As a CEO, your time is a vital company resource. How you spend your workday — the meetings you're in, the initiatives you weigh in on, even where you are physically — influences how decisions are made.
I've long described decision-making as the defining factor of company culture because it determines how leaders lead and how teams collaborate, and every competitive advantage (or disadvantage) stems from these two factors. This means you set the tone for your entire culture, whether you realize it or not, just by how you spend your day. No pressure.
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- How and When Do You Hire Your First Salesperson? - dot.LA ›
Sometimes it's better not to raise money. I know this sounds strange coming from me. I'm an angel investor in over 50 startups, my Twitter is essentially a ticker for funding news and I've always been a huge proponent for going public, which requires a long road of investments along the way. But there are great reasons to turn down venture capital investment and bootstrap it yourself or take just a small amount of funding. This was the crux of my discussion the other day with a founder facing this big decision on whether to raise a seed round.
This founder's company is getting great customer traction within a niche of a skyrocketing industry that has some very powerful players. He's at a fork in the road. If he pursues funding, he'll likely be able to raise a round. But is it the right thing?
- What Venture Capitalist Brian Lee Looks for in a Startup - dot.LA ›
- When Should a Startup Hire Its First HR Person? - dot.LA ›
- As CEO, How Should I Spend My Time? - dot.LA ›
The other day I had a call with a founder in my portfolio of angel investments who is preparing for a Series A round. His question was: At what point should he step back from personally leading sales and hire a real sales team?
Every seed or Series A company will go through this important step. There's no question that a founder's passion and knowledge of the product usually makes for a great salesperson. But at some point, it's time to let go and bring in the experts: true salespeople.
The challenge is, unless you cut your teeth in sales or have direct experience with the inner workings of a sales organization, many founders don't know much about recruiting or structuring a sales team. So where do you start?