Keep ’em guessing.
Became my mantra when I decided to delve into the world of Entrepreneurship.
I’ve always been a little goofy, unpredictable, having trouble with my superiors at work, and keeping my thoughts to myself.
My personal demons with Anxiety and Panic Disorders meant I was always in Fight and Flight mode; it also meant I’d argue my point with idiots till my brain was complete mush.
I’d exhaust myself over arguments that I simply could not win.
After I decided to quit my job; and decided to take some time off to decide what the world had to offer, and what my place was in it — I spent a lot of my free-time eating junk-food and watching Andy Kaufman.
I came to the realisation that comedians could eloquently get points across without pissing people off.
Don Rickles, Dave Chappelle, Stewart Lee, Andy Kaufman, Monty Python, A bit of Fry & Laurie, is pretty much all I spent my time on.
It was like I’d just discovered fire for the first time; for the first time in my life I felt like “Holy shit, these guys just seem to get it right..without exhausting themselves.”
It was as if the audience just could not tell when these guys were actually serious.
Being an absolute lunatic; I decided to give this strategy a thought — and took it to an extreme.
When I founded my own company and finally felt in control of my life again; I knew the direction I’d be taking.
Meetings with clients became weird, people in the same circles I spend most of my time in thought I’d completely lost it.
And yet; I was happy — satisfied — and mostly just having fun.
When a potential investor didn’t seem satisfied enough with the concept of Data Analytics for Asset Management; I simply uttered, “Well you know..some people like eating brains — I personally don’t. Unless they’re human ones, then maybe I’d give it a shot.” His face was pale, fearful, and confused.
We spent the next half hour discussing human brains.
At the end of the conversation; I took off having left him utterly confused and traumatised.
A week later, the gentleman called me wanting to know if I’d still be interested in the investment — I said “I don’t seem to recall having that conversation..are you sure we discussed investing in my project?”
He was baffled. “You’re saying NO to money?”
I said, “..well I mean. I thought you weren’t very fond of human brains so I kinda just went in a different direction. But I’m sure you’ll find something better to invest in.” and hung up.
Now, saying to ‘NO’ to money might not sound like the brightest idea of running a Data Firm; but — would I want an investor that doesn’t understand the business and accept his money on terms that this investor may become cancerous to my business in the future? I wouldn’t risk it. I’d rather find a smaller investor who genuinely understood the work I was doing.
Satire, became the ethos of my business — our advertising campaign mocked our method of operation.
One of the advertisements simply read, “Why invest in Data Analytics software to monitor your assets, when you can hire a dozen people to watch Netflix all day?” — it caught on like wild fire.
People were curious to know more about my business.
Uncertainty and Curiosity are the best ways to tickle the unwavering Investors who think they know better.
I found Satire got the message across better and I was having the time of my life pissing people off and keeping them confused.
The business is doing well, growing modestly — I’m not in too much of a hurry to become the Next Marky Mark Zuckerberg nor do I care.
I just wanna have fun doing what I love.
And I’m doing it.