Your Side Project Is Bullshit

I’ve noticed a trend amongst young tech entrepreneurs. They all have their 9 to 5 paying gigs but they also have a “side project”. Is it just me or should that phrase die a terrible, miserable death? Not because I disagree with it but because I have yet to see a single one of those side projects turn into actual companies.

I know there’s something cool about being able to tell all of your friends about your cool new idea and how one day, it’s going to hit critical mass and make you friggin’ rich and then you can finally quit your day job! Take that, Corporate America!

The problem is, if you have any intention of making money from your side project, STOP CALLING IT A SIDE PROJECT. You are building a company, first and foremost. You should be thinking about this concept all day and all night and if you keep referring to this supposed business as a mere side project, it will never turn out to be anything more. If you’re writing some cool open-sourced gems just for fun, THAT is a side project. If you inadvertently referred to my startup as side-project, you better be prepared to get pimp slapped.

Entrepreneur? I call bullshit. Start acting like one.

i calls it like I sees it


  1. says

    Well, I think in many cases, what people work on really are just side-projects… things they make simply because no one else has made them. But I agree with you that if you’re doing it with the intent of making it into a successful company, it shouldn’t be referred to with such a diminutive name as “side-project”.

  2. Mike says

    You’re right, people who spend their free time engaged in the active learning process of developing products and personal skills should be called the fuck out!

    I think side projects allow young entrepreneurs to test out ideas, work on their development, design, or marketing skills, and experiment with the process of building and creation without taking an ill advised dive. Someday, they’ll start their real company, and all of these experiences will help them.

  3. Vlad says

    There’s nothing wrong with building a side project. A lot of “really successful” companies start out as side projects. Facebook started out as side project and Zuckerberg didn’t believe it was going to be a huge business at first, but once he saw that happening he committed to it. It doesn’t have to be that you must start out that way.

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