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Kathryn Minshew: 7 Classic Startup Founder Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them)

About this talk

Daily Muse co-founder and startup advisor Kathryn Minshew has started several startups and has the battle scars to prove it. In this talk, Minshew shares common mistakes made by startup founders, and reveals the remedies to each. Chief among them? The “Gollum Syndrome” where founders treat their companies as “their precious.” Just launch and iterate, says Minshew, because “an ugly baby is better than no baby at all.” 

Kathryn Minshew, Co-Founder & CEO, The Muse

Kathryn Minshew is the CEO & Founder of The Muse, a career platform and job discovery tool helping 1 million people every month answer the question, “What do I want to do with my life (and how do I get there)?”

Minshew has spoken at MIT and Harvard, appeared on The TODAY Show and Fox, and contributes on career and entrepreneurship topics to the Wall Street Journal and Harvard Business Review. Before founding The Muse, Minshew worked on vaccine introduction in Rwanda and Malawi with the Clinton Health Access Initiative and was previously at the management consultancy McKinsey & Company.

Comments (5)
  • Jennerousity

    I really like this video. I am building a site and I just realized that it’s not the site I need to work on it’s the app……and then I saw this video. Funny how things come to you when you need them. Great content. And I have been saying this from the beginning. I have been so stuck on the one idea and all the other ideas that are going to make it work….is where I should be focusing my energies.

  • RichieOnix

    Great gems in this speech! Thanks Kathryn!!

  • Gillian Davis

    Such a great speech! So many key things we often overlook when we are in the thick of it! Thanks for sharing!

  • Robert Hurst

    Great advice for anyone starting out on the roller coaster journey as a founder of a start-up.

    Looking back at our own journey from start-up in 2001 to the successful fast growth and profitable international group we have become today your ‘words of wisdom’ ring true, albeit with the benefit of hindsight.

    I wonder if we would have done anything different if someone had told us some of these things when we first started out as naive entrepreneurs or if we just had to learn from our mistakes along the way to make them part of the ongoing culture of the organisation that we have become today.

    Robert Hurst
    CEO / Founder
    Audio Network

  • Chrys Chin

    What a great talk. Thanks Kathryn! We are currently setting up our start-up company and this video has been insightful (thanks 99u!). We’re experiencing the same thing about the product we’re developing- we became so fixated with all the features we want to have in our product that we lost sight of the core. We are at the infancy stage and hopefully all goes well.

  • Dmytro Igolkin

    Damn she’s hot!

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