My 10 Favorite Quotes From Startupland

I’m a bit embarrassed to admit that I have never read, “Startupland” until recently. I’m a reader and obviously committed to helping Founders level-up their leadership and scale-up their startup. So I probably should have read it sooner than I have.

After devouring the book this past week, I was struck by Mikkel Svane’s honest and emotional recounting of how he and his co-founders brought us Zendesk.

I hope my favorite 10 quotes from the book will encourage you to read it, too.

  • “Founders’ contributions can be very asymmetric in different phases of a startup’s lifetime.” Page 27
  • “As so many startup founders know, it’s really hard saying no to money, but sometimes it’s the right thing to do.” Page 62
  • “Working with a VC is almost like entering into a marriage.” Page 84
  • “…some VCs have had a reputation for routinely replacing founders with ‘professional’ CEOs with more big company experience. Good investors understand that the founding team often is what carries the spirit of a company and makes it what it is.” Page 93
  • “One of the great things about building a smart team is that it forces you to grow yourself.” Page 117
  • “In hindsight, it was impressive how little we knew about building up an organization – and how forgiving the people that we met were with this fact.” Page 133
  • “Hiring people who are way smarter than you and who have a lot more experience is actually really hard. And it’s something you have to learn.” Page 137
  • “…in some ways the hardest part of the process was the aspect of letting go.” Page 153
  • “Sometimes it’s hard to be official and upstanding and at the same time be your goofy and authentic and human self.” Page 161
  • “Time on my own is the scarcest resource I have.” Page 169

Which of these are your favorite?

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