Hi there! This is the first post of “Micropreneur Life”. Let me introduce myself. My name is Ignacio, I am a micropreneur living in Madrid, Spain. I am also a senior freelance developer, composer, blogger, podcaster, and the manager of the “Madrid Micropreneurs” meetup group.
I’ve been exposed to the startup world for some time now. I enrolled at the Google Campus and the TechHub community as soon as they opened here in Madrid (sadly, TechHub is closing its Madrid installations). Sometime later, I co-founded a startup and entered the Tetuan Valley incubator. That was an awesome experience. I met some wonderful people there and learned a lot in so many areas I had no expertise at all.
However, I soon realized that the startup world was not for me. There are probably hundreds of reasons for this, but these are the most important ones:
- The “Think Big, start small, grow fast” philosophy is not for me. I want to build a business, yes, but a sustainable one. Also, I want my business to add value to the people. I want my business to be something I’m proud of, and my customers to be people with faces and names, people that trust me and rely on my services. No, I don’t want to collect users as numbers to show to a VC or investor. I dislike growth hacking. I’m not playing the “startup game” anymore.
- I have the feeling that the startup world is a bubble, much like the real estate was some years ago in Europe. There are lots of startups with groundbreaking ideas out there, founded by creative and inspiring minds and souls. But there’s also this enormous network of companies that are feasting on those startups, making a profit from the illusions and dreams of those startups.
- Last, but not least, I’m 37, and I live in Spain. I love building stuff, but I have bills to pay. If I build a business, it has to be profitable, or intend to be profitable, from day one. In my opinion, the startup ecosystem here is populated mainly by young people that can afford to spend 2-3 years working on a non-profitable idea (like a social network), waiting to be funded by a VC or business angel. And that’s ok for them, just not where I’m right now.
Embracing the Micropreneur life
As probably most entrepreneurs, I consume lots of books, especially about entrepreneurship and online businesses lately. One day, I stumbled upon this book by Rob Walling, “Start Small, Stay Small“. I immediately felt like it was written specifically for me. By the time I finished it, I knew that I was going to pursue that path. I started my project, The Task Ninja (a Tasks and Customers Management Tool), on my own, and started to learn more about the micropreneur scene. Apart from that, and from this micropreneur life blog, I have a site where I teach iOS development and share my experiences as an iOS freelance developer, and I’m trying to grow an audience there. Also, I have a podcast (in Spanish) where I interview Spanish entrepreneurs weekly.
Finally, I launched the Micropreneur Life site as a way of sharing my experiences, failures, and successes with you, either with my initial projects or with any future endeavor I might get involved it. I feel that most entrepreneur blogs and sites start at the point at which their owners were already rich or had a successful business, so I wanted to share my experience from scratch, from the very beginning, in the most sincere and transparent way.