Advising a startup CEONot all projects need to take months
We once provided advice on strategy and revenue generation to the founder/CEO of a high growth startup. The company was in the technology and consumer products space, its founder had started the company to solve a problem in the industry he had left his previous job for. We quickly realized that while solving a sticky, profitable problem for that small sector the company had also solved a problem for a much larger industry. We advised the CEO to pivot the company slightly and to target the much larger industry. While sales cycles would increase from roughly months to quarters the revenue volumes would increase by more than 10X – well worth the additional effort.
Our plan was threefold:
- Hire an additional sales person so that the CEO could offload her sales prospects (and workload) in the historic market.
- Raise some additional equity capital. Investment capital was available and with longer sales cycles and a transition underway, it made sense to have some additional capital.
- Once the CEO pivoted away from his previous clients and handed that effort over the newly hired salesperson they would focus on the new industry and a particular company within that industry that could be leveraged.
Within a few short months, the capital had been raised, the hire had been made and the CEO was well on her way to winning a huge new contract.