As a serial entrepreneur, I learned a lot of lessons from things that
didn’t work. These lessons later on shaped my ideas on what would be needed
to build a successful startup company. When I became a VC, I realized that
these same lessons could be applied to helping evaluate the many businesses
that I was getting to see. Whilst the following criteria are by no means a
guarantee of success, or the only criteria that you should think about, I do
believe they can be very helpful.
So in no particular order, here is a list of six questions that I learned to
ask to validate my own startup ideas, that now shape what I look for in an
investment. I hope this list will help you validate your idea:
1. An extraordinary entrepreneur with unique insight
Does the entrepreneur show the extraordinary drive, energy, passion, and
commitment to take on the tough task of starting a com... (more)
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)
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
“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)
2014-15 Bridge Group SaaS Inside Sales Research Survey
The Bridge Group is known for publishing insightful studies that aid SaaS
Sales & Marketing leaders to build and optimize their inside sales
strategies. They are working on the 5th round of their SaaS inside sales
research and would like our help completing a 6-7 minute survey. Your answers
will remain anonymous, and in return the research promises action-oriented
guidance on compensation benchmarks, selling strategies, productivity and
performance best practices, and more.
If you are able, please take a few moments to fill o... (more)