Patrick McKenzie+ Your Authors @patio11 I work for the Internet, at @stripe, mostly on accelerating startups. Opinions here are my own. Sep. 11, 2020 1 min read + Your Authors

This was *extremely* good. I learned quite a few things about YC, and I have been (gestures to HN karma) something of a fan over the years.

There is also (towards the end of the interview) some necessary and extremely bracing talk about the likelihood of companies on the funded trajectory flourishing and the intensity with which the successful founders have to pursue that outcome.

I loved the observations on how smart people tend to set their tempo based on the local norms of their peer group, and how picking better peer groups tends to lift you up.

An interesting observation for me on joining Stripe after having some success in running businesses is gaining a visceral appreciation for how many orders of magnitude there are on that tempo spectrum.

I have complicated and nuanced thoughts for another day on the degree to which the rocket ship trajectory narrative sometimes overdominates the pop culture of startupdom, to the detriment of people pursuing it and people who probably shouldn't be given their goals/company/etc.

Some people within the funded ecosystem latch onto cultural signifiers of it without actually stepping onto the trajectory, and this can feel like success until reality brutally reasserts itself (generally via "We are N days from missing payroll").

Some people spiritually adjacent to the ecosystem might feel a sense of judgement or non-belonging because it doesn't support e.g. "I just want to build a vertical SaaS company, have a team that never grows beyond like 10 people, and have terminal revenues of a few million."

And that is not just *totally fine* that is *a worthy aspiration* and will require *a metric shedload of work* (and risk) relative to what many people do for a living.

You can follow @patio11.


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