Lately, I’ve been a terrible person. I have told many people, “No, I cannot help you.”
After six happily profitable years, we’re winding down The Julia Group consulting division. We are not taking any new contracts and not adding on to any existing contracts. As contracts expire, we are not replacing them with new business. In the next month or two this blog will get merged with the 7 Generation Games site.
I have agreed to present at one conference, the Tribal Disability Summit, in July, where I will be speaking on Start-up 101 : The Challenges and (Yes) Advantages of People with Disabilities. I have also said no to other offers to speak at conferences. I’m really bad at answering email requests.
Every time I tell someone no, I feel like I am a terrible person. After all, that’s why I went into consulting and why I started The Julia Group, so I could help people. We have always had rates far below the market average so that non-profits could afford the help they need and also so we could choose to work on the projects most rewarding to us overall and not just financially.
The truth is, I’m not really a terrible person. I decided to do a new start-up to make games that teach mathematics and I work every day on making those games better meet the needs of students and teachers.
The best advice on succeeding is to focus on whatever it is that you want most.
When I was competing in judo, every decision I made all day met a single criterion:
Will this help me win the world championships?
If the answer was, “Yes”, no matter what it was, I did it.
If the answer was, “It will make my chances of winning lower”, I didn’t do it.
If the answer was, “It won’t make any difference”, then I did it if I felt like it or there were other reasons.
I’m applying those same lessons learned in winning a world judo championships to running a successful gaming company. Being best in the world is not a part-time gig.
As my big brother (who is, coincidentally, a math teacher) told me,
There are too many people in this world who cannot give up what they want now for what they want most.
I’m trying my best not to be one of those people.