The Journal of Message Therapy

Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All.

Way back in 2011, I got involved with a startup that almost made it.

Hoping to launch a website that would “revolutionize how jobseekers and employers connect,” the company’s co-founders and I drove through the night to a competition in Kansas City—and we won.

Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All.

That’s me on the left!

But that was more or less the highlight of the story. The venture capital firm never delivered the $250,000 prize—perversely moving their deadline back again and again—and we made some short-sighted decisions based on the money we’d never receive. Lots of tech issues, a big pivot and a few frustrating months later, the founders split.

Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All.


One of them, Sonia Lin, wrote a book based on the experience—Secret to Startup Failure: Fail Fast. Fail Cheap. Fail Happy. It’s a collection of cartoons from her Entrepreno’s website, and I found myself laughing all the way through.

If you’ve ever worked with a startup, you probably will, too.

GRAPHIC (DIS)CONTENT.

Business school doesn’t prepare you for 100-hour weeks, sleep deprivation or the challenges of working with people who don’t share your dedication. But it does give you a funny way of illustrating how they feel!Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All.

Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All

Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All.

CO-FOUNDER BLUES.

And then there’s the hyper-focused, messianic co-founder. I had a great time working with him, but I never experienced him 24/7 like Sonia did.

Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All.

Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All.

THE FINAL EQUATION.

Sonia’s startup may have failed, but her book’s a success—winning a National Indie Excellence Award and getting great reviews on Amazon.

And while the book is supposedly all about failure, I like Sonia’s take on success. Sometimes it does take a miracle.

Fail Fast, Fail Cheap, Fail Funny—A Startup Founder Reveals All.

Like my blog? I can write your website—and your first two posts are free! Find out more!

2 Comments

Got something to say? Feel free, I want to hear from you! Leave a Comment

  1. Stephanie says:

    I have never worked for a start-up (and, frankly, I hope I never do) but I’ve known people like that – both the jackass in charge and the “poor me” underling. Seriously, I’ve worked my entire professional life in non-profits, and I would never tell my boss that I couldn’t be on a call because I’m going to the gym.

    • Jeff Segal says: (Author)

      Yes, but if you knew the guy would call you twenty times a day, wouldn’t you try to get your workout in first?

Leave a Comment

Couldn't agree more?

Think I'm full of crap?

Tell me all about it!