What Makes A Startup Fail? What Makes One Successful?

Curious what makes a startup successful? I was too...

What Makes A Startup Fail? What Makes One Successful?
Photo by Javier Allegue Barros / Unsplash

As I mention in my welcome email, I’m on a mission.

I want to know what separates successful startups from those that struggle.

More specifically, what separates those who generate $30M+ ARR from those who struggle to move past $1M, $3M, $10M ARR?

I’ve been analyzing both successful and struggling startups to better answer this question.

I want to understand what successful startups do that struggling startups miss. What principles and best practices do they have in common?

Similarly, do startups that struggle make the same types of mistakes? Do they commonly do things that successful ones do not?

A breakthrough in defining what makes a startup successful

All of this begs the question of what makes a startup "successful".

You will ultimately need to answer this for yourself.

But for me, a successful startup is one that generates at least $30M+ ARR and creates sustainable growth.

In truth, my view on this reflects an ongoing process.

When I started this journey, I viewed success simply as not failing. I started by asking:

Why do startups fail?

Turns out that’s the wrong question.

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