Why “Do What You Love and the Money Will Follow” Doesn’t Work In Startup

Joe Procopio
6 min readNov 14, 2019

Let me ask you a question that needs an honest answer. Do you want to be rich? Because your answer might dictate what kind of startup you’re building.

I’ve been in startup for over 20 years, and about 15 years ago, I quit caring about money. Now, there are a lot of ways to misinterpret that declaration, so let me knock out a couple of those right away.

  1. I don’t have enough money to not have to worry about money.
  2. I’m not talking about taking a vow of poverty.
  3. I believe money is the only metric that counts in business, as I’ve often said in these posts.

But if you’re in business to chase money, you’re just increasing your odds of failure. By a lot. I’ve seen it happen time and time again, and every single entrepreneur in my peer group who has been through at least one successful exit will agree.

So how do you get to success in business without chasing money?

I know. It sounds like a Catch-22. There’s a lot to unpack here. But it starts with some necessary changes in mindset.

The Myth of Having Enough Money

I get as frustrated as you when I hear people with a ton of money start talking about the pleasure…



Joe Procopio

I'm a multi-exit, multi-failure entrepreneur. NLG pioneer. Building TeachingStartup.com & GROWERS. Write at Inc.com and BuiltIn.com. More at joeprocopio.com