Mark Suster: Entrepreneurshit. The Blog Post on What It’s Really Like.

Mark Suster, a VC at GRP, wrote a post that’s making it’s way around Twitter right now.

I don’t know him but have read a few of his posts over the years. He seems to have a good reputation and is quite highly regarded by people I’ve met that have interacted with him professionally.

I generally get turned off by people going on about how difficult it is to be an entrepreneur. Yes, it’s tough, you fail a lot, there’s lots of rejection and stress, but I’ve also come to know that it’s a choice. I also believe that those that pick that path do so because they don’t really have a choice. I dunno, it certainly beats working for someone.

I suppose people just need to vent about shit. That’s fair. To a degree.

One of Mr Suster’s points stood out and because it’s something I’ve been thinking about a lot over the last couple of weeks in my day job.

People seldom understand that when enterprise customers choose your software it isn’t just a purchase order. It’s a human being inside the buying organization who has trusted you. He went to his bosses and asked for budget. He beat down the other factions that wanted to choose your competitor. He has staked his reputation on a project to use the software of some shitty 2-year-old startup company because he believes! In you.

One of the things I’ve learned early on in making and selling enterprise software is that it is hard to scale in the beginning. Every sale is high touch in the early days, especially when you’re creating a need and market. You spend a lot of time with people understanding their needs and explaining your point of view. Once they buy into that, you have to make sure that your product lives up to that. That’s a 24 hour a day commitment.

It’s extremely rewarding though, because when you do live up to that promise you can hear it in the voices of your customers. I find that thrilling.

I’ve done that now at two companies and am contemplating my third one. Sure, it’s difficult and your odds of success aren’t great. But I love it and can’t do anything else.