Looking at startups from the outside, it’s easy to assume the startup game is just that, a game. A game with big winners and glorious and rapid rises to the top. Of billion-dollar valuations and worldwide conquests. Of apps serving hundreds of millions of people and liquidity to ensure glory for one’s heirs for generations to come.

But entrepreneurship is not a game, and the vast majority of the time spent on the journey(one I have and do live, embrace and love to my core) is a slog, spent dealing with pain and strife and conflict. Essentially, it’s:

  • Customers that don’t convert.
  • Senior people who leave.
  • Champions at partner companies who leave their jobs before the contract is signed and leave you to start over again.
  • Founders who disagree.
  • Tech that fails to scale.
  • Key positions that seem impossible to hire.
  • Big companies that keep you from hiring their people by giving them bonuses 5X what you were offering to pay them when they agreed to join you.
  • Bills that outgrow resources.
  • Payroll that haunts you just beyond your ability to pay it without another round of capital.
  • Financings that don’t close, or take far longer than expected.
  • Competitors that get the press you deserved for work less compelling than your own.

To name just a few that come to mind. The entrepreneurial journey is hard. It’s just plain hard.


Source: The Entrepreneurial Journey Is More Darkness Than Light

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