Also shared on Startups.co. If there is one quintessential task a startup CEO needs to be in charge of is not letting the company running out of money.
Also shared on Startups.co. If there is one quintessential task a startup CEO needs to be in charge of is not letting the company running out of money.
Everyone wants to build great products. Here’s how you can do so. Product Design is at the heart of a startup. An idea needs a LOT of work before it develops into a well received product. With limited time and money, one doesn’t have the space to make blunders.
Over the last two decades of building and running businesses, and the last couple of years working full time with dozens of startup founders and CEOs on their strategies and funding plans in my consultancy business, I have observed that there are a co
More new VC money sloshing around Europe. This time it comes courtesy of Berlin-based Project A, which has previously invested in companies such as WorldRemit, Lost My Name, and ZenMate.
500 Startups is rebooting its efforts in Greater China after it hired a new head of business for the region, which covers mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Edith Yeung, a former executive with browser firm Dolphin Mobile, is taking up the reins.
People love a good startup story, especially one that chronicles the mishaps of first-time entrepreneurs and their eccentric founding team members. Case in point: HBO’s “Silicon Valley.
One of the biggest challenges facing technology startups (and many other technology companies) is getting established businesses to run "Proof of Concepts" - that is, trials of the startup's offerings, that, if successful, will likely lead to a sale.
In the early days of a startup, the only thing that matters is growth. It’s a matter of life and death (as you know already), so when it comes to hiring, you reasonably assume that all of your hires should directly contribute to that growth.
There is a lot of coverage of the companies that have reached valuations of over a billion dollars. Many of these companies were not always fast growing businesses.
Forget overpriced schools, long days in a crowded classroom, and pitifully poor results. These websites and apps cover myriads of science, art, and technology topics. They will teach you practically anything, from making hummus to building apps in node.js, most of them for free.
Noah Kagan built two multi-million dollar online businesses before turning 28. He also looks great in orange. (Photo: Laughing Squid) I first met Noah Kagan over rain and strong espressos at Red Rock Coffee in Mountain View, CA. It was 2007.
First, a bit of background. I went to Yale and learned about elite college admissions from reading forums like College Confidential. This knowledge helped me get into great schools and I advised my classmates/younger students too. But 1-on-1 advising doesn’t scale.
Business leaders have many tasks to accomplish and prioritizing stuff can be hard. Yesterday I wrote about the need to “do fewer things, more often” in which I described that frenzied world we live in and why the shiny objects and distractions stop us from living up to our true potential.
So, how do you build the next Trello and get rich? By not building a Trello clone. Why? Trello is a classic example of a disruptive innovation. If you deal with disruptive innovation, the first mover takes everything.
Disclaimer: This piece is written anonymously. The names of a few particular companies are mentioned, but as common examples only. This is a short write-up on things that I wish I'd known and considered before joining a private company (aka startup, aka unicorn in some cases).
A few months ago, my friend Tim took a new sales job at a Series C tech company that had raised over $60 million from A-list investors. He’s one of the best salespeople I know, but soon after starting, he emailed me to say he was struggling.
It is critically important for the founders of a company to intimately understand the company’s key performance indicators (KPIs). Founders cannot hope to grow a company in any meaningful way without an almost obsessive focus on its KPIs.
Here I’m going to share my experience on creating a SaaS webservice with a simple LAMP stack and making it earn $3700 per month (actually it made around $7000 before the Russian currency had tanked).
About 6 months ago I decided that I was going to build a SaaS company from scratch. I had recently sold my company and found myself in discussions with a number of startups around making angel investments.
The atmosphere was tense and Nardone was furious, three former employees said, because his COO, Emerson Osmond, had gone behind his back.
In 2014, my friends and I set out to build the best possible web design tools. We built UI kits, Admin Dashboards, Templates, and Plugins. We’ve always tried to create web products that are helpful in the development process, and that we would use ourselves for building websites for clients.
This article has been updated in 2017 with more spreadsheets, clarity and action from an article I wrote in 2010. That was the goal Mint.com’s co-founder, Aaron Patzer, set me when I first started as Mint’s Marketing Director. I thought to myself as the nerves began to kick in.
A growth team has the “responsibility to measure, understand and improve the flow of users in and out of the product and business. That’s the role of growth.” “A finance team by definition measures, understands and improves the flow of capital in and out of a business.
There has been a lot of public debate over the past several weeks about whether it’s a good thing to be “gross margin positive” or not and commentary always reminds me that some people at startups don’t quite understand financial metrics or even how to think about which ones are healthy.
Almost a year ago, I published a framework I called The Hierarchy of Engagement, that synthesized my thinking on how to build a product that endures. Since then, I’ve had countless conversations with founders about the hierarchy and how it impacts their product roadmaps.
