My "pay the bills" job is a Financial Analyst, but my passion for the past 5+ years has been my startup. I've learned so many different skills running my own business from project management, SEO, sales, advertising, growth strategies, programming, localization, etc. but if my startup fails would companies hire / be interested in me for the knowledge I've acquired? I feel I am very knowledgeable in all different aspects of online startups, and can be very helpful to other companies; however, I also get the feeling that businesses would see my failure in my startup as a flaw.
Having started several companies in my time, as founder or cofounder, some of which failed, I find it depends on a number of factors in addition to the above.
The one constant is you have gained valuable insight into other arena that you otherwise wouldn't have got had you not tried to grow the startup. This means you'll be able to communicate effectively with parties in those fields better than any other financial analyst.
Your ability to find a job based on your newly acquired skills depend, just like anything else, on the market for them. Your understanding of growth strategies may help with various marketing and managerial roles, analysis in pre-sales processes, customer insight and crucially, end-to-end customer journeys (quote to fulfilment and beyond). This can mean you more effectively communicate and work with those traditionally specialist fields.
After 5+ years, I'd argue a failure may be OK depending on it's growth profile. If it was 1 or 2 then it is often seen as a folly and perhaps to be expected, since most startups fail in that period if they're going to. Also, if it didn't ever make a lot of cash with no attempt at growth, it is also seen as a folly. If it made you lots of money, but the market turned under you, then I think it can be explained.
The question then becomes how much does the company value the new you?
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