I was recently thinking about how much personal growth Melis Guctas, the founder of Modacruz, has shown over the 2 years since we invested in her company. The pace at which she has learned how to deal with cofounder issues, build and motivate a team, and balance investor interests, all while growing her business is very impressive.
Part of this growth is because of her character. You need to have a strong motivation to learn and recognize that the best way to do this is to experience as much as possible, read as much as possible, and reflect on your experiences and readings to continually improve yourself.
However, there’s a second very important contributor to learning. And this is seeing success. Experiencing and reading, and applying your learnings from these experiences and readings to the problems you’re facing isn’t enough. If you don’t see success after doing so, your motivation to learn will gradually decline. However, if you see success after applying your new learnings, you’ll embark on a virtuous circle where your learnings produce success which encourages you to learn more and achieve even more success.
So having a desire to learn is great, but its effect is much stronger if you’re in an environment where you see success. And the most important determinant of the latter is the market you’re in. In the case of Modacruz, a mobile-first second-hand female clothing marketplace in Turkey, the market dynamics are very favorable.
The large number of price conscious buyers, the large inventory of unused clothing sitting idle in womens’ wardrobes, the ease with which you can list your unused clothing using your smartphone’s capabilities, and the low degree of competition when Modacruz launched all came together to create a very attractive market. And this attractive market amplified Melis’ existing predisposition to learn.
Great markets literally pull the personal growth out of the entrepreneur.
Also published on Medium.