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Is an Unstable Founder Worth the Risk? Not According to the @Launch Accelerator Panel

Posted by Amity Sims on 2013-03-08

At this week’s LAUNCH festival (March 4-6), with all demos aside, startup accelerators and their entrepreneur applicants were the hot topic of discussion. Joining host Jason Calacanis on stage to discuss the matter was Adeo Ressi (Founder Institute), David Cohen (TechStars), Thomas Korte (AngelPad), Halle Tecco (Rock Health), and Jeff Eddings (Media Camp).

The personality of a successful founder has been a repeated topic of discussion amongst journalists recently, with contributors to Forbes and Mashable examining what it takes to succeed in a highly competitive accelerator program. Keeping the conversation going, Jason Calacanis asked the panel of startup accelerator partners whether or not people have to be narcissistic and ruthless to be good entrepreneurs.

While the responses varied, there was consensus amongst the panel that founders have to have a heck of a lot of passion and drive. “You have to be product obsessed”, says AngelPad partner Thomas Korte. “If you can be talked out of being an entrepreneur, you probably shouldn’t be doing it,” he adds. The panel agreed there is no ‘typical founder’, however, personality traits do influence one’s chance of success. After all, if you can’t get keep your cool and get along with others, how are you going to find a co-founder a build a team? A bad team player probably won’t get very far.

For more coverage on the discussion at LAUNCH, check out these articles on Inc. Magazine and Upstart Business Journal.

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