10 Lessons Startups Can Learn From Superheroes

Sep 23, 2008 2,461 Comments by

What should the core values for our company be? Being a HUGE comic buff, I took this as the opportunity to frame our mission and values within the metaphor of an epic adventure. So here is the list of our core values, based on 10 Lessons Startups Can Learn From Superheros. (substitute “Superheros” for “Your StartUp Company”)

Superheroes Never Give Up

Like Batman, you have to keep pressing on to the very last breath. Challenges are overcome by wholeheartedly committing to unrelenting persistence.

Superheroes Always Get the Job Done

There are no excuses if you don’t save the girl from the burning house. There are just results, not reasons, you either save the day or you don’t. Gray area is for Kafka not comic heros.

Superheroes Are the Best at What They Do

Flash is the fastest and we all know it. . If you’re the back end developer, you are the best developer in the world, and everyone on your team knows it. Let great talent excel in areas where their superpowers are most needed.

Superheroes Are Crystal Clear of their Purpose

Captain Marvel may be a cheeseball, but he knows what he stands for. Startups die when they are not clear on their mission.

Superheroes Are NOT Flawless

Superheros have flaws, every member of your team will also. The goal is not perfection, it’s the pursuit of perfection.

Superheroes Do Not Seek Glory…But They Get it Anyway

Don’t do it because you want the attention.
If you do it right, you’ll get it anyway

Superheroes Help Others

Superheroes help people by solving problems. Startups should be obsessed NOT with themselves, but with how they are going to help other people and solve their issues.

Superheroes Can Do it By Themselves But Are More Powerful in Teams

You always have to have each other’s back. Its you vs. the world and brining together your own team of superheroes, and the mutual respect, loyalty, and camaraderie of that team is vital.

Superheroes’ True Strength Comes From Their Character

No matter how super you think you are, you’re strength comes from your character not your talent. Be courageous, be respectful, be honorable, be selfless.

Superheroes Accomplish Huge Feats

The same effort it takes to start a lemonade stand or college club, is the same raw effort it takes to change the world. Your goal is not to build a product or get traffic… Your goal is to accomplish the most amazing feat imaginable. Make the Product, Save the World.

And here is a presentation I gave on the topic with the presentation:

Part 1

Part 2


Ten Lessons Startups Can Learn From Superheroes

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About the author

Jason is the Co-Founder and CEO of Docstoc.com, the premier destination to start and grow businesses, offering the best selection of documents and content resources. Jason is also the creator of Startups Uncensored the long running and most widely attended tech mixer in Southern California. Before starting Docstoc, he was a partner in a venture consulting firm in Los Angeles where he worked with dozens of startups. Jason holds a BA from UCSB and his JD/MBA from Pepperdine University, where he was the Student Body President of both Universities.

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