Four days into 2017, Medium's employees came to work and were told that one-third of them — 50 people — were being let go. They were shocked. Their adored boss, billionaire CEO Ev Williams, best known as the cofounder of Twitter, seemed to care so deeply for each of them.
You’ve probably seen this diagram before. It elegantly shows that product management is the intersection of a diverse skill set. Its simplicity has made it one of the most successful product management memes out there, and it’s done good things for the discipline.
The turn of the calendar is cathartic for entrepreneurs — there’s something about starting a new year that inspires folks to launch a new startup, build a new product or raise capital. If you’re starting to raise capital, this is your guide. Let’s get to it.
One of the most common types of advice we give at Y Combinator is to do things that don't scale. A lot of would-be founders believe that startups either take off or don't. You build something, make it available, and if you've made a better mousetrap, people beat a path to your door as promised.
There’s been lots written about how Internet businesses should build software, from books like The Lean Start-Up, and posts from Google Ventures, but not many examples where startups open up their process and show how it really happens.
Are you a good leader? How do you know? In a startup culture that is obsessed with management by metrics, many founders struggle to answer this critical question about themselves. It’s tempting to measure leaders simply by the success of their businesses.
I’m done. I’m tapping out. I’m bowing out of the startup rat race. No, we’re not shutting down Baremetrics. Very much the opposite. I’m just finished subscribing to and following the traditional startup mentality as we build our company.
When it went public in 2011, over a decade after the company’s founding, Pandora employed fewer than 40 engineers.
In response to a comment on Hacker News, I’m going to try writing an annual letter to the YC community with an update on our progress. Our mission is to enable the most innovation of any company in the world in order to make the future great for everyone.
The low-confidence cynic in me wants to tell you that a seven figure exit isn’t really that much. I have friends who have had eight figure exits, and I’m met multiple people who have had 10 figure exits.
The hype around artificial intelligence/machine learning has reached mythic proportions. Some commentators are calling AI the fourth industrial revolution. Others are calling it the new electricity. And I’m a believer.
Over 12 years, Silicon Valley accelerator-turned-seed-fund Y Combinator has invested in more than a thousand companies. Its success stories include Dropbox, Airbnb, and Stripe, and recipients of its investments are altogether worth an estimated $100 billion today.
I’ve spent many years referencing Wikipedia’s list of cognitive biases whenever I have a hunch that a certain type of thinking is an official bias but I can’t recall the name or details. It’s been an invaluable reference for helping me identify the hidden flaws in my own thinking.
You’ve probably heard about Slack’s exponential growth. And you may have read how the internal-communication platform — now just two years old — is already used by more than 30,000 teams and valued at over $1 billion. But have you visited its Twitter Wall of Love?
Kim Scott had one thing to do that day. She was going to price her product. It was the year 2000, she was the founder and CEO of Juice Software, and she had blocked off her whole morning to make this decision.
For weekly recaps of The Macro, sign up here. Next, they build a minimum viable product (MVP) as a proof of concept, spending a lot of time arguing about which features to include or exclude from the MVP. Finally, if the MVP works well, they plan on building the full, mature, stable product.
If save-for-later service Pocket had a spirit animal, it’d be the American field ant. Like the insect, the startup supports that which is many times its own size.
Founders predictably underestimate the importance of hiring marketers. As a result, many startups don’t get round to marketing their product until it’s too late. This happened to me and I’ve thought long and hard about why this happens.
Snapchat’s first-mover advantage in vertical video and short-lived/disappearing images in combination with its engaging products has positioned it as the most significant competitor to Facebook in social networking.
A few years ago I had a jarring discovery. I’d spent more than 15 years building and launching technology products, but all of a sudden the skills and instincts I’d honed seemed irrelevant. In fact, if I stuck with them, they’d likely lead my company to ruin.
(Background: Dinnr was an ad-hoc, same day ingredient delivery service. Select a recipe on our website, and we deliver everything you need to cook that recipe at home, all the items pre-measured with printed instructions.
Three years earlier, Apple had been the first major tech company to integrate a smart assistant into its operating system. Siri was the company’s adaptation of a standalone app it had purchased, along with the team that created it, in 2010.
David Lieb knew his company Bump was going to take off when strangers dressed up as the app for Halloween. While at the University of Chicago, he built the app so he could more easily exchange contact information with new classmates by physically bumping their phones together. Bump was no blip.
The story of how an app I built in 6 hours got 2.3 million downloads, generated a full-time salary and was acquired after 18 months. You can now get this story as an eBook, get it free!
At first — or even second — glance at Snap’s S-1 it’s easy to see why many are drawing a comparison to Twitter. Like Twitter, Snap is losing a lot of money; like Twitter, Snap’s growth rate is slowing; and, like Twitter, Snap is actually losing leverage.
The day before Kintan Brahmbhatt’s 10th birthday, he stayed up late, gripped with excitement, so he could open his presents. After tearing off the wrapping on one package, he was overjoyed to find a bright red, remote-controlled toy car inside. Brahmbhatt placed the car on the floor.
