The Most Important Thing I Learned from YCombinator startup school

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I graduated from the YCombinator Startup School a few weeks back.

I actually got rejected initially but they made a system error so ended up accepting everybody. I think there must have been thousands of companies doing it.

In any case, it wasn’t quite demanding from a commitment perspective. You just have to write a weekly update for 10 weeks. Since I was still pretty much pivoting, I didn’t have many updates.

There was also a weekly group session where the startups would call in for an hour and update each other what they have achieved in the past week. Our group went from 6 in the beginning to 3 by the end. For me, these were good because I could get a sense of how the other startups were doing and since they are all at a more advanced stage, I learned a lot from them in terms of the specifics like how to engage with tech people, working with cofounders, the whole struggle of being an entrepreneur.

There were 3 Youtube videos uploaded each week, which you could just watch on Youtube by yourself anyway. But if I hadn’t enrolled, mentality it was difficult to commit to watching 3 videos a week.

I am not a tech person and I never managed to find a tech cofounder despite talking to many people for more than 6 months.

So my current project is pretty low tech and just really need me to work on it (part of which is creating this blog).

Also, the VC funding model didn’t really resonate with me. I am more a Russell Brunson follower.

There is one very important thing that resonated with me very strongly at YC though, which is this four letters of “frugality, focus, obsession and love“.

You can find Paul Buchheit talking more about it in this video below.

To me, this is the motto that I live by everyday now.

Frugality for me is making sure I am maximising the use of all my resources. I live by each day and make sure I am not overspending and allocating resources to where they should be. This word is key to my decision making each day.

Focus means I concentrate on getting my tasks done and with the best quality I can.

Obsession is me helping people and creating value for others with my work.

I am not sure if I understand this completely correctly but to me, the difference between focus and obsession is one is more specific and short term while the other is more strategic and long term.

Finally, love is the core of everything that I do. My family’s priorities always comes first.

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Categories:careers, personal growth, startups

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