Ten reasons why startups fail

From our own Tim Draper.

I’ve been on the sharp end of a few of these before 🙁

  • Out of interest – which ones?

  • Out of interest – which ones?

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  • Alan Munro

    How about sharing the top 10 reasons why start ups succeed? Is it just a case of not making most of the mistakes noted above along with a having lots of good ideas that their market actually likes?

  • Good question Alan – it would be a different sort of list though as companies can fail for a single reason whilst success requires a multitude of things to all be in place. Further, whilst whilst we can all agree on what failure looks like sucess means differen things to different people.

    Great market and great product would be a good start though.

  • Alan Munro

    How about sharing the top 10 reasons why start ups succeed? Is it just a case of not making most of the mistakes noted above along with a having lots of good ideas that their market actually likes?

  • Good question Alan – it would be a different sort of list though as companies can fail for a single reason whilst success requires a multitude of things to all be in place. Further, whilst whilst we can all agree on what failure looks like sucess means differen things to different people.

    Great market and great product would be a good start though.

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  • Anonymous

    Thanks for this wonderfull list.
    Entering in the field of stock market is all about risk and return, and because your money is at more risk in the stock market than if you park it in a savings or CD (by the way, the money you invest in a CD is probably reinvested by the company offering the CD), the potential return is higher. It’s true that the gyrations in the stock market can cause both large losses and large gains, but if your investment time horizon is long enough, these short-term fluctuations will result in relatively high returns. It is generally accepted, that the average long term return from investing in stocks is 10-12%. This is much higher than the average CD or savings rate of 4-6%.
    Option Tips

  • Nic – Great perspective by Tim whose obviously seen a lot of startups (wins & losses). One way to learn why startups fail is by looking at folks who’ve failed. It’s often tough to find these given the survivorship bias, i.e. we like to talk about wins/not losses.

    But the startup community is amazingly generous in sharing their insights even when the outcome is negative. We put together a list of 25 (and counting) of the best startup failure post-mortems. There are many nuggets of wisdom that can be gleaned from these founders and their posts.

    http://www.chubbybrain.com/blog/2010/10/startup-failure-post-mortem/

  • Nic – Great perspective by Tim whose obviously seen a lot of startups (wins & losses). One way to learn why startups fail is by looking at folks who’ve failed. It’s often tough to find these given the survivorship bias, i.e. we like to talk about wins/not losses.

    But the startup community is amazingly generous in sharing their insights even when the outcome is negative. We put together a list of 25 (and counting) of the best startup failure post-mortems. There are many nuggets of wisdom that can be gleaned from these founders and their posts.

    http://www.chubbybrain.com/blog/2010/10/startup-failure-post-mortem/

  • Thanks. I will look at your list later