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David Skok

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Top Stories by David Skok

It’s just after the end of a quarter, and for VC’s that means many board meetings to review how portfolio companies have performed. Over the years of doing this, I’ve been shocked and surprised how many times I’ve seen good companies with great product/market fit miss their sales targets for an incredibly avoidable reason: they […] ... (more)

J2EE Standard Dramatically Changes Application Server Market

Earlier this year I wrote an article describing how Enterprise JavaBeans had impacted the application server market, causing a convergence between Web application servers and distributed object and transaction servers. With the advent of the J2EE (Java 2 Enterprise Edition) standard, we're about to witness another seismic shift in this market. It's worth looking at what J2EE is - and isn't. J2EE builds on the Java 2 standard, and adds specifications for most of the important programming interfaces in an application server. Key interfaces are EJB for middle-tier logic, and servle... (more)

Designing Startup Metrics to Drive Successful Behavior

Great companies are almost always run by great management teams. And great management teams know that the only way to improve a process is to start by measuring it. Good metrics should also be actionable, and drive successful behavior. In this post I hope to help show how to figure out which metrics matter the most, and how to design them in such a way as to drive behavior that will lead to the results that you want. This post is applicable to any kind of business. In a follow up post, I will use this technique to walk through the design of a set of metrics for a SaaS company. S... (more)

Two Excellent Startup Presentations

Readers of this blog will likely really enjoy the following two presentations that discuss lessons learned by the founders of both DropBox and Xobni. There are lots of great lessons to be learned here. Dropbox Startup Lessons Learned From Zero to a Million Users – Dropbox and Xobni lessons learned ... (more)

SaaS Metrics 2.0 – A Guide to Measuring and Improving What Matters

“If you cannot measure it, you cannot improve it” – Lord Kelvin This article is a comprehensive and detailed look at the key metrics that are needed to understand and optimize a SaaS business. It is a completely updated rewrite of an older post.  For this version, I have co-opted two real experts in the field: Ron Gill, (CFO, NetSuite), and Brad Coffey (VP of Strategy, HubSpot), to add expertise, color and commentary from the viewpoint of a public and private SaaS company. My sincere thanks to both of them for their time and input. SaaS/subscription businesses are more complex th... (more)