Paul Graham

Paul Graham

Paul Graham is a computer scientist, entrepreneur, venture capitalist, and author. Best known for funding Y Combinator.

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Explore our hand-picked selection of quotes by Paul Graham:

#how to pich

I have never voluntarily looked at a startup's deck. As soon as a founder starts to open their laptop, I ask them to stop, and just tell me in words what their startup does.

#focus

It would be convenient if you could do great work by working only moderately hard. Maybe there are some people who can. But I can't think of any.

#what to work on

If you're a domain expert and you feel that it's almost too late to start startup x, it's the perfect time to.

#getting started

If you're a domain expert and you feel that it's almost too late to start startup x, it's the perfect time to.

#productivity

It would be convenient if you could do great work by working only moderately hard. Maybe there are some people who can. But I can't think of any.

#decision making

When deciding what to do, the best choice is often one that's simple but hard.

#clarity

Does the sentence "Install the app to set up your device and create an account" scare you? It sure scares me. To me it means "You will spend the next hour dealing with complicated things that don't work."

#simplicity

Does the sentence "Install the app to set up your device and create an account" scare you? It sure scares me. To me it means "You will spend the next hour dealing with complicated things that don't work."

#investment

If you're an investor and you meet a founder you feel is truly playing the long game, it's scary not to fund them.

#hard work

More startups have a chance of becoming really big than their founders realize (or want to admit to themselves). The reason for this apparent paradox is that it would take an enormous amount of work.

#finding ideas

The future is not hard to see. You've already seen it. You just didn't realize it, because you dismissed it as a toy.

#tech industry

It's a bad sign when a startup brags that it's disrupting some industry. The success or failure of startups depends on the effect they have on users, not the effect they have on industries. Disrupting industries is incidental.

#team

Work with people you want to become like, because you'll become like whoever you work with.

#career advice

Work with people you want to become like, because you'll become like whoever you work with.

#customer centric

It's a bad sign when a startup brags that it's disrupting some industry. The success or failure of startups depends on the effect they have on users, not the effect they have on industries. Disrupting industries is incidental.