When to quit (when I already feel like it’s the only way)?

I have been working at a startup for one and a half years. In the beginning I was there just for the opportunity of learning and embracing new challenges. I was still graduating and a full-time job was not my main worry. Later, I agreed with the founder to start taking this more seriously, so I moved to the city where the startup is located and started to get a salary.

Problem is, we are just two people (me and the CEO), and even though I admire his persistence, I don’t feel he is fit for the job. Also he has lied sometimes to me about leads, so I don’t trust him much, and currently the company has real liquidity problems, so I never get my check on time (usually there is a two month delay). Also, I have no contract…

The product is really interesting and has potential (in the sector of construction), but so far we’ve had no sales, and our current investor is not supporting us anymore. We do have some leads, as always, but honestly I don’t care anymore. I feel depressed just by thinking of going back to work, and dread every day. Recently I went through a small surgery and even that felt like heaven because, for a small amount of time, I didn’t have to work.

I understand that being an entrepreneur is a constant struggle, so I have been trying my best to keep up, but I don’t think I can do it anymore, and maybe I should quit once and for all.

What are your thoughts on this?

  • Just listen to what your inner self is telling you. You don’t trust the CEO, you don’t get paid as you should, the business is failing and you’re happy when not there. All the signs are there for you to move on. However, if you like the business and want to make it work, maybe you should be a co-founder instead. This way, it makes sense to not get regular pay because there’s something else for you at the end. However, I would not recommend this because you don’t trust the CEO …

  • Just start looking for new opportunities. Once you get an offer you like from a different company you can decide whether to take the jump.

  • If you feel like there is nothing more left to learn. Jump ship. I He should be kissing your ass for staying. And if your in CA, feel free to report his @$$ to the Ca labor union for late payments

  • Thanks for your answers. I decided to pause for a bit, to see if any of the leads does result into something.

    At the same time I will also make it clear that I’ll only go back to work once I receive the money I am owned. I already worked for free for a few months in the beginning, so it would be foolish of me to repeat that process.

    In the mean time I will start sending my CV to other companies, and if possible try the corporate environment to get a new perspective on work life.


  • Get a job with a big company. F_ck working in a startup. The probability of you ‘bagging the elephant’ in stock some day is pretty slim. It’s a numbers game and most people don’t win. For the ‘chance’, you are taking a sub-par salary … now you risk not getting paid at all. If your investors have bailed, and you have no customers, you are f-cked. Get out. Get a job in a large tech company that’s already established. Always fun and there’s no risk of someone stealing your scooter while you’re at lunch … because they’re past that sh_t and you can’t ride in the office any more. You’re welcome.

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