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6 Things Most Startup Founders Are Scared Of

6 Things Most Startup Founders Are Scared Of

Don’t let your fear of what could happen to make nothing happen

untitled-1“For any successful startup founder, the biggest challenge is to hire the right person. “I would say my biggest fear is about hiring the wrong person for any leadership role. Unlike traditional organisations, startups function differently,” says Ajith Mohan Karimpana, CEO and founder, Furlenco

Being an entrepreneur – is all about taking a blind leap forward. It is all about accepting risk after having studied the risks involved. As an entrepreneur, one needs to arm themselves with insights of the opportunities within the space. But while doing so, there are certain fears that hold them back. Founders are always seen talking about traction, revenues, their journey, and product etc., but when it comes to their fears or what they are scared of – they are reluctant to do so. They feel as if the world would see a chink in their armour and take them apart. Is that the case or are these fears about having fears valid?

We, at Inc42, interacted with various founders to know what are the things they are most scared of. And this is what they have to share…

Losing Co-Founders Or The Core Team


“Losing its most talented bunch of people who helped them build that startup into a successful business, as well as not being able to find enough good talent to multiply it further is the biggest fear that a startup founder has,” said Ashish Tulsian, founder, Posist, a cloud-based Point of Sale (PoS) solutions provider.

For any founder, his team is the backbone and to hire the right talent is the most challenging task. The team turns a founder’s vision into reality, and no founder can afford to lose this asset. Startups can pivot and raise money but having a good skeletal team is the toughest part.

Losing Frugality Of Decision Making

When you start a company, you are the primary decision maker. But as an entrepreneur’s journey takes off, the decision making power is divided between the investors and the core team. And this is the point when an entrepreneur gets scared of losing the power of decision making. 

Not Living Up To  Consumers’ Expectations

For every business ‘Customer is King’ and if customers are not happy with the service or product served to them, then there are chances for failure that escalates. Founders are aware of this fact and therefore they fear not living up to their customers’ expectations. To make a business successful, founders need to understand the customer’s need so that they can serve their customers with the right products.

“Successful startup founders are the most scared of not living up to their consumers’ expectations of the brand and products every single day. A brand is only as good as the ability to live up to the promise,” said Shrikrishna Bharambe CEO and co-founder of Fingerlix, a ready-to-cook food solutions brand.

Too Much To Do In Too Little Time!

When an entrepreneur starts his journey he has limited resources and funds to fulfill his vision. From establishing a startup to market their product, all has to be done on a limited budget.


“As a startup, you do not have the luxury of hiring as many people as is required to get the work done. We end up multi-tasking and often taking on the responsibility of several people, at one time. I am always fearful that, in a bid to achieve the impossible, the core team does not burn out. Or give something important a miss, only because of genuinely having no time to address it,” said Anurag Avula, CEO, Shopmatic,  an international ecommerce company that enables its customers to sell their product online.

Growing Complacent And Losing Out On Creativity

Starting a company is hard but growing it with same passion and creativity is harder. In this fast -paced and ever-changing world, founders often are not able to continuously evolve and respond to the changing consumer’s behaviour. With growing complacent, they often tend to lose out on their creativity.

When a founder starts a company everything is new to them but as the growth happens, he encounters same people and problems on a regular basis. This leads them to follow same methods of doing the particular task without thinking of a new idea.


For startup founders, competitors are their biggest fear. The competition will always exist and, hence, founders need to constantly innovate and improve to ensure they stay ahead of the game at all times.

untitled-1“We have worked hard to gain a competitive head start and charted a course towards building a great product. For me it would be a competitor coming out with a product that upsets our current roadmap and planning,” said Tarun Gulati, co-founder, DJUBO, a cloud-based platform that manages booking confirmations, room hold requests, room queries, online channel partners, booking engine, payment follow up and much more through a single interface.

Studying the competition before taking the plunge can give founders strong market research data without having to invest a big part of their own capital, resources and time.

The truth is, while starting up, there’s no room for fear. It’s all about conquering your apprehensions and inhibitions much before taking the formidable step towards entrepreneurship.

In Conclusion

The basic trait for any founder is the passion that keeps him going till he sees the light of his vision. If successful founders are made to go under a SWOT analysis, most of their fears will come out as internal, rather than external. And if you, dear startup founder, are still scared, unable to cope with your fear, to overcome these fears and get going – it is important to have a strong support system of friends, family, mentors, advisers as well as other startup founders.

So, founders, it is all about taking a deep breath, acknowledging your fear, minimising it and conquering the world.

(With inputs from Shefali Walia, Founder, WeTravelSolo)