Never Give Up – Startups Are Hard, But That’s OK!
Make Mistakes Faster.Andrew Grove, Intel Co-Founder
Been awhile since I wrote anything on my blog. That is totally on me for being so lazy. Crazy to think it’s been a few years since I actually wrote something on my blog that was coming from my mind. As I have been busy like the rest of us with work, managing a work-life balance, trying to fit in the time to exercise, ensuring my current relationship with my girlfriend does not falter and so much more – I decided to take the time to go back to writing blog posts on a consistent basis.
For those who are totally new to my blog (understandable as I feel I am pretty much starting fresh – my fault for not being consistent), thanks for stopping by. The TL;DR about me is: I’ve been in the startup game for some time (10+ years to be exact which still seems crazy!). Throughout the time, I’ve seen a lot and encountered so many highs and lows and the good and the bad. I’d like to say, I somehow have survived multiple battles and am still going strong. Nonetheless, I felt today was a good day to write about a few things I’ve learned along the journey, with one being the most important that I felt I should share while working at various startups.
STARTUPS ARE ALWAYS HARD
I put a quote below the title of this post, one that really resonates with me and I felt it also pertains to this post as well regarding working at startups. If you missed it here it is again:
Make Mistakes Faster.
This is 100% true and pertains to startups in my opinion. No matter what you’ve heard or what you’ve seen, startups will always be difficult and have their ups and downs. There is no “perfect” startup that goes from 0 to 100 upon inception. Every startup, starts from an idea – a foundation. It is from there, a startup founder or founders really dive in deeper, to take that idea and morph it into a reality. Once there is somewhat of a base established (i.e code developed, app launched, etc) then of course, comes the wild roller coaster ride of growing and scaling. This pertains to both external and internal scaling. This post will focus on the internal growth and whether you’re employee #1 or employee #500, startups will always be hard. Just an FYI – don’t let that deter you, life is about challenges and overcoming them.
Don’t Second Guess – Mistakes Happen. Learn. Grow. Be Better.
Whether you are a pro coder, held a high level position previous to your current position, or hell – even Michael Jordan (THE GOAT), we have all made mistakes. No startup expects you to be perfect. You’ve probably heard the common term with startups “Roll-up your sleeves and wear multiple hats,” which may sound cliche but throughout my career while working at various startups, this has ALWAYS been the case. This is what makes startups hard at first. They will ALWAYS be hard, but that’s what makes the end goal together that much more exhilarating. You will go through tough times and perhaps long hours (disclaimer: each startup varies). If you’re like me, you probably have made mistakes along the way as well. That is 100% natural and normal. No one is a “perfect” employee that never makes mistakes. With startups, sometimes making mistakes may feel a bit overwhelming. While working long hours, whether trying to ensure a code update goes out or trying to finalize and launch a campaign for a client up until the last minute, the work will be hard. But that’s the beauty of startups. With the tight knit community within your organization, you will have support, which will give you the opportunity to quickly lean on your colleagues to help fix an issue if a mistake occurred. It’s OKAY to make mistakes. It’s part of life and especially while working in a fast paced environment. The important thing is to learn from your mistakes and make sure you grown and evolve so the same mistake does not occur again. I like to associate your first mistakes as always the “ah ha” or “gotcha” moments. These moments are pivotal as it is up to you to ensure you quickly catch onto them and remember to grow and not get caught twice.
I’ll end this post by referring to my quote above: “Don’t second guess – mistakes happen. Learn. Grow. Be Better.” Startups are hard but that does not mean the end goal will not be worth it. There will always be lows but that just means there will also always be highs as well.