Most of our investments are early stage. For these startups, our investment will not bring the company to cash flow break even. And many times our initial investment will not even bring the company to initial revenue either.
That is just fine with us.
There are many other things we want our companies to accomplish with our initial capital. Such as product, learn & engage with their users and staffing.
It’s easy for young startups to deal with task list at hand. Nothing seems more important than the product release that is 6 or 8 weeks away or the fires at the moment.
In a startup, sometimes its best to start at the end and work backwards.
What does that mean?
Think about what you want your company to look like a year from now. Then work backwards and figure out what you have to do & the timeframe (and how your board can help) to achieve those goals.
I’ve found that it this approach can help big time. It helps measure how your company is doing against those goals. It also provides transparency to your board so that everyone is on the same page with those goals.
But most importantly, it helps keep everyone focused on the big stuff.
In a startup you will always be understaffed and too little resources. That is just how it goes. And it can be overwhelming at times.
So I encourage you to try this approach and start at the end. It should clear away much of the noise.