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Foreword by Tim Draper

The vision for your business is important. Even more important is the implementation of that vision into a rock solid working product. You and I know that while this lays a solid foundation, it is not a sufficient condition to succeed as an enterprise.

A startup is a journey, an adventure through customers, employees, suppliers, investors, naysayers, and promoters. In addition to a strong vision, you will need a strong commitment to your vision. You will need to make a product or service that delights your customer. And you will need to build a sustainable business model that makes money so you can grow and achieve all you set out to achieve and more. You will also need to execute brilliantly, differentiate sufficiently, and build a business that can grow predictably.

There is no one surefire way to win the startup game, but being prepared for this exciting journey always helps. Raj Setty’s “Setup to Startup” helps you think about your journey and be prepared for a plethora of eventualities. He argues that the more prepared you are for the startup journey, the higher the odds are of being successful. He gets you to ask yourself the tough questions, the ones that you might not know the answers to or might not want to know the answers to.

When we launched Draper University of Heroes (and Draper University Online), we designed a school that would encourage people to take the risks that are necessary to have extraordinary outcomes. We created a series of activities to expose these young heroes-in-training to situations that they had never experienced before. We put these young heroes to test every single day all in the effort to “prepare” them for the real world adventure that is lying ahead of them. We taught them “future” instead of history, took them through survival training, got them to experience the stories of some of the great entrepreneurs first hand, changed the rules to every game they played, and got them comfortable with doing things that might be unpopular or embarrassing. So, the message of this book resonated with me. If a startup is somewhere in your dreams, this is a book that will help you get a sneak preview of what the pursuit will look like and what kind of a person you should become to chart that course.

First hand accounts of a few smart people who went after such pursuits adds more color to the book.

People have asked me to define what I mean by “hero.” I believe that a hero is someone who enthusiastically pursues an outcome that has a low likelihood of success but if it is successful, it will produce an extraordinary outcome and make our world a better place.

Do you want to be a hero? This book can set you on the right path.

Tim Draper
Menlo Park, CA

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