12 Nov

What is the best advice for a young, first-time startup CEO?

Welcome to the world of business, may your journey embark fruitfully.

You have to keep an open mind to this as it may sound counter intuitive but it actually works. So be patient and be attentive to details and read between the lines.

Are you really mentally ready for this?

Here are my fool proof 27 points for a startup.

  1. Do not take loans.
  2. It’s an emotional roller coaster so be ready and enjoy it do not give up. You will lose a lot of hair but hey, bald is in fashion.
  3. Do not take loans.
  4. Make the 20% of product features that are responsible for 80% of your value first. With your own god damn money.
  5. Do not take loans.
  6. The remaining 80% of features of your products, add them later organically one by one.
  7. Do not take loans.
  8. Talk to people and ask their opinions on stuff you know nothing, Jon Snow.
  9. Do not take loans.
  10. Build a distribution network and channel partners. More sustainable than just advertisement and it is an asset to add to your company value. They are kind of your subscribers the more you have, the surer how much you will earn, and you can plan your scaling around it.
  11. Do not take loans.
  12. When you need investors don’t ask for money for your salary, it’s a waste of money. Ask for features and growing distribution network.
  13. Do not take loans.
  14. Keep innovating and don’t bother with cat fights with your copycats. It’s a waste of time.
  15. Do not take loans.
  16. If you are a technical guy step down from being CEO and get someone who knows how to run a business to do it for you. It also will make the investors trust you more. Don’t fight the CEO over authority, only vision.
  17. Do not take loans.
  18. Investors want to see a team that knows its shit. Not your buddies.
  19. Do not take loans.
  20. When you want investors to get professional help to evaluate your startup and to tell you how much shares to offer. Residuals 1% for my 1 billion idea is a waste of the investors. Do not waste time on investors, they talk just like your ex gossiping about how small your wee wee is.
  21. Do not take loans.
  22. Focus on your business process and do not change it every day, it frustrates your employees and customers and your distributor and channel partners. When you want to change split a operate line with new offering and gradually change. If it works, don’t fix it.
  23. Do not take loans.
  24. Make your business unique, no one wants to invest in another clone.
  25. Do not take loans.
  26. Don’t try to fight multi-billion dollar companies. Investors will think you are an idiot. Instead, fill the gap these companies don’t cover, and they might actually buy you. They are potentially investors too.
  27. Did I mention do not take loans? DO NOT TAKE LOANS.
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