June 13, 2024

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Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang: “Nobody in their right mind would start a company”

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Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang shares his candid thoughts on the challenges of starting a company. He admits that if he could go back in time, he wouldn't do it. However, he also says that the experience has been incredibly rewarding. His advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is to be realistic about the challenges they face and to be willing to put in the hard work necessary to achieve their goals.
NVIDIA

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In a recent interview on the Acquired podcast, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang made a startling admission: if he could go back in time, he wouldn’t start a company.

“Nobody in their right mind would do it,” Huang said. “Building NVIDIA turned out to have been a million times harder than I expected it to be, any of us expected it to be.”

Huang’s comments are a stark reminder of the immense challenges involved in starting a successful business. While the allure of entrepreneurship is often portrayed as a path to riches and glory, the reality is that most startups fail. In fact, a recent study by the Kauffman Foundation found that only about half of all new businesses survive for five years.

For Huang, the challenges of starting Nvidia were both personal and professional. He recalls working 18-hour days, seven days a week, for years on end. The stress of running a startup took a toll on his health, and he admits that he neglected his family and friends.

Despite the hardships, Huang is ultimately grateful for the opportunity to have built Nvidia. He says that the experience has taught him the value of perseverance, resilience, and teamwork.

“If you’re going to start a company, you have to be prepared to go through hell,” Huang said. “But if you can make it through, it’s the most rewarding thing you can do.”

Huang’s advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is to be realistic about the challenges they face. He says that it’s important to have a clear vision for your company and to be willing to put in the hard work necessary to achieve it.

“If you’re not willing to work harder than you’ve ever worked before, don’t start a company,” Huang said. “Because it’s going to be a lot harder than you think.”

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