Maxprog just turned 20 years old a few days ago. Believe me or not, it has been quite a pleasant journey. That's very likely because I do what I always wanted.
Who am I?
My name is Stan Busk. I am a french-born self-taught vocational software developer. I started programming when I was around twelve.
In my place, computers were like UFOs so no one could help or even understand you. I have always been fascinated by algorithms (and spinning things). I started very early and never stopped; however, being fascinated by something and creating a company are two different things that require very different skill sets.
Running a company
Indeed, to be successful in creating a company, you must learn about business, develop genuine products, market them, handle payments, and after-sales support. Later you may need to hire people, outsource stuff, learn basic accounting, etc. Finally, you have to fight against your competitors, maintain good visibility on the internet and make the right decisions to continue in business.
Most people would never risk themselves and would prefer working for others on stuff they don't like that much. I understand them. It is also clear that very few people are born with the right set of skills. Maybe it is why most startup companies are created by venturesome friends/colleagues on a common idea.
Each partner brings their skills to the venture. They have to complete themselves. For example, we have Apple's Steve Wozniak, who was an engineer, and Steve Jobs, a marketer. They were friends. They had a product, created a company, and started selling it. The founders of a business may later add more partners/shareholders to the company. The business world is very hostile; you need to grow fast. It would help if you had partners for their skills or money.
The way to go
But what if you are gifted and have all the necessary skills? And what if money nor business growth are your priorities? Well, you do things by yourself in a more natural manner, at a much slower pace. You create a product in your spare time without leaving your actual job, then try to sell it. If you are successful and sales are good enough, you can leave your job, create your company and continue your development. That's exactly how it happened to me and Maxprog, sort of a casual out-coming.
Constancy, perseverance, and patience
You have to work hard, yes, but it doesn't look that hard when it is what you always wanted to do. The secret is constancy, perseverance, and patience. Giving up is not an option. Twenty years after that successful start, the company continues operating with only eight products. I have sold dozens of thousands of licenses in 185 countries.
I agree that it is essential to be in the right spot at the right time with the right product, which is what happened to Maxprog and me. What I appreciate the most is being the owner of my time.