone who makes it a point to argue. While they stay secluded in their development caves, you’ll be finding inspiration in new professional circles. While the others are enjoying a comfortable routine, you’ll be pushing the limits of innovation—and maybe cringing a bit in the meantime.
Penelope Trunk’s career advice runs in 200 newspapers. She is the co-founder of Brazen Careerist, a career management tool for next-generation professionals. This is her third startup. Find Penelope’s original article, Put Yourself in Uncomfortable Situations, on her personal blog.