Thoughts on startups by investors that
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Big Obvious Failure is Better Than Long Slow Lack of Success

Steve Blank has a good post today called Failure and Redemption, which he introduces with this:

Steve Blank, failure

We give abundant advice to founders about how to make startups succeed yet we offer few models about dealing with failure. So here’s mine.

Steve’s experience was Rocket Science Games, which raised $35 million and a cover story in Wired Magazine before failing. He writes about shock, denial, anger, blame, depression, acceptance, and, finally, insight. 

At least it was clear and present failure. Very visible failure with the big raise, big press, and then the big crash at the end.

Not one of those much-more-common long drawn-out failures that end up taking years of slow quicksand-like decline.  Lots of smaller raises, pivots, restructuring, clinging to hope, and frustration. With no real path to success but no exit either.

Not having the option of continuing can be a blessing. Take the write-off, swallow hard, and do something else. Persistence and perseverance can be overrated.

Written by Tim Berry

user Tim Berry

Tim is the founder of Palo Alto Software and bplans.com, the co-founder of Borland International, and the official business planning coach at Entrepreneur.com. He has been called the "Obi-wan Kenobe of business planning" and "The Father of Business Planning." He is a serial author of books and software on business planning.

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