Several times a week someone asks me this question… What does it take to succeed as an entrepreneur?

Sometimes people ask as they wonder if they have what it takes to quit their job and go for it… Other times they wonder if it’s something they can “learn” or develop…  Regardless, it’s a great question right?

We all want to know what is that one thing that matters…


There are so many factors that help. Obvious things like intelligence and expertise. Important things like honesty and integrity.  Things like subject matter expertise and skills…. As an investor I want an entrepreneur to have all those things… and to be successful in many cases it will take some combination of them all… but here’s the thing, if I have to pick one, just one, its perseverance.


Well as I noted in my last post (Pepto and Aspirin) being an entrepreneur is hard. Really hard. And startups typically fail. It’s just a fact. Numbers aren’t on your side. So what I value is the guy or girl who is committed to the cause and they just don’t let go.

Its important because there will be challenges. They may come as bumps in the road or they may be brick walls with spikes and fire you have to climb, but they are coming… So the entrepreneur that perseveres makes it through when others give up too early. The one that perseveres is still standing when others are knocked down. And if you are still standing, you can succeed.

So the recipe is simple: “If you get knocked down, jump back up and keep going… Just don’t stop”…


Yours in startups,




Photo credit: Sam Hoy