Photo : my favourite one
I will start this blog by saying I am not an escape room expert,nor a businesswoman. I am an escape room enthusiast. And I would sure love to own an escape room.
The summer of 2015, me and my boyfriend visited a couple of escape rooms in Rhodes,Greece,where i come from. We tried all rooms at Unlock and all rooms at Enigma Escape Experience. The last day of our vacation and final escape room we visited,we got an offer from the owner Alex, to collaborate. We live in Oslo,Norway. Alex would do all the work, we would run it.Franchise.
But i was willing to give it a try. *I have also had the luck to watch how his app has grown from being an idea, to be a product.. So I guess tha makes me an “experienced” beginner..yeah right..
So this is a list of what i have learned about escape room businesses so far.
1. Before starting, decide why you want this more that anything. When you are sure you are going with this product,start spreading the word. Find the balance.
1a. Do not tell everybody – Too many people knowing you are about to start a business will be too much for you. You do not need too many opinions at this point.
1b. Do not be afraid to share your idea with others – You might believe people want to copy you but you are already a step ahead at the game. Do not keep your ideas and strategies for implementation for yourself. You need it for feedback. If you think about it, the idea it worthless without execution. It is the final product you are about to sell..
2. Do not work alone. Find a co-founder. Two heads are better than one. 100% of owning a company sounds better than 55 or 30% but you will achieve much more and reduce company’s risk profile at a startup. I could at this point add that there is not a such thing as the perfect partner.
3. Join Facebook groups. Connect to escape room owners and escape rooms enthusiasts. Escape room enthusiasts, Escape room start ups, Escape rooms buy-sale-trade, Humans of escape rooms. Start networking as soon as you decide to go ahead with your idea.
4. Have a mentor. Where you find one? Ask around. Someone with experience. Any in the same phase as you are, at this point, is not recommended. Sit down and make a plan. Tell your mentor clearly what you need him/her to do and how often. You need a kick in the ass here and there? You need him/her to check what you have done once every month?You want him to connect you to some people. Speak up. He/She is not in your head.
You have my permission to punch people who replies “Google it” when you ask for help. Shame!
5. Take your time. Invest in yourself. Often! Spoil yourself to a healthy extreme in order to reward your hard work and avoid burnout.
5a. Do not forget the rest of the world. And do not push people aside because you start something. Your project is not more important than others project. They make time for you,you do the same.
5b. You will be tested. Your family, your girl/boyfriend, your investors, your team, the universe. Everyone is testing you. Decide how you will react at rejection, criticism, judgement. It is not fun, but it is given. You will be tested.
6. Write everything down. Keep a diary or a pocket book for what everyone is doing, ideas, a drawing, dates, a name, anything. It helps.
6a. Close your mouth and listen.It is the perfect time to.
7. Do not second guess yourself. Just go with it. Trust your gut. Not everyone likes your idea and that is ok. Not everyone has time or know how to support you in your startup phase. That is also ok. Stay positive.
I remember wondering often if the market timing was right. It is!
If not you,who? If not now,when?
I read last week that many motivational posts are posted by not that smart people. BS! They keep me motivated and I know I am smart, so, that works for me!I keep them at my desk.Something like this..Send me if you have some good ones 🙂
To be continued..
Facebook group : Humans of escape rooms
Facebook Page Humans of escape rooms
Coming soon : Humans of escape rooms