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Startup *S.H.I.T. to Share! *Strategies/Hypotheses/Insights/Theories (to discuss/debate/demonstrate)

Startup Lessons

In STARTUP WHATEVER!. More on Medium.

Side Hustlers, Students, STARTERS as a bridge to All-Stars, Experts, & SCALERS /
#DiscussAndDebate Topic#037

What if one of the reasons that ~99% fail is simply this:

A. What if those with the time, interest, passion, and hustle to START (potentially-)great businesses are just not (often) the ones with the experience/expertise to build/scale it into a great company?

B. Conversely, what if (many of?) those with the skill/talent, experience/expertise to build/scale great companies will simply no longer possess the time, interest, passion to do the hustling/grinding, a-b-z-testing & trial/error-tinkering to create the (potentially-)great products/services/software/whatever…

C. And, what if, entrepreneurial ecosystems that depend upon successful startups coming from the very few

Success/Fail Rates are NOT some unchangeable “Natural Law of Entrepreneurship!” We CAN improve…

STATUS QUO BIAS — A cognitive bias that explains our preference for familiarity… to resist change and prefer the current state of affairs
[definition from]

“Startups Are Hard.”
— *BUT* —
there are things we can do to dramatically improve the current success/fail rates if we start thinking (and re-thinking?) more strategically and identifying / addressing the most common Problems & Pitfalls — particularly for YOUNG and/or FIRST-TIME Entrepreneurs…

Because simply following the same paths and repeating the same approaches of countless Startups/Founders for whom those paths/approaches have consistently resulted in ~99% failure (but yet somehow (magically?)…

STARTUP *[Strategies, Hypotheses, Ideas, Theories]…

One of the key points in “Outliers” by Malcolm Gladwell is that 10,000 hours (of experience, practice, study, etc.) is required to achieve GREATNESS.
[Full Disclosure — I actually can’t remember if it’s for “greatness” or “expertise” or “mastery” — but any of those work for what I’m trying to say]

I have now spent 10,000+ hours studying and analyzing the most Persistently-Pervasive Problems & Pitfalls that young entrepreneurs and/or first-time founders are likely to encounter (10,000 hours watching/analyzing startup pitch presentations, observing/interviewing and advising/mentoring young entrepreneurs, and asking “WHY?” a few thousand times).


[Spoiler Alert: Nobody seems to have a universally-accepted definition] For the sake of this discussion, we’ll use GOOGLE’S DEFINITION (below) to illustrate a few common misconceptions (that have evolved over time) about what “an entrepreneur” actually is. [comments in red are us]

The reality is — there are MANY TYPES of Entrepreneurs!
But in the most authoritative definitions we found — including Google,
- that you need to be the CEO…
- that the business needs to be YOUR idea…
- that you need to start All-In / Full-Time…
- or that you can’t reduce or MITIGATE your risk
(Multiple Eggs / Multiple Baskets)
[more on this later]

So, why am I so interested in discussing the wide variety of contradictory definitions of Entrepreneur? (Particularly the specific parts associated with my notes written in red on the image above?) Because…

  1. Because the success of my first startup was a direct result of my personal epiphany that I could be a successful entrepreneur without being the CEO

And the “Holy Sh*t! Get-Out-Of-My-Head!” Article that Helped Me Realize What I was Experiencing!

Forbes Magazine has written about me twice… (#NotSoHumbleBragIntro)

The first time was directly/intentionally (an article about me and my company in 2010), at a high point in my life, both personally and professionally. The second time, albeit only indirectly / unintentionally about me, was a few years later — which I later stumbled upon at a very low point, both personally and professionally (we laid off all employees, sold off assets, and dissolved our company in 2013)…

Obviously, it’s a stretch to say that the 2013 article was “about me” — because it definitely didn’t mention my name, and the author (Lisa M. Gerry) had/has no idea I…

Experience/Expertise (50+ Viral Ventures -> 497+ Million People), Secret Sauce, and Techniques to Teach…

Just Because It Can Be Difficult to Attain, Doesn’t Mean Funding Should Be Viewed as a Victory (or even as Validation!)

I’ll come back and finish this later (hopefully), but, quick thoughts:

First Question to Ask Yourself: WHAT KIND OF FUNDING IS THIS?!?

Is it a “RAMP Round” or a “RESCUE Round” or a “RESEARCH [(and Development (R&D)] Round”?
I just made those up — because I have #AnAlliterationAddiction — but the point is that not all rounds of funding are equal, not all rounds of funding are for the same purpose, not all rounds of funding are AS crucial to success/failure for the startup or AS likely/unlikely to be good investments for the investor.]

Jeff Goldblatt is an Atlanta-based Entrepreneur, a B2C Startup Founder, Advisor, Thinker, Re-Thinker, and Viral Media Expert. He has an MBA from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School and is pursuing a PhD from The Hogwarts School of Witchcraft & Wizardry.

As creator of The Rejection Hotline® , 300+ Humor Hotlines, National “Get Over It Day”… and 40+ viral ventures (each individually reaching over a million people — and collectively engaging audiences of HALF A BILLION), he has become a nationally-recognized authority on viral media and content creation (scroll down for a sample of his viral ventures).

Spoiler Alert: A = $2.5M and B = $2.5M but A ≠ B — (wait, what?)

There is actually very little about those two “$2.5 Million Dollar Companies” that will be similar! From internal and external perceptions of “success” vs. “failure” to the personal financial impacts of everyone with equity (co-founders, investors, employees, etc.)…
(To Be Continued — but the main point is illustrated via the image below)

#ImageCreatedInPowerPoint #DontJudgeMe #DesignerNeeded #Obviously

P.S. The example above has 2 “equal” values with different circumstances… it might make my point a little clearer if I actually use DIFFERENT values, whereby the smaller value is arguably the more favorable:

Definition Debate: “SUCCESS” vs. “FAILURE”
[Spoiler Alert: It’s NOT always an easy answer] /…

(, Part 3)

With 15 years experience in startups (including: VC-funded, angel-funded, bootstrapped… acquisitions, asset-sales, dissolutions… successes, failures…), I’ve seen/learned A LOT — not only about the startup world in general (, but about myself as an entrepreneur. I have become keenly aware of my (few) entrepreneurial strengths… as well as my (many) entrepreneurial weaknesses — for example:


Startup *S.H.I.T. to Share! *Strategies/Hypotheses/Insights/Theories (to discuss/debate/demonstrate)

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