The world of entrepreneurship isn’t as glamorous as it seems, said tech investor Ben Lamm – in fact, it’s downright painful, and he doesn’t recommend it.
Lamm recently announced the launch of his sixth startup since he began his entrepreneurship journey as a senior at Baylor College. The company was acquired when he was 29-years-old for an undisclosed amount. Lamm went on to found and sell three more tech companies. His most recent enterprise, Colossal Bioscience, is a biotech company hoping to reanimate the woolly mammoth using gene editing. The company recently raised $60 million in Series A funding.
According to People.ai, Lamm’s personal estimated net worth is $14.4 million. However, Lamm feels the glorified stories of entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley don’t include the more unsavory details of business ownership. From his experience, building a startup requires working more than 200 days per year, infrequently sleeping, experiencing constant stress, crying often, and breaking down regularly. He told readers that though he is a dysfunctional person, he believes that he has a particular combination of characteristics to be a successful entrepreneur.
In order to excel as a business owner, Lamm said that your passion must outweigh every problem you face. You must persevere despite everyone around you telling you “no,” and have the conviction that your business’ mission is worth the struggle. He added that lifestyle changes are also a necessity. He only travels for work when necessary, and he gave up alcohol and coffee to aid his productivity. He limits himself to two hours of emails and Slack messages in the morning on his vacations. Additionally, he forces himself to get at least seven hours of sleep per night.
“I don’t know if I wish entrepreneurship on anyone. It’s like my worst enemy,” Lamm told CNBC Make It. “I don’t know if it’s a compliment, necessarily, calling someone an entrepreneur.”