From MNC to solo to startup, to solo again
From Salaryman to Zero-Salary-man
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When I decided to work on my own and to be an entrepreneur, it wasn't as simple as “I quit. I'm gonna start my own startup.”
I left my job in a German multinational company (MNC) in early 2019 to focus on my mental wellness app idea and joined Founder Institute, a Silicon Valley-based pre-seed startup accelerator. It was my first time working full-time on any app. It was an eye-opening 4-month cohort-based program. It focuses on prepping everyone to be a well-equipped startup founder, hence the name. I learned a lot from them, and I was pumped and ready to move further.
Then one day, I saw an opening posted by a well-known CEO and co-founder of a local healthtech startup and I immediately thought it was a good stepping stone to venture into healthtech world.
Right? Oh boy, was I wrong.
From day one until the end, I felt anxious about the whole office set up. At first, I thought it was just me, maybe it was me that couldn't cope. But I can see a few more with the same look, then later shared the same vibe. They eventually left months after I did. Knowing how hard it was for them, I felt relieved.
But how can a mental wellness company be like this? The CEO has a long way off being empathetic. He's like a robot. Sure, I'm bias because I'm still bitter, but I can't help it, I'll forever paint that guy as mental (pun intended).
When I left the company, it was so traumatizing that I couldn't get myself to work. I've lost my main purpose of leaving my career to follow my dream. And my own mental wellness app idea? I shelved it. I mean, how can I help other people when my mental state is in shambles?
It took me almost 6 months to recover. Maybe a year. That's when I discovered No-Code. As a tech guy, discovering and working on new tools was indeed my saviour. I started working on new ideas, even if it was darn simple, but still satisfying to work with. Then, MVP (minimum viable product) after MVP completed and launched, shelved and pivoted, I was on a roll.
I then started my freelance work as a CTO/Dev Consultant, focusing on building and launching MVP ideas as fast as possible with the help of No-Code.
I received my first paid customer from Twitter. That's when I decided to share my MVP thought processes on Twitter, to get more traction.
From there, I began to make new friends from the No-Code community. As you may know by now, I'm also an avid fan of building in public.
The community has blossomed with the birth of community-based programs like the Public Lab and their #30DaysInPublic. In which I am an active member.
It is an exciting time for me. I've started writing in public now and inspired to keep on building — towards my goals.
"You don't look like an introvert, Leif."