Never Read The Comments
Sarah Adler
3.2K148

Sarah, congratulations on all of your success. I’m rooting for you. But I think you have to understand a few things, at least based on the information presented.

It is entirely possible that some people are responding to your age, not your gender. Sexism in tech is much like racism in the NYPD — sure it’s there, and sure, it’s a factor. But some cops are just assholes in addition to being racists, and some are plain-old equal-opportunity assholes. I’m sure the fact you’re a woman has factored into some prejudices, and I’m unfortunately sure it will again. But there are other factors at play.

Look, you and your cofounder have done some amazing things. But raising money from VCs is not the end game; it is the beginning of a long road. And if you’re successful at navigating that road, your job will change dramatically. Being a true CTO is far more than being a competent — or even talented — programmer, which I have no doubt you are. It involves leadership skills, management skills (which is different from leadership), a deep and nuanced understanding of business, and a whole lot more. I’m sure you have these attributes, but they are very likely still developing (unless you’re a savant; maybe you’re a savant).

You have come a long way. But you have a long way to go. I doubt you remember Foodspotting, but at your stage of the game they were grabbing headlines and users all over the world. Where are they now? There are many stories like this, and they all add up to: building a successful venture is a whole lot more than writing some code and raising an A round.

Be PROUD of your accomplishments and your possibilities, but stay humble about how much you have yet to learn and accomplish. That is my 2-cents worth, or whatever it’s actually worth.

And I am very much rooting for you. (I’m an NU guy myself.)

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