Hustle versus Calm: A Call for a New Way of Building Startups
As a young business person or founder, influenced by all the media of hustle culture, without any good mentors, all you can do is hustle & grind.
You hustle because you don’t know any better or you don’t know anything. So you brute force it. Try everything, throw spaghetti at the wall, work 24/7. And if you do this long enough, it starts to work. All at the risk of burning out and building something unsustainable.
But there seems to be a better way. This is why I’m really interested in Tyler Tringa’s philosophy of building businesses.
- Calm Companies are patient and have long-term ambitions.
- Calm Companies stand by their convictions, even in hectic times.
- Calm Companies prioritize physical and mental health across the entire team.
- Calm Companies don’t sacrifice the sustainability of the business for short-term growth.
The older I get & the more I learn, this innately makes sense to me. And it is easier than ever for founders to tap into. With the new canon of bootstrap founders (namely spread by DHH, Jason Fried and the Basecamp crew), growing success stories of massive self funded entrepreneurial exits (Mailchimp, Spanx) and a growing community represented by the folks at Calm Company, Indie Hackers, MicroConf. Plus we have lots of best practices coming out (thank you MicroAcquire! https://resources.microacquire.com).
We hear about the aphorism of “enjoying the journey, not just the destination.” But the way we build these high growth startups in Silicon Valley, this seems to be ignored. We seem to celebrate the pain and brutality. I’m not saying you don’t need to work hard in startups. This is absolutely crucial.
But we also need to talk about working smart too. This way the founder can embark on a sustainable and hopefully enjoyable journey while building his business. We need to see more of this if we want to get more people into a career of entrepreneurship & to rebuild our economy for everyone.