#1 Cause of Startup Death? Premature Scaling
This is what INSEAD professor Nathan Furr said in a 2011 Forbes article. I can attest it still holds so true: premature scaling is startup death.
Steve Blank says the same; in his 2012 book The Startup Owner’s Manual (btw, I still like the old title The Four Steps to the Epiphany), he listed as one of the 9 Deadliest Startup Sins:
| Presumption of success leads to premature scaling.
Again and again, I see startup founders confusing groundless conviction with grit, ending up stuck in the rabbit hole. Conviction without validation with evidence is simply a fixed mindset. Hunches are important, but then again, until you prove that hunch is real, typically after many iterations of experimentation to arrive at the conclusion that the hypothesis holds true, that hunch is no reason for conviction.
Growth mindset prevails. Never be assuming. A healthy dose of self-skepticism and evidence based management goes a long way.