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'B' is for Bootstrap

As defined by Wikipedia, "Bootstrapping or booting refers to a group of metaphors that share a common meaning: a self-sustaining process that proceeds without external help".

Bootstrapping is tough, I'm not going to sugar coat it. You're doing this all on your own. No investors to help you through the lean times. But for the same reason bootstrapping makes it tough, it also makes it great ... as a bootstrapper, your business is your own and you're answering to no one but yourself, your family and your customers.

Eric and I are bootstrappers. We started Snackbox with nothing but our brains, some cash for operating expenses, and a fabulous black pant suit that I wore to every new business meeting that first year after establishing the company (never underestimate the importance of a rockin' power pantsuit, by the way).

I chose bootstrapping as our 'B' post in this series because I think it's incredibly important in determining many aspects of a business as you're just starting out. Further, there are a lot of great groups out there that can help those of us that are bootstrapping. Support groups, if you will.

In some markets, these bootstrapping support groups are kind of difficult to find. If a Google search nets you nada, consider asking small to mid-size business owners for recommendations. Here in Austin, Texas we have some great resources, one of which is Bootstrap Austin. Bijoy Goswami has curated tons of great resources on the Bootstrap Austin blog as well as the Wiki. Even better? Here are some videos on YouTube from BootstrapU. And, Bijoy is a great resource, no matter where you're based. Be sure to follow him (@bijoy) and Bootstrap Austin (@bootstrapaustin) on Twitter.

Are you a boostrap entrepreneur? How has bootstrapping affected your business?

Reader Comments (2)

What a great idea! :) I heart Bootstrappers.

January 21, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHeatherMcK

We are a start- up ad agency that knows well the challenges and rewards of bootstrapping. It takes time and energy, but with the right amount of passion, as all entrepreneurs know they need in spades, it pays off eventually.

Belonging to groups like Bootstrap Austin definitely help. The more groups the better, the more chance your company's name makes it onto the right person's awareness meter.

January 24, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterStefani
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