It’s almost 4 a.m. now and I’ve just finished amending my resume for Bain & Company. This is one of the companies which I’ve dreamt of getting into all this time. I’m also currently considering building a startup now, though I’ve yet to decide on when to commit to this project.
I personally enjoy all kinds of excitement which can bring different forms of experiences into my life. This is the reason why I took the opportunity to work in Japan around a year ago. Now, back to the topic. People always ask me this question whenever I’ve told them that I want to start my own company: what product do you have in your mind?
In my opinion, for any business to thrive, it must first identify a lucrative and sustainable industry. The product itself should not come first, and the entrepreneurs should never fall in love with their products. A product which cannot justify its position within its own market is most likely merely an internal hype and it will never become a commercial success. Think of that electric tie press in Jeff Bezos’ ‘The Electric Metaphor’ TEDTalk.
I am a strong believer in the fact that mankind will constantly evolve to become greater. Through the universalization of education, humans will become more humane in the future. (Slightly off-topic here, but this is the exact reason why I believe that a 3rd World War is unlikely.) Through history, we know that it always took time for mankind to build up their sense of morality as in the case of the Slavery Abolition Act 1833 or a more tangible example – environment protection act. Every country and civilisation has to experience major revolutions to bring forth the improvement in the quality of life, but these often give rise to unforeseen complications. As an example, the Slavery Abolition Act created a void in the labour force, solved by the application of steam engines after the industrial revolution which in turn prompted environmental concern due to the high CO2 discharge rate. Based on my deduction, green energy and sustainable production technology are going to become more and more dominant in the future and thus I’m considering this as a very viable option.
I’m also setting my eyes on e-commerce. The market in well-developed countries is probably way too saturated with this now but for developing countries like Malaysia, there is still a very big room for improvement. E-commerce allows trivial tasks to be done more efficiently and thus it is perfectly logical to deduce that it’ll become an essential part of our lives in the future.
Malaysians are still used to ordering online just to receive their parcels around a month later. In my opinion, this phenomenon won’t stay for long as it is human nature to pursue a better life. A local parcel delivery startup which can match SF Express in China will probably make itself to the headlines in the future.
These are just a few of my ideas which I’ve thought of recently. I’m still struggling (or rather, procrastinating) to identify the field which I want to get myself into if I’m going to build a startup. I’m not being pessimistic here, but if I got rejected by the big names which I’d applied to, I’d probably go all-in to start my own company. The recent gold price surge is basically telling us that people are losing hope in the global economy and that a recession is likely to come soon. Just like how the 2008 financial crisis had created Uber and Airbnb, this could spark the growth of some unforeseeable markets. We should either grab this chance or miss it and wait for another decade.