No. 1 mistake: Finding the right co-founder
Today's Entrepreneur is Nathan Lands, CEO & Co-Founder of Gamify.
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I am a(n):
Companies I've founded or co-founded:
Gamify, Gamification.org, GameStreamer
Startups I worked for:
I've consulted Gaikai, War Inc. and some other companies in the past.
If you are an entrepreneur, why?
Because I can't imagine doing anything else. I was very fortunate to make money at the age of 15 doing what I loved -- which permanently changed the way I look at life and the world around me.
My favorite startups:
Gamify, Riot Games, KickStarter
What's most frustrating and rewarding about entrepreneurship/innovation?
I'd say that the emotional rollercoaster is one of the hardest things about doing startups.. but it also makes it exciting. It's like being Christopher Columbus. You have to convince a bunch of people that you're not crazy and to join you, and to fund your expedition to do something people say can't be done. You're sailing the ocean with a dream you believe in but always the possibility you might fall off the edge because your assumptions were incorrect or the tides changed.
However.. there is always the chance that you may change the world. There is nothing more exciting than that.
What's the No. 1 mistake entrepreneurs make?
Finding the right co-founder is often critical and I think a lot of startups fail because of this. It's like getting into a marriage.. you need to spend time with the person, understand their culture and make sure you have the same long-term goals but both are able to work together and be flexible on how you get to that end goal. It's also good if you're not exactly the same as the other person.. diversity of skills, experiences and viewpoint can be very important while also having some commonality.
What are the top three lessons you've learned as an entrepreneur?
#1: Work super hard at what your passionate about -- but don't forget that life is really a big game and you've most likely only got one shot at it. It's easy to forget that and to get stressed out with the crazy hours that startups require. Make sure you're doing something that you truly enjoy or if not -- make sure there is a damn good reason and that it's part of some bigger plan to soon get to do something you truly would love to do.
#2 Don't take too much money too early.. try to control your own destiny if at all possible. Don't obsess over TechCrunch or comparing yourself to other people or friends. . just do your thing and do your best.
#3. Relationships are important. Don't neglect them, wether they're personal or business. In the quest for high valuations and being the next Mark Zuckerberg, some people lose themselves.
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