An entrepreneurs' greatest skill is letting go

Once a company's founder gets too attached, the company encounters its greatest obstacle.

Running a startup is very similar to parenting.

Entrepreneurship is a deeply personal endeavor, especially for founder-CEOs who must believe in their companies above anything else.  A startup is not very different from parenting, in that thousands of hours are spent nurturing children and and helping them to grow. In both the result is a strong attachment; in startups, the attachment is present in every step of the building process.

Once you’ve found the ideal product-market fit for your company, however, there is something else you must do: let go.

To understand what that statement means, imagine what would have happened had Larry Page and Sergey Brin continued to work to improve their search algorithm for Google - rather than build a business off their technology with AdWords. Sure, they’d still have the best search engine in the world, but without the business model, they wouldn’t be able to stay independent or thrive.

Similarly, had Mark Zuckerberg not evolved into a great CEO and just continued writing code and running the development team, Facebook might have become another MySpace rather than a $200 billion company.

Once a company's founder gets too attached, the company encounters its greatest obstacle: making sure that the founder-CEO backs off enough to scale his or her job duties in line with the company's evolving demands.

As an entrepreneur or investor, the greatest skill a CEO can demonstrate is to get out of his/her own way and let go.

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