The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten on Smash Notes

The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten podcast.

December 31, 2019

Unfiltered insights and actionable advice straight from the trenches of startup and business life. The show hosts, Steli Efti and Hiten Shah, are both serial entrepreneurs who have founded multi-million dollar SaaS startups. Being busy CEOs of fast-growing companies, they know the value of your time and make sure you get the most out of each 22 minute episode. Tune in for new episodes every Tuesday and Friday.

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In today’s episode of The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about comparing yourself with other founders & startups.

It’s common for some founders to compare themselves and their startups with other founders and startups. ,and doing so is never a good thing. The moment we start comparing ourselves to other people's apparent success, most of the time, we all lose.

In this episode, Steli and Hiten talk about why comparing yourself to others is never a good thing, why you need self-awareness and self-acceptance to get to self-improvement, how a lot of founders are so insecure about who they are and much more.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

00:00 About the topic of today’s episode

00:45 Why this topic was chosen.

02:02 Hiten’s point of view about founders comparing themselves.

03:23 The importance of self-awareness.

04:00 Steli trying to emulate Steve Jobs.

05:24 Why you need self-awareness and self - acceptance to get to self-improvement.

05:47 How a lot of founders are so insecure about who they are.

06:26 How lack of self-awareness leads to unhappiness.

07:00 How we’re always looking at others.

08:37 How you never know what someone else is going through.

3 Key Points:

I think in one word we want to say stop!It’s easy to compare oneself on social mediaWhat’s important is your journey.


Steli Efti: Hey, everybody, this is Steli Efti.


Hiten Shah: And this is Hiten Shah. And today on The Startup Chat, we're going to talk about, I think, something that it seems like people get prone to off and on. Which is comparing yourself to other founders, other companies, other businesses. Other people, even. And I think this is just a topic that we haven't talked about that we wanted to talk about. So Steli, take it away. What's the thesis here? What are we trying to say?


Steli Efti: Well, I think in one word, we want to say stop. Stop comparing yourself to others. There's some beautiful quote, I tried to look it up real quickly, but I couldn't, but somebody can tweet that at me. There's probably a bunch of great quotes around the evils of comparing yourself to others. But this one particularly eloquent one around the source of all unhappiness or the source of a lot of unhappiness is really to find us, as humans, comparing ourselves to others and with others. And that goes for founders, and that goes for startups in general. Like startups just going, oh, this other startup is much harder than the company that we are working for, or whatever. So maybe we'll break down why. At least my thesis or my opinion is that it's not helpful to constantly be comparing yourself with others. And why it's not helpful and what to do instead. But I'd love to hear... I don't think you disagree, but I'd be shocked if you did, but I'm curious, would you agree with that? Did you give advice to others not to compare themselves with other founders of the startups? Is that even a problem? Or do you feel like most founders and startups are very... It's a hypothetical question, a rhetorical one, but have you gotten the sense that founders don't have this problem? Because I for sure haven't.


Hiten Shah: I think founders do have this problem. I think it's easy to go out there on social media or read Tech Crunch or any other news site and be like, oh, they're doing great, I'm not. Right? Or I'm doing great, they're not. And what we forget is, we're individuals, we have our own journey. And that's what's important, which is, what's your journey like? How are you doing on your journey? Not like, how are you doing compared to somebody else? So I think it is true that the greatest source of pain is when you start looking at other people and things outside yourself, outside your business, outside of your control, and start comparing to them. I think that that's definitely something that I w...

Key points in this episode

In this episode

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