Matt Mireles

Entrepreneur. Thinker. Father.


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Humility the Hard Way

Humility the Hard Way


Posted By on Jan 7, 2014

So much of the best advice is impossible to hear when you are first starting out. Success feels within our grasp, just a sprint or two away. We’re in too much of a hurry to listen. Failure slows you down. The pain of failure forces you to stop. Failure creates the context where one can truly listen and absorb advice from the grizzled veterans around us. I think the technical term is humility. If you learned this lesson the hard...

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Silicon Valley favors the brash and the brilliant. If you have a pedigree and a network (e.g. if you studied Computer Science at Stanford), the bar is lower. People will doubt you less. The corollary to this, of course, is that the more of a nobody you are, the harder it is and the higher self-esteem and courage it will take for you to succeed. Courage is in short supply… everywhere. A startup is a scary, lonely endeavor. It...

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If you’ve never done it before, price negotiations are easy to fuck up, especially when you need to have a non-adversarial long-term relationship with the guy on the other side of the table. Think: Employee Salaries Venture Capital Valuations In either case, you want your employer or VC to not hate you after the fact, and vice versa. For some perspective, I’ve fucked this up royally more than once. Like, laugh out loud...

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A friend of mine living in Pakistan took to Facebook to grumble about American imperialism in her country and the region. This is what I wrote in response: Unfortunately, if the US didn’t act like “the world’s police”, then you’d see a bunch of smaller players duke it out and wrestle for control over the world’s resources and strategic choke points. It would, sadly, be a much bloodier world with...

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A Letter to My Son

A Letter to My Son


Posted By on Aug 21, 2013

Luca’s school asked me to write him a letter for mail day. I asked if I could send an email instead. They said ‘yes.’ Here’s what I wrote… Hello Son, Your old man here. First off, I love you. Remember that, especially those early, early mornings when you want to play and I pretend to not notice you sitting on my head and slapping me in the eye. I’m not actually asleep during those times, but I wish...

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Valediction, Memorial Day

Valediction, Memorial Day


Posted By on May 27, 2013

Thanks to all the military veterans out there. You put your ass on the line, be it for freedom or some politician’s folly. You risked life, limb and long fits of boredom for we the safe and only occasionally grateful. It is because of your sacrifice that we can enjoy the fruits of peace and the commercially-focused mindset that comes with it. The blessing is decidedly mixed, as our country might be better off had we tasted what...

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A Good Startup CEO

A Good Startup CEO


Posted By on May 3, 2013

A good startup CEO sets the direction, the mission and the unit of measure, then empowers his team to figure out the rest. — Matt Mireles (@mattmireles) May 2, 2013 I became a startup CEO because it was the only palatable job I could find. But I never really knew how to do the job well. After $1.1MM, 17 employees, 4 years and 2 companies, I think I’ve finally figured it out. The first job of a CEO is to define the mission, to...

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“There are no rules. Don’t let anyone tell you any different.”  –Jim Everingham Perhaps the biggest lesson I learned––though I struggle with it still––from my first startup experience was: YOU ARE ALONE. You are Cortez at the shores of Veracruz.  There are no rules. There are no answers outside of those that you create for yourself. The King will not save you. Accepting this fact was hard for me. I never fully...

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Naked in the Mirror

Naked in the Mirror


Posted By on Dec 30, 2012

“You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.” -Steve Jobs It’s easy to forget that lesson sometimes.

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How Are You Going to Win?

How Are You Going to Win?


Posted By on Dec 30, 2012

“How are you going to win?  It’s not going to come from blog posts or angel money – it’s going to come from having a great product and lots of customers who want to buy it.  That’s what we should be focusing on.  What is it going to take to make that happen? “I keep saying how brutally hard this is.  Each time you crest the rise in front of you, it just makes it clear the size of the even larger hill that looms beyond...

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