Advice: Do Something Awesome

During the Web 2.0 expo, Twitter co-founder Evan Williams told startups to take the following advice, "Do something awesome." In thinking about my own entrepreneurial ups and downs, I couldn't agree with him more. When I started Shared Insights back in 2001, there was no such thing as Twitter. In fact, the term Web 2.0 wasn't even around. However, I wanted to do something awesome which was to give people a voice and change the way organizations communicate.

To say I wanted to change the world would be cliché, but in all seriousness, I knew that the business world was flawed - processes were impersonal and communication within organizations was exclusive to leaders. I made it a personal goal to build a business based off my desire to change professional communications.

While I wish I could say that awesome ideas are enough to make entrepreneurs successful, I've learned that there's more to it. Passion While great ideas and good intentions are always the best place for entrepreneurs to start, I've found that anything you truly want in life takes far more time and investment (both in terms of financial capital and human resources) than you originally anticipate. The desire to change the world is what gets you started, but it's passion that takes you to the finish line.

People There's that saying that "No man is an island," and I couldn't agree more. While your business endeavors will be driven by personal goals, it's people who will ultimately help you realize them. It's extremely important to build a strong team and surround yourself with individuals who understand your message and more importantly, share your passion. Without a team, success is a longshot.

Product When all is said and done, people buy products and services after every social interaction – in essence, social commerce is the logical extension to all social communications (whether those commercial interactions are today or in the future). In this case, building a truly superior product that enables people to achieve their personal and professional goals is essential to success in this industry. Without it, there is no business.

If you are starting a business or are currently trying to build one, remember to think about the reasons behind your endeavor: What will you do that's awesome? How will you change the world? What will product will you develop that produce results that people want and can use to enhance their lives? Once you figure out the answers to these three questions, you are ready to get started. Awesome things at Mzinga During the first quarter of 2009, we announced lots of changes – some good, some not so good. But in the end, we have established the foundation for our future. Our passion for being the best in the social industry remains alive and well. Our people are committed to greatness and we will be releasing a product that we are sure that ensure our long term success – one that customers will love. Stay tuned to see all the awesome things that we have planned for Mzinga.

Cailin Darcy