Budding entrepreneurs are often inundated with advice for their new ventures. Des Traynor’s is a little different.

Des Traynor co-founded Intercom in 2011. Due to the company’s meteoric success, he is often asked what his secret is or what his top tips are for those just starting out in the field of entrepreneurship.

“The thing that frustrates me most is the popular answers like working 996 (9am to 9pm, six days a week). It’s horseshit. People say hustle, crush it, fail fast, fake it ’til you make it. Those are the wrong questions and answers, the cultural cycle of start-up gloss,” he declared at Inspirefest 2019.

Instead of shelling out such platitudes, Traynor instead advises founders to be true to themselves. “Ignore the top tips and hustle bullshit, you do you and whatever happens is whatever should happen. And if you try to be somebody else, it ain’t gonna work.”


Words by Shelly Madden