Mark Suster interviews Ben Horowitz who sold his previous business Loudcloud and Opsware for 1.6 billion.
Horowitz and Andreessen have founded Andreessen Horowitz a Venture Capital company, because in their experience the founders should be the CEOs but traditionally entrepreneurs/founders have a model where someone with training as a CEO comes in to run their company.
Note: Jump to 17 minutes until the video where the content starts.
This model did not work for either Horowitz or Andreessen (who founded Mosaic and Netscape). By starting their own venture capital company they want to support entrepreneurs to stay as founders/CEOs.
Horowitz has just published a book “The Hard Thing About Hard Things”. He says it is for veteran entrepreneurs as well as aspiring ones. In it he analyzes the toughest problems entrepreneurs face. Very few are honest about how difficult it is to run a new start-up.
Ben believes that the Accelerators (companies organized to get you connected, known, knock on the right doors to meet the right people) are mostly good.
They create a path for entrepreneurs to get recognized with their bright ideas – typically a 20 -25 year old can not break into the market to get the support they need for their start-up.
On the negative side the Accelerators can diminish your naivety by surrounding you with “group think”. He advises to keep authentic to yourself, your ideas and your start-up. Avoid group think at all costs.
Mark Suster asked: in today’s world with instant communication on all fronts it is extremely difficult to have your company, your ideas trashed publicly – we have all heard of the number of high-profile suicides recently – where can entrepreneurs get support?
Ben feels that yes this worldwide publicity can be a great stressor, he feels that the entrepreneur is plagued more by the stress they feel coming from within their own company. They feel they are letting them down and this stress is far more significant.
The short answer: there is no support out there, sure you can talk to friends but often they have no idea what you are talking about. He says is more about focusing on what you can do.
You have to believe you can find the answer and just do not give up until you do.
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Original Source: Startup Grind Spring Conference 2014