In business school, I frequently thought of the old business tycoons who were in the beginning of their industry's heyday: Henry Ford (autos), J.P. Morgan (banking), Cornelius Vanderbilt (shipping and railroad tycoon), John D. Rockefeller (oil). I'd think, if I'd been born then, business would've been easy. In hindsight, it all seems so obvious: trains, growth, ships, oil, investment, factories, etc. etc.
For the last couple of years, I've been wanting to create a business (in addition to my consulting) around a SaaS (software as a service) product. Since probably 2005, SaaS businesses have grown rapidly. Now it seems there's an app for everything and anything. I've become to think that the SaaS market is saturated and opportunity is few and far between. If this is true, this also affects my consulting business because if the opportunity isn't there, then less and less entrepreneurs will need my consulting to help build software.
So like many entrepreneurs, I began to feel pessimistic and downcast about the future. But like most entrepreneurs, this was a brief spell.
I recently read an article that bolstered my confidence: "You are not late". The author talks about a similar thought process as I mentioned above, but within the technology boom. "Oh, if we'd just been around at the beginning of the dot com boom...things would have been so easy." Then he says that:
If we could climb into a time machine and journey 30 years into the future, and from that vantage look back to today, we'd realize that most of the greatest products running the lives of citizens in 2044 were not invented until after 2014.
I believe that. Heck, 10 years from now, we probably won't be using the majority same tools, services, and technologies we're using today. Major platforms like the web and email may still be around, but they'll probably look vastly different. For example, 5 years ago, the majority of all email was hosted on an exchange server, or an in-house pop mail server. Now, the majority of people access their email in the cloud through different devices and clients.
Because here is the other thing the people in 2044 will tell you: Can you imagine how awesome it would have been to be an entrepreneur in 2014? It was a wide-open frontier!
The one thing that is constant is change and people have been innovating since the beginning of time. There's opportunity in the future. You have to be willing to learn, change and visualize if you want to take part!
So now the hard part...what's next? What's the next big shift in technology? What will are you working and investing your time?