One of my favorite parts about running my own business is the creative freedom. In school and at my job, the rules were set by other people. The majority of the creative thinking I did was trying to figure out how to alter the rules in my favor. For the most part though, once you get out on your own, you have total creative reigns: if you can think of it, you can try to make it happen.
I can remember the day in 2004 when I first thought about SportsLizard. I remember the day at work when a co-worker and I jokingly said that the workplace needed iPrioritize to organize tasks. I remember that Friday afternoon when I was pissed that I couldn’t find a way to get notified of album releases and Music Alerts was born a few days later.
And I remember back in January when we made it our goal to rebuild our e-commerce platform. At that time we had nothing but a set of ideas, a bunch of data from our existing platform, and a ton of notes from what we thought were the best shopping sites on the web.
Then I remember how disappointed I was six weeks later when nothing had gotten done yet because the weather was horrible, we were all sick, we all took vacations, and Greg and I had jury duty. I was overwhelmed with all of the work ahead. But then we rallied, one small goal at a time.
I remember how excited I was to get the first functional style-less version of the registration page done, and how pumped we all were to look at Mike’s original Photoshop mock-up of the design. And only a few months later we’ve released it to the world. We made concessions: there are still plenty of features to be added and plenty that need more work, but the bottom line is that we turned our idea into a reality in just a few short months while our sales continued to reach all-time highs.
Never mind the varying degrees of success these projects have had. It’s the most satisfying and exhilarating thing in the world to me to be able to have an idea, something that’s essentially worthless, and turn it into something tangible, something that people will find value in.
Very few jobs can offer you that.