Team First

by Scott

After college, I joined Venture for America with a singular purpose: learning how to build a business. I knew my hands-on experience in the trenches at a startup would be invaluable when the time came to start my own.

During my fellowship, I focused my talents on building software because I had a knack for it. Anyone with a technical degree does their fair share of math problems, but I spent years crunching numbers to calculate the next best move in card games. I loved math so much that my first business venture was doing math homework for lunch money in high school. Naturally, I was happy to find that coding is, much like physics, little more than problem solving through applied math, so I figured being the best developer I could be was the path of least resistance for adding value.

Nerd culture forever!

But as time went on, it became more and more apparent that business is all about people. Capacity to build a product or service is necessary to create a successful company, but in the wise words of Jim Collins1, leaders of great companies prioritize getting the right people on the bus above all else. Logically, this makes sense to me because the other major components of a startup—market and product—are ultimately derivatives of the individuals that make up the team. Castle was founded on this philosophy, and I’m confident we got it right.

Max and Tim are each titans in their own right.

Max is an eccentric critic whose ability to get shit done is unlike anyone I’ve ever met, and the man has superhuman reading powers. His unwavering focus is borderline intimidating, his loud personality makes him the perfect champion for Castle, and his unabashed criticism is the primary source of feedback with which we use to make our product, and ourselves, better.

Tim is a stoic scientist whose mind is so logical that he literally never fails to dismiss a false dichotomy when presented with one. His word is worth its weight in gold, his breadth and depth of knowledge are incredible, and his penchant for levity makes him a pleasure to be around—trust me, as cofounders of two companies we spend a lot of time together.

Of course there’s plenty left for us to learn, but one thing’s for sure: I’m proud to call these dudes my business partners.


If they sound like individuals you’d like to spend every waking hour with too, then you’re in luck because I’m willing to share. In fact, Castle is hiring!


  1. Yes, I read cheesy business books like Good to Great in my spare time, what of it?