If you’re philosopher Lao-Tzu, the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. But if you’re Edith Harbaugh, it starts with a celeste Bianchi road bike — and the voyage is 3,360 miles.
At Etsy, COO Linda Kozlowski spearheaded international expansion, unified and started growing its marketing plans, began redefining the company’s brand, launched a new communications strategy, and kicked off the integration of user feedback into product development — all in about six months.
For a moment, simplify the purpose of startup to one act: the transfer of belief. From founder to herself. From founder to startup. From startup to investor. From startup to market. That last transfer of conviction proves to be one of the most tenuous.
Most of us know how bureaucratic processes work. If you want to build a new deck on the back of your house you might have to apply for a permit.
Whether you are starting a new business or scaling your business to new heights, these are some of the most useful entrepreneur resources you will ever need. My hope is that this post will be a great resource list for all your entrepreneurial needs.
I work with clients to do some basic marketing when building their apps, and I thought it would be worth compiling a short list. These simple things don’t take much cash and are pretty much the bare necessities if you want anyone to notice you’re launching an app.
In September 2012, Forbes published a lengthy feature heralding Brazil’s arrival as “one of the most entrepreneurial countries in the world.
If you made a movie about a laid-off, sad-sack, fiftysomething guy who is given one big chance to start his career over, the opening scene might begin like this: a Monday morning in April, sunny and cool, with a brisk wind blowing off the Charles River in Cambridge, Mass.
Ali Rowghani, head of YC Continuity, talks to GitLab CEO Sid Sijbrandij (W15) about how GitLab has built a completely distributed company with 160 people (and growing). We filmed this conversation at GitLab’s SF headquarters, where Sid is the only local employee.
This article is by Dave Girouard, CEO of personal finance startup Upstart, and former President of Google Enterprise Apps. He’s well known for building Google’s enterprise apps division into a $1B+ global business. Here he shares his tips for making speed fundamental to your company.
But to repeat ourselves for a moment: Good metrics aren’t just about raising money from VCs … they’re about running the business in a way where founders can know how — and why — certain things are working (or not), and then address them accordingly.
What does your morning routine look like? Mine used to be waking up at 7AM, sleep walking to the shower, frantically getting dressed into socially acceptable clothes, pouring myself a cup of caffeine, and walking amongst drones of zombies to a crowded bus station.
One of the most important things I learned from running a startup is that on a macro scale the innovation market is efficient. If the market conditions allow for a startup to arise, it’s overwhelmingly probable that multiple startups already exist in that market.
When designing for the web, you can analyze usage data for your product and compare different interfaces in A/B tests. This is sometimes called “data-driven design”, but I prefer to think of it as data-informed design — the designer is still driving, not the data.
In the first of a new series focusing on city eco-systems, TechCrunch Editor-at-large Mike Butcher gets under the skin of one of Europe’s hottest startup cities. During the last financial crisis Portugal was one of the hardest hit countries in Europe.
Constant Nieuwenhuys (1920) was a Dutch artist who co-founded Situationism in 1957. This was a short lived art movement that didn’t really take off much, back then. Situationism is the theory that human behavior is determined by surrounding circumstances rather than by personal qualities.
We all know the story. A team creates a groundbreaking new innovation only to see it mired in internal debates. When it is eventually launched in the market, there is an initial flurry of sales to early adopters, but then sales cycles become sluggish.
I consider a scale-up as a company that is in this third phase. Pouring resources in fast and getting a big return on them without the wheels coming off the bus. In HubSpot’s case, it took us about 1 year to get through phase 1. It took about 6 years to get through phase 2.
Vanity metrics: good for feeling awesome, bad for action. (photo source: UK Guardian) This is a guest post by serial entrepreneur Eric Ries. He was most recently co-founder and CTO of IMVU, which has more than 20 million registered users and generates $1,000,000+ in revenue per month.
Kim Scott, co-founder of Candor, Inc., has built her career around a simple goal: Creating bullshit-free zones where people love their work and working together. She first tried it at her own software startup.
At this time, The Review traditionally reflects on the extraordinary people we’ve interviewed and long-form articles we’ve published over the last year.
The computing industry progresses in two mostly independent cycles: financial and product cycles. There has been a lot of handwringing lately about where we are in the financial cycle. Financial markets get a lot of attention. They tend to fluctuate unpredictably and sometimes wildly.
There’s so much truth in this tweet. And it resonates so much, I think it deserves a name: The Bad Product Fallacy Your personal use cases and opinion are a shitty predictor of a product’s future success.
Two months ago I started my journey to build my first web app. It’s a very basic web app called When To Surf for surfers to see when is the best time for them to surf every day. I’m launching it today. I’m from Ukraine, I work remotely at Railsware .