About & contact
I live in Barcelona and like sailing, writing, teaching, and learning.
(Cutting my own hair was a habit picked up during my darkest days of bootstrapping, back when I lived in an abandoned warehouse, showered from a plastic jug, and fried my eggs on the heating pad of a Mr. Coffee. I've since rejoined the ranks of the intermittently barbered.)
About Rob Fitzpatrick
Rob is an entrepreneur of 12 years. He went through YCombinator (s07) with an attempt to figure out social advertising before Facebook managed to do so, which obviously didn’t work out so well. He has raised funding in the US and UK, built products used by customers like Sony and MTV, designed and Kickstarted a card game, cofounded the education agency Founder Centric, rebuilt a little sailboat, and has built and launched countless silly hobby and side projects which have (so far) managed to keep the wolf from the door. He’s a techie who (grudgingly) learned enterprise sales. He now specializes in the gathering of unbiased customer learning and taking an idea from nothing through to its first dozen or so paying customers.
Rob is the author of The Mom Test book about how to talk to customers and learn if your business is a good idea even when everyone is lying to you. Taught at top universities including Harvard, MIT, UCL, and many more.
Coauthor of Workshop Survival Guide about how to design and run effective, engaging, high-energy workshops.
About this site
I started blogging back in 2010 as a way to try and process (and share) what was happening during the slow, grinding failure of my first business. Several years and 200ish articles later, I felt like I’d mostly wrapped my head around it. Meanwhile, that first blog’s other mission–to document and share the emerging best practices in early stage entrepreneurship–had been well and truly sorted by the community. As such, I paused it to focus on other stuff.
Several years on, I now feel like I’m holding some fresh perspectives and experiences worth sharing. During my blogging hiatus I have: built a pair of bootstrapped-and-profitable small businesses; reached financial independence via passive income; seen my first book get picked up as a text at Harvard, MIT, UCL, and elsewhere; and worked closely with a bunch of entrepreneurs and large companies on how to apply this stuff in ways that I haven’t seen written or talked about elsewhere. I’ve also had my ass kicked repeatedly in areas I thought I’d already figured out, so hopefully that helps maintain some perspective ;)
Although some of my companies have been scalable startups, the I’ve been surprised by how much I’ve also enjoyed working on smaller, less scalable, more lifestyle-focused businesses. I’ll write about both, but my interest is mainly on using startups as a path toward a good life as opposed to sacrificing life in pursuit of a good startup.
On this site (and in this newsletter) I’m going to be writing:
- Opinion pieces where I feel my opinion is both non-standard and also justified via extensive experience
- Long-form educational pieces about tools and approaches which I feel are either poorly explained or widely misunderstood by the community
I’ll try to avoid writing stuff that’s already been well-handled by someone else. If you’d like to follow along, you may do so either monthly or quarterly.