Jason Cohen

Founder CTO, WP Engine

Jason has built four software startups, both bootstrapped and funded, both alone and with co-founders. All of them grew to more than $1m annual revenue.

He sold two, and currently serves as CTO of the fourth, WPEngine, with 380 employees headquartered in Austin, Texas.  More recently, he has also been an angel investor and was a founding member of Capital Factory, an Austin incubator and co-working space. He writes about software and startups at ASmartBear.

Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise: Creating a healthier business through a healthier mind.

Metrics are important, but so is making the tough, gut-wrenching decision to part ways with a key employee. Product strategy is important, but a fixation on the competition is counter-productive.

A successful exit can set you up financially, but how do you avoid the fate of (statistically) the majority of founders who become sad and un-moored after an exit, rather than ecstatic over their newfound wealth and entering the next chapter of life?

We can manage products and even people, but managing our own minds can be hardest of all. Ironic, since biologically it ought to be the thing we can control most of all. Bad management of the mind results in poor strategic decisions, focusing on the wrong things, and unnecessary negative emotions and stress over what someone said on the Internet, what a competitor did, what an employee did, or how the company evolves away from its roots. Startups are difficult enough and risky enough as it is, even without this added burden.

Through personal stories and commiseration with your fellow entrepreneurs, you’ll face the truth, take solace in seeing you’re not alone, and overcome these challenges using a specific set of tools.

We can’t make every day fun, but we can make it healthy. The result is better business decisions. And your own sanity.