“We can’t all be heroes because somebody has to sit on the curb and clap as they go by.” – Will Rogers
It’s true now even more than when Joe Kraus (@jkraus) wrote in 2005 (original post), “it’s a great time to be an entrepreneur” (see Mark Suster’s brillant post on the startup explosion and on changes in the software industry). But is there too much of a good thing? Mark Evans asks if there “are too many startups?”. I think the question that Mark is really asking is not are there too many startups, but is it too easy to become a founder.
We put a lot of focus on the founders of early stage ventures. But let’s face it, not everyone is or should be a founder (See: Founders versus Early Employees). We need to start and grow companies. This is more than just a whole bunch of 1 and 2 person pre-seed startups. We need people to want to cut their chops at Wattpad, Wave Accounting, Well.ca, Lightspeed Retail, Fixmo, Shopify, Kik, Hootsuite and other startups. People that can grow a company to 500 million users and beyond.
“Being an early hire at a startup gives an individual the ability to make tremendous impact on an organization as it grows – and both the founders and those hires should know it.” David Beisel
We need to create companies that create opportunities for employees to become their Chamath Palihapitiya and Andy Johns or Adam Nash. There are a number of Canadian startups that are poised to break out. All they need is a few key people to make a huge difference. I tried to highlight a mix of founders and the people behind the scenes on the Hot Sh!t List (2011, 2012). There are the founders that we always talk about, but there are people behind the scenes that are driving.
We’ve seen a number of young founders build brillant products and then move to new roles. Josh Davey (@joshdavey, LinkedIn) founded BurstN and is now killing it at Chango. Daniel Patricio (LinkedIn, @danielparticio) founded Pinpoint Social and is building products at Jet Cooper. Ben Yoskovitz (LinkedIn, @byosko) founded StandoutJobs and NextMontreal, is now the VP Product at GoInstant. There are lots of opportunities at Canadian startups for entrepreneurial employees to make a huge impact!
Looking for a gig at a Canadian startup? Check out the StartupNorth Job board which features jobs like:
- Content Manager / Marketer, RateHub.ca, Toronto, ON, Canada
- Senior Ruby on Rails Developer, Quandl.com, Toronto, ON, Canada (Downtown)
- Operations Engineer, mDialog, Toronto, ON, Canada (Downtown)
- Senior Software Developer (Full Stack) @Uniiverse, Uniiverse, Toronto, ON, Canada (St. Lawrence Market Area)
- Talent Acquisition Specialist, Wattpad, Toronto, ON, Canada (Yonge and Sheppard)
- Insanely smart web developer, Top Hat Monocle, Toronto, ON, Canada (Yonge and College subway station)
- Web Developer (LAMP), TheRedPin, Toronto, ON, Canada (Downtown Toronto)
More reading on starting your own vs joining a startup:
- What are the pros and cons of starting your own company vs joining an early-stage post-Series A startup?
- What are the pros/cons for someone interested in tech startups to start their own company vs joining a startup who has raised a series A or B funding?
- What motivates an early employee to work in a startup?