Chapter 1: Founding

The Founding Idea

Start with a problem or a disruption Founding Idea: MobileIron Founding idea: Do the homework Founding-idea test: Does it have "gravity"?

The Co-Founders

Co-founder fit Co-founder skills Founders set the culture The founder oath: Separate mission and ego Founder challenge #1: Too many co-founders Founder challenge #2: The equity split Founder challenge #3: Founder drama

The Early Team: Choose wisely to survive The Early Investors: Pick like a co-founder Non-linear Path is uncomfortable, but normal Thinking Ahead: Milestones to make the next round easy

Chapter 2: Product-Market Fit

Introducing Product-Market Fit PMF for Enterprise Startups: It’s different

Paying reference customers How do you know?

Finding PMF: Your path through the woods

Start with the product-market hypothesis Focus but be open to adjacencies - even if that seems like heresy Before building: Gathering customer data is an unsung skill While building: Listen, review and iterate your way to PMF Get to 20 paying customers—and find your hotspot MobileIron: Adjusts and Finds PMF Engagio: Fast path to PMF & $1M Annual Recurring Revenue

PMF Challenges

Overcoming founder bias When PMF feels elusive Some early customers get left behind Technical debt – damned if you do, damned if you don’t Team debt – virtually unavoidable

Achieving PMF: A huge milestone

Chapter 3: Go-To-Market Fit

The missing link for growth: Introducing Go-to-Market Fit The 3 parts of GTM-Fit Part 1: Decide on a GTM Model Part 2: The Key - Create a repeatable GTM playbook 1.0

Step 1: Figure out the core steps in your GTM Model Step 2: At each stage, what do marketing and sales say and do? Step 3: Identify how the rest of the company can support each step MobileIron: Sample for sales-led playbook SendGrid: Sample for marketing-led playbook with self-serve Nailing the GTM playbook

Part 3: Line up on an urgent wave – or suffocate slowly

Address an urgent operational pain Provide a high level strategic-value proposition tied to larger wave Urgency requires sacrifice

When to start looking for GTM-Fit? What if GTM-Fit feels elusive?

Cure #1: Find the GTM patterns Cure #2: Get everyone in line

Finding GTM-Fit: Hard on you. Hard on the team.

GTM-Fit: strains the company and the team VP Sales’ dilemma: Davy Crockett or Braveheart

GTM Fit doesn’t always mean hypergrowth now Inside the black box of GTM metrics

Instrument the GTM machine analytics Metrics answer the key GTM financial questions

Drive scale: find GTM leverage What does GTM-Fit feel like? Momentum. GTM-Fit: Exit survival mode. Get ready for Thrival.

Chapter 4: Accelerate to Category Leadership

Welcome to Thrival Tien Tzou, Zuora Aaron Levie, Box Bob Tinker, Mobileiron Acceleration GTM to category leadership Why target category leadership?

Startups and other vendors don't decide. Customers and Industry analysts do. Creating a new category

GTM Acceleration drives massive changes across a company

Execution shift: from careful execution to calculated recklessness Market shift: separate from the pack Market shift: obsess about awareness and thought leadership Mindset shift: A GTM-led culture Investor shift: growth-centric

The big question: How fast to go?

Sample growth algorithms Dashboards and early-warning systems Intelligence from the troops

Chaos of GTM Acceleration: Really fun and really scary

Fix one thing, another breaks: The Flywheel of Success and Pain

The “Oh Shit” Moments How to Avoid Total Chaos

Clear vision and culture Set explicit company and team goals. Tackle interlocks and issues. Pace of execution: regular communication and program reviews

Accelerating to Category Leadership is both fun and scary

Chapter 5: Achieving Sustainable Industry Leadership

Transcending the initial category

Citrix,"Once you get to category leadership, it’s smooth sailing, right? Few companies transcend their initial category The 7 keys to transcendence

Path to industry leadership

Add new GTM Capture adjacent categories From product to platform & ecosystem Competitive landscape: eat or be eaten Overcome the gravitational pull of the initial category Achieving escape velocity

Big Question: When to shift from acceleration to sustainability? Drive to Sustainable Industry Leadership

Execution shift: Calculated recklessness to predictable growth Mindset shift: Clear path to cash flow break even Mindset shift: Drive efficiency and maximize net LTV Investor shift: Prepare for cross-over & public investors

Drive to Sustainability – People & Culture Changes

Culture co-existence: Growth with planning & optimization Team changes: Expect them

Success means change. Change is hard and healthy.

Chapter 6: Closing Thoughts

Key to success: Anticipate company change In the beginning: Survival Then, shift to Thrival Sometimes there's not a great answer Change is hard. Change is healthy. Celebrate along the way and have fun!