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Unicorn Tears by Jamie Pride

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INTRODUCTIONTHERE HAS TO BE A BETTER WAY!

Over the past 20 years I have founded and funded numerous technology startups. During that time I have seen a clear pattern emerging: startup failure has become an accepted industry norm, and it has an impact that reaches far beyond financial loss to investors. Having experienced my own journey of failure as a founder more than once, I have felt the very real, deep, personal impact of that failure on me, my family and my colleagues.

As I sat at home, licking my wounds from my most recent startup failure, the thought of writing this book took hold — and it soon became an obsession for me. I started talking to founders, and what they shared with me didn’t surprise me at all. Many of the first-time founders I spoke to were lost, with no map to guide them; even the more experienced founders, burnt out or stressed out, felt alone, isolated, with nowhere to turn for support. I was determined to write a book on startup failure by a founder for founders.

I quickly discovered that startup failure is ingrained in the eco­system. Concepts such as ‘fail fast’, misunderstood and misapplied, are thrown around without much thought. The traditional venture capitalist approach to failure is to place a lot of bets on the understanding that, while most ventures will fail, a very few may turn out to be ‘unicorns’ and return vast profits that will make up for all the losses. It is a very wasteful approach.

The financial waste in failed startups is fairly ...

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