When should I give up on a startup or new business venture?

A little while ago, a question about knowing when to throw in the towel in the business world really got me thinking. So, let’s kick things off with a quick intro and a bit about my own journey in the world of personal business. I mean, why would you even consider my advice if you don’t know where I’m coming from, right?

My aim here is to get you fired up and to help you approach your current or future business endeavors with some serious logical thinking.


My name is Mike, I am 39 years “young” and I am just an average guy living in Texas with my wife of 13 years and our 3 girls. I am a web developer and besides a few software sales jobs in my early years, web development has consistently been a incredible passion of mine.

I kicked off my entrepreneurial career in 2006 creating a business by the name of Vessio, offering website maintenance and development services.

While my business is now thriving and consistent, this was not always the case — it took 7 excruciating years of scrapping by, living off of peanuts, bouncing from apartment to apartment, and constantly trying to re-innovate my process to establish some sort of traction for the business.

Finally, in 2013 I saw results. I hit my stride. I began to collect the rewards of all of my past failures, all of my accumulated knowledge from years of “trying”, and most importantly began to feel accomplished.

If it wasn’t for my relentless passion in the field I was pursuing, my business would never have seen the light of day.

Here’s what I learned

In my experience, if your business idea feeds your soul and energizes you, the only other ingredient you need is time.

Usually when you get the feeling of reduced passion and motivation for a project or idea. That does not mean it is time to quit. It usually means you simply need a minor positive “win” to reignite your ambitions for the venture.

We (as in humans) are quick to give up without quick results but most startups take an incredible amount of time to gain traction. My advice would be that if you feel like giving up, it means you are not working hard enough.

Give it more time. Give it another creative push.

When should you give up on your startup or business?

I am only qualified speak for the online space in terms of business ventures. In this regard, if you have exhausted all efforts — paid for ads to gauge real interest, experimented with social interests, successfully used organic placements from publishing useful content, and you have still found that targeted prospects are not expressing interest in your business or idea.

After 2 to 5 years, it might be time to re-evaluate your idea or come to the conclusion that the market is not yet ready for your idea.

What are your thoughts?




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