When to quit?

A friend of mine, who clearly is at a bit of a cross roads, asked me this question yesterday.

“How much effort is enough before you drop a biz and move on to another one?”

I thought it was a really good question and something that people should talk more about…so I’m re-blogging my answer here today for everyone to see:

When to quit is a really good, and tough, question…I think it depends on just how passionate and interested in a given effort you are…but also has a lot to do with how big you believe the market is and how well people are connecting with your story (once they find out about it).

If it’s taking a lot of effort to convince someone, after you’ve found them, then it’s probably not a strong enough or compelling enough story…this might mean the market or pain isn’t as big as you thought…or it could just mean that the value-prop. and story you are presenting aren’t the right ones.
It’s hard enough to find people and get their attention in the first place…so if you get past that and still aren’t getting good results, it’s time to rethink something.
Only you can really decide if that ‘rethink’ is just the story/value-prop OR the whole business/effort itself.
I’ve given up on a TON of things that I still believe could/would be massive businesses…but in all of them, it became clear that *I* wasn’t the right person to get them there (this is part of the core behind my “Didn’t work Wednesday” series really).
The other bit that I didn’t mention in my response to my friend, but should have, is that once you’ve started seriously thinking about quitting - it probably means you should (sort of like how they say when an athlete starts thinking about retirement, it’s time to retire).
I do believe you can force it, and fake it, and still find a certain level of success (and in fact, I think *most* people live in this mode)…but it’s not how you’ll find happiness or joy…and it’s likely to have a serious cap on just how successful you can really become.
So why go that route?  Why not step back every so often and reflect on just what your doing, and most importantly, why?
If nothing else, it will likely give you clarity on if you should keep going on your current path or not…

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This is the personal blog of Kevin Marshall (a.k.a Falicon) where he often digs into side projects he's working on for digdownlabs.com and other random thoughts he's got on his mind.

Kevin has a day job as CTO of Veritonic and is spending nights & weekends hacking on Share Game Tape. You can also check out some of his open source code on GitHub or connect with him on Twitter @falicon or via email at kevin at falicon.com.

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