“There is no worse mistake in public leadership than to hold out false hopes soon to be swept away.” – Winston Churchill
I’m continuing on in the series “Snapshots of a Startup” where I’m sharing some lessons from experiences that I’m going through, lessons I’ve learned and insights I’ve gained while in the process of devloping my 1st major startup venture.
The Stockdale Paradox…sound familiar? Maybe…maybe not. Well, I’m borrowing a page from Jim Collins’s book Good to Great as it directly applies to a key insight that I’ve learned from being involved in a startup.
Stockdale…Admiral Jim Stockdale…he was the highest ranking US military officer in the “Hanoi Hilton” prisoner-of-war camp during the peak of the Vietnam War. He was restrained for not 1, not 3, not even 5…but 8 years as a POW. In addition, he was tortured over 20 times during that period without being given any prisoner’s rights, release dates or anything for that matter that might have given him an ounce of hope of which to cling to. How is this applying to a startup? Am I just referring to overcoming struggles, maintaining perseverance or a will to succeed? While those are all good things…the answer is NO…I’m getting to the point that Jim makes in his book. (more…)