Joshua Hyatt touches all the bases in this month's cover story ("Should You Start a Business?," [Article link]). But there is one crucial element that doesn't appear in any business plan, as anyone who's ever tried to start a business is aware. I'm talking about fear. I know about that from personal experience. Twelve years ago I set out to launch my own magazine. It never got off the ground, because I wasn't able to get the financing I wanted. In retrospect, however, I realize that the failure may have had more to do with the F factor than with the scarcity of venture capital. Although I didn't admit it to myself at the time, I was actually trying to raise too much money for the launch, in an attempt to take the risk out of something that would have been risky from day one under the best of circumstances. The moral? Better to acknowledge the role of emotions in business and the impact they have on business decisions than to pretend they don't exist.
Feb 1, 1992