Not just why Kinethics, but “why us?”

A piece I wrote for Reese News Lab.

The past few weeks has been hectic for the Kinethics team: client calls, research, contracting developers and designers. We’ve had to focus mainly on immediate scheduling and planning concerns.

These simple things — balancing starting a business with extracurriculars and schoolwork — have been more difficult than I expected.

I’m a big picture person. I love strategy, dreaming and goal setting. But with the idea and strategy for Kinethics, an interactive compliance training service, firmly in place, we had to get down to the nuts and bolts of launching our prototype. That means lots of emails, meetings and reading.

Launching a business isn’t just about that shiny new idea. It’s about working to move from idea to product, or in our case, a prototype.

Still, it’s easy to get lost in the details and forget the reason for all those emails. The Kinethics team had to think about the “why” and specifically the “why us?”

We’re an unlikely team to be going into compliance training. It’s a legally complicated industry that requires a high level of knowledge and skill. Most of the people we talk to are double our age and have years of experience in business or law.

We were thinking about our age and inexperience only as a liability. We forgot why we wanted to do compliance training in the first place — to bring a fresh and realistic voice to a boring field.

A compliance and corruption speaker told us we were in a unique position in the compliance industry. As outsiders of both multinational corporations and current compliance companies, we weren’t afraid to shake things up. Our youth, and maybe our inexperience, allows us to take necessary risks that others in the compliance training industry aren’t willing to take.

We were all excited and confident about Kinethics, but we lacked confidence in ourselves. But without believing in our own abilities, we couldn’t expect anyone to believe in our product.

So we had to refocus. We all met and talked about strengths and weaknesses. We reminded each other that we were the right people for the job. We started practicing not just selling Kinethics, but selling our own skills and abilities.

We’re learning to balance big-picture planning and detailed execution. And we’re learning to do it all with confidence and boldness.

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