I Advise Startup Founders
I help the founding teams of tech businesses navigate the challenges that come from building a popular product. Founders typically begin to ask for help around the time they reach 25 employees, lose a key team member or customer, or revenue stops growing.
You just passed 25 employees
I remember the excitement of hiring my first full time employee. That excitement turned into frustration by the time employee number ten was hired, and mass confusion by the time employee twenty-five walked through the door.
To get this far you've already figured out how to build a product and sell it to customers. Now you need to learn how to find the best people, teach them what you need them to do, and make sure they're actually good at their jobs.
The problem is - if you're like me when I hired my 25th employee - you've never done it before.
You just lost a key employee or customer
If you're like me, losing a key team member, customer, or partner feels like a punch to the gut. It's impossible not to take it personally.
But at the stage you're at now, it's more likely the problem that caused the breakup came from people or systems you haven't checked in on in a while. They were the right investments at a previous time, now they've become liabilities.
It's time to reconsider everything, improve people and processes that have fallen behind, and empower people that are already part of the solution.
Your revenue just stopped growing
I have good news, this happens in every successful business, sometimes multiple times, on the path to greatness.
Everything we've ever read leads us to believe that high growth companies should at some point experience that infamous "hockey stick" growth we all want. It's true.
What isn't said is that following each period of hyper revenue growth there is typically a period of inefficiency and stagnation marked by flat revenue.
I've been here before. What matters most right now is how quickly you improve yourself as the operator of your company.