Startups Should Sign Their Work

Written by Sean Murphy. Posted in 2 Open for Business Stage, 3 Early Customer Stage, skmurphy

A great post by Tim Bonneman on “Startups Without Face Nor Name

I always find it surprising:

You sign up for a beta invite. Time passes. One day, you get an email after all stating the app, project whatever is now live. You sign up, you log in, and then, when you try to see who’s behind all this — nothing. No names. No pictures. No (real) address. No background info whatsoever about the founders or the team or the management or the backers or the first customers or their mother or their cat. Nothing. Nada. Zilch.

Sorry, but what do you think this is? Hide and seek?

I think it stems from a fear of failure. But unless you commit how can you expect other folks to spend time (and ultimately bet a chunk of their business and/or career) working with your application. I am coming to the conclusion that “stealth mode” as currently practiced by many firms (often a variation on “I’ve got a secret”) gets the team off on the wrong foot. I think it’s better to tell what truth you can and to say who you are.

Dharmesh Shah wrote about this in “Stealth Mode Schmealth Mode: the Real Reasons Startups Don’t Talk

  1. Lack of Direction
  2. Lack of Focus
  3. Lack of Commitment
  4. Lack of a Solution
  5. They Have a Secret

[…]

Before you decide to clam-up and guard your “super secret business idea”, make sure that you have something worth guarding, and that it’s in your best interests to do so. More often than not, you’re better not being coy, and doing some talking.

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