286 words ~ 1 min read
The story of Jotform
Follow your dreams and the money will follow
Hustle until the haters ask if you’re hiring
Work hard, play hard
Sleep is for losers
Rise and grind
Motivational startup quotes are everywhere.
They shout from Instagram feeds, coffee mugs and status updates. Maybe you have one scribbled on a nearby sticky note. If so, no judgment.
These are powerful themes. Everyone wants to feel excited about what they’re doing and creating.
We know that hard work can deliver results. And quitting your job to chase a startup dream is a seductive idea.
Mainstream media also perpetuates the story that if you log 80 hours a week, follow your passion and “hustle hard,” you’ll create the next Facebook or Amazon.
It could happen. But this narrative often leads founders into business before they’re ready.
It can also create enormous (and unhealthy) pressure that derails smart, ambitious people.
For every entrepreneur who’s clocking three hours of sleep each night and going prematurely grey, I’d like to offer an alternative path.
This path led me to build Jotform in one of the most competitive industries around: online forms. Even Google Forms stepped into the ring, and remains one of our toughest competitors.
But we persevered — for 15 years and counting. We’re still one of the leading players, with +10 million users and +300 employees, and we’ve done it without taking a single dime in outside funding.
This is not a story of overnight success or following my dreams straight to the top of TechCrunch. I’ve built this business slowly, while maintaining my freedom and my personal life.
I believe that bootstrapping is a great approach for entrepreneurs.
And in this bootstrapping guide, I’d love to share everything I’ve learned from growing my startup from 0 to 10 million users without selling my soul to investors.