That, more than anything else, is what will eventually kill their company. Not a lack of funding, not bad product-market fit, but a lack of motivation to try something else and find another way to solve that problem when their first solution doesn’t work out.
Beware Bullshit KPIs
Good KPIs are lagging indicators and they tell you what has already happened to you business. Leading indicators are great KPIs because they help you predict the future.
If You Want Money, Ask For Advice (If You Want Advice, Ask for Money)
Rapidly implementing investor feedback immediately builds an emotional tie between the investor and your company. Maybe they didn’t invest capital, but they invested an idea, and now their idea is a part of your idea.
Forget “Smart” and “Dumb” Money; Find “Calm” Money
You’ve maybe heard the terms “dumb money” and “smart money.” If this is your first rodeo, “dumb money” refers to capital from investors who provide nothing but the cash, ie. they have no experience or connections in your industry, while “smart money” comes from investors who can offer you their rolodex and years of experience in addition to their funds.
Unfortunately, smart money is by and large a myth.
The #1 Killer Of Startups Is Solving Problems That Aren’t Problems Yet
Why the hell would you worry about your site’s scalability if you don’t know how to effectively acquire customers? Your site falling over someday MIGHT kill your company (probably not). Never growing past eight customers WILL kill your company. Instead of using your beautiful brain and precious funding to solve theoretical scaling issues, perhaps you should go run some customer acquisition experiments. Build a fucking landing page. Buy some AdWords.
The CEO Has Three Responsibilities
I regularly tell people the CEO has three responsibilities.
* Communicate the Vision.
* Hire Great People.
* Don’t Run Out of Money.
Full stop. End of story. Next blog post. But just in case you wanted more…