Mark Johnson- CEO, Zite
Entrepreneurship isn’t a profession, it’s a lifestyle.
Entrepreneurs like building products; Are quirky and curious; Affect millions of lives, inventing new technology and doing something that no one has done before.
Dave McClure- Founding Partner, 500 Startups
The condition of entrepreneurship is just being a little insane.
Challenge with most startups is dealing with the emotional ups and downs, which are huge.
Sam Zaid- Founder & CEO, Getaround
Even if it’s shaking, you still have that deep, unwavering belief that you can make it work and there has to be a way through this problem, one way or another.
The sooner you start, the faster you’ll learn.
Don’t be an entrepreneur because your dad is an entrepreneur. Do it because you feel like that’s who you are and what you want to do, and because you feel a massive frustration with something and you want to make it better.
You are going to dedicate so much time of your life, time, sweat and blood and loose friendships. So you might as well be working on something that you feel has potential to have a massive impact.
Chris Arsenault-Managing Partner, iNovia Capital
It’s all about people. How you build a team, how you motivate them, but also how you challenge them and how comfortable you feel being challenged.
Ben Huh- CEO, Cheezburger
Now all of us can lead, but this is a special type of sport.
You know where your revenue is coming from, but you don’t know where it’ll come from tomorrow.
Ofcourse I could have worked harder, better decisions, hired better people, made a better product, market myself better, gotten more customers..there is a million things you COULD HAVE done but that doesn’t fucking matter because you cannot roll back the clock. There is nothing you can do about what happened in the past. There is a difference between things you can and cannot control, and if you worry about the things you cannot control, you are going to waste time and never going to make an impact.
It is entirely possible that this version of myself will not be the successful one.
I don’t think everybody should be an entrepreneur. There are some people whose lives will be made miserable by the fact that they will take on this ambiguity and risk and responsibility. And that is totally fine.
Risk taking has to be embraced.
Jason Bailer- Founder & Principal, Growlab
Companies aren’t easy, they don’t just get on a special track cruising down the runaway train. Things get off track constantly.
Marc Ruxin- Founder & CEO, Tastemaker X
I don’t think you have to be great at everything. I think you have to understand your strengths and weaknesses and optimize for the things you are specially suited for.
Mikkel Svane- Founder & CEO, Zendesk
The first year or two when you’re bootstrapping but it’s only you and a few founders, and it can basically break apart all the time. It’s like carrying a kid- you need to give them freedom, you need to trust them and the company. But if you dont, you worry all the time.
The mental block can prevent you from doing it, but once you kinda bag in the saddle, things are easy.
Brian Wong- Co-Founder & CEO, Kiip
You can’t have an entire company of panicking individuals. You may have a massive mode of panic, attack, crazy sirens blowing in your head, but no one can hear about it.
Brant Cooper- Author, The Lean Entrepreneur
One of the toughest things for entrepreneurs to do is to think small first, but by definition, all big businesses started small. You have to start small.
Julia Hartz- Co-founder & President, Eventbrite
I actually hit through this wall of fear when we were about 30 people. And then we raised venture capital and we knew that we would grow from 30 to 100 people in less than a year, and I honestly felt almost paralyzed with fear.
Scott Kveton- CEO, Urban Airship
I’ve had my share of failures and I think that’s kind off what makes a person ready for success.
You need that motivation of ’It is do or die’, otherwise you are not going to get behind what you are doing.
Dan Levin- COO, Box
You are going to screw up. If you are going to go fast enough to succeed, you are going to make mistakes. If you are not making mistakes, you are going too slow and you’ll never win. It’s all about how you deal with those mistakes, that’s the key.
You should do whatever makes you happy, whatever you have passion for.
Jeff Clavier- Founder & Managing Partner, Soft Tech VC
If we don’t allow ourselves to make mistakes then we will never invest in things that are radical and risky.
Kate Rutter- Co-founder & Principal, Luxr
You start out as an explorer or as a learner, and then you make something and at a certain point there is this level of expertise. You go like ‘I got it. I know what I am doing!’
I would advise any entrepreneur, whether seasoned or not, to really experience the amplitude- the brazen bravado that you have to have to be able to push something in the world, and the deep grounded humility that this could really screw up.
Be brazen, but don’t be arrogant. Be humble, but don’t be timid.