Love the Ones You’re With. Why Startup Success Depends on Relationships | SiliconANGLE

Ben and Doug at DisneyI recently wrote this post with Doug Kilponen, COO at Wanderful Media. Having worked together on two different startups over the course of several years, it has become clear to us that loyalty is the secret ingredient for success. The media tends to credit startups with being built by a few key people, but the reality is your business, and your future, depends much more on whom you take along for the ride and how you share the adventure together.

In the early startup days, it’s you and your team against the world, fired up by passion and chasing a shared idea. That faith in each other moves you from one line of code to the next, one venture pitch to another. As your startup begins to mature, the strengths of your team are vigorously tested. Success can lead people to the difficult choice of staying with the same team or possibly a more amicable separation, with the possibility of working together in the future.

DSC_1547For example, look at what’s happened to alumni from Odeo who went on to found Twitter, or Topix who are now finding great success with Blekko. Our team at Wanderful includes talented people we worked with at MerchantCircle and CodeGear. The teams that have formed, reformed, gone onto different opportunities but continued throughout to nurture the loyalty and friendships that were built in the early days are thriving.

When starting a company, choosing the right team is the one decision that will truly impact your success and your future career. You won’t succeed unless you choose to work with people who have integrity, a sense of shared purpose and a desire to create something meaningful. Once you find great people, be good to them!

Read the full article: Love the Ones You’re With. Why Startup Success Depends on Relationships | SiliconANGLE

About Ben T. Smith, IV

Founder of, investor in and advisor to technology and media companies
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