72% of start-up founders suffer from mental health issues – report


Startup Snapshot, a data-sharing platform for the startup ecosystem, has released a report titled “The Untold Toll: The Impact of Stress on the Well-Being of startup founders and CEOs,” which uses data collected from over 400 startup founders across the globe in order to shed light on the impact of entrepreneurship on mental health.

The report was created by Startup Snapshot in partnership with Intel Ignite, the Econa center of excellence for entrepreneur mental wellness, Arnon-Tadmor Levy and The Zell Entrepreneurship Program, and its findings have garnered attention from employees, employers and investors alike due to its surprising findings regarding the abundance of mental health issues among start-up founders.

72% of founders, mental health

According to the report, a whopping 72% of founders stated that their mental health was affected by the entrepreneurial journey — more than one-third of those founders (37%) reported that they suffer from anxiety as well.

“With our most recent study, we are on a mission to bring transparency and clarification to the emotional states of founders and entrepreneurs,” said Yael Benjamin, founder and CEO of Startup Snapshot. “We were able to uncover the most overlooked, physical, emotional, and cognitive tolls that entrepreneurs face every day when it comes to running a startup.”

Yael Benjamin, founder and CEO of Startup Snapshot (credit: Startup Snapshot)

“The goal of the research is to begin a conversation that normalizes, and in fact encourages, the admission of the many entrepreneurial challenges and stressors,” Benjamin continued. “By turning the looking-glass inwards on the complex emotional workings of the entrepreneurs themselves, we hope to provide them with the self-awareness necessary to enable changes in their behavior and create healthier realities for themselves — [both] financially and emotionally, as the two are, in fact, inseparable outcomes.”

Despite the clear mental toll that entrepreneurship takes, a staggering 93% of founders surveyed said that given the option they would do it all over again, and only 23% of them seek help or go to a psychologist.

The report calls for more awareness around the emotional and mental health of founders, urging entrepreneurs to seek help when necessary. “The data highlights the isolation of founders in the startup journey and identifies the clear need for entrepreneurs to tap into unbiased support from others that don’t have a clear and vested interest in the company or in driving one specific agenda or another,” stated Nimrod Vromen, CEO Consiglieri and Partner Arnon, Tadmor-Levy.

The report underscores the inseparable relationship between financial and emotional well-being, noting that founders must prioritize their mental health for long-term success.

“Today it is emotionally harder than ever to be a founder,” said Tzahi Weisfeld, VP and GM Intel Ignite: Intel for Startups. “You have to fire employees, cut costs and navigate down rounds, all while keeping a positive attitude and selling the dream, motivating everyone to keep going faster than ever.”