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How does it feel to leave a succesful startup that started from your bedroom

Well it wont require much braincells to compute the feeling but let me try to put it in words. Its something like your adult son kicking you in the balls wearing the shoes that you made, its something like a tree you nurtured from a seed to a plant, watered it everyday and when it starts giving fruit you realize you planted it on someone else's land. Bottom line I wont recommend to have this experience. But how the cliche goes there is always something to learn. I wont write a sob story with boring details but I do want to share some things which I learned. If you are joining a startup or already working for a startup I hardly recommend to read through.

Keep Numbers in mind ALWAYS

The biggest mistake that you can make is the assumption that if the startup succeed you are successful. There are different phases, there is a phase of hustle and struggle. Its a really great phase to be in. Exhausting yourself till you can't keep your eyes open, coding while sitting on the cold floor of a data centre, eating nothing but junk because you don't have time. Bonding with people who have the same goal of succeeding, having the sense of purpose of your existence is one of the best things that one can experience. 

BUT that phase will pass one way or another, you cannot be forever in that phase. If that phase lead to a profitable and a sustained phase then you have to make sure certain things. First you have to make sure that your hassle has earned you a privileged place for the next phase. The 'privilege' has to be measurable. I would highly recommend to have a company share while you are going through the hassle phase. The profits(if any) will be little and it will be easier for the stake holders to pay up in terms of share. Do not assume that your hassle will give you the privilege in the next phases, that's not human psyche. Time changes and so does priorities. The engineers who were critical to the success of a product are easily replaceable by sales or marketing people, no one is wrong, that's how things are. But if you can accept it then its better off to have as much leverage while you are critical to the startup.