Why older startup founders succeed

On average, the founders who were thirty-four or older had a longer history of entrepreneurship. Two-thirds of them had previously started a company, like Haddleton. The other third, who were first-time founders, often had years of relevant work experience as executives at large companies and were used to managing large teams and products. Eric Yuan, founder of the video communications company Zoom, started the company at age forty-one; by then, he was a senior vice president at Cisco, leading a thousand-person team. Eric Baldeschwieler was forty-six when he started Hortonworks, a multibillion-dollar big-data startup built around open-source Hadoop software. He’d built and managed the Hadoop team at Yahoo before venturing out. Todd McKinnon was thirty-seven when he started the identity-management company Okta; by then, he was running a hundred-person engineering team at Salesforce.