Friday, August 21, 2009

Ten thoughts on what matters at a startup: Deliver

Why does deliver matter at a startup?

Not everyone has to deliver. I have three little boys, the two oldest of whom play soccer. I go to the games and I have a wonderful time watching them run around, get the ball, occasionally score, and generally try to play the game. When they’re done, I tell them that they played great, and I ask them if the had fun. Effort and having fun are what they’re going for; I don’t expect them to deliver goals or a win at this stage.

A startup is different. Effort is great, but results are what matter. Effort can, of course, lead to results; in the end, being able to deliver matters more than anything.

In a sense, the other posts in this short series are really about behaviours that support being able to deliver results.

At Primal Fusion, we saw how making an effort delivered results when we launched at DEMO. All the work and preparation were invisible to the world, though, and what mattered was what was visible on stage: our founder showing our thought networking service live on laptop computer. The effort would have been worth far less without that successful demonstration.

We have more milestones to reach in our journey at Primal Fusion, and we know what it will take to reach them and to deliver results.

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This is one in a short series of posts called Ten Thoughts on what matters at a startup. The thoughts started life as a presentation I made at VeloCity residence at the University of Waterloo. While they're far from definitive, and aren't a top ten, they've mattered to me in my software startup experience.

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