Startups Are Boring. Seriously?

startupsIs there a place more fickle and anxious to change than Silicon Valley? Maybe it’s just part of its innovation-driven DNA, or perhaps it’s attention deficit disorder.

Case in point is a recent post on Business Insider declaring that “Suddenly, startups feel very boring”. Just when the rest of the world is getting excited about startups and the entrepreneurial renaissance, some people are losing interest.

Seriously? I mean, aren’t startups still the cat’s meow? Everyone seems to want to start or join a startup, so how have they become boring? Maybe their shininess has faded for entrepreneurs in the trenches, or VCs looking at yet another knock-off startup with no business model and a team with no experience.

But I think for the rest of the world, startups are still exciting and seductive. In fact, I would argue startups are a vehicle that will thrive within the volatile and uncertain global economic landscape. When there’s no job security and cost-cutting is a corporate mantra, startups offer hope and optimism for something better.

This is not to suggest startups are an economic panacea but they provide people with the opportunity to create something that could make a difference, have an impact, or simply provide them with a way to give themselves some control over their professional lives.

Business Insider is in the business of driving page views so the blog post worked be getting my attention and, as important, spawned another link to it.

But it’s also symbolizes how the Web is fraught with fickleness that makes it so difficult for businesses to establish a solid foothold.

It’s a live for the moment world in which people jump from service to service, while startups feel the need to constantly pivot to find the magic formula.

As someone immersed in the startup world, it’s easy for me to quickly dismiss the idea of startups being bored. But Business Insider has it wrong: startups are far from boring; it may be they have received so much attention, some people may be thinking it’s time to shine the spotlight on something else. But boring? Not a chance.

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  • Chris Schmitt

    I do agree that we’re running out of ideas for consumer start-ups and that many of the latest ideas are just silly, The really exciting stuff to come wll be how to embed the start-up approach/mindset in large, otherwise more traditional companies: banks, telecoms, etc. These opportunities are just beginning. They’re not exciting enough to get mentioned in TechCrunch, but they’re still gaming changing and transformational.