Dear SaaStr: What Were The Top Pieces of Advice You’re Glad You Ignored?

#1:  “Don’t do any VC investments your first year.  Take your time”

Sound advice.  But would have missed 4 unicorns if I had.  I would have missed leading seed investments into Pipedrive, Algolia, Talkdesk, Parklet/Greenhouse, and more.

#2: It’s Hopeless.  Let’s Throw in the Towel.

Yes, it was.  But quitting doesn’t help.  And by not quitting, it ended up not being hopeless.  We had customers.  Just not enough of them.  That was something, not nothing.

3.  Don’t start that start-up, it won’t work, there aren’t enough customers, and the technology doesn’t work.

All true, based on conventional knowledge.  We sold that company (my first start-up as a founder) for $50,000,000 12.5 months later.

4.  Don’t join that start-up, it’s not enough money.

True, but it got the journey going.  Do things that accelerate your growth and career.  Worry less about a few nickels and dimes today, at least if you can.

5.  Don’t leave.  I’ll pay you $50,000 to stay.

A lot of money, especially at the time, when it was more than my life savings.  But the moment had come to do the next thing.  Still, I stayed 60 days for that boss.

6.  Don’t hire that VP.  He has one terrible reference.

Yes, but what about the other 3 great references?  The best in startups often break a little glass.  Too much is a problem.  But a chip on the shoulder can be good.

7.  Don’t do that investment, the CEO is hard to work with.

Yes, but he’s been 100% honest, upfront, and transparent.  I’ll take that over a schmoozer any day of the week.

8.  He/she can’t do the job, they don’t have enough experience.

You’re missing the point.  They’re the hardest-working person at the company.  They grow every single month.  Watch where she’ll be in 6 or 9 months.  Ahead of almost everyone else.  I’ll take that bet.

A related post here:

The Top 10 Pieces of Advice I’d Give to My Younger CEO Self

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