I was listening to an episode of my new favourite podcast, The Top from Nathan Latka which featured Prem Bhatia, CEO of Cooleaf. (Sidebar: The Top is an awesome podcast for anyone interested in Sass and online businesses in general.)
Nathan had an interesting exchange with Prem where Prem was a little hesitant to confirm his age when asked. I’m paraphrasing a little but the long and short of it was that Prem was a little reluctant to disclose his age because he considered himself a late bloomer as he only started Cooleaf when he was in his mid 30’s.
There’s this awful ageism in the tech startup world that perfectly captured in the conversation between Nathan and Prem. There is a perception that if you’re not starting and growing businesses in your early ’20’s that you’re already over the hill and simply shouldn’t bother.
What a complete crock of bullshit.
Frankly, I think your mid 30’s are probably the sweet spot for establishing any kind of business. I know, I know. There are tons of people who do succeed at an earlier age, but on a macro level they’re still the exception. In fact, in the UK the vast majority of entrepreneurs are in their 40’s. From your mid 30’s you’ve gained enough life experience and confidence to deal with things when the going gets tough.
Please, please, please do give up on starting a business you think you’re too old. Do not listen to the young guys who will tell you it’s a young mans game. Most of them have no fucking idea what they’re talking about.
I think Gary sums it up better than anyone else can