Tech companies when they’re small can move so much faster. It’s been reinforced for us how much we need to keep moving really fast even as we get big. Otherwise inertia slows thing down. Last time at Startup School. People tell you “you can’t do this, there’s all this stuff you have to know”. My message last time was that no, don’t let those people tell you that. I think it was taken out of context that I don’t value experience at all. I think a lot of you are here because you want to take your shot at something and build something.
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook
Well, managing, raising capital, and figuring out what value the company should be at and when you should raise and when you shouldn’t is definitely a big lesson that I didn’t entirely understand until after raising a couple of rounds of financing. The other lesson would be: hiring people is the most important thing that you do at a company, so have a greater focus on the interview process, and train everyone to interview people well and deliberately. A lot of times people interview and they get into a room and they’re, like, well, I thought that guy sounded like he knew what he was talking about. You need well-defined criteria for how you evaluate: who asks what questions. Make sure you cover all areas of technical and management skills. Ask the same sort of technical questions between two engineering candidates so that you can compare them head to head accurately, efficiently. All those things matter, but they’re actually not done all that well in most companies. Aaron Patzer, Founder of Mint.com
Successful bootstrappers know this: Your business is about the process. Itʼs not about the product. If you structure a business model that doesnʼt reward you as you proceed, it doesnʼt matter how much you love the product. Pretty soon there wonʼt be any product to love. The bootstrapper is focused on finding a market that will sustain the process. A platform that responds to the work you do. With a business model that works, the deal is simple. You invest time, effort, and money. In return, your market responds with sales, cash flow, and profits. Seth Godin, The Bootstrapper’s Bible
Customers love to personalize applications to fit the way they work. By building your apps with a single code base, customers can easily customize them with tools that work on the application’s metadata layer, knowing that their customizations won’t be lost when the app is updated. A single code base makes your life easier all the way around: Instead of tracking multiple code bases, versions, and worrying about incompatibilities, you can focus your development efforts on pleasing your users. Salesforce.com whitepaper, The 7 Secrets of SaaS Startup Success